Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Quilt Pattern Shoppe

Today I am taking a short break from my postings about the North Carolina Quilt Symposium, to bring you information about a new way of downloading quilt patterns.

Occasionally, I am asked to review a product or service that is quilting related. Often I do this for new books or products I have purchased. However, I am being paid for my time to review this site and blog about it.

That being said, I can see where The Quilt Pattern Shoppe offers a unique service to those who like to make quilts from patterns. All 200+ patterns on the site are from various pattern designers, and all patterns are downloadable -- you buy and print your patterns instantly. There are no shipping charges and you can begin working on the patterns immediately.
I am not affiliated with the site other than agreeing to review the site on this blog. My first negative criticism of the actual website is this annoying large block of white space in the upper right of the screen. This should be easily fixed by someone who knows web-building software. The viewer should not have to scroll down the page to view the content.
A quick look at the Terms and Conditions page indicates that you must download your pattern within seven days of purchase, and you get three attempts to successfully download. Here is something that does not sit too well with me: you are licensed to make only one copy for yourself for each pattern you download. That is a turn-off for me. If I find a pattern that I like, that is easy to use and makes a pretty quilt, I might make several in different colors and fabric styles. Oh, yes, and there are no returns and exchanges once you purchase a pattern here. That is understandable due to the nature of downloaded files.
Aside from no shipping costs, the site offers the opportunity to earn Shopper Reward Points from your purchases and receive free quilt patterns , thread, and fabric from our partner stores. Partner stores? I could not find any listed on the site unless they are the links under Related Services. Perhaps that is a work in progress. Or, possibly, information is provided once you make a purchase.
I checked out the "Free Patterns" sidebar link, and found a hearts and daisy table runner which I was able to quickly download in a pdf file. The directions seem clear and easy to follow. That was the only Free Pattern currently listed.
There is also a Free Newsletter offer. I personally am already inundated with advertising e-mails disguised as newsletters. This one is outdated with a give-away offer that ended May 25. However, if you like this service, they can update you about new designs and special offers.
Okay, on to the patterns. You can browse by designer, skill level, technique, and type of object such as purse, baby quilt, or home decor. I have not purchased any of these designs for download from this site or from any other source. There is an opportunity to provide product reviews if you log in as a member of the site.
I think that this site might be very helpful if you need to make a quilt in a hurry for a baby shower or other gift, since there is no shipping or ordering delay. Also, it might be a good way to get started if you wish to market your own designs. If you try it out, I hope that you will be satisfied with the service.

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