Reply to your comments on yesterday's post about my retiring. I'm glad you'll miss me but I'll still be writing and posting.
First of all that was NOT my 2017 Challenge to go on a fabric diet. That's why I put the picture of Ignatz throwing the brick at Krazy Kat. Fabric dieters are Ignatz the mouse. Fabric manufacturers are Krazy Kat.
When I read things like that I say, "No wonder my fabric sales are down." A fabric diet seems to me to be a very silly idea. If no one buys fabric no one will manufacture fabric.
Our 2017 challenge should be BUY FABRIC! You shouldn't need reasons besides
Love to Shop.
Other ideas are more complex.
Louise's comments seem to define a lot of the problems:
"I suspect some of this might have to do with demographics. Older women (me included) have been buying fabric so long we are saturated. I know lots of people who are ready to "destash". (Not me...I hoard!) We also own quilt books on every subject already.
Younger women don't mind doing everything online. There are so many tutorials they probably don't need classes, although I like classes for the sociability component."
My favorite Baby Boomer analogy:
As that generation moves through life they dictate trends like a mousey bulge through a boa constrictor.
I'm not of the Baby Boomer generation. I'm older. But I've always hung on to the tail of their trends.
That influential generation is now retirement age. They have plenty of stuff and not enough places to store it.
If you want to sell stuff to Baby Boomers vibrating chairs might be a good idea.
The most important difference, in my opinion, is a generation gap between young stitchers (under 45 say) and older stitchers like me and you.
- Each prefers different quilt styles.
- Each prefers different fabrics & color schemes.
- Each shops in different formats.
- Each obtains information in different formats.
- Each uses their free time in different ways (and has differing amounts of free time)
If we go back to my sad litany of yesterday you will see that each milestone indicating a downhill slide in the quilting business can be balanced with an innovation for the younger generations.
Book Publishers Closing <---> Patterns available by Instant Download. Instagram,Facebook, etc. provide pictures.
Magazines Discontinuing Publications <---> Digital Magazines with tons of color and tons of pages. Tutorials, blogs and posted pictures provide inspiration & skills.
Fewer visitors to Quilt Market & other industry conventions <---> Easy for retailers to keep aware of current trends online
Less reproduction fabric available <---> lots of brights/solids/minimalist/pink & blue on white prints being sold.
Fewer brick & mortar quilt shops <---> more online shops and other ways to purchase fabric.
Fewer visitors to shows---generations use their free time differently.
Each generation has its own preferences. There is no sense complaining about it. Trends do not go backwards. My New Year's Resolution is to get hipper. (As we used to say.)