Support your local shops. I believe it is important to support your local shops. So many of us go to our local shops and soak in all that good advice, then price compare, and end up buying the item somewhere else. We are robbing our local shops for taking all that advice for free. If you like having that shop near you, then support it.
Shopping has changed. I grew up with Santa Barbara having many fabric shops. Even the department stores used to have fabric departments. In recent years almost all the fabric stores have closed. There are a few textile resources with specific clientele. Sewing patterns are hard to come by. Some notions are harder to find. Even the bigger stores in neighboring cities only carry a limited inventory. So the temptation to shop online is great.
Many small shops are closing. There was a local yarn shop that recently closed. The owner was very knowledgeable about yarns, knitting needles, and patterns. There is no substitute for actually feeling and seeing yarn. Many women would spend their time knitting in the store as a group. It is sad now to see the empty little shop.
Some shops have a loyal client base. Our local sewing machine store (Grant House Sewing Machines) is actually expanding. This is so encouraging. They sell sewing machines, but are expanding and selling more fabrics, notions, kits and books. They are also offering more classes and workshops. I recently went to a lecture there given by Andrea Schewe. Andrea Schewe is a professional pattern maker and designer for the Simplicity Pattern Company, a writer for Threads Magazine and the 2016 Teacher of the Year. I learned so much and got so motivated. It's hard to believe a small shop was able to contract such a big name.
Andrea Schewe and I have become good friends since her visit to Santa Barbara last year (Design Studio West). After this year's visit we are challenging each other to write weekly posts on our blogs. You can visit her at: Andrea Schewe
It's time to look at your shopping habits differently. If you like going to local stores because you get good advice and you can get what you need, then buy items from them. Supporting your local shops will ensure that they will still be there when you need them. I have had recent disappointments from online sewing machine purchases. I'm going back to my local shop. The advice is worth the price.
How will you change the way you shop?
Do you have a local spot that is dear to you?
How will you make sure it stays in business?
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