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February 22, 2012



I have found some very nicely packaged bundles on ebay. I tend to shop where I can find the best price for the same product. I use for that. I don't mind if the fat quarters have been cut in the shop- not beautifully packaged if I get the same fabric at a better price. I think Fat Quarter Shop does a nice job, but their prices are typically higher. I like to buy books from Connecting Threads because they are cheaper.

Patty F.

Not unreasonable at all! I live in a large metropolitan area but also order the majority of my fabric online. So many of the local quilt shops seem uninspiring and the inventory seems stale. My faves also are Fat Quarter Shop , Shabby Fabrics, and Hollyhill Quilt shop. All three do an excellent job of presentation and their selection is incomparable. Additionally , their shipping is with lightning speed. When I receive a package from any of these three, I feel as if I have received a Christmas package in the mail!

So you are not alone!


I'm with you, the majority of my fabric comes from an online shop so the big thrill is getting the fabric in the mail. The nicer the presentation the happier I am. The folks with the best packaging I've ever experienced is the Country Sampler in Spring Green, Wisconsin. They wrap everything in beautiful paper and tie it all up with fancy bows, even the patterns! It's a little present each time a box arrives at my doorstep.

Pat C in Washington

I don't think so - presentation IS important. Shabby Fabrics makes it fun to open their packages. I mean, you know what you've ordered, so it's not like it's a big surprise, but it's nice to have it prettily presented, isn't it? It shows that they think you're worth the extra effort of pretty packaging, and that counts.

Robyn Brown

While I do like a pretty package, customer service is far more important to me. I feel it's something we lose a bit of every day so when you find a retailer like that, so willing to make things right. . . well my money's on her. Now having said that I think Kim from Fat Quarter is just like that. Her service is excellent as well. She's always been helpful with questions I've had or gone out of her way to assist with something I want. I haven't ordered from Shabby so maybe I need to :)


You've definitely struck a chord here! Fabric, especially quilting fabric, is no longer a generic commodity. At the prices we're currently paying for "designer" quilting fabric, I do expect to receive my fabric in excellent condition and not in a wrinkled mess! I have done business with several online stores and generally find their service and packaging to be excellent. However, there is one large, discount site that just slaps poorly cut fabric pieces in a shipping envelope and the fabric invariably arrives needing ironing. I can overlook some of that since I usually only purchase there because of the discount, but still...


I don't think it's unreasonable. Being quilters/sewists/fibre artists, we are very visual people. We also don't have unlimited funds and want to spend in a way that makes us feel good.


Not at all unreasonable. Presentation always has an impact on us. Any good retailer should know that.


That kind of things means something to me too. Given a choice between the two, I would easily have picked the Shabby Fabrics package. However, your speaking up may make a huge difference to the other company. I guess I'd give them one more chance a few weeks down the road to see if anything has changed. Otherwise, stick with the tried and true.

And I love the pinks and reds you picked out!


Are you being unreasonable? OK, I don't do tact very well, so this is going to be blunt. Yeah, actually I think you are. The owner responded, in your words very graciously, which you appreciated, yet you still won't let this go. Please, Nicole, there are more important things in life than the way fabric is folded.


Unreasonable? I should think not! If it arrives sloppy I tend to think everything is sloppy. I'm glad to know the owner of the shop was so attentive and, like you, I would definitely *consider* doing business with them again. That said, all things being equal - I'm going with the clean and pretty presentation. Seriously. It does make a difference. All things being equal. That's competition. Besides, I love FQS. They're just top rate. I like top rate. ;)

Karen L.

I agree with you, Nicole - presentation is everything especially with the prices these days. I too order a lot on line because my local shops don't carry these wonderful lines. They seem to be stuck with the "safe, traditional" fabric. In sorting my fabric, I see alot of that kind of fabric but I'm more drawn to the "modern" fabric at this moment in time. Mostly, that's because of what I see on your blog and others. The fabric seems like a precious commodity at these prices and the effort to present it well is a bonus.
Karen L.


I have ordered fabric from Equilter several times and it arrives wrapped in tissue paper and has a small thank you note attached. It's like receiving a gift. I think your $100 purchase deserved better than butcher's twine and raw edges showing!

