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I cheated on my LQS

I cheated on my LQS

Old 08-14-2012, 01:16 PM
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I love my LQS and the owner. We are good friends. I have to drive 45 minutes to her shop and she gives me 15% off. Well, I've been buying online now and again and a few days ago I went into her shop and noticed that her inventory is down quite a bit. She has a building behind her store with lots of long tables for classes and she keeps it open for anyone to come sew anytime they want. The day I went I could hardly find a place to shop because all the gals were sewing in the shop out back. They were having a great time together. Dawn says they do that all the time. I use to only shop from her and her shop was loaded with fabric and kits. Not so anymore. I think many people are shopping online now, getting better prices and more selection, and Dawn's shop is affected. I feel just horrible. I went there to pick up my quilt that her LAer quilted. Well, I bought a layer cake, but I needed a charm pack really, so she cut the layer cake into 5" squares for me while I waited. What a nice human being she is. And I bought more fabric from her that I didn't need but felt that I owed her. I had a king quilt and she squared it up for me for free, as usual. We visited for an hour. One person came in during that time. Not like the old days. I know prices are high at quilt shops, but she isn't trying to rip anyone off. She is making a business.

She goes out of her way for me all the time. I call her whenever I have a problem sewing and need some math and she helps me. She knows I'm not good at picking out fabric, so she makes me kits out of fabric I like. I told her I was in a funk and needed to take a quilt class to get back into quilting and she asked me which teacher I wanted and then showed me a couple of patterns that I could choose from and then she wrote up a class. Just because I needed it. She is the greatest. And I've been cheating on her. If I would have spent my money in her shop, she would have more fabric, I guarantee it. I spend a lot of money on fabric. I think a lot of us are shopping on line now to get better deals and more selection and we are hurting our LQSs.

I am going to stop online shopping for now. I know she doesn't have a lot of fabric I want, but she has the best eye for blending fabrics together. So, I will for now pick out a piece of fabric from her shop and have her make me a kit again. I need to be loyal. You know, she sells me 2" of fabric, if I need only that. She is all about the customer. She is everyone's best friend. She let me pick the teacher and the pattern and made a class just to get me back into sewing again. You can't find that online. She's the one who bound my last quilt because I don't like binding quilts and the gal that does it for her was unavailable. She cut all the 2 1/2" strips and sewed them together. She did it all. And charged me very reasonable. I bought fabric for the backing of a quilt I brought over and she took the backing fabric home and sewed it together...she even threw in a strip of another fabric to jazz it up...all for free. What online shop would even care about that?

I think we all need to think about buying online and at stores that aren't quilt shops. What are we going to do if they all go out of business???? I rely on her so much. She helps me pick out what quilt pattern to use on my quilt. She teaches me the short cuts. She tells me which books to buy and which aren't worth my money. I take my quilt to be quilted to her and she sends it out and when she gets it back, she pays the LAer out of her till and holds on to my quilt until my payday until I can pay her. She ever said I could take my quilt and write a post dated check. What online store would do that?

I say we celebrate our local quilt stores again. They got us quilting. Let's keep them in business!!!! We don't even know who the online store owners are. Could be big companies who don't quilt and maybe not even a woman in sight.

She has my back. And she wants me to succeed. And I want her to succeed. I think we all need to support our local quilt stores and quit complaining about the extra money. She's not getting rich at her shop.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:21 PM
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I like what you wrote, Jeanne. I think, too, that shop owners need to understand the power of internet shopping and sell their stuff online. Sure, they may need to invest some capital to do it and that's hard. BUT, what if your lqs had kits online that you could browse from home at 11 pm (when I shop!)? Or go online and order something you saw in the shop but didn't buy at the time?

I know that I prefer my lqs and I check out their website regularly, but they don't update their classes often and don't offer any products. I guess I want both - in store and online!
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:22 PM
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I wish my local store was like that. They're not, so I don't feel any guilt about giving my business to others and buying over the internet. You're very lucky to have your LQS.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:30 PM
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Originally Posted by UglyCook View Post
I like what you wrote, Jeanne. I think, too, that shop owners need to understand the power of internet shopping and sell their stuff online. Sure, they may need to invest some capital to do it and that's hard. BUT, what if your lqs had kits online that you could browse from home at 11 pm (when I shop!)? Or go online and order something you saw in the shop but didn't buy at the time?

I know that I prefer my lqs and I check out their website regularly, but they don't update their classes often and don't offer any products. I guess I want both - in store and online!
I agree. A quilt shop in VT has gone online as well as keeping their shop, too. They are really doing great now.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:31 PM
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I totally agree. We need to support small business - and quilt shops in particular, because they support what we love to do. I have a favorite LQS and I have gotten lots and lots of help with blocks, picking fabric, and an occasional "cheer up" talk when I needed it. (In fact, the owner just called me a few days ago and asked if I wanted a part-time job!! Not that we had ever talked about it, but she needs someone and thought I would have the skills and personality to fit in her philosophy for the shop... wow - my dream job dropped in my lap!) I have taken many classes at this shop and buy most of my fabric there. I have at times bought fabric or patterns online, but usually only when I needed a certain fabric and my LQS didn't have it or was out of it. You can get fabric somewhat cheaper online, and there's nothing wrong with that, but you don't have the personal connection with other quilters when you just click and checkout. That's worth paying a few extra dollars to me!

There are no quilt police when it comes to choosing to shop at a LQS or online. But, as the former owner of a small business, I firmly believe we need to support these local shops. The owners really don't get rich, but most I think own and operate quilt shops because they love quilting and want to share their passion with others like us.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:34 PM
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I tend to feel the same way. I started feeling so guilty about my LQS that I ordered fabric from her which I could've ordered by myself online for $2/yd less. The kicker came when her supplier was late on the order and I ended up waiting 3 weeks for it. Hancock's always gets it to me in less than a week. None of it was her fault but I wanted my fabric.

I suppose I will still order online, but will also buy from her on occaision.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:41 PM
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Every time I pass my LQS, I stop in and buy at least a yard, whether I need it or not. It's not much but if everyone did it, it would it would certainly help.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:48 PM
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I love my LQS, too and try to support her by purchasing my fabrics, patterns and supplies from her. She knows though if she isn't able to get something that I need that I will go on-line to get it. She never makes me feel guilty either. Its the reality of living in a rural area. I live over 90 miles from the nearest big box fabric store and over 50 miles from the next nearest LQS so it is important to me that I send as much business her way as possible. Plus her friendship and quilting knowledge is something that I wouldn't get at a bigger store or on-line.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:48 PM
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I have one LQS. I went in recently and made a few purchases and the lady was actually friendly!! I stopped going in there years ago since the staff was never friendly to me. I once went in with my Mother and my sister and when we left my sister asked if they were always so unfriendly. I never said a word about the place to her ahead of time!! Even she could sense it. So that was the last time until recently.

I buy a lot of fabric on line and at Joanns. I am happy with shopping all ways for fabric.
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Old 08-14-2012, 01:59 PM
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You have to do what feels right in your heart and what you can financially afford. Maybe you could strike a better balance. Purchase from her what you can and when you can. There is nothing wrong with subsidizing your projects with some good internet bargains. It is important to support your LQS whenever you can, but competition can be healthy too.
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