1. Shipping International and USA is first class. If you want a different level of shipping I am happy to calculate the postage difference.
2. I work hard to help customers in regions of the world where receiving packages is difficult by either holding shipments until they can be in an area that has better delivery, shipping to relatives or using a shipper/courier of their choice. Because of the high volume of shipments that I make internationally, please do not ask me to violate your local customs laws.
3. As Thistle Threads is a one-person operation, shipping is done on a three-time a week basis. Every effort is made to get your shipments out as fast as possible, but delays can occur especially when I am out of town.
4. The products sold through Thistle Threads are mainly the result of R&D in historic collections or augment my embroidery teaching. The vast majority are the result of my own product engineering to reproduce threads of the past by investigating the historic threads and processes and then working with historic companies and helping them prototype and source raw materials. The vast majority of the materials are not exclusive to Thistle Threads, while that would be an option, my belief is that we all need to contribute to the continued viability of these historic companies and in that interest, maintaining exclusivity would be counter-productive. But the limited manpower the companies have can sometimes mean sporadic supply of those unique materials or limited supply to other vendors as class kits sometimes takes precedence in the manufacturing output. I appreciate the patience of the needlework consumer who appreciates not only these unique materials and their quality - but sometimes for good things one must wait.
5. Needlework Nibbles are a low cost series of limited edition kits. The instructions are not included in the kit but are available on the linked webpage to allow a larger number of pages and color photos of the working to be included, as well as to make the instructions for the project available after I have decided to stop kitting the project. Often the kits are sold to raise funds for specific needlework related projects at museums and historical societies. Usually Thistle Threads augments the stated donation with an additional company donation to ensure that the project is completely funded at need.
6. I do not currently sell plans for the caskets. I do sell the locks and other hardware to enable those who want to make their own to their own design to have these important items. After an analysis of the cost of producing a set of workable instructions and the number of potential sales, we determined that it was not a viable option. The level of tooling, number of custom wood thicknesses, number of parts (~150) made a casket to the design we are doing something that is achievable by a limited number of home woodworkers.
7. I do not publish a phone number but I am easily reachable by email. As I have a young and energetic family who travels often, email is the best way to get me in our new 24-7 world. I have been known to 'solve issues' using on-board wireless on international flights. My phone number is carried in my pocket and would be a problem in the grocery store, school events, doctors offices and the like. If you need to talk to me personally, I am very happy to call you back in very short order upon receipt of a number via email. Conversely the great thing about email is that it is easy to answer in the go-go world of today and so you might be surprised about the speed of reply.
8. If you would prefer to send me an order via mail with check payment, the address is:
PO Box 62
Lexington, MA 02421
Please alert me to your order via email (firstname.lastname@example.org) so I may take it out of inventory for you, ensuring that it is waiting for you upon receipt of your check.