How are you all? I have finally finished the book and as we speak it makes its way across the sea to the publishers in Australia. This is the 8th book I have published and although it is a lot of hard work, there is always something very satisfying about seeing one’s work in print. I hope the book will be released before the end of this year and of course will keep you posted. It did occur to me that many of you probably don’t know what is involved in putting a book together so I plan to do a blog post on this very soon.
Kits or sourcing your own supplies.
This week I wanted to follow up on Mary Corbet’s blog Post about whether to buy an embroidery kit or to source one’s own supplies. She has covered the topic quite comprehensively so rather than repeat it you can read all about it here: Mary Corbet’s Blog Post.
I have been thinking a lot about this lately and trying to decide whether or not I should provide full kits with threads or continue to provide kits without threads. In fact I have spent the last few days updating my shop and changed the word KITS to PATTERN PACKS, to avoid any confusion. You will see that the sections in the shop state either Needlepainting Patterns, Whitework Patterns or Full kits, click on the picture to go to the shop.
A Pattern Pack includes: Fabric with pre-printed outline, 2 needles, instruction book.
A Full kit includes: Fabric with pre-printed outline, 2 needles, instruction book, threads.
The difference in price is approx US$20 so you can decide if it is worth it or not?
I have received emails from many of you stating that you would prefer the kit to include thread, but on the other hand many of you have a stash of thread and prefer to provide your own. It seems that there is a need for both? Let me explain some of the reasons I don’t include thread in my kits:
- Number of threads. Needlepainting kits in particular include numerous colours – sometime as many as 45 – 50 shades.
- Cost Prohibitive. The cost of including so many threads is prohibitive to you the consumer, and also myself as it means I have to keep stock of large quantities of thread.
- Time consuming. I run this business alone and there are not enough hours in a day, so I would have to employ part time staff to pack the threads. It is very time consuming cutting and sorting such a large number of threads onto cards, so the answer would be to supply full skeins which would be very costly.
- Import & export duties. The threads are imported into South Africa, so incur customs duties and taxes. I am basically re-exporting them overseas again in kit form so it does not really make sense when you can order/purchase them in your own country?
- Availability. One of the main reasons I am hesitant to provide thread with the kits is that the thread colours needed are not always in stock with the supplier. This has proved to be a huge problem in the past when I am preparing for workshops. I will put in my order for 50 of each colour needed, only to find they are short 10 colours. I will then order these 10 colours online, only to find they are short 2 colours………… and so it goes on. At the end of the process I have had to pay additional costs on shipping and purchasing retail. So my worry is that if I did decide to provide thread and could not source all the colours at one time the kit would have to be out of stock for several weeks until delivery.
Pattern Packs & Digital Downloads. I believe, the answer is to provide all designs as either pattern packs or digital downloads, but I will also provide a limited amount of full kits for those who can’t source their own threads or would prefer to purchase the complete package. The starter lesson kits will of course include thread. I would love to hear your views on this, as it helps me to provide “what the people want” in my shop.
New Designs. As always at this time of year I do a bit of spring cleaning – some of the older designs will be discontinued to make way for new designs. The discontinued designs are always available as digital downloads so you will never lose out, but I like to keep you on your toes with new designs every year. It would help me to know what designs you would like to see more of , either:
- Needlepainting birds, flowers, landscapes or other.
- Whitework with colour designs.
Please know that I always have your best interests at heart and my intention is for you to study the technique and then provide designs to keep you growing and stitching! Till next time remember, embroidery forever, housework whenever. Trish