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Thread: Support your local quilt Shop

  1. #1
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    Yes, fabric prices are increasing everywhere. I just want to remind everyone to support your local quilt shop. They not only provide fabric but they provide services as well, things that you will not come by on E-bay, Walmart, chain stores, etc. What about the time you needed help with a particular technique-local quilt shop to the rescue. What about the time you needed to learn something new-local quilt shop to the rescue. What about the time you just want to escape the day to day stress of everyone's life-quilt shop to the rescue. Who will help you figure out yardage and make pattern modifications?
    They also provide good quality fabric that lasts and will withstand the test of time. If you are making a heirloom quilt, don't run the risk of using less than quality fabric.
    Most local quilt shops are not in the business to make millions but rather to provide a service to a wonderful group of people - Quilters! We need your support to stick around.
    :) Any suggestions?

  2. #2
    Senior Member renee765's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fussycut
    Yes, fabric prices are increasing everywhere. I just want to remind everyone to support your local quilt shop. They not only provide fabric but they provide services as well, things that you will not come by on E-bay, Walmart, chain stores, etc. What about the time you needed help with a particular technique-local quilt shop to the rescue. What about the time you needed to learn something new-local quilt shop to the rescue. What about the time you just want to escape the day to day stress of everyone's life-quilt shop to the rescue. Who will help you figure out yardage and make pattern modifications?
    They also provide good quality fabric that lasts and will withstand the test of time. If you are making a heirloom quilt, don't run the risk of using less than quality fabric.
    Most local quilt shops are not in the business to make millions but rather to provide a service to a wonderful group of people - Quilters! We need your support to stick around.
    :) Any suggestions?
    I admire LQS owners and the hard work they do to make their quilt shops popular and successful - almost more of a 'way of life' than a 'store'.

    But as I was reading your post, I couldn't help but answer your questions a little differently.

    What about the time you needed help with a particular technique - this Quilting Board has come to my rescue.

    What about the time you just want to escape the day to day stress of everyone's life - this Quilting Board has come to my rescue.

    Who will help you figure out yardage and make pattern modifications? My friends on this Quilting Board have come to my rescue.

    Having said all this, it makes me wonder if our modern technology, with the ability to easily order quilting supplies online, and virtual communities (where else could you get ideas from someone on the east coast, west coast, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, etc.) that creates a global quilting fellowship have made it extremely difficult for a LQS to stay in business? Thank you for all the work that you do!

  3. #3
    mrsdralshhadeh's Avatar
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    Being fairly new to quilting,, and wal mart not caring their fabric anymore,, I am in a pickle,, lol.. SO although I love the LQS,, we do not have them in Puerto Rico,,, so I am forced to buy online,, or have my mother run and grab what she thinks I would like,,or need. (usually right as well,, but then again mothers know everything right,,lol..) but I understand your post,,, it is true,,,,

  4. #4
    Pam
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    They do need to be supported, that is for sure, but I buy mass quantities once a year (Paducah quilt show), and then fill in with a couple of yards here and there. They sure are not going to retire with the profit they make from me. It is 50+ miles for me to go to the LQS, so I try to stop in whenever I am "in town".

  5. #5
    montanaquilter's Avatar
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    i just love MY LQS!! It is a wonderful place to relax, visit, use their class space and just go in and touch the fabrics!! Yes it is also true that they are there for us when we need help learning new techniques, offering inspiring classes, sales and discounts are good also and helping us on all of projects!!
    It is very hard being a store owner and I know that they are NOT getting rich from doing it and it's a very tough job. Thank you to all the small business owners and their patrons for staying open and shopping locally!! It's makes a huge difference.

  6. #6
    Moderator sharon b's Avatar
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    Funny you should post this today . I was out of town today and had the chance to stop by a LQS, just not mine. Make sense. It was very pretty and the fabric was yummy :mrgreen: And on some, the prices probably 50 cents cheaper than MY LQS. Maybe they knew I wasn't from around there I don't know , but just not friendly . So as I looked and pondered .... nope walked out without buying even a fat quarter :roll: I will spend my money locally at MY LQS :lol: :thumbup:

    And this is not the first time I have stopped by this store , and the first time just not friendly either.

    So it does pay to get known at "your" LQS

  7. #7
    montanaquilter's Avatar
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    so true Sharon...I have been to other LQS's and if they are not friendly or helpful or can't even bother to acknowledge me then no they don't deserve my money...obviously they are millionaires and don't care if i really buy anything from them!!

  8. #8
    JJs
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    If there are any LQS around here they are very well hidden - we're in the 'back of beyond' boonies and woods even.
    The closest quilt shop is 90 miles away.

  9. #9
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    We have 2 LQS and one I will never step into again cause the owner is rude and the other has the nicest ppl but I can't afford $10.00 a yard. So what am I suppose to do, I shop WM they are friendly and I can afford them. I come to this board for help and there is always a helpful quilter on here. I am sorry but the debate will never end.

