...is always an experience.
For those who don't know what SAS is or if you've heard about it but have never been, let me tell you a little about it. It's billed as a "fabric by the pound" store. It's located in Tempe and it's a windowless block building in an iffy part of town. The sidewalk to the main entry is flanked by large cardboard boxes filled to the brim with large plastic grab bags filled with ends of trims, lace, and who knows what else! When you walk into the store, don't expect a cheery greeting from anyone; in fact, if anyone as much as grunts at you, you know that they hired a social butterfly.
If you're looking for the customer service of a Nordstrom's, don't bother going. If you're accustomed to a clean, orderly, well lit fabric store, this ain't it, girls! So why do I go? I guess it's all part of the whole treasure hunt thing but more than anything, they really have a lot of cool things that I can pick up in bulk for great prices. It takes a lot of "stuff" to fill mini books so that they look good but to fill them entirely with scrapbook products would make the kits really pricey...hence, SAS.
Saturday morning, I ventured out to SAS, definitely in need of fillers. I grabbed a couple of bags of fringe on my way into the store...these fringes are really awesome...and they expanded when I opened up the bags and spilled them out onto the ottoman. They definitely stuffed those bags quite full! Yay! Can you imagine these on the edge of a mini book?
It didn't take long before my arms were filled with boxes of buttons, pieces of felt, rolls of vintage lace, tulle, etc. Two of the employees looked at me with arms full...never said a word...and there are no carts available for shoppers (nor any room in the aisles if they had them). So, I had to ask if I could put my things down on the counter while I explored the other half of the store. The response was a grunt...I took that to mean a yes...deposited my stuff and went off in search of more.
Back in October of last year, Miss Tena had picked up some vintage seam binding ribbon there for our demo at Memory Trends. They had found some for her in the back room and she bought quite a few for us to use...she also gave me several of them. I love vintage seam binding...having grown up in a house with a clothing designer, we always had seam binding at home...the vintage stuff is soft and it drapes, unlike binding that's made today which is kind of stiff.
On a whim, I asked Miss Grunt if they had more seam binding. She said that she thought they had some in the back...wow, a whole sentence. But, there wasn't another sentence that said, "Let me go check", nor did she make any move to look. "Ummm, will you go check and see, please?" The response, a little grunt followed by "I guess". Remember, not Nordies!
I followed her to the back room and waited outside the door...she couldn't find it back there but she knew where some was. Again, no move to go get it. "Well, are you going to look for it?", I asked. Her reply, "I really don't feel like moving boxes right now!" Wow...
So, I took a deep breath, and politely asked again...one of the other employees said that it was really old stuff and the colors were weird...um, vintage, ladies, vintage! I begged, cajoled, pleaded with her...I think I finally shamed her when I asked her to show me where the boxes were and I would be happy to move them. She moved them and under a pile of fabric was a box of vintage seam binding. PAY DIRT! Aren't they wonderful?
When I was checking out, the other employee who wondered why I would even want them, asked me what I was going to do with so many rolls of ugly colors? Tee Hee...She's been around a while and knows me from my many visits there...she thinks I'm strange to come there and shop for paper arts projects. Could be she's quite right, in fact, I'm sure she is! But, in the meantime, I have fringe, I have beautiful lace, I have buttons and rhinestones AND, I HAVE SEAM BINDING...and we are all going to have some beautiful kits...down the road!!!
So, move aside Nordies...close your doors fine fabric store...who needs you when they can have SAS?????