This is our belated blog post (sorry for the delay!) about our contest. Entrants were asked to finish this sentence in 500 words or less: “When I shop at Erica’s I’m inspired because…”: We had so many entries that it took longer than we expected. We have notified the winners, sent their gift cards, and they have given permission to reprint their entries.
This is how it went…
Bill (son and IT person) printed out all the entries, without names, and Dick (husband), Cathy (daughter), and I started reading. What a beautiful collection of letters that reaffirmed our goal since we opened the store! We’ve always wanted to inspire!
I can’t begin to tell you how you touched us, and I don’t have words to express how warm and fuzzy you made me feel.
Thanks so much to all who took time to enter our contest celebrating our new tag line, “Your Inspiration Destination.” There were so many wonderful entries, that we decided to award first and second place gift cards to entries from our Internet customers and from our local customers. They have different perspectives, and we appreciate both. Not only have we doubled the number of winners, but our Lacy (feline) has chosen an entry to give a special “Feline Appreciation” Award! So we have 5 winners!
Let’s start with Lacy’s award. She just loved yours, Roxanne Schnitzler! (From Decorah, IA.) She may be prejudiced, but she thought yours was like catnip to her heart! She sent you virtual purrs and kisses, along with a $50 Erica’s gift card. (We had to do the gift card part for her.)
I have never actually been to the store because of distance, but shop online and love Erica’s. You have everything. I love machine embroidery and you carry supplies and magazines no one else does. Your newsletters are informative, newsy and fun to read. I love how you are always coming up with something to say and something new to do, even if you haven’t actually started it yet! You don’t mind laughing at yourself or pointing out your mistakes-makes you human, when I only know you online.
One of my absolute favorite things though, is your love of cats and seeing how you baby them and let them help you in your sewing endeavors and how they get to analyze and critique every project from start to finish! A little cat fur never hurt a project. Keep up the good work and maybe someday I will get to meet you in person and see your shop in person. Roxanne Schnitzler, Decorah, IA
These were are our $100 Gift Card winners:
The “local” winner is Ann Viviano from St John, IN, about an hour and a half away.
I’m in heaven – knitting, quilting, embroidery, cross stitch all the things I love to do and right at my finger tips. – I walk through the front door and my heart does flip flops – the examples hanging all over the store I can’t wait to pick out my project and race home to start – yes it is a 2hr drive and worth every penny of gas to shop at Erica’s. The people at the shop are so friendly and helpful and the staff manning the phones are just as helpful and just as friendly. It is a joy to do business at Erica’s. No matter what questions I ask there is someone that can help me. I have always been greeted when I arrive and I have always been asked if there is anyway they can help me – that is SO not the norm in most of the shops I have been to. Now if only I can get Erica and Dick to open a store in my area of Indiana. Thank you both for what you have provided to the quilting world and all the other wonderful hobbies we enjoy – you have made shopping in your beautiful store a wonderful experience. And I LOVE your newsletters, it is like reading a letter from a close family member – especially the antics of your furry friends. Keep up the GREAT job and a big thank you to all of your staff. Erica’s is an example of the way a shop should operate. You all are WONDERFUL. I mean every word of this – not just because you are offering gift certificates, I felt that this ‘contest’ was a way for me to let you know how I feel about your shop and your staff. Thank you for giving me this opportunity.
Our internet winner is Vicki Callahan from Mason City, IA.
