Total Reported Spending at Independent Retailers and Restaurants on Small Business Saturday Tops an Estimated $100 Billion since the Day Was Founded by American Express in 2010 ~ New York (Business Wire).
You may be asking what does an event like Small Business Saturday – which occurred 2 weeks ago, have to do with quilting, sewing or creativity in general?
Actually, there is more in common than you might think. People, like myself, that are driven to create and share that creative spirit are the small business owners that thrive in the entrepreneurial environment SBS was designed to foster and support.
Each year since 2010, the first Saturday after Thanksgiving, (sandwiched between Black Friday and Cyber Monday) has been designated as Small Business Saturday. The intent is to generate a renewed interest in small businesses and restaurants while simultaneously helping these local entrepreneurs compete with larger retail outlets for holiday shopping customers.
I’m all for anything that gives any small business an economic boost and I make it a priority to participate and contribute in any way I can. As for me, I love the personal attention you receive in a small business or restaurant and I will choose first to frequent these shops any time of the year.
Small Business Saturday 2019
My goal for next year is to create a quilt fabric road trip” – or, “MyQuiltingSpace Trek – Part 1” and see how many businesses I can visit on this one day. Although my primary intent will be to spend money, this will also serve as an excellent opportunity to discover businesses that are new to me and to meet and network with these inspiring and innovative business owners.
As a tribute to the individuals and their respective businesses who consistently provide me with endless inspiration (and fabric!) my contribution for this year’s event focused on the two stores listed below.
My First Stop:
The Quilter’s Station.
I feel so fortunate to live only 2 miles away from such a wealth of fabric, patterns, notions and expertise.
This one-of-a-kind quilt shop is locally owned by Rita Briner and specializes in primitive fabrics as well as reproduction prints, woolens, flannels, and home spun wool. Walking through the isles viewing bolt after bolt after… of fabric you soon realize this experience is no different from being a kid in a candy store.
Each time I walk through the door I pretty much lose my mind and almost immediately find myself darting off into a myriad of directions. I’m easily drawn to the patterns or woolens sections although my original intent was look for cotton fabric that would pattern and color and coordinate with the fabric swatches in my hand.
Am I the only one that does this? I mean just take a look at the image below…what you’re viewing is just a very small sampling of the eye candy you’ll find when you first walk through the door!
On this particular Small Business Saturday I was able to remain somewhat focused and with the help of her friendly and knowledgeable staff I was able to locate and choose the exact fabrics I was looking for:
Stay tuned to see the transformation of these fabrics into something that will warm your heart and soul!
Second Stop –
I could write a novel on this mercantile wonderland – what I refer to as the “Quilting Mecca of Missouri”. It is actually several stores that occupy a large portion of all available retail space within downtown Hamilton, Missouri. Each of the 14 different quilting shops that encompass the Missouri Star Quilt Co., is decorated and stocked according to a theme. For example, ‘Batiks Boutique’, ‘Man’s Land’ the ‘Machine Shop’ and ‘Penny’s Quilt Shop’.
Should you be interested, you will find doing even a small amount of research on the origins of the MSQC and owner, Jenny Doan to be very worthwhile and inspiring. The connection between the MSQC and JC Penny is also quite interesting.
I never tire of hearing her story.
Traveling to the MSQC is a good 1 hour and 15 minute drive from my home so needless to say it is not a shop I am able to physically frequent too often but the online store is every bit worth a visit. This is how I used the Missouri Star Quilt Co., to contribute to SBS.
The day I discovered the MSQC I subscribed to their daily emails so turning on my computer and opening my email was the most effort I had to make! From my home and the MSQC home page I was able to shop a huge variety of fabrics, patterns, kits and notions. On this day, I was able to make use of the “Daily Deal” and with the offering of free shipping and other freebies I was delivered a box of goodies that made me feel like it was Christmas morning!
Below are fabrics from the Scandi 5 fabric collection by Andover:
Taking a look at the website earlier today with the hope of making a second purchase makes me more thankful that I bought this fabric bundle when I did as it is now listed as “Sold Out Forever”. Whew! Thank goodness for Small Business Saturday and the Missouri star Quilt Company!
These winter themed fabrics will make a wonderful quilt. I have in mind a couple of patterns I’d like to use with this fabric. As soon as I decide and begin that project I will be posting about that process so stay tuned!
So how does spending money at a small business or restaurant make you a better person?
According to BusinessCommerce.com, “The unofficial shopping holiday now has 70% awareness amongst U.S. consumers, with 64% of survey respondents indicating that their primary motivation for shopping on the day after Black Friday was to support their local community.”
Every few months we read where a large powerful company purchases another large company. And then another. The fear of consumers and small business owners alike is the inevitable end result – one or two large oligopolies whose purpose is to seek out other smaller businesses to purchase and control leading to a market monopoly.
Is a retail monopoly really so bad?
A large homogenized behemoth that disregards the value of the individual creative spirit and stifles efforts to facilitate innovation and ingenuity may provide convenience to the masses in the short term but the long term effects can be devastating. Historically, the existence of a lack of diversity within any culture has resulted in the death of many natural entities – species of animal, human and horticultural life to start with.
It is my hope that through the efforts of Small Business Saturday and other entrepreneurial events that the public will take notice and do what we can to preserve these valuable community establishments.
As our communities prosper, then as consumers, we too share in that prosperity.
The skills and talents of local businessmen and women will always need a platform for expression and service. A large, soulless corporation does not allow for this.
When you support any small business on Small Business Saturday as well as every day of the year you become a wiser, happier, more responsible and valuable consumer.
And these attributes are what make each of us a better person.