I thought that I'd post my two cents worth on how the economy has affected the closing of quilt shop businesses. I was intrigued by a previous post by another reader and the many responses. Always like to read other opinions. I posted the following in response to that previous post. I believe that this is a valuable discussion, so I invite others to also post.
There are hardly any LQS in Jersey. One must go across the borders of NY and PA to find anything decent. Yes, JoAnn's is there in a pinch. And Walmart has some textiles (not much to choose from and you do have to be picky). I believe it is the amount of taxes that businesses have to pay in general to the state which they are doing their business. Couple that with the rising costs of producing textiles, the artists' creative demand, production costs etc. and you have a hefty price tag on fabrics. Remember when calicos were $1.99 a yard? Well the economy since then has quadrupled and the rising costs have not met the demand of available dollars to sustain inventory purchases for businesses to entice the buyers of their products. So much of what is on the shelves is less due to loss of revenue for income. With that being said, the business owner has to make their payments on the inventory, their rent if they don't own the building space, utilities, outstanding debt, insurances, salaries, health insurance (if appropriate), travel, contracts on sewing machines, and above all, the bank if they have a business loan and the list goes on. The business owner must be a smart cookie to run a profitable business where one buys low and sells high, no matter what the commodity is. Also one has to take into consideration what the 'traffic will bear'. The online purchasing has made a significant impact on smaller business and we, the consumer know this. Loyalty is only as deep as one's pocketbook. If the man down the street sells his 'eggs' at $1.00/a half dozen and an unknown sells his 'eggs' at $.98/ a dozen, the consumer may choose to save a few cents and buy cheaper deal to feed his family , his habit etc. Business people have to be one step ahead of their competition in order to maintain and stay in business. It's the law of economics.