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Jazz Up Your Fabric Displays

fabric display

In honor of the upcoming AQR Academy workshop on April 7 – “Jazz Up Your Fabric Displays!” – we’re covering how to display one of the best parts of owning a quilt store: the fabric!

Fabric Focal Point

When you walk into any fabric store what is the first thing you notice? The fabric bolt of course! They’re the most prominent fixture in any quilt shop. One way to get shoppers through your store is to stock a bolt on the rear wall.

And speaking of stock – how exactly should you fill said fabric bolt? You can create the illusion that you have more selection in your store if you group similar merchandise together – compared to scattering it throughout the store. Customers not only are more likely to notice these groups, but they’ll also be attracted to the color schemes they like.

Take advantage of the vertical shelves on your bolt by hanging sample projects, fat quarter bundles, or patterns (think of what grocery stores do). Quality over quantity is important as you want to create inspiration the shopper wouldn’t have seen if they were shopping online.

The Display

Outside of the fabric bolt, what else increases sales? The reality is, customers love to touch fabric. Folded merchandise on a table turns faster than merchandise that is hung. Merchandise that is hung however is typically better maintained, so consider that when you’re setting up your display.

Inspiration for this post came from “Strike the Right Note,” by Anna Woodward published in the February 2022 issue of American Quilt Retailer.

If you’re looking for more information to guide you in owning a retail business, subscribe to American Quilt Retailer today. Already a subscriber? No worries—join our Facebook group for insights and dialogue from industry specialists like you. And don’t forget, you can always purchase single issues if you prefer that instead.

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Great Display

By now you probably have your 2020 planning completed (or about there anyway) but I’m sure you’re saving some ideas for later. Check out these display tips and ideas we gathered at last fall’s Quilt Market.

Display Tips

  • Eye hooks: A great way to display quilts is with this pragmatic idea; eye hooks and clothespins. The folks at Everyday Stitches used the display idea to help customers out with frequently asked questions: “What patterns are fat quarter friendly, what patterns are simple, and what patterns are fast?” Graphics and patterns were included above the display quilts.
  • Tidy: Being neat not only looks nice, but make shopping easier for your customers too. Just take Elizabeth Hartman‘s idea of using a library card system as a way to showcase her new fabrics. The library cards include the sku of the fabric they’re in.


  • Seasonal themes: Don’t be afraid to be bold. Stephanie Brandenburg of Frond Design Studios did just that by incorporating an outdoor patio table and umbrella stand in her display. Editor of American Quilt Retailer Heidi Kaisand loved the idea so much she went home and implemented the idea in her store!
Display idea
  • Wearable items: Brandenburg also shows both traditional and modern ways of using fabric with her mannequin that shows a garment and a wearable pin. Brandenburg is known for creating unconventional artwork that just so happens to coincide perfectly with Frond Design Studios’ brand.
Fabric display

What display ideas do you have for your store? What processes have you found streamline the display process? Leave a comment below of ideas that have worked great for you, and ideas you’re leaving in 2019.

If you’re looking for more information to guide you in owning a retail business, subscribe to American Quilt Retailer today. Already a subscriber? No worries—join our Facebook group for insights and dialogue from industry specialists like you.

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Affordable Foot Traffic

Affordable foot traffic—is that even a thing? And what does it even mean? If you want to increase your foot traffic without breaking the bank, follow these suggestions.

  1. Ask yourself one question: what is one thing my business could to to _______? Then answer that question honestly.
  2. The second step is to fill in that blank! What is one thing my business could do to increase foot traffic? Host an event! When you answer that question honestly, you’ll probably come up with an event that you would want to attend if it wasn’t your store. Don’t forget to think outside the box, the event should attract a new demographic and offer a sale. And since events are low budget the biggest resource you’ll use is the time it takes to plan it.
  3. Use social media. Email blasts should be sent every 15 days, and budget to spend at least $2 a day on Facebook ads.
  4. Offer coupons. Coupons are different then sales, every store can offer a sale. Set yourself apart by using coupons; statistics show 96% of consumers use coupons and 85% of consumers look for coupons before visiting a store. The more you know!
  5. Last but not least, put time and effort into your store display— it is more important than many business owners realize. The display can also be one of the most fun parts of running a store, so have fun with it!

foot traffic

All of these things take advanced planning, so be sure to include these topics in your company meetings. Not to use one liners, but these are tried and true statements: remember, more hands make light work and the early bird gets the worm.

If you’re looking for more information to guide you in owning a retail business, subscribe to American Quilt Retailer today. Already a subscriber? No worries—join our Facebook group for insights and dialogue from industry specialists like you.