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by asterixsew Moderator ( edited 14 Sep 2017 ) 14 Sep 2017

Just noticed that Urban Threads has undergone a makeover. Its now just like Embroidery Library. I have always seen UT to be innovative, edgy, young and so on but now it appears to be bland and boring. Anyone any thoughts?


by maggiecal 24 Sep 2017

Looks like it is Deb who is now missing from both companies - her last YouTube videos on their site are from about a year ago. Kenny is listed on the new EL site. I sincerely hope she and her family are ok. If anything were amiss, it would explain both companies lack of creativity n the past months (although this month it looks like both have pulled through with some decent designs). I'm also not thrilled with the price increase BUT have always wondered how it is for them to see us all on FB posting pics of items we make with designs that cost so much more. They were the most reliable of the low priced items out there (them + John Deer). I do regularly get Ace Points for $4 on sale, San Francisco Stitch (on sale but still a chunk of change), Oma's, designs from Secretsof, Kreations by Kara - so many that cost $4 or $5. I will be getting less because of the price increase, but in fairness to them I do think others who do their usual quality (which they'd better stick to if they're raising their prices) do charge more. Usually the $1 items are the flat reproductions, no shaping, no interesting artwork contributing to the design with the stitches themselves.

by mariahail 23 Sep 2017

just have to agree with you, do not enjoy it that site anymore. Maybe she will fix it later on....

by gdsteliga 23 Sep 2017

I'm glad I purchased tons of designs from EmbLib in the past.
The new site does nothing for me and most of the designs have dejavu look to them.
If Kenny and Deb are not there anymore maybe they will set up somewhere else.
I guess things have to change, but we don't always have to like it. I used to visit everyday, now not so much.

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JeanW by JeanW 24 Sep 2017

I feel the same way!!! The email we get for the weekend and not that good anymore!

by 4evertwa 22 Sep 2017

You were reading my mind and so glad this came up because it's really been bothering me w/all the changes that have been made since I first discovered Embroidery Library years ago. Plus, I was hoping it wasn't just me and the fact maybe I wasn't embracing all the new changes that have been made. Reading the other comments, I see I'm not the only one that has noticed a huge difference in the entire E.L. company. Going back through the saved weekly emails, I noticed Deb's last posting was 9/24/16 and then the slow subtle weekly changes since then. June 2017 I sent an email inquiring about Deb and mentioned Kenny as well. The response back was "Deb is no longer here at Embroidery Library. However, if you do have any questions or concerns, we’re more than happy to assist!". Very short and nondescript. Now the site is almost unrecognizable and like others have posted, I seldom find anything that is exciting or just can't live w/o. Weekly sales are now the boring $1.39 per design, no real new exciting designs to want to purchase, Happy Hour is worthless, and their BOGO is purchasing a reg. priced only design to get a free one whereas before you could buy any design even if it was on sale. Seems like E.L. has been taken over by an entire new group of people and maybe Kenny & Deb were pushed out???? It would be interesting to see if all these undesirable changes have increased their sales over what many of us liked and were accustom to before. I know I haven't purchased anything in a while and certainly don't visit as often as I use to either. Time will tell.

sewist1 by sewist1 22 Sep 2017

Yes it used to seem they were like a family. Deb and the other girl whose name escapes me at the moment used to answer questions very quickly. Customer satisfaction was very important to them. Deb even used to answer questions here on cute.

4evertwa by 4evertwa 23 Sep 2017

Kim was excellent at responding very quickly as well as Deb. There use to be page on the old website with photo's and a small intro of everyone at E.L. but don't see it or maybe I'm just not seeing it on their new web design. Sure miss the Old E.L. and the weekly surprises/excitement from designs to sales! Deb did a fabulous job of marketing & customer service.

maggiecal by maggiecal 24 Sep 2017

I truly don't believe anyone was pushed out. More I was hoping if she retired it was for happy reasons and not illness or illness of a loved one. They may be protecting her wishes for privacy.

