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February 22, 2012



I recently told a friend I am every advertising person's best friend. I am all about packaging.
When I spend a lot of money, I like it to look like it's valued by someone besides just me. If I'm buying discount, the presentation isn't nearly as big a deal. Shallow? Perhaps. But that's how I am. How's that for a long way of saying I agree with you?


Nope, not unreasonable at all. When we spend our money we like to get some pleasure out of it and let's face it - presentation is IMPORTANT. My favourite clothing shop here in my small town takes the time to properly fold and wrap all their purchases in tissue paper (no matter how much you've spent)rather than just throwing the item into a bag.
I agree that prices have gone way up - we pay a lot more in Canada than you do. At times I order from the US and even with the shipping it costs less than what I would pay here. I've just heard that one of the rest quilt shops in this area is closing - how sad.


I hear you on this situation and guess what's important to each of us is different. It takes me a whole bunch to decide say something to a company if I'd like to see an improvement on their site or shipping package. "Pick your pony, take your ride" type thing. However I did recently write a quilting design place (paper/digitized patterns for quilting) because their pictures on their site were small in size, light in color and some would enlarge and some not. I tried to be ever so nice to tell her and let her know I wasn't complaining but I would like to see things more clear before purchasing and thinking that others would as well. I never heard from her and the last time I looked they were the same.

So I say your company that answered is wonderful just to answer. I'm sure if they make the effort to answer they will make the effort to package prettier too.


How long would it have taken to package the fabrics nicer? 1-2 minutes? It is a little thing, but means a lot. It sure looks nicer too!!

Denise in PA

I totally agree, Nicole. I always make it a point to show beautiful presentations on my blog and credit the shop. I will sometimes just leave the package as is on my shelf for awhile to admire it. I've also been amazed at the little gifts that some shops include in your order (even when your order is not a lot of $$$). I love the handwritten notes. It all makes me feel special. I've also gotten my fabric order wrinkled, haphazardly folded and stuffed into a bag from other shops. Does not make me feel special, so that fabric better have been a really great deal! o:)


I have ordered from on-line shops and brick & mortar shops over the internet because I, too, live in the 'boonies' (by choice)! I searched for Carrie Nelson's Nine Dots line and finally found it in an on-line shop I hadn't used before. But, I.wanted.that.fabric. I ordered A LOT of it and waited. It arrived and I was so happy--until I opened the yardages and found they had torn it rather than use a rotary cutter or scissors. The edges are not straight for some reason and I've had quite a bit of waste trying to square it up. Fat Quarter Shop and others may have set the standard high, but tearing expensive fabric? I have read that people do that but never really thought much about it. Who knew?


I know there are a few online dealers that give a good price on shipping all they can fit into a flat rate pkg./envelope. If the shipping was a really good deal I could get over the presentation. I prewash my fabrics so they get tossed in the washer before they hit my sewing room.


Looks like you've struck a chord with many folks out there including me. I totally agree with you and its not just limited to fabric. V. Secret is one of the worst. You pay a small fortune for a bra and it comes in a pathetic envelope and plastic bag!!! Always burns me up. I have two gift cards from there, one from last year Christmas that I have yet to spend because their packaging irritates me so bad. :-)

Stephani in TX

I think this discussion understates ALL of our purchasing activity these days. At the mall, there are discount everything shops and then there are swell department stores that show creativity, interest in the customer, and well kept surroundings. Shows that retailers, brick and morter or on-line really do need to compete for the shopper's dollar. You did well to speak up Nicole.


I ordered 6 yards of fabric and when I finally got the package, it had a piece that was 18". But the invoice said 6 yards and the human who packaged it stuck a sticker on it that said 6 yards. So I phoned and was told that it was sold out and on back order, but to keep the 1/2 yd and they would send me the 6. A month later, I got the six yards. The only reason I stuck with this was because I was using up a credit from a previous purchase that they screwed up on. I now need more than the 6 yards so I went to my LQS. Although she doesn't have it in stock, and she knows I only need 3 more yards, she immediately ordered a bolt...SO, I'm lucky to have a great LQS and I go there first before ordering online. Without shops, we don't have a place to meet for groups/classes and the money stays in my county when I shop local!


Definately not unreasonable! How many times have you walked out of a store because of cleanliness or lack of good customer service? If the way the material is packaged is sloppy then how is it cut, or better how is it stored, treated, cared for before I buy it? I recently bought fabric that came smelling as if it had been sprayed with scent of some sort. Will it wash out, is it masking something else? The way you product is sent represents you and your business, it should look beautiful.

