Changes are Happening at Needle & Foot

I have some news for all of you so we will just cut to the chase! I have decided I do not want to have a fabric shop any longer! There, I said it – to all of you – in public – it is no longer just a plan in my head! Ah, that feels better!

Let’s talk about how all of this evolved. Last year, in 2020, I sold a LOT of fabric. Truly – tons and tons of fabric. I should have added up the yardage for you but I am feeling too lazy, so you will just have to take me at my word. When COVID hit and the quarantine was in place, online shopping went through the roof. My small shop went absolutely nuts. (I can’t even imagine how it was for bigger shops!) It took me by surprise, there was no way to plan for this. I scrambled to keep up with demand, bringing in fabric however I could. Of course the fabric manufacturers felt the same spike in demand and within a month or two, so many fabrics were out of stock. I rarely saw this, pre-COVID. There was always availability.

Keeping up with this was hectic but manageable. Basically my little online shop became a full-time gig. For the first time I got a taste of what this would be like if I were to keep it going on a full-time level. It was exciting and tiring at the same time.

Then fall rolled around and I had a momentous birthday – I turned 60! Yeah, I can’t believe it either. It is hard to wrap my head around that number! But when I turned 60, I soon realized I didn’t want to work anymore. It was almost an over-night decision. Actually my decision to open the fabric shop (at the end of 2016) was also a very quick decision. When something feels right, it just feels right.

By closing the shop, I will have more time for other things (obviously!) One thing I noticed after opening the shop was how little time I had for sewing! Kind of ironic, yes? I had thousands of yards downstairs and not a whole lot of time to use them! Once I decided to close the shop, I stopped the flow of new inventory coming in. I have not brought in new inventory since January. Let me say, cancelling all of the outstanding orders was quite freeing. Selecting fabrics, placing orders, keeping track of money spent, unboxing inventory and listing it online is time consuming. Reading about what companies are bringing in new fabric, which designers are coming out with new lines takes time. I had to be on the computer a lot! Like, a lot, a lot, a lot! So this has been the first change I have noticed. Less time on the computer leaves me more time for other things. I have been out in the garden more with Ray which is a total win!

As you know, I love traveling to see my grand children. Each time I do this, I have a wonderful friend, Sophia, who ships my orders. She says she likes doing it but I don’t feel like I can impose on her forever. I want to be able to go up to WA and stay without feeling a twinge of guilt for taking up Sophia’s time.

I suspect some of you have wondered what was going on. I have some very loyal reader/shoppers and my inventory has decreased with no new pieces being added. Well, now you know why! The existing inventory will be sold off (at great prices) and I will be moving on to new adventures.

I want to spend more time participating in QAL’s (like the upcoming Positivity QAL), more time making Mercyful Quilts, and more time making garments. Blogging is still in the mix and I hope to be more focused on it – both writing posts and reading your posts.

Having the shop was really a great experience. All of you were so supportive and I am so grateful for that. It has been fun to put together bundles, think about which lines you would enjoy, and learn about new kinds of fabric. (For example, I knew next to nothing about repros and nothing at all about the stunning William Morris fabrics.)

OK – this has become a long post and if you are still with me, thank you! To begin clearing out the inventory, I have opened a sale with everything in the shop marked down by 20%. This will be an open ended sale. If you are interested in yardage (eg a partial bolt of solids or a lot of a particular wide back) send me an email. I will work out a special price for you. Also, there are a couple of you who have a gift certificate that has not yet been used. Please take advantage and use it! I don’t want you to miss out on the opportunity!

As I said earlier, without all of you, this whole adventure would not have been nearly as successful. So thank you, thank you, thank you for all of your support over the last 4 1/2 years!

66 thoughts on “Changes are Happening at Needle & Foot

  1. B2

    I’m so happy to read about your decision. You’re such a remarkable person—-I just know you’re going to love having more time and freedom. I love your blogs so I’m glad you are continuing with those.

    💕💕💕💕

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Hi there, Thanks for the note. I am pretty excited as well. The shop was a wonderful experience and it was great to be busy during the quarantine. That sort of worked out well for me and I felt like I was helping others who were trying to keep busy at home sewing. It was a win. Now on to other things – like hoping you and Randy come out to CA for a visit!!!