4evertwa by 4evertwa 25 Sep 2017

Talented Deb is in her mid-40's and hope her career in embroidery has not ended or there is a family health issue going on. Kenny & Deb together certainly projected a well organized EL with lots of weekly creativity.

by jofrog2000 17 Sep 2017

Did you see that the price changes with the size? There is no way they do each size from scratch. All really good software can resize with stitch adjustment.
Good. I've been looking into making reading pillows, and there are many place for those sayings and designs that won't break the bank.

by tilde01 16 Sep 2017

The only thing I can add, is that their new designs are automatically 50% off for the first week. UT still has some edgy designs.

by chenille 16 Sep 2017

I used to buy almost every week from Emb. Library and sometimes Urban threads, lately though, hardly ever. Prices went up and the designs seemed same old, same old. The good thing is I don't spend half as much anymore. Interesting to know that others feel the same. I thought it was just me!

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grossfamilie by grossfamilie 18 Sep 2017

I fully agree. I have the same feelings and also have "saved" a lot of money meanwhile.

by maggiecal 16 Sep 2017

Well, as said - they've always been the same company with Niamh doing artwork for both but different styles for their designs. They'll get economies of scale by having one person easily do their weekly web updates and web maintenance (it's the exact same template for both). With everyone and their brother selling designs and simpler digitizing programs, I suspect they need to save money where they can in order to stay in business. Both sites are bland but easy enough to navigate and all my old orders are sill there, so they did ok on that front.They did do a really nice job on the new Pinterest boards for Urban Threads - if you're a pinner, you might find inspiration easier there. I did think releasing this week's EL design (7 X 8 with 112,000 stitches) was absurd and really really lazy digitizing. Concerned if Deb or Kenny is ill or retiring and the rushing at the last minute for weekly post is affecting their quality. EL Support used to be something to bag about. I'd messaged them about the latest design (one number for design, click size and it bounces you to a different page, different design number, size only in DST or EXP, no explanation for the bounce, limited formats - thought it was an error). Support basically said, yes we meant to do that, only offered in those formats in that size - no explanation. I was so disappointed in the reply. Turns out it is because of the stitch counts in the design and many machines can't stitch that number and they have a page with machines and stitch limits per design that they could have linked to (I'm a bit of a nerd, knew it couldn't be the size - 7X8 limiting their formats and recalled stitch count limits - searched out the answer myself). As they've pushed that design on the web, Instagram, email, Facebook and such - lots of folks were buying it planning to just reformat and stitch - not being aware their machine might say NO, uh uh.Wondering if the new attitude will be - we sold in those formats, if you resize or reformat - we don't support. Ok, long vent - but really disappointed with the new person answering support questions. Hoping he's just overtired and it's not a trend.

DebJohn by DebJohn 17 Sep 2017

Totally agree! The new support person just doesn't get it and is borderline rude/condescending. I have really slowed down in purchasing from EL or UrbanThreads due to the price hikes. Happy Hour isn't happy anymore and the discounts are hardly worth rushing out to check my wishlist. The new washed out pastel theme with super thin font is hard for me to read. I don't like any of their changes, but then, these changes are saving me money. :(

pennyhal2 by pennyhal2 17 Sep 2017

I agree totally with everything! I rarely go there now.

maggiecal by maggiecal 17 Sep 2017

Thanks Deb - my own first thought on his note was "how *swearword* condescending" but I suppose they've been barraged with unhappy notes this past week.

lildoll2 by lildoll2 23 Sep 2017

finally you gals are getting it, i bought a design few weeks ago, it would not work with my pt pallete, all i asked for was a smaller design , thinking that would work, nope!!! they blamed it on this dumb old lady, wanted me to buy a new gismo, to put my designs in ( then they were sure it would work ) as said above they are not the same nice people, my money is going other places... doris

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by sewdeb edited 16 Sep 2017

Hmm, it's been ages since I was a "younger market" member, LOL, but Urban Threads had always managed to pry design money from my tight little fist. Now even when their weekly email shows up - there's nothing to tempt me to their site anymore! Such a shame when their site could always be relied on for being original, cutting edge, hip and even cheeky. Now it's a big yawn. And EL and Urban Threads sharing designs during a sale?!!! Seriously?!

