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Economy woes - Cutting back on quilting goods?

Economy woes - Cutting back on quilting goods?

Old 01-30-2009, 08:50 AM
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Location: Oregon
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With the economy, do you find yourself cutting back at your LQS?

It is such a trickle down effect. If we cut back, the shops have a hard time. We might loose them. But if we keep shopping we might be saving our local shops, but have to deal with our mates, in these trying times.

I have to figure out how to 'support' my LQS, without going into debt. :lol:

My feelings is that I would rather have a local shop that I can go to, take classes and just have the full support system. On-line 'stores' don't offer as much, IMHO Yea, you can get some fabric 'cheaper' (sometimes), but I'm a feeler. I want to know what I'm getting and I want it now.

DH and I have our own local (automotive) business and we are feeling some of the economy woes. We really, really believe in 'support your local business'. When the local/little guys are gone... then all we are left with are the big box stores. We all know that they don't always have what we want or that their PR has something to be desired.

I better get off my soap box
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Old 01-30-2009, 08:55 AM
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stay up there- we need everyone to support their local family owned businesses. I'm a sole proprietor- I feel the same way about my fellow small business owners. I always support them as much as I can.

Yes, sometimes the squeeze is on the save a buck here or there, but the customer service and knowledge are so much more in a "mom and pop" place. I love going to the lqs and talking to the girls and getting help with my indecision- colors, patterns- they always give me great ideas.

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Old 01-30-2009, 09:06 AM
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I agree, I try to shop locally as a general rule, don't buy online except once in a great while.
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Old 01-30-2009, 09:12 AM
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An EXCELLENT reminder in these trying times. Spend your money locally and support small business.
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Old 01-30-2009, 09:32 AM
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Location: Michigan's Upper Peninsula
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I agree with spending locally.

Sometimes the prices are higher, but the customer service is great.
These owners have heart and soul invested in their businesses and need our support.

Even though I have to cut back on my purchases, I would rather go to the store on a regular basis than only go when they have a sale.
The owner's knowledge and experience are the intangibles that I am willing to pay for regularly.

The worst feeling comes about for me when I see a local store going out of business. There are about 30,000 people living in the county. These shop owners become someone with whom we can place a face and remember how they contribute to our community.

Thanks for letting me rattle on! Small shops within 80 miles from my home are having super, souper, etc. sales this weekend. I hope they
have successful sales :)
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Old 01-30-2009, 09:35 AM
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I agree, we need to support our local shops. I was just at the Aquarium store yesterday, a little mom and pop place, and they are getting hit hard, I'd much, much rather buy from them than Petco or some big box place. The fish I get from my little store actually live for more than a few days! Also I too prefer to be able to "feel" and look closely at the fabric I am purchasing, I rarely order online for fabrics and quilting supplies, with the exception of the Roll of Warm and Natural. A friend of ours owns a little Christian Book Store. We used to order all our books on-line but are trying to shop there as much as possible cause I know how hard it is for them right now. She is also one of my quilting buddies and I don't want to see their store go under!!
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Old 01-30-2009, 09:40 AM
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Can I offer an opinion on the buy local first idea? Our town has a beautiful and diverse downtown shopping area. It has always been fun to shop downtown and you know most of the owners as they are your neighbors and friends. This past Christmas season, the downtown association in our area ran an ad campaign that made me not step downtown once for Christmas. Everyone on our list received gift certificates to the 'big box' stores. The reason? The ads the association ran were very negative. Instead of making me want to go into the local stores, the ads implied that if we didn't spend our $$ locally, we were rotten citizens of the town. That was sure incentive to me - not- For heavens sake, offer me hot apple cider and a smile, a chance to win a $10 gift certificate. In all fairness, the big box stores employ my neighbors and friends also. Now that the ads have stopped, I am back downtown doing my part. Trust me, I am not the only one who felt a negative message was not worth their advertising dollars.
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Old 01-30-2009, 09:45 AM
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I grew up in a small town where the only items available to buy were what the owners of the few stores wanted to stock. They didn't stock anything new because it may not sell and they would be out shelf space as well as profit. It's hard to shop at the local stores when a few miles down the road there are bigger stores with more selection for the money. I have asked the two local fabric/sewing stores in my town about a new quilting/sewing tools and they look at me like I'm from Mars. I don't have the tolerance for small stores.
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Old 01-30-2009, 12:28 PM
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I live in a small town with very few places to shop at all. I do buy what I can locally, but it really isn't much.

I have one local LQS and I will not go in the shop unless I really need something. They are extremely rude. They treat you like there is something wrong with you if you don't buy what they recommend even if you are looking for a specific fabric.

One time I ran out of a fabric and was looking to see if they had it. It was a pink ribbon fabric. The lady tells me they have it. She takes me to it and it is not the same. She proceeded to tell me it was the only pink ribbon fabric on the market. I obviously knew different since I had some of the other already in a quilt. Then she got snotty when I didn't buy it. They are waaaay overpriced (13.95 for muslin that wasn't as good as what I saw at walmart). I like one kind of quilting needle. I asked them very nicely to order them for me. I even offered to pay (buy off of them) the entire box. They refused to help me out. The only place I can find these needles is Amish country which is 1.5 hrs away. I don't go very often.

When the customer service is right I will shop local. When it's not, I won't!

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Old 01-30-2009, 12:44 PM
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Yes buying Local is so important but on lines stores also have a place for some. I live in a place that does not have a quilt store or guild, We have a fabricville which is also Fabricland which are chain stores. Without online shopping I would not be able to do my quilting. I do have a wonderful quilt store by my cottage i try to go to when i am there.
I also find that I am backing my wall hangings more with muslin as it is so much cheaper and you don't see the backs of the wall hangings.
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