Friday, 14 March 2014

Oh Fabricland!

I'm trying to stay positive but it is not working.  Fabricland, you suck!

I recently picked up Vogue 8896 at my local Fabricland store a couple of weeks ago and I came home excited that I got this pattern when it was on sale only to be shocked that I had size E5 (16-18-20-22). It is not even my size. Now Fabricland has a policy of final sale on patterns. This really sucks because I know I would not ask for a pattern that was not in my size.



It really sucks because in recent years they started to treat customers like we're thieves and we're no longer able to get our own patterns. You have to write the pattern number and size down on a piece of paper and hand it to one of the sales clerks who will then remove the pattern and instruction and then hand you the pattern envelope.

It sucks.

Well, I returned to the store to pick up another Vogue 8896, wrote down the pattern number and the size combination along with the size numbers. What did I get, another E5 pattern!


I called the store, explained the situation and I get the "final sale" rhetoric. Are you kidding me?


So now I have to drive back to Fabricland in the morning and get this all sorted out when the manager is in. Just because the salesperson on the phone can't help me because patterns are a "final sale" item.

Which really sucks.

Lesson from all of this, never trust that the sales person is going to give you the item you ask for (see the two patterns in the wrong size that proves the point) and never pay for something you haven't inspected yourself. Which is hard to do since they don't let you hold it let alone inspect said item until everything is run up and it is paid for. I'm kicking myself because I didn't leave the store until I checked my receipt since I've found too many cashier mistakes in the past. Did I mention how much I think Fabricland sucks? I should have checked my patterns too.

This really sucks.

I really hope there is some better news to report tomorrow.  

Until then...

30 comments:

  1. I agree. I really hate the pattern system, I want to be able to look at them closer before deciding if I want to buy.

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  2. I've never been to a store that does that with patterns. Why do they do it that way?

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    1. I don't know why they changed their system but they way they jump on someone who mistakenly goes to the other side of the cabinet to pull a pattern you would think they were stealing a safe full of money. I am just making an assumption that it was a inventory control system. Maybe it was because people were not putting patterns back in the proper spot. Or they just wanted to drive customers crazy. I don't know.

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  3. Oh man, I feel your pain. We are really lacking in fabric shops, and Fabricland is the only real option other than online . Such a shame. And the patterns - what a nightmare. Our local stores are a little better - you get to check them over before having to pay, but I still feel like I am putting them out when I ask for a pattern.

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    1. Me too. Not only do you have to wait for someone to pull a pattern, they make you feel like you are putting them out especially if you just want to check a pattern for yardage information.

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  4. I hate Fabricland too, most of the ones in Toronto & Mississauga. Some of the women who work there are OK but most of them act like they are doing you a big favour by pulling patterns, cutting fabric, ringing up sales, you know, their jobs. I know they are underpaid & overworked & their attitude probably reflects how they are treated by their management but they chose to work there. The fabric selection was/is poor & now that they don't carry Simplicity or New Look patterns (apparently Simplicity was going to charge them a prohibitive amount for the privilege) I don't even bother with them. I buy at online fabric stores, BMV patterns online & have Burda & Ottobre subscriptions. I got tired of thanking people for a level of service and poor product (everything was mixed fibres & poly) that was increasingly unacceptable. Thanks for the opportunity to rant but I wouldn't expect anything from them.

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    1. I've been buying more and more of my patterns online because I don't like the selection and service here in the city. I miss Simplicity patterns. It was a bad business move on Fabricland's part. Fabricland seems to be moving away from fabric for sewing clothes to a home decoration company. I was searching for braid for a cardigan jacket that I want to make. It was pretty sad. But there were a lot of knick-knacks and cheap sewing kits in plastic bags taking up store shelf space.

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  5. Wow, what a terrible system! Did they have a problem of someone stealing pattern parts before? Here we just open the drawers and rifle through the patterns, which are sorted by brand and number, until we find the one we want. I didn't realize that was a privilege.

