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  • Sample Fabrics

    Hello there. At present I don't use sample books. The customer goes to a fabric shop/warehouse with the measurements I have given them. But I met a disabled lady yesterday at a craft fair who wants me to take fabric samples to her. I am not sure what to do. Can someone advise. She wants all her 8 room house curtained and cushions.
    And, I don't have the money to buy the fabric on her behalf (don't want to anyway in case I'm left with it if she changes her mind) so how do I go about getting her to buy it. Would she give me the money and I'd buy it (trust issue there)
    I have a month as she is going away.

    Who would you suggest I contact?
    Do they cost a lot?
    Can I hire them?

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
    Julie

  • #2
    Re: Sample Fabrics

    Where are you in the country? There may be a member nearby with sample books they would lend you. Alternatively many fabric shops will lend out sample books if you pay a returnable deposit.....obviously you will need to get an idea of what the customer has in mind.

    Alternatively, could you look at websites together with the customer, then order samples of what she likes? Many places send free or postage only samples of up to 6-7 fabrics at a time. There are all sorts of places selling fabric online from discount to luxury. Some places to start might be Dunelm Mill and Terrys Fabrics (lower end of the market), Montgomery, Sanderson Interiors and Kingdom Interiors for mid-high range. They all sell direct at retail prices. Obviously there are also sites from specific manufacturers/designers like Laura Ashley, Elanbach, Vanessa Arbuthnott etc.

    If you get as far as deciding on a fabric then either she can order direct and pay herself, or will need to pay you in advance and trust you will order what she needs. Do not order anything until her payment to you has cleared.

    Don't be put off, this could be a nice job. I find most people are very appreciative of individual service where you can offer something high street stores cannot.
    Louise


    sigpic Simply Sewing

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    • #3
      Re: Sample Fabrics

      Do you have any interior design shops who would come out to visit with you? I don't hold books myself, but I borrow from a designer that does and then I make up They make a lot of money on the fabrics and for a job this size I am sure they would visit her. You would need to get an idea of colour, style and price range first. If they won't visit you may have to go looking for samples yourself and make sure you add the appropriate hourly rate onto your estimate. Being incapacitated by a bad back myself, I am sure she would be happy to pay for you to do her leg work for her ! Just watch your back though - it was carrying sample books that did for mine this week!!
      Julie
      Julie

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      • #4
        Re: Sample Fabrics

        Thanks Louise and Julie.
        I am in a wee village in Ayrshire and I don't know any curtain makers personally but I'll ask in some shops if they would hire out some sample books after I get an idea of colours and design from the customer.
        Thanks
        Julie
        (Maybe I should call myself Julie B so as not to confuse folk with you Julie?)

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        • #5
          Re: Sample Fabrics

          Good luck with the shops - hopefully they will help when they understand why you are asking......if you then place an order then surely it is good for them too....it might even be chance to build a good relationship with them for future customers.
          Louise


          sigpic Simply Sewing

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