Kathy R

I absolutely love Shabby Fabrics and their customer service. They always go above and beyond.
I have stopped going to some brick and mortar stores because I don't feel they take the care that they should when I am dropping my hard earned dollars. I don't appreciate sloppy cutting and just throwing my fabric in a bag. I wouldn't do business that way!
I applaud the owner of the other store for calling you and getting your feedback. I bet you see a change there :-)and I applaud you for taking the time to let her know. If she isn't told, how is she going to make a change?


You are certainly not being unreasonable. She needed to know how you felt. Changes can not be made to improve customer satisfaction unless they hear about it. I went to a quilt shop last fall and received such rude and dismal service that I emailed the owner. She was crushed and had no idea it was going on. In this economy, letting the owner know if you are unhappy can mean a business staying open or not.


Great post! I also order from Shabby Fabrics and The Fat Quarter Shop (just got a package yesterday). They are so much fun to open and see your beautiful fabrics packaged so neatly! I love that they both have prompt delivery on their packages! Especially if I am wanting to finish a project ... I want my fabric quickly. I would give the other company (wish I knew you it was) another try just because the lady did return your call!
Happy quilting!


I think, if you are paying top dollar, a nice presentation should be expected. However, if you are looking for the best price and find a low one and the packaging isn't fancy...let it go. I wouldn't write off a shop that has low prices because they don't have a fancy presentation. I do appreciate fabric that is in plastic because the outer packing often gets damaged, and I do love the little "extras" - but if I get a real good price on my fabric, I'm not going to stop using that shop just because they don't wrap fancy...unless stuff arrives in complete mess. Fortunately that hasn't happened to me yet.


Presentation is so important. It makes the fabric all that more lovely when presented attractively! We need to feel that our dollars are well spent.
sillysally aka choc chip addict

Julie in WA

O.K. I am the odd man out. My biggest concern in getting a package of fabric is that it makes it unscathed to my front ripped envelopes, no crushed cartons, no soiled goods. The pretty packaging is nice, but it goes in the garbage...just let me at what is inside!

Large online shops have the advantage of bulk discount purchasing as well as large volume sales, while smaller online shops must watch every dime.

I kind of like the fabric stacks tied with hearkens back to the old days of purchasing fabric in the mercantile!


Honestly, though I admit it's wonderful to receive a prettily presented package, as long as I receive the fabric I ordered in the correct quantity and in perfect condition, I'm happy. After all, it's the fabulous fabric I'm paying for - anything else is simply an unexpected surprise and not something that would affect my choice of vendor. :-)


Before Christmas I ordered some FQs from a UK ebay company. I was very upset about the way they came. They hadn't been rotary cut, they had been hacked at with scissors, they looked like they had been cut by a child. I did complain because they asked for feedback. They must waste loads of fabric this way because they had to make sure each FQ was they size it was suposed to be. I will only order from them again if I'm desperate.

Mary Flynn

I like seeing a very pretty presented package. However with that being said we must realize that time is money. I don't want my money being spent on their time to package pretty. If I can save $1 or more on a yard of fabric for them to just fold it up and mail it...great! Heck...once we untie the pretty package and get it in our own stash...would we really know the difference? Please don't get me is just that things do cost so much now and I want a deal!!


Just this week I ordered from two different vendors online, and I'm eagerly awaiting to see how my fabric arrives. I already have experienced the high quality of Fat Quarter Shop, but they didn't have the older fabric I needed so I needed to branch out. I should have checked Shabby Fabrics! No, you weren't unreasonable.


In this day and age we deserve to get what we pay for as well as having it presented nicely! There is so much competition out there for what little discretionary dollars folks have to spend anymore that those who please are those who get repeat business! It's great that you called the other fabric dealer and voiced your complaint - sounds like she is willing to take heed! I think you did her an immense favor, Nicole and she is certain to reap the benfits from it!


I have to admit I don't care how my fabric is packaged as long as it arrives! I am so happy to get it that I just rip open the envelope and immeidately spread it all out so I can enjoy it's fabricy goodness. I am too busy patting it and fondling it and dreaming of how it will look in a quilt to even notice how it is packaged!


You are so right!,,


I can see both sides... but when it comes to "discretionary " income I understand. When I spend for fabric-- it's a soulful experience. Choosing it waiting for it to come in and the pretty tissue paper it's wrapped in is all part of it....Just as much as using and cutting up the pieces. I know how you feel.

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