When I shop at Erica’s, I’m inspired because of just about everything! Where do I begin? I love the site. I especially love the ‘what’s new‘ link. I have found the cutest fabrics there and get excited and motivated. Even though my niece was only recently married, I know someday they’ll be starting a family and I found the best baby fabric under what’s new and guess what? I already ordered it! I love that the communication is so quick and so friendly and I never have to doubt or wait to find out if the fabric is coming or if you’re out. Regular e-mails keep me informed and I live for coupons and specials and you offer those at the best of times! Your ordering process is easy, swift, and as I said, I never have to wait for long to find out and receive the exciting news that my fabric is on its way. Since I am not a patient person, your site allows me the close to instantaneous satisfaction that I love so it is my favorite site for ordering fabric. When I need inspiration, I just go straight to your site and start reading thru the ‘what’s new’ and the sale fabrics and when I was looking for dinosaur fabric for my great-nephew, all I had to do was type in ‘dinosaur’ and I was immediately given a list of things I could look thru… books, fabric, FUN! The site picks me up, inspires me with new ideas, and gets me motivated to work on projects I have or to learn how to do new things in the sewing and craft world. I thank you for that and continue the great work. Some day I will come see the store in person. I think I could spend hours looking around.
Our second place winners received $75 Gift Cards.
Our local winner is Jaime Stacy from Goshen, IN (about 45 minutes away):
When I shop at Erica’s I’m inspired because there are so many options!!! I usually never walk out of Erica’s empty handed. Whether I am looking for specific things to complete a project, looking for a new project, or I am just coming in to browse, I end up leaving excited by something that I have found. I have a hard time “imagining” what a finished project will look like. I love that Erica’s has finished projects hanging up around the store. I also love that you have everything right by the project to complete the project. I have a hard time putting together fabrics to complete my quilts and I love that I can buy a kit where someone has already pieced together the fabrics for me. It leaves me to do what I enjoy the most, sewing! I also love that you offer so many classes on such a wide range of ideas. I love to sew but I ended up taking a jewelry class when I saw a necklace displayed that I really liked. I would have never thought about making jewelry if I hadn’t seen the necklace or been given the opportunity to have someone walk me through how to make it. I was very inspired when I had the opportunity to come meet the creator of Art to Heart!! What a wonderful experience to realize that Nancy is just a normal person like me that loves to sew. I am also pleased to know that by taking my 9 year old daughter into your shop that she is becoming interested in sewing and crafts. Sewing and crafting has been a wonderful way that my Mom and I have kept a close relationship. I am so excited to see my daughter becoming interested in what I love to do and I hope for a lifetime of being able to connect with her through sewing and crafting. I love having a shop around that I can count on to keep me excited doing what I love.
Our internet winner is Marie Korol from Freeland, PA.
I can see such beautiful colors. The patterns for quilting are so varied, and I feel that I can quilt anything. I’m always amazed at the different styles and color combinations as well as the different techniques used. If I’ve never done that process it makes me want to try it, and by doing so, I broaden my horizons and hone my skills as a quilter. I feel like a fabric artist and I look forward to the creative process. When I’ve completed my personal work of art my self esteem soars. It’s so nice to feel good about yourself. I know I will receive my treasures in record time and in excellent condition. What more can you ask for? Great service, bonus points and a brand new pattern to make you smile! Your staff is polite and very knowledgeable, and I always feel like I am your most important customer. It doesn’t get much better than this. I am so glad I discovered your site. Thanks for being who you are.
I had the pleasure of calling all the winners. It was so much fun! They were all so excited and some even had their lists ready to be able to use their winnings right away! They were so warm and friendly, that I felt we were friends already. I have to tell you about my call to Marie! When she answered the phone, I introduced myself, and she said “Get out!!!” I do have to admit that this was the first time I got a response like that when I told someone who I am! She replied that she is somewhat of a free spirit, and we had a great conversation.
Thank you so much, everyone, for entering. We had a hard time choosing our very favorites: we appreciate all of them. Wish we could give everyone Gift Cards, but we need to stay in business, so we can continue to be “Your Inspiration Destination!”
You can see What’s New at Erica’s almost every day! Any page of our website has a column on the left that tells you where to find things, and all you have to do is look for “New Items” in purple, and click to find out.
(To find an item or event on our web site after clicking on the highlighted words, hold down the “Ctrl” key and touch F. Enter the item number in the box, press enter, and you’ll be taken to that item.)