In the comments section on my most recent post at Scrapbook Update, I was accused of not supporting Local Scrapbook Stores. I find this really troubling. I started out working in a Local Scrapbook Store. Besides the accusation being untrue, it missed the point of the post.
It did get me thinking about where my scrapbook dollars are spent. I’ve spent the last year keeping track of how much money I spend on scrapbooking and where it is spent. I report here each month how much I spend but my focus has been on the dollar amount. I have not been paying close attention to where those dollars are spent, though that information has been tracked.
Today, I created a spreadsheet of where my dollars have been spent from April 2011 (when I first started keeping track to today, May 24, 2012). You can read my most recent post and get links to all posts on the subject here.
Here’s where my scrapbook dollars have been spent:
Big Box Stores
Includes Michael’s, Hobby Lobby, JoAnn’s
Photo printing and photobooks
Includes Walgreens, CVS, Shutterfly, Snapfish, scrapbookpictures.com, persnickity.com, blurb.com
Local Scrapbook Stores
Includes Big Picture Classes, Balzar Designs, Ali Edwards, Ella Publishing, Get it Scrapped, Shimelle
Includes Technique Tuesday, EK Success, Scrapbooks Etc., Crafty Steals, ITunes, Amazon, Creative Memories, Stop and Scrap, Two Peas, Scrapbook.com, Adobe
Neither Big Box nor LSS (i.e., Archiver’s)
Random Offline Shopping
Includes: hardware stores, tourist shops, office supply stores
What does this really mean?
My online shopping totals are misleading. It includes purchases to Creative Memories (through my consultant who lives several hundred miles from me), mom and pop operations like Technique Tuesday, things that can only be bought online (like a kindle version of Scrapbook Workshop), a couple of purchases from big box online retailers (Two Peas, Scrapbook.com), and computer software (Lightroom). I shopped so randomly for physical product online that I opted to lump all of these purchases together. It’s imperfect, but does make it my highest dollar amount on the list.
My big box retail shopping mostly included things that my LSS either didn’t carry or I was not willing to make a special trip there just to see (about 50 miles roundtrip). This includes paint brushes, speedy ball, and peacock feathers. Go ahead, judge me for betraying my LSS.
A large portion of my online purchases were for classes. Could I take these at my LSS? I could take classes at my LSS, but not the classes I bought and it’s not just because some were taught by industry leaders like Ali Edwards. Even if my LSS offered these classes, I most likely would not take them there. I have a full-time job and an almost 4-year-old in addition to other obligations. I need a class that I can take at 5 in the morning. Seriously. This is when I watch the videos to the classes I take.
My photo printing involves major corporations (shutterfly) and small operations (persnickity). I tend to go with the big guys when they run a really good sale or I need prints right now (hello, Walgreens and CVS). My favorite has to be Persnickity. I can get unusual-sized photos, which I like.
Is shopping outside of an LSS destroying local scrapbook stores?
Sometimes, but this by far is not the only contributing factor to why some LSS close. That’s another post for another day.