      Reply
  2. Linda

    Yay for you Bernie! Making those momentous decisions is happy and freeing. Your shop has been a happy place for me and you’ve been a great seller/shopkeeper. If I can ever get mine going, I’ll be picking your brain. Enjoy that grandchildren/QAL time!

    Reply
  3. Wendy Tuma

    Having family who own a shop, I well understand what you have discovered – that having a shop is a ton of work! I’m so glad you have made the decision, although I will miss the shop. I know that you and I will keep in touch with our blogs, etc. Having the time to be able to buzz over to see the grands will be so worth it, especially without feeling like you need to be back in the shop. And please tell Sophia thanks, too, for all her work with you! We’ll chat more about this 🙂 Good for you, Bernie!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      I knew you would totally get it. You have been a wonderful customer through out!! Thank you Wendy. We will talk soon – after I get all of these orders packed. Yikes!

      Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Oh for sure – always working on something. Maybe we can come up with something fun together Carole! I have enjoyed working with you and also appreciate your loyal support of my shop activities!

      Reply
  4. Beth Stanfield

    I’ll have to tell you how we ended up in TN after being life-long NCers. ( at age 69!) God’s new dream for us.
    I’ll hit a REALLY BIG birthday in August!
    I love William Morris. Had to use restraint. I’ll be back!
    Bless you as you move forward.
    Beth Stanfield- in TN 🙏😊💪

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      William Morris fabrics were quite the discovery for me Beth. They are just gorgeous. Thanks so much for the good wishes.

      Reply
  5. Diann@LittlePenguinQuilts

    Oh good for you, Bernie! Although you will be missed – I always loved what I got from your shop and your wonderful service – I’m really happy for you! When I turned 60, I decided to retire from teaching – a career I loved. But we all know when it’s time! There’s a lot of life to live yet!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Interesting Diann – I think this is a good time for a change. I agree – lots of life to live. Having the extra time back is going to be a lot of fun.

      Reply
  6. Laurie Lasala-Tuttle

    I’m so happy for you Bernie, yay for following your heart!! Working does eat up free-time, I have a hard time reading & responding to blogs, (such as your fabulous one) while working. Thank you for running an amazing shop; I loved it. ❤ Laurie

    Reply
  7. Roseanne

    Hi Bernie! I can only imagine how hard it was to write that sentence. You have to make decisions that work for YOU and your family. I am 100% certain that all of your customers will completely understand. It is fabulous that you are leaving on a high note. I happen to know of a great QAL that just started yesterday. HAHA! You’ll have to make room for all the quilts you’ll be receiving at the end of the summer. {{Hugs}} a bunch for you. Go travel, enjoy your grandbabies and your peeps. You’ve earned it. And Happy Memorial Day to you. ~smile~ Roseanne

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Thanks Roseanne! Yep, I am definitely joining in on Preeti’s QAL. But oh my gosh, now that I see her multitude of layout suggestions – yikes!! I need to just dive in without overthinking it. They will all be really cool and I can’t wait to see what the other quilters make!

      Reply
  8. Kathy

    Congratulations! People always say you know when it’s time to retire and you were able to pick yours too which is a blessing in this crazy upside down working world today. Family means everything to me as it is to you so you enjoy all this time now without thinking of what you have to do when you come home. It’s your time to sew for fun. I will look forward to your blog posts sharing your wonderful pictures and how each day is a pleasure to live in.

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Thanks so much Kathy. You are so sweet and I love reading your thoughts on my posts. I appreciate it greatly. Have a wonderful Tuesday!

      Reply
  9. Barbara Esposito

    Wow Bernie – wishing you all the best! A wise pastor once reminded me that life is about Seasons. I completely understand missing the actual sewing time. Even sewing for Jaftex as I do takes away from the things I want to sew for myself or others. Enjoy every second in the garden and with those adorable littles. Be well and stay in touch!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Thanks Barb! I agree with you – when I did one year with Island Batik (before I had the shop) I felt those time constraints. Anyway – this will just be another adventure and I am looking forward to it. Take care and have a lovely day!

