Sunday, May 10, 2009

The most useless fabric shop in the world

Everyone in Australia knows exactly which shop I'm talking about...

I drove to Spotlight today to pick up some water soluble stabiliser so that I could do a bit more crazy stitching. I have a project in mind that I'm going to make, but it just won't work without using stabiliser, and I don't have enough in the stash.

I'm apologising in advance for the excruciatingly bad grammar but I'm too angry to add any!

I arrive at the haberdashery counter and take a number and wait......

15 year old girl calls my number
I ask for water soluble stabiliser
She asks me to repeat what I want
I ask for water soluble stabiliser
She says she doesn't know what it is.... and asks how to pronounce it
WATER SOLUBLE STABILISER
She asks the other 15 year old girl behind the counter and she has no clue either
She then says that they probably don't stock it
I say I bought some here less than 2 weeks ago, so you do stock it
She says I should try the dress counter
I say I bought it at the haberdashery counter less than 2 weeks ago, and tell her to ask a supervisor
She finds and asks a supervisor who also has no clue....
They then proceed to tell me that I should just come back during the week when the full timers are working, because they'll know what I'm talking about!

WHAT THE????

Can somebody please (pretty please) open a proper fabric / haberdashery shop in the Western suburbs? I promise I'll be your best customer.

37 comments:

Jo (sparkly green knickers) said...

Very frustrating!

Cass said...

At least you still have a haberdashery counter. They removed the one at my Spotlight so now everything is done through the dress counter.

Tania said...

Don't even start me. Every time I am forced to go there I get intensive practise on my repertoire of evil and huffy glares. At my local there is now only ONE counter where they cut fabric. That's one out of FIVE. Course I didn't discover this until I had waited in THREE queues. I am on the verge of launching official protests and requesting Prime Ministerial intervention. Failing that, I'll go out of my way and head to somewhere, anywhere else. Thanks. I needed that!

Bianca Jae Makes Stuff said...

ahhh and grrr! I only going during the week for that reason and then have either side of lunch. I completely agree with Tania, time for protests! BTW really enjoy our blog xox

Liesl (Hoppo Bumpo) said...

I've had lots of similar experiences ... a pattern question at the pattern counter ... an interfacing question at the cutting counter ... all met with the same standard sorry I dont sew, so I can't help you. I don't understand why they don't bother to train up their staff?

Jennifer Rose said...

being part time is no excuse for not knowing what is stocked in the store. there should always be someone there that has an idea where things are. don't need to know exactly where it is, but should know the area it might be in.

If that kept happening when I went there I would be complaining to the manager/owner that the staff is no help at all and that they've lost a customer and possibly more. Wouldn't want to come across as a hag but when I go to a store like that I would expect helpful staff that want to help. Nothing bugs me more in a store when the employees are unhelpful because they don't care.

My Black Cardigan said...

I share your pain!

Selina said...

oh Cam, I feel your pain! I find that if I don't know exactly where something is in Spotty, I don't even bother. We don't have anywhere else to go around here either, and it drives me up the wall!

But like the 2 15yr olds said, I would go back during the week when someone will know what you're talking about!!

lynne said...

I feel your pain, too.

I thought it was only my local Spotlight with that kind of service, as the ones on the other side of town are quite pleasant (much to my shock). I get over charged regularly, and it is such a drama to have it fixed up.

So the other day when I was under charged? Karma :-)

Cravings Frocks said...

Ugh, Spotlight. I was complaining a few days back because my Spotlight (which doesn't even have a haby counter) was out of black drill, black invisible zips, small bags of Hobbyfill and half the other things on my shopping list. I eventually found some white DMC after going through the boxes piled in the middle of the embroidery section.

Sasparilla Sue said...

holy bad customer service, batman! I thought the bad customer service epidemic was strictly an American thing but I guess it's not. That's frustrating in the extreme!

Nikki said...

Why oh why oh WHY don't they make "half a clue about sewing" a requirement for a job there?

Melanie said...

