Guess what? I’ve not fallen off the face of the earth. Once again, I’ve been neglecting this space. Boy, it is a chore to balance life. And once again, I am going to try to stop by here more regularly. I do have many things I want to share with you.

Before I get to the matter at hand, I want to mention that you will be hearing from me about a revamping of my Giveaway Roundup. I’ve not been giving it the attention it deserves and requires. For the plans I have, I will need a little assistance. No heavy lifting. I will be putting out a call for bloggers. I’d like a few different ones a month for what I want to do. More details to follow soon. You can shoot me a message if you have a blog and may be interested. No obligation if you contact me.

Okay! So, what brought me here today? I’ve been seeing posts pop up recently about where quilters should make their purchases. I came across one today when scrolling through a weeks worth of posts in my Bloglovin feed — I’m behind everywhere! Anyway, this one was asking if quilters should purchase from Massdrop. I have generally remained silent on these posts but felt compelled to speak up today.

I know this is a hot topic for some. I voiced the thoughts I had at the moment. You may agree. You may disagree. I’m sure there are other aspects, etc. I did not address. Anywho, here is the full text of my comment:

I’ve been noticing these types of posts appearing lately about where fabric and supplies should and should not be purchased with the general opinion being traditional local brick and mortar or established independent online businesses. It makes me wonder if sometimes there is influence on these posts based on the sponsorship of the blogs.

How and where purchases are made is a personal decision. A number of factors can come into play — economics, location, availability, etc. Somebody may make a purchasing decision entirely on cost. Another based on their own remote location. Someone else based on what’s available locally. For me it’s usually a mix of cost and local availability. Most often, what I like and/or am looking for is not available locally. I prefer to support a local small business when I can but consideration of my finances outweighs consideration of theirs.

Regarding Massdrop, they are not a go to place for fabric and supplies. You don’t decide you need XYZ item and go right to Massdrop and purchase it. At this moment, they have only two sewing related drops. Using their website and purchasing from them is not onerous. You do not have to participate in polls. You can receive an update email from them letting you know what’s new. You can commit to buy only if the drop reaches the lowest price. The drop is open for a certain number of days. Once it ends, then Massdrop orders the product. They then ship it out once they receive and process their order. Their drops are pretty specific. It’s not often there is any type of variation to choose from. They are selling genuine products purchased from the manufacturers or distributors for the manufacturers. You would have to determine if a product you are interested in is the best deal for you based on what’s available to you elsewhere. I have made a few purchases from Massdrop and have been completely satisfied with each transaction.

That being said, Massdrop is utilizing technology and innovation. Some can say brick and mortar all day long but technology and innovation are a reality. Businesses need to adapt. There are plenty of local brick and mortar and established independent online businesses that are not utilizing what’s available fully or at all to reach and interact with potential customers, such as taking advantage of social media platforms or local brick and mortars that don’t have an online store. There is a natural life cycle with various types of businesses and industries. How many of you no longer have a landline in your home with service provided by a local telephone company because you have a mobile phone with service provide by a national company? Do you no longer subscribe to your local newspaper because you get your news online? Do you shop at membership only warehouse clubs like Sam’s Club or Costco? There are many things taken into consideration when purchasing products and services local vs non-local, small vs big, independent vs corporate, etc.

I’d love to hear what you think. Please be assured I read every comment left even though I may not have a chance to reply.

One more thing, I needed a photo for this post. Here’s one of the visitors at my suet feeder this winter. A Northern Flicker. I’ve been enjoying all of the woodpeckers that have been stopping by.

