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  1. #21
    Binding Belle

    Join Date
    May 2013
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    Default Re: Thinking about opening a quilt shop??!!

    Love your enthusiasm! So lots of things to consider as many before me have mentioned. Hereís my two cents
    1. Right now decide on the name of your business. Remembering if you actually open your shop, youíll be answering the phone and saying ďGeorgiaís best quilt shopĒ or ďEverything pieced and quilted quilt shop ď. And youíll say this super long or short name a gazillion times a day.
    2. After deciding on your name ... google it. Are there already 50 shops with the same name? If so, consider a different name. You want Google to bring you up in the first 5 choices.
    3. Go to Houston this fall as a potential quilt shop owner. Youíll be attending the first half of the show thatís only open to quilt shop online or brick / mortar store owners. You used to need a sales tax id and your corporation or LLC name to attend. So go look at Houston Quilt Market .. not show .. to see what you need. There are several classes offered or used to be .. specifically on opening a quilt shop .. how to run it as a business .. etc.
    4. Check with your state laws on obtaining your state sales tax id.. in my state itís pretty easy. Name your business, apply on line and then 4 times a year submit paperwork showing no sales or sales
    5. Once you get that state sales tax id and are committed to going to Houston .. contact Brewer Supply Company and Checker Distributing and get appointments with them so they can guide you on what supplies youíll need to get started. You will not need everything they tell you to buy .. six 6 x 12 rulers will gather dust as Quilters use their Joannís coupons to buy those. But specialty rulers .. notions they canít buy or wonít drive to Joannís for .. you need those things.
    6. Start going to your local banks .. set up appointments and gather info on what they want to see to give you a small business loan to get started. If they are interested, they will help you.
    7. Be cautious in who you share this dream with .. some will discourage you ... some will immediately expect a ďfriendsĒ discount. So think about that ... especially if your town is small.
    8. Honestly, you donít want to start a new quilt shop and a long arm business at the same time. Both have their challenges and rewards but both take a tremendous amount of time to learn and grow. Although, thatís exactly how MSQC started .. with Jenny long arming and a few bolts of fabric in the very first , very small store. So thatís something to consider ... maybe longarm and also have a small selection of fabric or precuts or kits?
    9. If you decide to open ... be very clear up front with friends and family on how they will be paid. Itís your business, not a charity. That might seem harsh, but if youíre clear from the beginning... it helps tremendously to avoid hurt feelings or lost relationships. Donít ever tell anyone what youíre wholesale price is and your markup. Absolutely no one will understand that markup is what turns the lights on, pays the building rent, replaces the fabric sold, etc
    10. Find a CPA or lawyer you trust to help you with the business side .. they are a tremendous assist to you .. Iíve seen more than one shop closed because taxes were incorrect or not filed or paid.
    11. Absolutely keep your dream ... make a plan ... pros and cons .. in your opinion why did the other shops close ... what would make your shop different ... are you comfortable with a social media presence? ... youíll need that whether itís FB, Instagram, blogging, etc.

    Dreams become reality when you put it down on paper and start moving forward on the necessary steps. Have fun and I wish you the best of luck!
    Life ainít always beautiful
    But itís a beautiful ride - Gary Allen

  2. #22
    Missouri Star

    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    New England
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    Default Re: Thinking about opening a quilt shop??!!

    I posted this on another thread regarding an interview with my LQS owner about how she stays in business.


  3. #23
    Beginning Stitcher

    Join Date
    Feb 2018
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    Default Re: Thinking about opening a quilt shop??!!

    I concur with pretty curious about the atmosphere in a quilt shop. I used to drive 90 minutes to go to a certain quilt shop about twice a year. ( We had one in town during that period but the staff was not in the least bit welcoming.) I once asked if they had a particular fabric-the one word answer: No. Didn't bother to ask "Hey could we order?" In my view the difference was in the way the shops handled their businesses. I went out of my way to go to the one that offered a different experience, and I know many others did also. ( She has since retired). She had calming music playing and it was like going to a quilt spa lol. Needless to say the shop in town went out of business a few years. The other shop was in business for a dozen years before she retired, and the Internet did not seem to adversely affect her business.
    Last edited by Nesie; May 13th, 2018 at 09:27 AM.

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