  10. #10
    Super Member Chasing Hawk's Avatar
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    I would be more than happy to support the one near us. But, I don't want to or have the desire to. How she handles customers is something to be desired. I don't know if it is the way we looked or were dressed. Neither one of us is into designer duds or the latest shoe trend. We don't dress to impress nor flaunt or ability to buy what we want without the use of a credit cards or other means. She lost a $1300.00 sale that afternoon, plus what ever material and other goodies I would have bought.

    My husband and I went in there a couple of weeks ago. To inquire about an embroidery machine I am looking to purchase. All she had to do is say she doesn't stock that machine. Her reason was...it was the latest model..it is a model that came out a few months ago. So she steered us towards a machine that was several hundred dollars more the machine I wanted and had features I didn't need or want (Disney designs).
    I asked about the machine I want and it's maximum hoop requirement and she said 5x5. Which isn't true 5x7 is it's maximum even says in the description.Then she states that included in her price were classes, tech service and one free cleaning. I don't need any classes, I would rather explore the machine on my own. But rather than argue with this lady we walked out the door.

    She gave me a bad impression and a feeling of not wanting to go back.

  11. #11
    Moderator littlehud's Avatar
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    My son and I have purchased machines from our LQS and we are always greeted by name and treated well. I love going in there.

  12. #12
    Super Member JanetM's Avatar
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    I do support the LQS's in my area. I know many people feel their prices are too high and prefer to shop at the chain stores. Sewing/Quilting is my ONE indulgence (I'm a very low maintenance woman) so I buy quality fabrics, and quality tools and notions. I'm not nearly as prolific as some of the members on this board, so I haven't broken the bank yet.

    I was next door to JoAnn's today so I went in to look at their magazines. While I was there I looked at the fabric and couldn't believe how their prices have increased. $9.99yd and panels for $16.99. These were not 1st quality fabrics.

    I know that most of the WalMarts have eliminated fabric, so I wonder if JoAnn's is feeling that they are the only game in town for that customer demographic, and feel they can increase their prices and the customer will pay. I will never spend $9.99yd at JoAnn's but will at my LQS if I see something I really like.

    I will continue to support my LQS's because of all that they offer, plus I like to support the little guy over a corporation any day.

  13. #13
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    When you live in a small town and an outlying county, you have to take care of the shop you have. We have two and I support both. The larger one is always busy and classes full. The smaller one is quieter, smaller classes, and a place I go to sit and visit. Of course both stores know me by name and suggest things to me they know I am interested in. I love the personal touch. Otherwise, if they were to close, I would be on a road trip to Ft. Worth or further. I love the big guys buy want to keep the little guys around too.

  14. #14
    Power Poster CarrieAnne's Avatar
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    I am pretty far away from the ones around here too, but there is one I just love. When I want to splurge I go to a LQS and buy a few fat quarters of their 30's prints.
    As someone said, JoAnnes is getting almost as expensive, but they have the AWESOME coupons.
    If a LQS owner treated me badly, I'd never go there again though!

  15. #15

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    Fussycut and other owners, here is my story. First off, I need to say I live in a Quilter's Paradise in Massachusetts! There are 3 LQS's within 15 mins, 5 more in 30 mins and 8+ more within 45 mins. (Also three Joann Fabric stores within 30 mins). Not all in the same direction, but you get the idea. With one to three other friends, I average at least monthly trips (mini shop hops) to several of them at a time. We never come home empty-handed and make one or more purchases in each store.

    I belong to two quilt guilds (each has close to 200 members) and these are active quilters who also regularly patronize these LQS's.
    The closest LQS store owners make themselves visible by participating and getting to know quilters without overt advertising or commercials at the guild meetings. They gain their business through friendliness and having their customers spread the word about where to get which fabrics.

    The LQS's strive to be unique as a destination with their personal touch and selection of fabric categories. The ones that I/we frequent least often are either poorly organized or messy shops, staff that are preoccupied with each other, or too distracted to offer a smile to customers. (This happens rarely since their competition is near by).

    Many use e-mail for monthly newsletter or notice of sales or a special limited discount, special events, etc. Again with a personal touch they are friendly.

    We do our best to support them and they respond by appreciating us and our business. They even make referrals to each other if you are looking for a particular fabric type.

  16. #16
    Power Poster sandpat's Avatar
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    We recently had a new store open within about 25 min. of me...which I can't tell you how much I appreciate! There is no fabric at Wally's, there are no other fabric outlets nearby. I've been there 3 times and purchased each time. I think she will have to work very hard to stay open though due to fabric costs. I'm afraid that the old Wally customers who can't afford higher cost fabs will end up at the thrift store buying clothes to cut up. LQSs are wonderful and I DO support them, but with modern technology and current fabric prices, they will have to be very careful to be able to offer lower priced fabs I think.

  17. #17
    Senior Member pam1966's Avatar
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    I love the ladies at my LQS and although I don't make it there as often as I'd like, I support them as much as I can.