Nancy, Near Philadelphia

I don't have any complaint with your complaint, Nicole. As long as presentation doesn't increase the price, I think the vendor should go for it! I recently trolled the internet to look at the price of a particular fabric I needed and found it ranging from $8.70 per yard all the way to $11.95 per yard and had it in two days with a progress report email on the intervening day! So this internet fabric shopping is quite the adventure and there are many things to consider: price, of course, and presentation, but also communication, shipping charges, and promptness. I agree that Fat Quarter Shop is superb on all fronts, and recommend Old Country Store in Intercourse, PA for price of fabric, communication, and haste of delivery. And now am off to investigate Shabby Fabrics . . . .

Barbara Anne

I think your point is right on the mark. When time and care is taken to add creativity and/or beauty to the item, it does make a positive difference. I've gotten fabric orders in tissue paper tied with a ribbon, and, on the other end of the spectrum, in a plastic bag (sometimes with a closure, sometimes closed with tape). It's no surprise I like the shops that package my order as if they're a gift!

Just imagine if your order had been tied with ribbon rather than sad string. What a wonderful improvement that would have been.

Love your new fabrics, by the way! I do believe those red ones are at play in your delightful Granny squares.


Kath Kershaw

Hi Nicole.
Nope your not unreasonable.Money is hard to come by so you want the most out of it.I love folding my fabric and putting it in order,this is not an unpleasent job,a little time consuming may be but is bound to get repeat orders in at a time when retailers need to look after their customers.

Nancy G.

Nicole, I agree. Green Fairy Quilts include a pen with their name on it, and most shops take the time for a handwritten note on the invoice. I appreciate a personal touch as well as a nice package.

A Facebook User

I don't think you're being unreasonable and presentation does matter. That said, for me, I take into consideration how much I paid for the fabric. I don't mind sacrificing presentation if I'm getting a good deal, as long as the fabric is in perfect condition.

Lately, I usually find myself shopping at online vendors which offer discounts (such as Burgundy Buttons and Green Fairy) even though I love and have shopped with FQS and SF. Since fabric prices keep going up and up (rather quickly, too!) I'm more than willing to give up the ribbons, bows, and frills if it means I'm getting 20-30% off retail. In fact, I'd rather do without the presentation for a better price.

If, however, I'm paying full retail, then of course the packaging and presentation matters and I will go with whoever wows me the most.

Deb A

No you're not unreasonable at all! With fabric being over $10 a yard you expect the best when you spend your hard earned money. Another shop that prices are fairly reasonable and she always packages them very nice is Intrepid Thread, give her a try some time.


I totally agree, Nicole...the little bit of extra effort shows respect for the customer, who is, after all, an artist!;-) I also appreciate when I am thanked for my purchase, as I do have many options on the internet. And now I am going to go back and appreciate that pretty stack of PamKittyMorning it.

Lisa D.

I'll be interested to read what your readers have to say about this. Of course it's always nice to get a pleasing package in the mail - one shop always includes a personal note when I order. On the other hand, fabric prices are getting so high, not so pretty packaging wouldn't prevent me from ordering again, especially if the price was right.

Mary Jo

I totally agree. I think any quilter would prefer the more attractively packaged fabric and would tend to reorder from that shop before the other one.
I have bought several quilt kits from Country Sampler in Spring Green, WI and they are almost too pretty to open. My LQS just stacks the fabrics and puts their kits in ziplock bags and writes the name on the outside with a permanent marker. The two just don't compare and of course I'd prefer to buy an attractive kit. When I took one of the Country Sampler kits in to show the owner of the LQS she just didn't understand why a customer would care! It's just another example of how much presentation can matter.

Laurie in Iowa

You are not at all unreasonable. Shabby Fabrics is going to appreciate the extra business it receives from your glowing review.


Nicole, I have found that Shabby Fabrics makes each and every customer feel as if they were their only client. They have become my favorite online shop. I also love the Fat Quarter Shop, they treat everyone excellent and their packaging is also wonderful! I too would have been disappointed and a little angry with the careless way second batch you ordered was packaged, it causes more fraying and is in my way of thinking, uncalled for. I don't have to have beautiful ribbons and tissue paper to be pleased with my purchases, but come least stack it neatly and put it in plastic!!! Hugs...


you absolutely are NOT unreasonable !! . . . I also order from the Fat Quarter Shop and love them too . . .

I've also ordered fabric from Susan Branch and they do a lovely job with their shipments too . . . I've ordered tons of other things from there too . . . same lovely shipments . . .

I will now look at Shabby Fabrics on your recommendation . . . thanks for the info . . .

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