Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Dear Joann Fabric...

Dear Joann Fabric,

WHAT has happened to your customer service, not to mention your classes. 

I am fuming right now. 

I have been a loyal customer for Years, but all that is about to change.  Just after last Christmas (as in 2009) I got the totally awesome idea to knit hats and blankets to give to the children's hospital after I saw how excited it made one of my boys who received one, and to sell some others online.  Genius idea, i know.  The one small hitch?  Someone needed to teach me HOW to knit first.

When I was in elementry school, I was a part of the Girl Scouts.  At one point we were going back and forth to the local senior center to learn to sew and knit from the ladies.  Some kids had the best time.  My experience?  Borderline traumatic.  When you are horrible at sewing and can not get the hang of knitting, the ladies do not really want to spend their time with you.  I dreaded these visits.  And spoiler alert, I never did learn to really sew much of anything either.  Ask my husband who puts the buttons back on the boys clothes.

Now though?  I thought for sure I could do this.  So I talked my sister in law into joining me and we signed up for the intro to knitting class and the follow up class to learn how to make the baby hats.  Hey, we'd tackled Wilton cake decorating together, surely we could do this.

Not only was our 1st class rescheduled more than once due to lack of people (apparently they need a minimum of 3, and we only made 2), but it went terrible when we Did finally have it.  We walk over to the table and this older lady gives us a not so nice look, holds up both a knitting needle and one to crochet and asks us which is the knitting needle.  We correctly point to the knitting needle and she says ok, you can come in then - and tells us how last class she had clearly not smart younger girls and it was a waste of Her time. 

Um, yeah.  Girl Scout nightmares coming right back.  My 8 year old self wanted to bolt from the room.

But I stayed.  And you know what?  I couldn't get it.  Well, I sort of got it, but it was taking me too long and I had more than a few mistakes.  So she moved on without me.  (Did I mention there were only 4 people in this class?)

I practiced myself for weeks, waiting on the next class.  Which got postponed.  And postponed.  And postponed again.  And here we are several months (and at Least 2 seasons) later, and still no call for the class.  My sister in law and I are the only ones waiting, no one else has ever signed up.

Tonight I was around the corner at the YMCA with the boys and they were so excited about the Christmas lights as we were leaving - and the big gingerbread house in the lobby - that I had an idea.  I drove around the corner to Joann Fabrics and the boys and I went to the service desk.  I explained how long I have waited for the 2nd knitting class and that at this point I just want my money back.  I gave the girl my license (because they took that info from me when I 1st signed up for some reason) and said even a store credit was fine, I was just over the wait at this point.

I was going to turn that credit right over to a gingerbread house kit for the boys and maybe a craft or something for the Big Guy's birthday party this weekend.

What did I leave with?  Nothing.

The girl goes through the class book, tells me there are no notes (as I was told there would be) and after speaking with someone else on the phone that she can not give me anything back without the original form I signed up with, there is no way to track it otherwise.  The form from almost a year ago - the CARBON COPY?  Riight. 

I would have to wait for the girl who takes care of the book to come back in.  I asked when she would be in.  Oh no, we can't tell you what her schedule is, we don't do that.  If you leave your number she can contact you. 


Had I not been standing there with two 3 year olds and a 4 year old, and had my mom not been working her part time Christmas help shift at the moment, I would have totally lost it on the girl.  Instead, I said forget it, she said ok and went on to something else.

WHY is this such a production?  The way I see it, they took my money for 2 classes.  Here we are almost a year later and there has only been 1 class.  How can there be no way to look me up, no notes when someone had placed repeated phone calls to me, no offer to get a manager - no anything.  WHY could they not look up the price of the class and hand me a freaking store credit?  I wasn't even asking for my cash back. 

Horrible horrible customer service.

I am seriously about to stop shopping there - after I get this mess straightened out.

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