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Wal-Mart stores closing Fabric Dept.

Wal-Mart stores closing Fabric Dept.

Old 06-15-2007, 04:31 PM
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JS
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Hi Everyone,
A while back I heard from the clerks in my Wal-Mart store that the company has decided to close the fabric dept also. They said the company feels the dept. is not a money maker enough to justify keeping it open.The clerk gave me a web address to sign a petition and also a number to call directly. I passed this on to another website and wrote a note on the petition site.
Not too long ago I spoke again with the salesgirls and they said most of the stores in the South have already closed their fabric dept. We have a super store here in York,Pa. and they have decided to leave ours as is at least for three years until they redecorate the store. The girls said the depts that close will carry some pre-cut fabric in small packages. We have another Wal-Mart on the other side of town and I think they are closing the fabric dept. there. Upon reading some of the letters on the petition site- it was so sad to hear how so many people have only their Wal-Mart store to rely on for fabric. Not only for quilting,but,some ladies have to make the clothes for their children and will have no other stores in their area to go to. Some simply can't afford the prices in the fabric stores. Folks...we have to be the mouse that roared. If not for ourselves then for the women who have only Wal-mart to rely on.
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Old 06-15-2007, 05:05 PM
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Were you aware that a petition had been circulating since last November, asking Wal-Mart to not close those fabric department? the last I saw there were over 30,000 signatures from all across the USA. I did a search and came up with this link.

http://www.petitiononline.com/savefab/

This link works and now has more than 35,000 signatures. It would seem it has done no good as many stores have closed fabrics anyhow. I talk to the mgrs in store I visit and some know nothing, others tell me they know they are safe through the first of the year. Who know! It is the Bottom line...the Almighty dollar.

If you have not signed, here is your opportunity.

we not the valued customers we once thought we were. And with the fabric departments gone, and fabric stores gone, and other stores closing, where will we buy fabric? On line, I suppose.

June in Cincinnati
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Old 06-15-2007, 05:37 PM
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There has been a lengthy discussion about this very subject here on this website for quite a while and some of the departments have already closed and some are staying open for awhile longer, but what I wanted to say is this. Last quarter, WalMart lost 2% of their sales. That got their attention!! I would like to think it was because of the fabric department closures and the things they would have sold had they kept them open to attract us quilters to their stores. They have apparently hired two executives from Target, who have done all of this damage to their sales. I know, when I have been in there, once they called all personnel to face shelves in automotive, and no one could get help anywhere else in the store. Also, there were few checkers and long lines. That is why I quit shopping KMart years ago and went to Walmart. Now, they ARE KMart. I think we need to bombard them with letters and let them know that they lost those sales because of us!! At least, let them be aware that we had an impact. I think that petition is not doing much, but letters will, even email letters if they go to the right person. I don't know that address. Anyone out there know it??
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Old 06-16-2007, 08:24 AM
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Now we are talking quilters. If someone beats me to it fine, but I will try to find out this weekend just who we need to contact to get our message across.
If it is true and there is a good chance it is.... then the dollar will speak the loudest. If they have figures showing the fabric and notions dept. not making their estimated figures ...the company will be only too happy to eliminate that dept. Wal-Mart has such a following I feel that the loss of fabric and sewing customers will not justify keeping the dept. open. I know when I signed the petition website and read other messages from protesters they said they mostly came in for fabric and notions and would pick up other odds and ends while there. so, they will stop shopping the store all together. I am still not sure that is enough to make the company sit up and listen. I just wish there were a way to gauge about how many fabric and notions customers they have in a year and what that average person spends in the dept. That folks is the bottom line.Money and the masses. If the figures are correct as June said and we can count on at least 35,000 people protesting and they were to spend only one dollar a year in fabric and notions dept. in each store that would be $35,000 right there. None of us spend $1.00 alone in that dept. Do you think we have a chance? If you get the chance to go to the petition website and read some of the messages these people have written it will break your heart to see how Wal_mart has left them in the cold. Especially the rural area people who only had Wal-Mart and thats all they can afford. Never let it be said we did not at least try our best. I will put on my Sherlock Holmes hat this week-end and see if I can come up with a name to contact. Have a good week-end all and stay safe. Will talk to you when I have a name.
Jean
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Old 06-16-2007, 01:27 PM
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WalMart's having problems (i.e. losses) because their sales of clothing is way down...and their Chinese manufacturers have been left holding the bag (to turn a phrase). There have been some articles in the Wall Street Journal about WalMart's decrease in sales and their manufacturers in China. The Chinese manufacturers are looking for other places to sell the inventory that was slated for WalMart. Sorta breaks your heart, doesn't it? Not so much...IMHO.
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Old 06-17-2007, 01:08 AM
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Have you seen the commericals? About Walmart, getting merchandise overseas, and the commerical points out about the long hours that children are made to work over there? Makes you (me) stop and think.I signed the petition awhile ago, as well as talked to our Walmart. Its is sad, because its not about what the customers want. Customer service went out with the full service gas stations. You know when they use to fill your gas, clean your windows and check your oil, and they where eager to do it. It is a true novelty to even find assistance in any chain store. Walmart being the worst. But most people simply throw up their hands and say, What can we do? I stopped shopping at KMart when they dropped fabric and I will stop shopping at Walmart. Where their is a will there is a way.
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Old 06-17-2007, 03:50 AM
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Have you checked the tags in the expensive stores? most of their stuff comes from outside the US, too. Most of what we buy everywhere is produced by what would be considered sweatshops here in our culture.

