Our draft stopper business is manageable during most seasons. It gets busy in the fall, then busier in the winter. When the country is hit by cold weather, we experience extremely busy periods when we work long hours and the sewing machines are almost smoking. I always wish that some customers had looked ahead a bit and ordered early. Last January was a cold one, and we were blessed with a massive amount or orders. We had just come off a busy holiday season where we were featured in a New York Times article, and a few other online / print papers. Again awesome for business, but as we worked through the season last year we came close to being overwhelmed.
This year's big news is fuel prices being cripplingly high. And the Farmers Almanac just came out with their predictions for a colder than normal winter for much of the country. So yes, it's going to be a busy one. We have had supply chain issues with fabrics for a few years now. We are ordering much more than normal this year to try to be ready. We are also beefing up staffing as best we can. Our buckwheat hull filling is available and we are ordering in extra pallets. We are expanding our winnowing and sanitation operation to keep a good supply of filling ready to go.
Another thing we just completed updating our multi-pack listings. For customers with multiple windows to seal, and people with more than one door. We hope these multi-packs will help people save some money. We don't charge for shipping, but the cost of shipping is part of our pricing, and it's getting higher all the time (fuel costs). By combining draft stoppers in our multi-packs we are able to save some on the shipping cost, and we pass that savings on to you with lower prices. Also, cloth and buckwheat filling costs have gone up this year. We are not passing those increases along to our customers. We have actually reduced many of our prices as we tighten our belts in hopes of selling more draft stoppers, and helping more customers save fuel this year.
So please, if you need draft stoppers, consider ordering early this year. We will do everything possible to keep up either way, but we would be delighted to help you seal up before the cold arrives.