      Reply
  10. Cheree Hull

    Well how many of us have thought of owning a shop–I know I have! But I know we all have considered the time away from quilting that it would take. I’m so happy for you for going for it, enjoying it and then knowing when to stop–and I’m kinda jealous! Just enjoy that journey, no matter where it leads!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Thank you Cheree. It was a fun thing to do – I feel like I learned so much and for the most part it was super rewarding. Now onto the next adventure! Take care.

      Reply
  11. Kathy E.

    I can only imagine how time-consuming it is to have a fabric shop, but I can say you did it with great panache and expert skills, Bernie! You will always pride yourself on running this business and having it be so successful. Good things don’t always last, and knowing when to quit takes courage. What a great feeling you must have knowing you are moving on simply because you want to, not because you have to! Grand kids don’t stay little for long and you are so blessed to have them. Enjoy every moment of your new adventures and now I look forward to watching where your time takes you! Hugs to you!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      The grand kids won’t be little for long and I want to have time to enjoy them! It was quite a decision, whether to keep going or to quit. (Either one sounded like a lot of work!) But I know this is the right thing to do and I am pleased. You have been a great supporter of the shop and I really appreciate that! Thank you.

      Reply
  12. Kathleen McCormick

    Good for you, but so sad for us who love the support you give to the community. I am traveling but will fill up a basket on the end of the trip and get a few goodies. I still have one gorgeous group of fabrics I won from you and can’t wait to come up with the perfect design. I am really pleased for you…doing what you want to when you want to do it is just right. More time for you, for sewing and grandchildren…perfect. `

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Hi Kathleen,
      Thanks for the well wishes. This feels like the right thing and I am happy to see what comes along next.
      Hope you are enjoying your travels – Take care.

      Reply
  13. Sue Marshall

    Congratulations!! I know you will enjoy your extra time. I’ll miss your little shop, but I’m sure it’s the right decision for you.

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Thank you for the good wishes Julie. Also for the loyal support of my shop! You have been a wonderful customer and I really appreciate that. Now on to other adventures!!

      Reply
  14. Nancy Bird

    I love your graphics! I have a friend who is going through the same changes as me – end of a marriage, and moving hundreds of miles away – divorce for her, and my husband’s death for me. Both quotes really spoke to my heart, and I’m sure will speak to my friend as well (I screenshotted them to save!)
    Thank you, and congratulations on the next chapter of your life!
    Nancy

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Hi Nancy, I am glad to see you enjoyed the post. Life is always full of changes, some good and others – not so good. But we move through it and see what comes next. I am sorry to hear of the loss of your husband. Hoping you have lots of people around to support you as you go through these changes. Best wishes to you.

      Reply
  15. Carol Westover

    Hooray for you!!! I love that quote about never being too old to have a new dream. It totally matches what’s going on in my own life. My husband and I have decided to sell our home (Cable House) and downsize to a gated community. How freeing the decision has made me feel. I imagine it’s just like when you made your decision to no longer have a shop. The decision feels right in every way. Congratulations on your decision. You’re making it for all the right reasons! Sincere regards… Carol (aka Tehachap)

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Oh my gosh! I am so glad you are doing this – I bet it will be really good for both of you. Less to take care of and lots of support around you. I will be interested to read about this transition. I hope your husband doesn’t have issues with the changes – that can be unsettling for someone in his situation. Take care.

      Reply
  16. Mari

    Oh Bernie, I will miss your shop, but I get how the next chapter is opening up for you. The shop served its purpose, and now you can move on to the next adventure. And what a fun adventure that will be! Congratulations, and good luck winding down. (Pretty sure I will have to help you out by taking some inventory off your hands. . .)

    Reply
  17. Cynthia Brunz

    Good for you Bernie! I am just a couple years behind you and I can relate. I keep warning my clients that change is coming. Like you, I can feel it. I will still teach but the daily grind responsibilities can b tough to do every day. Best of luck to you!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Yay for you too Cyndy. Life holds so many opportunities.There is lots I want to do. I know you feel the same. Can’t work forever!!!