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    1. Angela, that is a good way of putting it--a privilege. Fabricland is the only store that carries Vogue, McCall's and Burda (and Butterick). Mitchell Fabrics started carrying Butterick but do not offer discounts. Last summer, Fabricland discontinued New Look and Simplicity like "Anonymous" mentioned. And they one and only fabric / sewing machine store in the city that used to carry Kwik Sew patterns was bought out by new owners that changed the store's focus to quilting and quilting gadgets.

      Fabricland is the only place in the city (and by the other comments here it seems nation-wide) that adopted this system. I don't know exactly why. No one was willing to answer that question. When the change happened all I got as a response was shrugged shoulders. I think it is to drive customers bananas. It is working.

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  6. We have no fabric shops here where I live so I purposely travel 2 hours to our nearest Fabricland. I don't like how crowded it is, and I sure don't like how busy it always is. I do however like the fact that I can still actually find fabric somewhere. The next nearest place would be another hour away. Guess people don't sew in Saskatchewan.

    By the way I love that pattern and think the fabric you picked out to use will be wonderful. That is if you are going to use the fabric you chose a post or so ago?

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    1. But Saskatchewan has a sewing conference coming up in a couple of months. I wish Winnipeg had one. I'm thinking about driving to the conference to take the bra making workshop.

      I exchanged the pattern for one in my correct size and I cut it out in a deep red knit that has been in my stash for ages. It will be (fingers crossed) a wearable muslin if all works out. I just want to try out the pattern first before I cut into the printed knit.

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  7. I DESPISE the new pattern selecting process at Fabricland (I'm in Victoria, BC, so I guess it's everywhere) and I don't think I've bought a pattern there since it was instituted. Frankly, I'm surprised that they are still doing it, because it's such a huge PIA for customers AND staff, but I guess, as others have said, they just don't care.

    This is just one of the many ways in which Fabricland sucks. Years ago, I was doing costuming for a local community theatre. Between my own fabric addition and the costuming, I have spent, literally, thousands of dollars at Fabricland. Do you think they would give me a bit of fabric for a sample--no, not a shaving. If you want a sample, you must buy a 10cm length. I've also heard they are lousy employers.

    I've got to stop shopping there!

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    1. Me too, I think this experience was the last straw for me. I just wish there was a close alternative for purchasing thread.

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  8. We have about five or six Fabriclandwest stores here in Edmonton. I shop only at the one on 170 street. Staff are great. The one in Londonderry Mall I avoid.....cranky staff....sale fabrics mixed in with regular fabrics...I am sure there are times when they tell you they don't have a pattern just to p.....the customers off. I shop mostly online for my sewing stuff. Even with half price sales I can get most patterns on BMV cheaper including postage. Marshall's Fabrics has a good selection of knit fabrics.

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    1. There is a Marshall's here too. I've been there once, must make another trip out there when all the ruts melt from the city streets.

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  9. I stopped shopping at Fabricland in May or June of 2011 when they locked up their patterns. Back then, they were a little more forthcoming about the reason -theft. I had a long, somewhat heated discussion with the Pembina Hwy manager about that, but they still want to treat their customers as thieves and pests.
    I used to spend a great deal of money there every year, but it is going to other businesses now, tho' I still try to buy Canadian. This was a good link http://finishedgarment.ca/canadian-online-quilting-fabric-stores/
    I now order patterns on-line when they are on sale and buy my fabric occasionally on-line as well, tho' I do try to buy locally when possible. (Graca, Northwest Fabrics have Kwik Sew patterns. They will show you the book when you ask, and they have never made me feel like I'm irritating them when I ask to see several patterns (they keep them behind the cutting tables). And if you want to buy inexpensive fabric for muslining, go to the Nygaard outlet on Notre Dame and Clifton. In the far back left corner they have a shelving unit where they keep the 'leftovers'. You never know what is going to be there, but I have walked away with over 10 meters of various weights for $5, It seems to depend what it is. They appear to just want to get rid of it.)
    Maybe you should send a link to this blog post to the mucky-mucks at Fabricland. It seems like sewintists across Canada are telling them to "kiss my @$$" and taking their business elsewhere.

