Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Scrapbooking Post

This will not be brand new information to you if you know me but my greatest hobby, aside from music, is paper crafting (i.e. scrapbooking, card making, etc.) I am a member on a scrapbooking supply website called Two Peas in a Bucket (cute name right?) and get to read all about people's opinions concerning stores like Michael's, JoAnn's, Hobby Lobby's, Archiver's and Target and various other "big box stores" that sell paper crafting supplies. I also get to read about the "LSS" which is "scrap" talk for Local Scrapbooking Store and how many are closing or whatever other information other "Peas" seem to have the need to share.

Every time I read this I'm reminded about how frigging blessed I am to live near such an amazingly run scrapbooking store. (If you're a TOM girl and you're reading this... I suppose this could be a little kissing up but it's also a serious compliment.) I've never really cared for Michael's. Especially in our town because employees just don't seem to care and the selection has never been all that great. They don't work with the customer much as far as ordering or being willing to budge on anything. Which really amazes me because a lot of consumers buy craft supplies in bulk. For home business reasons or event reasons. And so if Michael's isn't willing to offer a discount or figure out a way to get more of something in, it leaves a wee sour flavor in the mouth. I always feel bad asking someone where something is our about a product because I'm made to feel rude for interrupting their conversation or stocking. Yikes!

JoAnn's has been alright. They have a decent department. The staff is a little bit nicer but you can still tell it's a large corporation by how they do business. They do have great sales and have those sales a bit more often. They've been a good back up when needed for supplies.

Target. Well. Target here kind of sucks. They hardly ever update their merch. However, some of the totes they've sold have been at good prices and super duper cute. I've found paper their maybe once or twice. Usually I just like to go down the aisle "just in case" but I hardly ever find anything exciting.

Other stores that have random scrapbooking supplies are Big Lots (I've found a few treasures there), Tuesday Morning (completely random finding a section there!) and Walmart. Walmart bites big time although, I did find a pair of Cutter Bee scissors for a very good price there.

So where is this all leading to? I love Treasury of Memories and let me tell ya, we are the minority in this area for such a fabulous scrapbooking store. I'm definitely one who believes in supporting the local business but I want to eve more so when I see one run so well! Happy employees, oodles of supplies and at great prices for being a smaller store. I know prices are generally higher than at a big box store but it's not by much and the great customer service and attitudes of the business completely make up for it! I'd pay 50 cents more for something at TOM than at Michael's in a heart beat! I also appreciate the willingness to cater to the customer because HELLO... smart business people know they want their business to remain open and will do whatever they responsibly can to keep it running!

I was reminded again about how happy I am with my "second home" when I visited the new Stampadoodle in town. They moved to a new location and have a HUGE place now. But as I looked through their supply, I noticed they were more expensive, didn't have the same "deals", the staff were kind but it just wasn't the same and I kind of felt like I was having an affair. Yikes! I noticed a couple of products priced about $1 - $3 more than TOM and I just cringed a little. It surprised me how much more expensive things were there.

I would go back though because they do have different things and a few "departments" had a lot more selection but really.... Treasury is first on my list.

So if you're a fellow scrapbooker and you kind of take for granted that we have such a great "LSS" in our area.... stop taking it for granted because it is rare. We have a very unique business here and I, for one, will shop with a new thankful attitude now! So... TOM gals... You rock!!!

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