Most "Mom & Pop" operations pay minimum wage, or not much more, because that's what they can afford to pay. Usually no benefits package, either, for the same reason.

Am i angry at WalMart for forgetting who made them as huge as they are? YOU BETCHA! Do I hope they wake up before they go bankrupt like KMart? YOU BETCHA! Am I going to shop elsewhere when i can afford it in personal protest of their decision about the fabric departments? YOU BETCHA!

However, am I going to always spend anywhere from half to twice as much (on merchandise, plus the extra gas and time it takes to shop elsewhere) on everything? am I going to criticize those who have no other choice but to get everything they can at WalMart because they can't afford to shop anywhere else? ABSOLUTELY NOT! Not just NO ... YOU-KNOW-WHERE NO!

The left-wing has singled out WalMart because it's the biggest target on the range right now. Most of what's wrong with WalMart is wrong with virtually every other business in the world. Some of the information presented in the smear campaign is totally true. Some of it is twisted truth. The rest is only half-truth, which makes it also half-lies. The insulting irony is that the campaign against WalMart and similar corporations is waged by people so stinkin' rich their personal assistants can shop wherever they want, whenever they want. They have an agenda to change our culture in ways that go far beyond WalMart and that most of us wouldn't want to see happen.

There are no easy answers to this. Thanks to all the bad publicity about WalMart's original plan to wipe out all fabric departments in every store, they have at least backed off to a plan to eliminate some, reduce others, and leave some intact based on customer reaction and sales in each store. In addition to online petitions and snail/email campaigns to corporate HQ, the "battle" must also be waged in each community. Phone calls, letters, personal chats with local management must come from enough customers in each area to "inspire" those local managers to fight for their fabrics.

Money talks. Complaints alone fall on deaf ears. Here's my crackpot suggestion and request for the day:

if you are a regular WM fabric customer, keep buying. Make the calls, write the letters, talk to the fabric ladies and local managers. Make at least one purchase a month - even if it's just a little something for your stash.

I'm very fortunate. I can afford to spend a little more on fabric and supplies if i absolutely have to. Not Quilt Shop prices, but a little more. So I'll get what I can at WM then add hours to my shopping time by getting the rest online. If I'm out of town, as goofy as it might sound, if there's a WM selling fabrics, I make sure to buy some in hope it'll make a difference to WM-dependent sewers in that community.

if you don't normally buy so much as a spool of thread from WM, but care about those for whom it's WM fabric or nothing, do the same ... write, call, nag, and buy a little something (use it for quilts to donate to charity) as a show of solidarity and support for the cause.

best of luck to all of us. :?


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Old 06-17-2007, 05:55 AM
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So far I have been fortunate to live in an area where our WM is keeping the fabric dept. I buy alot of my motif type fabric there to make some of my product. It is way too expensive even at Joanns to be cost effective for my customers.
They keep telling me they are not going to close ours down, but I'm always afraid they don't really know. They have a full time general manager and 4 full time employees that work in that dept. And they keep them hopping all the time. They are always complaining about the amt. of work they have to accomplish in their shift.
So I have to agree with Patrice about supporting your local store(if you want them to keep the fabric dept) by buying what you can. I need our dept there, so will buy as much as possible from them when I can. I'd hate to lose it.
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Old 06-17-2007, 04:11 PM
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I think you are so right Patrice. I have my fabric dept for at least three more years they say. At that point we will have to see because they will be redecorating the store then. Perhaps if they feel the dept is profitable by then mine will be saved and so may many others. It is like being between a rock and a hard place at this point. It seems the bigger stores who are more profitable totally are the ones keeping their fabric and notions intact. Lets hope for the best and do what we can.
Jean
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Old 06-17-2007, 04:19 PM
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Hi triciasquilts. I agree with you and Patrice, I hope petitions will help too, but can't count on that. I too still have my fabric dept I know for three more years until they redecorate the store. Perhaps by then they will see the light and continue to carry fabric and notions.
Best,
Jean
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