Has anyone else noticed the quality of their designs declining, too? Lots of jump stitches in fill designs and FSL that now needs to be have me babysit while they stitch.

I guess, I too, needed to vent some. Sorry :-/

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sewist1 by sewist1 17 Sep 2017

Yes the quality has declined. Obviously besides Deb leaving they have had a change in the digitizers.

by jofrog2000 16 Sep 2017

I'm so glad to read that I'm not the only one to hate the way they are now. I did write when EL changed and let them know. Guess that's why their weekly "sale" items are now $1.39. Got to pay for all that work.
Time will tell.

by Janus48 15 Sep 2017

Hmmm, I thought it was just me! I too have been buying less and less from EL...and it was always my favorite site. I never bought much at UT and I knew they were "related"....but now I see the changes in both sites look more like twins than cousins. Perhaps it is time for them to rethink their changes. Maybe someone new stepped in and needed to prove their new ideas?

by mranderson 15 Sep 2017

Just been and had a look at UT new site. Guess just like EmbLibrary we will have to get used to the new look. Once a business changes the format for their site they will not go back after spending a lot of hours and money on the new site. No letters or phone calls will change a thing. It will just take time to get used to the changes.

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sewist1 by sewist1 16 Sep 2017

Well if they ignore what people are saying their business will decline. Simple as that.

by babash 15 Sep 2017

I am not a fan of the new look either. I like the sites to have their own look.
I contacted Embroidery Library about some designs I had seen on Pinterest but couldn't find the designs on the site just the colour chart with the design number and I wanted to buy them. Was told they were a VIP set and only used once and not for sale.
As sewist 1 said I used to buy every week but now nothing much appeals. Used to be if you bought the set it was a bit cheaper than individual buys but not now.
Both sites are looking very much the same very ordinary and too much of the ones being brought back as requests.

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asterixsew by asterixsew edited 15 Sep 2017

Thanks for your reply. I too used to buy designs very regularly but its ages since I see designs that have the I must buy appeal. Even my friend who doesn't like UT dislikes the changes. We have a saying in the UK - if it isn't broken don't fix it

by spendlove Moderator 15 Sep 2017

I agree - bland and boring.

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asterixsew by asterixsew 15 Sep 2017

Thanks for your input Sue

by rsloan 15 Sep 2017

I agree with you - I really dislike both sites now and I've contacted each vendor and complained. Hope it does some good. I was especially disappointed that Urban Threads when this direction, their site was always so unique and really highlighted their designs with lots of pictures on different projects. I say let's blitz them with our disappointment and maybe they will get the hint. Thank you for letting me vent my frustration - I'm really a nice person...

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asterixsew by asterixsew 15 Sep 2017

Thanks really nice person for venting your frustration. UT was my favourite site because it was so different.

by lildoll2 14 Sep 2017

yes i have seen a change too i don't like it either. i don't buy from either anymore , they don't have what i need or like , doris

asterixsew by asterixsew 14 Sep 2017

Interesting comment

sewist1 by sewist1 15 Sep 2017

No their designs are not what they used to be. I used to buy something almost every week when the new designs came out. Now nothing really tempts me to part with my money.

by graceandham 14 Sep 2017

Maybe they are the same owner and it's cheaper to maintain one interface with one group of programmers? They do have those fresh edgy designs we love.

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asterixsew by asterixsew 14 Sep 2017

Betsy they have always been part of the same company. UT was a offshoot and I think that its success is that it appeals to a much younger market