  18. #18
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    ladies..please listen to this..it is very important to support your lqs;s...if they all close ..where are you going to go...walmart fabrics are a hit and a miss..they shrink..they fade..they are not even weaved..and over time they will not hold up...besides walmart doesnt care if you shop there or not..don;t bother to ask them a sewing question..they probably cant thread a needle..joann;s is at least somewhat better...lqs are the best..they need your support..take your machines to get them professioally cleaned..take classes...buy and enjoy from the best even if it means less fabric but the best fabric

  19. #19
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    I mainly buy on line as my LQS has mostly fabric that doesn't interest me.
    I do shop 3 LQS in NH when I'm in their areas: Quilters Workshop in Newport and Quilted Threads in Henniker. Both have an abundance of fabulous fabric.
    Their staff are wonderful women, but I'd shop there anyway.
    Frank's in Claremont has mostly last year's lines (fine by me), at well discounted prices. They are also nice people.

    I go to shops, however, for the fabric; not breaking bread nor marrying them, so attitude is really immaterial to me.

  20. #20
    Super Member weezie's Avatar
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    Don't have one; never had one; got along nicely without one and still do. My support of any shop of any sort has to be beneficial to me as well as the shop. Otherwise, I don't see the point.

  21. #21
    Super Member Luv Quilts and Cats's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sharon b
    Funny you should post this today . I was out of town today and had the chance to stop by a LQS, just not mine. Make sense. It was very pretty and the fabric was yummy :mrgreen: And on some, the prices probably 50 cents cheaper than MY LQS. Maybe they knew I wasn't from around there I don't know , but just not friendly . So as I looked and pondered .... nope walked out without buying even a fat quarter :roll: I will spend my money locally at MY LQS :lol: :thumbup:

    And this is not the first time I have stopped by this store , and the first time just not friendly either.

    So it does pay to get known at "your" LQS
    Not having a friendly staff is the kiss of death for an LQS. My friends and I do not go to shops that are not friendly. And we pass the word to other quilters we know. One store I know of has changed owners so many times because either the new owner or their staff is not friendly and they go out of business. You would think a store that is involved in a craft would be shopper friendly to keep people coming back. I went to one store where the owner was so opionated that she turned alot of people off. If you can't be civil, don't be a quilt shop owner. Sorry for the rant, but this is a pet peeve of mine.

  22. #22
    Super Member brushandthimble's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JanetM
    .


    . I will never spend $9.99yd at JoAnn's but will at my LQS if I see something I really like.

    I will continue to support my LQS's because of all that they offer, plus I like to support the little guy over a corporation any day.
    Ditto! esp regarding the prices at JoAnns.

  23. #23
    Super Member Chasing Hawk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by weezie
    Don't have one; never had one; got along nicely without one and still do. My support of any shop of any sort has to be beneficial to me as well as the shop. Otherwise, I don't see the point.
    Exactly !!!!!

  24. #24
    Super Member JanetM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fabric=fun
    Fussycut and other owners, here is my story. First off, I need to say I live in a Quilter's Paradise in Massachusetts! There are 3 LQS's within 15 mins, 5 more in 30 mins and 8+ more within 45 mins. (Also three Joann Fabric stores within 30 mins). Not all in the same direction, but you get the idea. With one to three other friends, I average at least monthly trips (mini shop hops) to several of them at a time. We never come home empty-handed and make one or more purchases in each store.

    I belong to two quilt guilds (each has close to 200 members) and these are active quilters who also regularly patronize these LQS's.
    The closest LQS store owners make themselves visible by participating and getting to know quilters without overt advertising or commercials at the guild meetings. They gain their business through friendliness and having their customers spread the word about where to get which fabrics.

    The LQS's strive to be unique as a destination with their personal touch and selection of fabric categories. The ones that I/we frequent least often are either poorly organized or messy shops, staff that are preoccupied with each other, or too distracted to offer a smile to customers. (This happens rarely since their competition is near by).

    Many use e-mail for monthly newsletter or notice of sales or a special limited discount, special events, etc. Again with a personal touch they are friendly.

    We do our best to support them and they respond by appreciating us and our business. They even make referrals to each other if you are looking for a particular fabric type.
    You are so lucky to have so many shops nearby..can I come visit?

  25. #25

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    Janet M. and others - if you are coming to the New England area, i would be glad to help you locate shops near where you are visiting/staying. I know about and have visited most of the ones in Massachusetts, Maine and New Hampshire - less to the ones in Conn. or R.I. I was helped by people on the board to locate shops on my trip in May to the Napa and Sonoma Valleys in California. Feel free to PM me and we can chat.

    To others about attitude of shop owners and staff - I believe this is a reasonable expectation to be treated in a kind, courteous and respectful manner not because I am spending money but rather that we all should strive to that standard when we meet other people. This means that I need to be careful with their products and fabrics as I browse and not whine, complain or expect special treatment from them when something is out of stock or not available.

    The original poster asked for ideas and I am submitting what I believe can make a difference in attracting quilters to their shop.

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