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  1. #11
    Quilting Guru

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    I think the quilt industry is already adapting to younger consumers who mainly shop online. They offer sales, services, and exclusive products. Fat Quarter Shop and others offer specially curated fabric collections that give you a color coordinated sampler that goes across fabric lines. Many offer Birch Box-like subscriptions that send you a box of fabric and notions every month, or they host BOMs. Now, MSQC offers their own line of thread which has (at least from looks) comparable quality to brands like Aurifil for a fair price. Craftsy provides a platform for quilting teachers to reach customers who are too busy to attend a class in person.

    The weekly tutorials have been a great way to keep the MSQC brand present in quilters' minds, offer inspiration, and promote new fabric lines. Designer fabric lines often have limited runs, so there's an incentive to buy a bundle of it while it's still readily available. After that, there are third party sellers who offer fabric from discontinued lines - sometimes for more, sometimes for less than the original price. Bloggers also post their creations using the latest fabric lines, and that definitely helps create an almost cult following for certain designers.

    It's interesting to see how small quilting companies are innovating and connecting to their customers. It's a refreshing change from big-box fabric stores that inflate prices up to 200% the going price, then turn around and offer you 50% off coupons to try to whip you into a buying frenzy because you're getting such a "good deal."

  2. #12
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    Quote Originally Posted by quiltingtrish View Post
    I for one cannot justify purchasing a book for $30. when I can probably get the same one for $5. or less at a library sale or guild sale. I also cannot justify paying $11. or $12. a yard when I can go to fabric stores and get the same (yes, the same fabric) for $6. or less. Yes, I look for bargin's and that is how I built my stash over the years. I am fortunate that I can hit good fabric shops that are about an hour of my home and it is a good day when I can take off for the day and hit 4 or 5 in one day. The local LQS offer classes when I am working and charge about $45. a class so I don't do those.
    She said the older people have their stashes and the younger ones can only buy a few fat quarters at a time. With the economy the way it is - kids can't get a job, have student loans, and move home or get a job that doesn't pay much. Well, their goes the parent's money and for me, as much as I love quilting I can't put fabric first at $11 or 12 a yard if I've got monthly bills to pay first. If you are one of the lucky ones and have the money - go for it. But the majority these days don't. It is what floats your boat too. Some people have the campers - well, they cost money. Some people love to shop - I don't know how retail stores stay in business - yes, I know a lot are closing. I can't tell you the last time I stepped into a Kohl's or Sears or whatever - as much as I don't like Walmart that is usually where I go to get the staple stuff for food and household and do use coupons. I'm lucky I work in town so hardly use any gas - there are about 4/5 of my town people that drive an hour to get to a job.

    I also got 6 people involved in quilting over the years so they have supported the industry. A few of them have the money to pay the higher end for the price of fabrics and some of us don't. The ones that I know that do supposedly have the money and spend also complain how broke they are. I guess I might be getting off the topic a little but it all comes down to what people want to spend the money they have on and where they have to cut. I am lucky that I find the local sales - be it yard sales selling fabric or wait until business's going out to slash their prices. When I get emails from a business with the headlines yelling BIG SALE and I read to find out I will get 10% off, I move along. Business' get offended when we don't want their kits, prices at $11 or 12 a yard, then they need to keep finding those people that can afford it. Yay for MSQ who figured out how to sell to the public and make the money back and more - the local LQS that cater to the usually local people will never compete with that.
    I put my opinion out there whether you agree or not.
    I didn't share this article to offend anyone. I just thought she had some ideas and insight that I hadn't thought of before and were interesting...for instance about how the author didn't get as much from his/her book if it was bought on Amazon. Not everyone or maybe anyone can follow all the things that she suggested. They are just suggestions.
    Bec

  3. #13
    The Guild President

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    I thought it was very good article and had some good points. I try to shop locally as often as possible. I feel compelled to support the LQS. I want them to stay in business and be there when I need them. When I first moved here there were no local shops and I remember that all too well. My exception to that is I do try to buy directly from some authors and pattern designers, the ones whose blogs I follow. I think we all shop differently at different stages of our lives. When I was a young Mother there wasn't alot of money for my quilting or crafting. I am now an empty nester, working full time with less money restraints. In a few years I will be retired and my spending habits will change yet again. Hopefully I will have enough in my stash to see me through

  4. #14
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    I do try to shop my local shop... but I like M* better and it's only a 45-50 minute drive from me. My local shop is small and offers mush less options than M*. Her turnover for fabric is not at all what I need. She carries very few precuts. She has lots of books but I don't need them. She just doesn't carry enough new variety for me. I still go in when I need something right away... I always check to see if she can help me out. Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

    She offers to order for me... but I feel bad about that. If I only need a few yards of something, she has to order the whole bolt and then it goes on the shelf in hopes someone else wants it and buys it. So, I try to not ask her to do that.

