New hours and changes at our Brick & Mortar location
We have changed our hours at our new location 3416 46th Ave., Suite 103, Rock Island, IL. Our weekday hours will remain the same, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesday through Friday. But on Saturdays, we will only be open on the third Saturday of the month from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Also we have changed our shipping options so that online orders greater than $50 to Quad Cities addresses will ship for free. This includes Rock Island, Moline and East Moline, Illinois; and Davenport and Bettendorf, Iowa. This is so if our new schedule doesn’t work with yours or you just need something fast and can’t wait until the third Saturday of the month to pick it up, you can get it from us without paying extra for shipping.
You can always order online and leave us a note that you’ll pick up in store and we’ll refund your shipping fee. This option is great if your subtotal is less than $50, or you just enjoy stopping in and seeing the new fabric in person.
We realize this may seem like an unusual choice for a quilt shop, but we are not your average quilt shop. When we expanded from our dining room to our first brick and mortar location three years ago, we already had more than 20,000 customers from all over the world who followed my patterns and videos online.
Over the past three years we have tried to recreate that magic in our brick and mortar location, providing a full schedule of classes, staying open late on Wednesday nights and every Saturday, sponsoring and vending at many local quilt guild shows and advertising to quilters locally.
But while our online audience has now grown to nearly 50,000 YouTube subscribers, nearly 30,000 email subscribers and nearly 8,000 Facebook fans, the number of our local customers has remained the same.
We love our local quilting community and have come to consider many of our customers friends over the past three years. But most days our local sales are not enough to cover the cost of the material sold, and the cost of paying an employee to sell it to them, and that doesn’t even begin to include the cost to keep the lights on and house the fabric.
We know we’re not alone in this. Nancy’s Notions famously closed its brick and mortar location last summer and moved to selling online only because it no longer made financial sense to keep the physical store open. And nationwide quilt shops are closing faster than they are opening.
Thankfully our online sales have increased tremendously over the past three years and have allowed us to become a profitable business. About 90 percent of our fabric goes out the door on a mail truck instead of bags held by local customers and that’s good for our locals. It means we are able to bring in much more fabric in greater varieties than would ever be possible if we just relied on local sales, giving you lots more choices.
And it means we make enough in other areas of our business to offset the discrepancy in what it costs to keep the lights on and what we actually bring in through local sales.
But we had to make some changes so that we can continue to be a healthy company that will be able to serve the Quad Cities and our online customers for years to come.
And that’s why we moved to a smaller, and yes we know, harder to find location. Our new little shop is better laid out to house every piece of fabric we had at our original location in the front room and give us plenty of space in the back to fulfill our online orders and work on samples for our new patterns and YouTube video tutorials.
Plus, with significantly less overhead at our new location, we were able to hire Josie to work every day to help us with the online portion of our business, and help local quilters who pop in with fabric matching and quilting questions when Stephanie isn’t able to be at the shop.
But being open on Saturday is a two-person job. It isn’t fair to ask Josie to work every Saturday. And it isn’t fair to force our daughters to spend every Saturday stuck in the back room of a quilt shop when they should be sleeping in or running to soccer or swim classes. And it isn’t fair for my husband and I to work six days a week, missing quality time with our daughters to maybe break even on local Saturday sales.
We hope you understand the reasons behind our decision to only be open on the third Saturday of the month. And we hope you take advantage of the new free shipping option for local orders if you aren’t able to make it in or can’t wait.
We truly believe that this decision will allow Quilt Addicts Anonymous to continue to serve our local quilting community for years to come. And it will allow our family and the families of our staff to live more balanced lives.