the Stitchin' Post in Sisters, OR
Be kind to your local quilt shop and support them by shopping for fabrics and notions from them. Oddly enough in the last couple months I've spoken with a variety of quilt shop owners who are a bit discouraged with the status of keeping their shops going strong. It seems that more and more of us quilters are not shopping at our local quilt shops but turning to the internet and online shops or coops such as Massdrop instead.
What's worse is that I've discovered that more "shoppers" going to the quilt shops are using that time to take pictures or notes of bolt ends and books that they then go home and order from online vendors. That practice is known as "showrooming" .. it's similar to the people who go to the bookstore to look at new books then go home and order the digital copy of it rather than buying a physical copy from the store.
Now, it's one thing when you live in a rural area that doesn't have access to any nearby brick and mortar quilt shops ... for those quilters you have no choice but to shop online. But it's quite another when a quilter lives in an area with actual shops. Those shops work hard to keep a revolving inventory in their stores. They need to constantly make quilt samples, line up quilt classes and manage employees. On top of this they have to deal with managing a physical location, local property taxes, leases or mortgages, parking concerns and general overhead connected with running a brick and mortar shop. In comparison a lot of the internet shops don't have as huge of an overhead and are able to sell for less.
While this may seem like the only way to go, I just want you to think for a moment of what it would be like if you didn't have a local shop to run into for fabrics and notions. What if you didn't have a source of experienced quilters to ask for advice on a technique or quilt pattern? Just the other day I was steered towards a new-to-me needle that helped out with a project immensely. Yesterday another shop was kind enough to hold a spool of needed thread for me when I called and found out that they only had one left in stock. If we don't try to spend our quilting dollars to support our local shops then don't be surprised when they close their doors.