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    1. Thank you for the link! I also did not realize that Northwest Fabrics sold Kwik Sew patterns. I've only been there once and plan on going back hopefully soon. I picked up some beautiful fabric when I was there. Thank you for all the great tips. I didn't realize Nygaard sold fabrics. I'll have to check that out too!

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  10. I complain about our Joann's and Hancock's, but now I think I should be grateful. Once when I went home and discovered that the instructions were missing from a pattern, they told me to just go grab it and they exchanged it. We don't have much selection on fabric, and they are often sold out on patterns (because of their $1 & $2 sales). Now I see why so many in Canada seem to sew the independent patterns.

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  11. Add me to the list of unhappy Fabricland customers. The only patterns that I have bought there in years have been the New Look and Simplicity that my local store are selling for $1 or $2. I only buy fabric in the discount section, so they aren't making much off me. Recently I saw a 2 meter package of fold over elastic there for $5, they must think everyone is an idiot and unaware of the internet, because you can buy 10 meters of the same product for $2 or $3.

    You are right, Fabricland sucks. Big time.

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  12. Ok, this is just so stupid!!! No returns is for the obvious 'take home,copy, return, buy another'. A size exchange is a clerical error and should just be quickly corrected. Rules can never be black and white when they remove common sense. Arrgh. Foolish. I will hate them with you.

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    1. They did exchange the pattern for correct size but they added the "it is your fault too" comment before they handed it over. I didn't need the attitude as I was already kicking myself since I had to drive in the horrible weather back to the store.

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  13. I am another who has stopped buying at the F-store! I was purchasing a handful of notions and went to pay with my M/C. The clerk asked to see my driver's licence or some photo ID...I asked 'why', she said she had to confirm that the M/C wasn't stolen!?!! The purchase was under $15.00 and I had my membership card with me! I said "if this card was stolen, I wouldn't be in here buying 15 bucks worth of buttons"! She wouldn't sell them to me until I produced photo ID.....I left them on the counter and walked out! REALLY...I'm 66 years old grandma buying baby blue buttons!!
    Patty in YWG

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    1. That is just craziness! It as if they have no common sense. I've never been asked to see id when I've used my cc.

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  14. Thank goodness the Fabricville in Halifax (the Maritime version of Fabricland) still allows you to pull patterns and look at them yourself. There is not much selection in terms of interesting notions but they do carry some interesting material mixed in with the "who would buy that?" fabric. Shopping online is great but the shipping costs from the States are a killer.
    Is there a recommendation of a Canadian fabric store with selection?

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    1. http://finishedgarment.ca/canadian-online-quilting-fabric-stores/
      Gala Fabrics in Vancouver/Victoria will apparently mail swatches and fabric. I have not tried them, yet.

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    2. Thanks for the links.

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  15. How did it go with the return? I've been curious. I've been lucky with the fabricland here in Vancouver, some of the women are friendly. I only buy patterns there when the go on sale and I almost never buy fabric but I maintain my membership for their notions sales. It drives me crazy that any fabric they carry there that isn't polyester (which is barely anything) they charge outrageous prices for. Stretch cotton sateen for $22/meter? Fabricana carries that for $8/meter and it's not that far away. I'm lucky here in Vancouver that I have quite a few great fabric stores to choose from, time for a visit Graca, you would go crazy at fabricana and dressew!

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    1. To their credit Fabricland did exchange one of the patterns for the correct size. They wouldn't refund the other pattern also in the incorrect size but I said I would be willing to accept an exchange for another Vogue pattern. After discussing it with the manager the assistant manager came back and said yes. I was happy with that resolution. I wasn't happy when the assistant manager said that I was at fault because I didn't check the patterns before I left the store. I didn't need her opinion added in since I was already kicking myself because I was inconvenienced by having to drive back to the store with the icy roads and snow. I would have left as a happy person if she would have just kept her opinion to herself.

      Vancouver sounds like a wonderful place to do some fabric shopping. I've never been that far west. One day...

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  16. If you paid using a credit card, you can dispute this charge. Especially if you kept the paper you wrote the size down on.

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  17. If you paid using a credit card, you can dispute this charge. Especially if you kept the paper you wrote the size down on.

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