Thursday, August 20, 2009

very disappointed in & unimpressed by Provo Craft

I'd read news about this a couple of days ago, but hadn't really seen a credible source until an email landed in my inbox today from an online vendor. To set the scene, earlier this summer Provo Craft had offered a deal for buying a bundle of their soon-to-be-released A2 embossing folders--purchase of this bundle would also make the purchaser eligible to buy the two exclusive folders that would not be available for individual purchase, the Celtic Knot and Harlequin folders. The Home Shopping Network got in on this and had these bundles on their site as a Special Value. They sold out quickly. I know because I managed to get my hands on one of them. Now other online vendors have been waiting for their turn. It looks like the folders for individual purchase have been shipping to vendors, but as far as the bundles go.... Well, here's what they said to their vendors....

Dear Provo Craft Customer,
We have made the decision to not release the Cuttlebug Embossing Folder Bundles. This also means that 37-1917 Harlequin and 37-1918 Celtic Knot that are exclusive to the bundle are not going to be released either. We apologize about any inconvenience that this may cause you or your customers. If you have any further questions please feel free to contact your sales representative.

Thank You,
Provo Craft

That is incredibly lame. What a horrible way to treat not only the crafters who were looking forward to getting their product, but their vendors as well! I'd hate to be a Provo Craft sales representative right now because I think a lot of people have a right to be angry and upset with them. I can't even imagine what a mess this must be now with preorders etc. This is a big black mark against Provo Craft in my book. I like their embossing folders, but I don't want to support a company that treats its customers in such cavalier fashion. I've been much more impressed by QuicKutz' customer service when I had issues with my embossing folders. Sizzix has always been a solid company. Sorry, Provo Craft, there are too many other choices out there now. You've made your choice, now I'm making mine. See ya!

Boy, I'd sure like to know who the brainiac was who came up with that public relations nightmare. Hm, or maybe they just don't care. Not sure right now which would be worse.


  1. It seems that with every new upcoming release, Provo Craft pulls a stunt like this. Look at the last few Cricut cartridges they released--they release images that were not on the cartridges. Now this! I just saw that the Gypsie will only be available at Michael's, for a month, THEN other places, including online vendors, can sell it. How unfair!

    I agree with you--so many more choices.


  2. Thank you for taking a public stand against Provo Craft marketing. I do not like this idea and I'm still upset with their marketing decision regarding last year's holiday folders. Provo Craft has made it very difficult for non-on-line shoppers to purchase their products!

  3. I've always liked their folders, but their customer service and marketing leave a lot to be desired. I'm not too keen on the notion of exclusive releases either, and that seems to be another route that they're taking--only making certain folders available from certain vendors. I know that Oh My Crafts has a preorder on their site for 'exclusive' bundle (*GASP* There's that word again!) of 4 holiday embossing folders. I haven't ordered from them myself, but I've read other people's experiences and I'd be hesitant to buy, much less preorder, so I resent the fact that if I'd wanted any of these I'd have to order them from a site I'm not entirely comfortable with rather than from one that I know has good customer service and a proven track record.

    I know that Provo Craft isn't alone in adopting this practice of exclusivity, but they've already seen that demand for their folders can outstrip supply. Making them in adequate numbers, having them available in a timely fashion to a wide audience, and actually delivering the advertised goods seems like good business practice to me. But hey, maybe that's why I'm not in business and marketing, eh?

    Thanks for coming by and commenting. I figured that I couldn't be the only one thinking that this was a less than stellar move. :-)

  4. Guess I'm glad I don't live in the states then. Usually takes ages to get anything from the states here in New Zealand of we do at all. I don't usually hold my breath.

    Suppose if I really want something I do need to order from the internet.

  5. I work for a small rubber stamp company in Canada and this is not a new problem for Provo Craft. Their practice for wholesale accounts was to keep the money you paid for items they did not ship. Graciously they will hold it until you order from them again. Great practice especially now.

  6. I looked at the offerings from Provo Craft for this release and only saw one that I really wanted ~ the diamond plate. Was at an independent (well, they have 2 locations) and picked it up. I have been noticing the QuiKutz and read on Sue Nelson's site that they would work in my Cuttlebug, so will start looking at their designs. I happened to have the TV on and stopped on HSN the other night when they were selling scrapbooking kits and going on and on about PC's wonderful customer service. Yep, it's wonderful if you're one of the chosen few. Thanks, Jay, for this and will think twice before spending my money with them.

  7. Good for you for taking this stand! I can't believe in this day and age that a company would treat its customers this way. Probably, HSN demanded an 'exclusivity' clause when they sold them. I've read about how that works for vendors on QVC and HSN. Tough to argue against an 'automatic' sell-out, but it is also unethical, IMO, when they've promised them elsewhere.

  8. I agree with with you!! I missed out on the HSN bundle and am disappointed that these products were limited. Sure would be nice if HSN would reorder from Provo Craft. I think that they would have another sell out!

  9. Okay, I'm not sure quite what to think anymore. I see that HSN again has the 11 new folders available as a bundle--that includes the Harlequin and the Celtic Knot folders. This looks like exactly the same bundle that was previewed on their site a while back, and the same bundle that was made UNavailable to vendors who'd offered them for preorder to their customers. Here is the HSN bundle. Price is higher now than before.

    I still think this is a rotten way for Provo Craft to treat their customers and vendors, even if the two "exclusive" dies are now available again--showing them a little respect would be a good start.


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