Tuesday, January 15, 2008

And now back to our regularly scheduled stitching posts...

After several self-indulgent meme posts, it's time to get back to posting about stitching. I promised Kim I would post a picture of my latest finish - LHN's Princess and The Pea:

I stitched with the recommended threads over 2 on 28 ct. linen. I've loved this design since the first time I saw it and I'm really pleased with how it came out. If I were to restitch though, I'd probably go with a DMC brown - I'm not much for the varigated color in this instance. Also, I'd probably use a DMC white or off white instead of the recommended Toasted Marshmallow. I didn't see enough of a difference to warrant the extra expense of the overdyed thread. However, I do love how the pinks and greens came out! I don't have it framed yet, and it will probably end up in a little girl's room some day (I hope!)

I also stitched up this little cutie, designed by Emily at The Floss Box. You can find the pattern for the Mini Scientist here. I made a few modifications, and my scientist husband is now the proud owner of a new scissor fob.

On the back, I stitched his initials and the date. This was stitched over 2 on a scrap piece of 28 ct. evenweave with DMC floss. I'm not totally pleased with the finishing, so I may restitch it on a slightly larger piece of fabric.

And last but not least, I received a LONG AWAITED order from an ONS that shall remain nameless. I ordered way back in the beginning of December, originally just looking for some Wisper thread to finish up an ornament. I stumbled across a good sale and couldn't resist picking up a few patterns and some new needles at a very good price. Everything was in stock, I received and order confirmation and the credit card was charged. I was eagerly awaiting my new goodies and became concerned when they hadn't shown up 10 days later. I checked the website and found that my order was being delayed for an out of stock chart. I also noticed that the store would be closing for a 2 week period at the end of December into January.

I checked daily for the update, and nothing changed, so I contacted the owner after Christmas and was informed that they were still waiting for an out of stock chart. I was more than a little annoyed, especially since my CC was charged when I placed the order and I received absolutely no indication that this chart was out of stock when I ordered. The owner's email seemed very indifferent and offered no explanation or even apology for the delay. I briefly debated cancelling the order due to poor customer service, but scratched that idea when I read their cancellation policies (they whack you a 15% surcharge for ALL cancelled orders). I decided to wait it out and I FINALLY got my charts today, a good six weeks after they were ordered.

I personally feel that not indicating items are out of stock, delaying whole orders without contacting the customer, and charging a credit card six weeks before you ship are all indicative of poor business practices. I would have liked to have had the option to cancel the out of stock items out of my cart before ordering or at least been notified of what was going on without having to chase the owner down. I like ordering from independent needlework shops because it helps keep them open, and in return, I expect good customer service. I'm even willing to pay a little extra to help keep people passionate enough about the craft to run a shop in business, but I won't give my money to someone who doesn't seem to care about their customers. There are plenty of other shops to purchase from.

Anyway, enough ranting. I didn't take any pictures of my new stash, but I did pick up some Thread Heaven and some John James needles (I really like them so far - I was stitching with them tonight.) I also picked up The Sweetheart Tree's Snowflakes in the Pines, LHN's Blueberries and The Cat's Whisker's Alyssum Scissor Pocket.

23 comments:

Teejay said...

I agree with you about being notified about out of stock items, this has happened to me a couple of times and I don't order from those establishments anymore. I recently got charged a very large shipping just for 2 skeins of floss at stitching bits and bobs, I don't think I will order from them ever again either, I have also heard other negative stuff about that one (could this be the one you are referring to). It should be published as it will force these stores to have better business practices or risk losing customers. I think the whole 15% fee is because this happens to them a lot. Shame!

Chiloe said...

I also think you should have given the name of the business inorder for us to avoid the same problems. I heard a lot of bad things also you bits and bobs: they have great sales but it's because almost everything is out of stock and then you wait for your order for a month or more ...

I love your finish: the princess !!!

Barbara said...

Believe it or not, I am still waiting for two charts I ordered in October. I've contacted the shop owner several times, but she is ignoring me. I'm furious.