      Reply
  18. Emily

    So glad that the decision feels right to you, Bernie! Lots of time for sewing, gardening, and grand kids now! I am quite sure you will find fulfilling ways to fill the time.

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Oh no question about it! The time will be full – usually there isn’t enough time. Now that we have been vaccinated and things are slowly going back to normal, it will be fun to create some new adventures. Take care Emily!

      Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Yvonne, thanks so much. You have been a great supporter of my endeavors and I appreciate it. So, now we shall see what comes next!

      Reply
  19. Dawn Lunn

    Happy Retirement! I retired at 70 and have definite regrets for not retiring sooner. The years go by so quickly. I’ve enjoyed fabrics from your lovely shop and thank you for being there. It’s time for family and the rewards of your years of labor. Enjoy!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      That is so true Dawn. Time passes incredibly fast. I feel lucky to have had the shop and also excited for whatever this next stage in life might hold!

      Reply
  20. SarahZ

    Good for you, Bernie! I have enjoyed your shop, and will continue to enjoy your online “company”☺️ Happy wishes for a smooth transition into new and refreshing routines☀️

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Thanks Sarah! I really enjoyed it too. I’m just ready for different adventures. Life is always changing, right?

      Reply
  21. Pat

    Thank you for all the beautiful fabric and inspiration. I have learned a lot about fabric selection in your monthly blogger bundles and your own choices of fabrics. Your shop will be missed. Best wishes on your new endeavors … 🙂 Pat

    Reply
  22. Preeti Harris

    Bernie, I wish you all the very best in your next endeavor, whatever that may be. If I was in your shoes, I too would want to spend more time with those squishy cheeks, bright eyes, story-times, and never-ending questions. I am sure I will be collaborating with you, sometimes calling you late at night. Because no one on the east coast will be awake to listen to my wild/new idea. Lots of Love & Hugs.

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      For sure! We will still work together – I am really looking forward to these changes. Thanks a bunch Preeti!

      Reply
  23. Sandra Walker

    Well, I have loved being a small part of your shop, through the blogger bundle, you sponsoring my QALs, through feeding my fabric and becoming friends. I wish you much joy in your future sewing; I totally get this after sewing for IB for 3 years, and feeling the freedom I now have. 🙂

    Reply
  24. Cindy Pieters

    Congrats on your decision! I hope you get to enjoy your time and grands! As we both know life can be too short enjoy every day and good luck in all your future endeavors!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Yes – life is precious. My husband and I are both excited about this change. Thank you for your good wishes. I hope you are doing well Cindy. 🙂

      Reply
  25. Rebecca Grace

    Happy Birthday, Bernie! Congratulations on your retirement decision. You have earned it. And I just love that Fred Rogers quote, by the way. So true! When we work so hard to keep something going past the time when it really ought to end, we’re only delaying the new adventures that are waiting for us in another direction.

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      New adventures – that is exactly it. I think the freedom this will give me and my husband will make for lots of fun – even just the day trips we are planning. I am looking forward to it!! 🙂

      Reply
  26. JanineMarie

    Congrats, Bernie, from probably one of your worst customers. (I have only recently got the hang of online shopping.) I’m really impressed with your ability to decide to do something and then just go for it. That was true for both starting and closing your business. I enjoyed following your business, but I have to admit that I missed your steady quilt-making from years before. I’m glad you had the opportunity to offer your fabrics and expand your quilty connections, but I think you will also thoroughly enjoy the family and sewing time coming up. Happy second retirement!!

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Thanks so much Janine! I miss quilt making too! I am sewing much more now, even with just not having to plan for the future of the shop. I know it is the right thing to do and I am so excited about it all. I appreciate your good wishes!!

      Reply
  27. Kirsty@BonjourQuilts

    Well, I’m sad for your customers but very happy for you! It will be wonderful to have the extra time to do all the things that light you up, and I look forward to hearing all about it. Congratulations on retiring! x x

    Reply
    1. Bernie Post author

      Thanks Kirsty. It has been a fun experience. I am just ready for the next thing. More sewing, gardening, travel etc. I appreciate your good wishes!!

      Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.