I don't know. I have a feeling Spotlight might be neck and neck with Lincraft for the most useless! My Lincraft, at least, is equally crap. There are no good sewing shops left :(

Sandra @ Pepperberry and Co. said...

Wow! That's infuriating. I'm a bit spoilt- I live next to the DFO Spotlight and everyone there is lovely, and quite helpful. The lines are still long but there's not the angst that was present in my previous Spotlight stores. I'm sorry you have such a horrid one!!

Lisa said...

Oh I feel your pain, we have one particular nasty woman at my local Spotlight and she seems to work 24x7 cause she's always there. This woman can't cut a piece of fabric straight to save herself and you loose at least 10cm from what you ask for.. grrr. And the evil stares she gives you if you ask a question. At least it sounds like they have equally qualified staff in other stores not just mine :-)

Finki (jay) said...

Gosh do I know that frustration. My closest is a lincraft and I think they are worser!
The full timers and manager do not know how to use a cuttlebug, do not know what a xyron is (yes they stock them) and tried to tell me that denim @ 9.99 pm was actually polyester suiting @ 24.99 pm.

I've worked in retail my whole life and would NEVER use some of the one liners that come out of there mouths.

chunkychooky (Cath) said...

I couldn't agree more. I live in a rural area, the closest Spotlight is about an 85km round trip- so IMAGINE my frustration when I get there - after phonong to ensure they have the exact size plastic eyes I need and they have told me yes we have loads of them- and i get there and they don't!!! It amkes me wild- I ahve tried to boycott them but I have no other real options- I hate that I have to rely on them!!!!!!!!!!

Michelle said...

I think Lin-no-craft are worse than Dimlight here in the ACT. I wanted to buy some pellon the other week, and there was no price on the roll. I told them the last time I bought it, 3 weeks ago, it was $7.99. They said no, they wanted to charge me $13.99 for it. Just because. I told them to stick their $13.99 where the sun no longer shone, and took the 25 minute drive to Dimlight instead. Where I got my pellon for $6.98 a metre. And it was a Saturday. I think the angels were smiling on me that day!

Can highly recommend Punch With Judy online for interfacing and stablisers! Much friendlier service, that's for sure, and they actually will know what you are talking about!

Jacqui said...

Spotlight here in NZ is also renowned amongst crafters for poor service (clueless/rude/badly trained) and limited stock. If they didn't have such a monopoly on the market I think there would be massive crafting uprising with tarring and hobby-filling! It's pretty impressive though, that they manage to plumb the depths so comprehensively in two countries. Truly international in their outlook! ;)

Margaret @ Konstant Kaos said...

I know if I want something specific then I drive out to Bayswater (which is the second largest) and I am planning a trip to Fountain Gate (which is the largest one). Brunswick is my closest one and it is hit and miss.

I have some water soluble stabilizer if you need some - I am sure it is the same one that I use with my embroidery machine.

sewjourn said...

Yep Cam I'm with you! Box Hill is my closest Spotlight and each time I leave there swearing and cursing my daughter says to me 'You said last time that you would never come back here Mum........'

Melanie said...

I hear ya there!. Now I know I use spotlight a lot and it is because I am a 7 minute walk from it but if I need help or real haby advice I DONT go to spotlight. The one in Narre has some of the most disgruntled staff members who wouldnt know a sewing needle from a pine needle and it can be painful. Oh now listen to me lol. bring back the old haby stores I say. Where product knowledge was what you got , not snarly teenages with the wonky electric scissors who look hung over(well in my store anyhow)...ok rant over. sorry...you started it tho lol:) Hope you are all calm and creative again for a new week. cheers!

Holly said...

Would an IT fixey company hire me if I didn't know a processor from my elbow? Nope. Would a woodworker hire me if I couldn't hit a nail to save myself? Nope.

Then why do Spotlight insist on hiring "I'm just doing this so I can get some cash to buy Twilight merchandise" 15 year olds who don't give a crap about sewing?!

