Wednesday, July 21, 2010

New Drape Plan

Buying fabric at Hancock Fabrics (Church Street/N. Decatur location in Decatur) turned out to be a giant bust*, so I'm starting from scratch on my path toward making my own curtains.

With the $276 I got back from Hancock's, I took my frustrated 'lil self over to Lowe's to buy some drop cloths to use as drape panels in the larger of our two spare bedrooms. If the gals over at Knock Off Wood and The Lettered Cottage can easily and stylistically do it, so can I... dammit. And each "panel" (or individual drop cloth) was $9.99 — SCORE! No sewing required? Sign me up!

Drop cloth drapes ($10/panel) from Lowe's. Photo from The Lettered Cottage.

For our master bedroom, I considered shopping Hancock Fabric's drape sale online — then I realized that would be dumb considering the disappointing customer service I've received over the past few weeks.

Instead I headed over to and picked up some slightly contemporary chocolate brown/white geometric material. See below.

Waverly's Parterre Walnut Designer Fabric - $15.98/yard at I bought 8.5 yards.

So that's about $185 for the same amount of fabric that I'd bought "half off" at Hancock. Fingers crossed the online fabric arrives in a timely fashion — and madame clutz-a-lot (moi) does okay with this project.

*I ordered fabric for two bedrooms (four windows total) at Hancock Fabrics a while back — half off, totaling $276. The employees there were friendly enough about taking my order. They told me the orders would take 2 to 3 weeks to come in, 3 weeks at the latest. This sounded fair enough.

Three and a half weeks pass, so I decide to call and check on my order. I tell the employee who answers the phone my name and why I was calling (to check in on an order). Employee is quite snappy with me, saying, "Umm... did we call you?" I responded saying, "no, you didn't — but the order is later than the 'at the latest' time you all mentioned to me when I placed the order." So I was instructed to call back in about a week.

So a week I waited. This time another employee answers the phone. When I'm asked if I have been called yet, I say, "no, I haven't received a call — but at this point, I'm alarmed about my order." She goes to look for the order, comes back and says, "uh, can you call back later? We're, like, really busy."

I'm obviously annoyed at this point but want to give these folks another chance. I call back the next day, ask to speak with the manager. Manager and I play phone tag for a day. When we connect, I mention my disappointment. She says they can't guarantee delivery times but will refund my shipping ($40) anyway. She promises that day (a Thursday) that the fabric will be sent two-day to the Decatur store for me to pick up Tuesday at the latest.

Yesterday (Tuesday) rolls around. I try to call the store various times during the day, only to get a busy signal. Argh! I decided to drop by after work because the store isn't too far out of the way on my way home.

Upon entering the store, I tell an employee that I'm swinging by to check on the status of an order — and that the phone seems to not be working. She asks, "well, did we call you?" OMG. No, you didn't call me — but someone promised the material would be here by today at the latest — not to mention it's 3 weeks late. She asks me to retrieve my "pink slip" (carbon copy of my order form) from my car so she can look up my order.

Employee sees my last name and says, "oh, I know exactly which order is yours!" Then she goes on to say she doesn't think the whole order has come in yet (WTF!?). She goes to the back and comes out with only one of the two orders. Out of control! That's not even the best part... the order that HAS come in has black grease stains all over it.

The employee then says they were so disappointed when the order came in and it had these black marks on it, considering all the time I've been waiting. I'm at that point wondering why I hadn't been updated — or why she hadn't stopped short of bringing the fabric out — and offered me a full refund instead.

I politely said, "I would like to get all my money back. Can I do that?" Without any argument, the employee says she doesn't blame me — and escorts me to the register where she refunds the full amount. She also said my experience was the exception, not the rule.

Sorry for the rant — frustrated!

P.s. To my father-in-law, I'm sorry for another post about textiles!


Erica said...

This calls for an angry (but well-worded) letter to the manager and corporate. You'd be surprised what companies can/will do to redeem themselves to customers. Messy!

Kb_Mal said...

I think you're right, Erica. I forget that my issue can't really be "fixed" unless it's escalated. :)

Brittaney said...

If you're ever looking for good fabric again, check out! They have an awesome selection!

Kb_Mal said...

Good to know, Brittaney!