    Her shop is for sale now. She wants to be at home more, with her husband. I've been going in there 13 years.

  5. #15
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    We recently had a shop re-open. Owner had closed and retired to another state with her DH . He died a couple years later so she returned to the area and reopened the shop. I will drive farther to go there than visit the one in my hometown. Prices are better, selection a bit smaller but the attitude of the owner is so warm and welcoming I make the drive. There is a third shop about the same distance that I don't go to because, well I feel like I'm looked down on. While I appreciate having quilt shops, if I only had the two the bulk of my shopping would be online
    “What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world, is and remains immortal.”

    ― Albert Pine

  6. #16
    Designer Diva

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    I have not read the article yet but it was interesting to read everyone's reaction to it. I find it also interesting that some people consider 30-40 min drive so far. LOL I don't have a quilt shop even that close. We have a sewing center who also carries some fabric, notions, and other items. They do machine repair, have classes, and monthly meetings. They are also very nice and welcoming but $$. I took a class and had a lot of fun but I doubt I can afford to take many more. I will be making most of my quilts by you tube with jenny or others. I will have to drive an hour away to a joan's or order fabric online.

    I have been looking at today's deal and trying to decide if it is better to get the kit or slowly buy the pieces needed to make the quilt. I love the fabric and got to see this quilt made. It was very pretty. But again, I will be ordering it online.

  7. #17
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    Quote Originally Posted by tsladaritz View Post
    I find it also interesting that some people consider 30-40 min drive so far. LOL








    Me too. I'm always wondering why that seems far.



    Lorie

  8. #18
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    I can drive for 30 - 40 minutes in one direction and still be in town. Albuquerque is spread out.
    K is for Karen .....................Cremation - My last hope for a smokin' hot body.

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  9. #19
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    I didn't mean to sound offended. I just gave my opinion. I thought it was interesting too, thank you for posting it.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/quiltsbytrish
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    What if you woke up today and the only things you had were the things you thanked God for yesterday? quilting trish

  10. Thanks shirleyknot thanked for this post
  11. #20
    Missouri Star

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    Default Re: Saving the quilting industry article

    This article was very informative. I have resolved that if I buy a quilting book, I will go to the author's web site and purchase there. But - full disclosure - I don't buy too many books!

    Two of my favorite LQS closed a few years ago. There are two others which are within a 20 minute drive, and several more that are at a longer distance. I also have the Lancaster area quilt shops if I want to go a further distance. When I am able, I supported the LQS. I still try to buy some of my fabric from those remaining. But, when I go there, I go to their sales area first! It is very hard for my budget to buy fabric at $13/yd when I can get lovely fabric, on sale, on line, for $4/yd.

    My experience with LQS has also been iffy. Early on in my quilting life, I was shopping for a variety of blue and brown threads for FMQ. At one LQS, I saw a wonderful display of Isacord threads. BUT - the very young, and, as I now know, inexperienced, clerk, told me that those threads were for embroidery. So, I didn't buy any. I later learned that those threads were perfect for FMQ. They lost a sale that day because their sales staff did not have enough education.

    Another problem I had with a LQS, which I felt is totally unacceptable, is when the shop owner "helped" me pin baste a quilt. This was my first large quilt - king size. The owner did not make sure the backing was secured. Fortunately, I followed the rule of quilting out from the center. I had to rearrange the basting after every block I quilted. And, as I got to the borders, I ended up with not enough backing on one side and too much on the other. I was able to fix the problem and the final results were lovely - but it was through no help of the quilt shop owner.

    Because of these negative experiences with LQS, I can not fully support them. Sure, I can say, check with your LQS - but if you are inexperienced, how do you know if they are experienced - or not? Everyone provides advice from their own level of experience. That may be enough, or it may not. This forum is very helpful in this regard, as we have so many with many levels of experience.

    I will continue to purchase from a LQS when I can, and I will also continue to purchase from online sources. I don't take classes any more, mostly because I can't afford them, and secondarily, because I can either figure it out for myself, or find the same information on the internet.
    If you are not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you are determined to learn, no one can stop you.- Zig Ziglar

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