I'm spending good money there, I at least want to talk to someone who knows the difference between knit and cotton fabrics.

~Holly

http://twocheeseplease.livejournal.com

JustJess said...

Incredible! Spotlight are awful. They're impossible to find anything in, impossible to get served, and impossible to get advice. No idea. There must be a patchwork place somewhere out your way? Williamstown?

bubbachenille said...

I'm hearing you too....We should copy all these comments and send to the CEO co it's the same everywhere I've been...I'mm as mad as hell and I'm not going to take it ANYMORE ! ! ! :(

Tinniegirl said...

It seems our pain is universal. What ever happened to customer service. Gee I miss it.

I suppose it's why we all try and support handmade and small business when we can. Sometimes though, it's unavoidable. You just need to get something quickly and conveniently. That's the theory anyway!!!

Linda said...

don't get me started on Spotlight! they piss me off no end, a lot of stuff I need if I don't need it in a hurry I buy it online, delivered to my door verses Spotlight? no question

Lucy Bowler said...

Spotlight makes me want to cry. It's huge and mainly useless, but like most people, it's one of our few remaining options. I've also been told to come back mid-week when the full-timers were on - what a waste of time! Buying patterns is a shocker too - you have to go and look through the books, then queue up for 100 years to get the actual pattern, then if they don't have them, it's the same thing again (which has happened to me twice on on shopping excursion). Lincraft are no better on the weekends - they used to rule, but are now shockers. I would just love to go somewhere good... HELP!

Sarah said...

My local Spotlight store never seems to have any prices displayed, so you have to line up at the counter if you want to check how much anything is, so you usually end up buying it anyway.

And I think their toy stuffing is waaay overpriced. I can get as much as I want for free from a local insulation factory.

Another thing- Lincraft and Spotlight are actually owned by the same company. They just don't want you to know that.

m.e (Cathie) said...

Spotlight is pretty bad...I hear that Bunnings does the same to the boys!

Jenaveve said...

Ditto to every complaint above. I'm not surprised to hear that Lincraft and Spotlight are owned by the same company. Us poor Westies, we are all doomed.

Spotlight have made me give up sewing on more than one occasion due to the uneducated staff, the lack of decent material and the lack of anything in stock. And their premises always look like a bomb-site.

They really need to lift their game or it's going to be shopping online by everyone in future.

Let's get these comments over to the CEO of 'both' companies...

mrs smith said...

I bloody hate spotlight.

Rach said...

Don't get me started on Shysterlight. Oh. My. God. They, for the most part, are useless. But sometimes you do get a good staff member. I aksed for fusible tear-away oneday and they sent me to the interfacing section, waving her hand dismissively. The following week I asked the same question and they had it! Someone actually knew what it was. I hate it when you ask for something and they tell you that it doesn't actually exist - like I have made it up? And the stores are in such a freaking mess.

Don't let me start on the overcharging.... Always, always check your docket.

Polka Dot Rabbit said...

Inep would be an understatement. How such stores can sell cheap imported manchester and woollens right next to crafting materials i beyond me. Lincraft is only worse for it's hideous fabric collection and over emphasis on scrap booking...

LittleDogRock said...

I couldn't agree more. I find both stores extremely frustrating. They stock so much rubbish and the stores are a mess! What a dream it would be to find a store with fully trained and helpful staff (& plenty of) stocked with all the most beautiful inspirational things we could want. I'm sick of looking at hideous fabric - what do they do with all this unwanted stuff - who buys it??

Wisdom.Courage.Love said...

I know this post is a little old but I wanted to say something as well... I agree with the service and up until recently lived just up the road from one, now it is a 40min drive. Constantly I was dissappointed on products and service and find it amazing that they do not consider employing those that are interested in these areas, those who want to help others out, know there products and are always willing to learn... I applied for a job and didnt even get a look in even though I am extremely capable and probably over experienced to work in these roles!!

nikkishell said...

Both Spotlight and Lincraft are shite! Glad i now work in a good fabric store so i don't have to bother with them anymore!