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.  Please do not ask to pick up orders at my home, hold orders to combine, send to hotels, relatives, friends, etc.  If the item is lost; there is no recourse and it is quite messy because someone else who didn't care was involved and we can't prove anything for insurance.  I will not reship the work of other teachers/needlework stores to you.  In general, ask yourself the following question:  "Would you ask Amazon to do this?".  If you wouldn't, please think twice about emailing me the request.

3. Orders are treated as single orders.  When I open I usually get a flood of orders that result in a large pile that fills a truck multiple times.  Therefore your separate email to me stating that you forgot something and can't I just combine orders, refund, add something else, etc. is difficult to do.  I may not see your email until I have rushed to get the first set out and your first order is already in the truck.  Finding your other order, getting into the system to combine, refund, etc. doubles the work to fill it and therefore slows everyone's orders down.  So if I decide I will do it, it goes to the back of the line.  Again, would you call Amazon and ask them to combine orders?  

4.  Please don't ask to break up kits.  I have had the materials specially manufactured in numbers.  If you remove some items, then I am stuck with them as I didn't account for that.  I can take them out - but the price is the price. Again, would you go into a major crafts store, walk up to the counter with an item and ask them to remove half the materials and change the price? 

5.  Because of the high volume of shipments that I make internationally, please do not ask me to violate your local customs laws.  If that shipment is caught, I will be on a list to have all shipments stopped and searched for three years in that country.  That impacts all other stitchers. 

6.  I work hard to help customers in a FEW regions of the world (and they know who they are) where receiving packages is extremely difficult or prone to theft in the mail system 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.  This ONLY pertains to countries in the developing world that aren't generally considered 'western'.  i.e. Europe doesn't count.

7.  As Thistle Threads is a one-person operation, shipping is done on a two-times 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.  

8.  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.

9.  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.

10. 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.  

11. 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.

12.  Thank you for the offer to help, that is quite generous of you.  It is just not practical to have my customers in my home working in my business for a host of reasons.  I am also not looking for a business partner at this time, I plan to wind down my retail business in a few years as some life changes are on the horizon when my kids leave home so it is best to remain solo.