Your Princess and the P looks great!!

Kathryn said...

I love John James needles, too. I've been using their Petite needles for a while and just got some Gold Petite needles. Is it my imagination or does the gold needle go through the heavy fabric I have more easily? Whatever, I do love them.

Julie said...

Superb finish and a great little fob

Shame about your order, now i am wondering who it is and if it's the same ONS my friend is waiting for an order from??

Sally said...

I think I have an idea who the ONS is. It is bad customer serviece without a doubt.

Love Princess and the P and the fob!

Pumpkin said...

She's adorable Jennifer!!!! I would love to stitch that for Brie (because she IS the princess) but I would have to change the colors to black and tan ;o)

How cute that your DH has a fob of his very own ;o)

I thought it was illegal to charge a credit card ahead of time. I don't blame you for being annoyed and that's why I usually stick with stores that have proven to give good customer service. It's frustrating though but I'm glad your stash finally arrived :o)

C in DC said...

She should have at least sent you the in-stock items at the time of your order. What horrible customer service.

Jennifer aka Sweet Pea said...

I've never agreed with the flat fee shipping on smaller items. It's just ridiculous to charge over $5 to ship 2 skeins of floss when they could easily be put into an envelope and mailed for under $1.

It was Stitching Bits, and while I will say her sale prices are good, the service completely negates that. I won't order from them again, and Teejay, I think you're absolutely right about that 15% fee.

zoomcity said...

I love your modifications on the scientist! Does your dh have blond hair? It's extra cute.

Princess and the (sweet) Pea is pretty, too. :o)

Kim said...

LOVE you P&tP! Almost enough to get off my ___ and finish my own :-) Thanks for posting the pic!

The fob is so cute! Now you need to get him to sign up for an exchange and start a blog ;-)

Carla said...

yay! you finish it!!! Congratulations, it looks so pretty! I agree with you about the brown and white!

Dani said...

Love your Princess and the Pea.

I only wish you had posted the bit about the ONS earlier ... I knew that I would probably have to wait a bit since I ordered my charts while they were closed, but have been trying to check on my order status ... nothing until today which said that one of the charts I ordered was out of stock (these are of course my charts for the bride's tree SAL). Hopefully they will get here soon, but I can always catch up next month.

Janet said...

I had a similar experience with this ONS which was a pity as I'd heard only good things until then.
Love P&P, sweet and girly.
Thanks for the linky - Big I is a scientist so I'll have to do this one, I'll need to think up a finishing idea.

Novice Stitcher said...

What an adorable piece! I like the whimsical designs LHN has started to feature along with their more traditional style. I ordered from SB&B once with okay results but have heard plenty of stories so I am pretty wary now. Glad you finally got your stuff!

Dawn said...

Both looks great!!!

Terri said...

I only order from them when they have a great sale, and I only order items that I don't need right away (usually fibers). I also only use paypal and skip the payment part until she invoices me when the order is ready to ship.

Vee said...

Love your princess and the pea stitching. I also agree with the others regarding waiting a month or more for an order from SB&B. I ordered from them in December, before the holidays and I still have not received my order because items were out of stock.

Sharon said...

Such cute finishes! Congrats.

Lynn said...

I'm pretty sure I know who you referring to regarding your order since I dealt with the same problem in the fall. I was never informed that my order was being held back for an out-of-stock chart and I waited weeks for everything to arrive. I'm looking elsewhere for my supplies now.
I adore that scissor fob. I'm a lab tech so it suits me too. Thanks for the pattern link.I'd love to make some for my coworkers. Princess and the Pea turned out lovely. I'm adding this one to my wish list.

tkdchick said...

Your finish is quite cute!

tkdchick said...

Your finish is quite cute!

Jenna said...

Princess and the P turned out to be really cute! Well done. :) I think I know which ONS you mean and I, like others, only order during a sale and when I don't really need anything in the order anytime soon. That's one of the reasons I tried to make my ONS revolve around customer service. Hopefully, I'm accomplishing my goal!