14 comments on “Where to Buy”

  1. Wellll, I have no comments regarding fabrics and related things, however, the Northern Flicker is beautiful! I’ve never heard of this bird before. :)

  2. i have never used Massdrop. Nor do I jump right to brick and mortar stores. Not that there is Anything wrong with brick and mortar stores. Here is my thing, I live 12 miles from Anywhere! And here is what I mean. The town that our address is associated with is 12 miles south of where we live, there is another town 12 miles north of us (in a different state) and there is another town 12 miles east of us. NONE of these towns even has a Walmart! 30 mins. one way to a Walmart. There is a fabric store about 40 mins. away from where we live but I don’t like it. (not JoAnns) about an hour away there is a quilt shop I don’t really like it either. It is in a tuorist town and the prices reflect that. I do most of my quilting/fabric shopping online. Not the best situation but sometimes people in customer service will help you match colors up. Sorry for such a long post this is just my situation. I would love to hear more about your giveaway ideas. And it was good to read a post on your blog again. I need to get back to my blog too.

    • No worries on the length. Yours is an example of how people have different circumstances that influence their shopping decisions. I’ll be in touch about the giveaway stuff. Thanks!

  3. Like so many others, I have a strict budget and quilting is a luxury I have to scrimp and save for. I will spend my money where I can get the best deal. If I find a deal online, I will ask a local retailer to match the price for an identical item, but so far, no takers. So I will continue to spend my meager budget in a way that will result in the biggest bang for the buck.

  4. I have used Massdrop a few times. It’s like anything you have to know your prices. I like to get good quality fabric but have to watch the prices or it can get expensive. I joined Crafty Gemini Quilt Club and there are a ton of projects so I have to be smart about what I buy. I found some awesome fabric from a FB page of Quilter’s Classified. Like anything you have to know what you want and what you can afford to pay.

  5. I agree with your comment. I too, try and shop local first. It’s nice to see the product before purchasing especially with fabric. But I also have to take price into consideration. My LQS moved recently and is now about 10 minutes from my house. Unfortunately she’s now in a prime location and has increased her prices. Patterns are always $1.50 more than anywhere else, same with thread prices, and fabric is $11.99 per yard. And then there’s availability. Most shops simply cannot carry all fabric lines.
    I’ve used Massdrop several times and have been satisfied. But like you say, you can’t shop for a specific item.

  6. I have bought from Massdrop, from online stores and from local stores. For me it is all a matter of price and time. If Massdrop has a good price for something I want, but don’t need tomorrow, I will order there. If I find a sale online or find something there I can’t buy at my local store, I buy online. If I need something today, then I head to my local store. I don’t shop at any one store for quilt supplies or anything else. I shop where and when it is convenient for me. I am a big comparison price shopper. I don’t buy from Massdrop because they say it is a good price, I check other places. Some of there things are ok priced and some are pretty darn good. :)

  7. Your thoughts are my thoughts. =) I buy locally, I buy online, I buy what I want where I can find it. If Massdrop does another Aurifil thread cone purchase, I will participate. A local brick and mortar could do something similar, involving a bulk order. That’s why Massdrop can get it for less – they are buying more.

  8. I’m 15 miles from a grocery store and 30 miles from a fabric store. We live on a retirement income. Every dollar counts so I have no problem with buying online if it’s a good deal. We grow our own fruits and vegetables, should I stop doing that to make some store happy? I don’t think so. Stores need to be competitive, courteous, helpful and knowledgeable. Stop whining as I always told my children and change with the times.

  9. Very well said! My favorite was when you said “Some can say brick and mortar all day long but technology and innovation are reality.”. It’s SO TRUE! These days we have lots and lots of choices, but it pays to do the research. Sometimes it’s cheaper to buy from my local quilt shop because I don’t have to pay for shipping. And sometimes I can only find what I want online.

  10. There is a fabric shop in my town, but it’s almost entirely haberdashery, not quilting. What few quilting cottons they do have are expensive and / or bad quality and not my taste. Even if it was a good shop, it would be no good to me as I’m almost completely housebound. The nearest other shop I know of is over an hour away. My favourite on-line shop has a huge range, good prices, a loyalty scheme and will colour match anything else they sell. I’ve never bought from massdrop, because while the price seems good at first, by the time you add postage to the UK and the customs charges, it is never a good deal.

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