Oh… my little bundle of joy is HERE! Some of it will go to a friend, but the rest are all MINE MINE MINE!
Magdalene from Needle and Thread is AMAZING. She received my order on Thursday and arranged for the fabrics to be delivered on this morning (Saturday). The prices from the store has been marked down and she is giving away 0.5m with every S$50 spent. This is great value for sewers in SG who often have to resort to buying from the U.S. to score great deals (yup, people like me). Note: I’m NOT paid by any sellers to rave about them. I’m just relating my experiences with the sellers and tools as-is.
This shopping experience is such a contrast to another transaction from hell that I’m going through right now with FabFanatic. I fell in love with DS’ Hope Valley series when it first came out in November last year. And then I was notified that Fabfanatic, a fabric co-op, was gathering orders to bring in the fabrics, I took up the offer since there were many positive feedback from other quilting blogs. The cost was about US$5+ per yard and I order a couple of 1/2 yard sets. That set me back over US$90+ inclusive of international shipping. I paid up as soon as I received the PayPal invoice at the end of Nov 09. To date, I have not received an inch of that order. I’m absolutely devastated! I’m not the only one in this shitty situation. Since their last email in March, promising the order will be shipped out that weekend, I have not heard from FabFanatic. They have not responded to my numerous emails and basically, I think they have fallen off the planet.
This taught me:
1) If I have a large order, get in touch with the merchant first. For Etsy, I usually test the ‘responsiveness’ of seller by asking a few questions via convo. Of course, the questions should not be ‘annoying’ or obvious ones that I can find out from the Policies page.
2) Do NOT prepay for orders that will take more than 4 weeks to be sent to me. PayPal has a strict rule about NOT entertaining disputes more than 45 days from transaction date.
3) Read Feedbacks from other buyers carefully. On the other hand, there are some buyers who do not leave ‘negative’ feedback for fear of retaliatory comments. So, look out for ‘high sales, low feedback’ ratio too.
4) Shop with sellers who can process the order or ship out the order quickly.
5) Pay with PayPal where possible.
6) Forget about fabric co-ops. :S
FabFanatic is probably one of the few black sheep in the world of e-commerce. But the ones that I truly admire are those sellers who are able to ‘recover’ from a bad service/shopping experience.
Once, I purchased a couple of items from an Etsy seller during the busy pre-hols season. She left out a tube of fabric glue that I ordered, but promised to make good by mailing out the item to me. I never received that tube. Suspecting that the item was lost in mail, I told the seller that I would BUY one more tube of glue and pay for the shipping, and she can mail 2 tubes then. She agreed and said she would make good that order. When the package arrived, to my horror, there was only 1 tube in the mailer! Of course, I was rather frustrated about her getting my order messed up again. I wrote to her for a refund but she was slow in responding. Eventually, she responded with an apology and refunded me the cost of the glue plus the additional shipping, etc. I totally understand that we can falter during such a super-busy shopping period. But if you can make-good the experience, I will definitely shop with the seller again. Afterall, I need a good seller not only for good transactions, but also good salesmanship when the transaction goes awry.
Logging off to prepare for the rest of the weekend with the boys now. Ta!