Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Frame Saga!

Sorry this is another of my long convoluted stories!

I think I have mentioned that we wanted to include some of my safari pictures in our new study and I was planning to do a gallery wall of lots of different sized frames and prints but then I decided that they would look great as square ones all arranged on one wall, inspired by this on Pinterest.

I already had some square wood M&S frames for some of our wedding pictures - it's a multi-aperture frame and looks really good quality.  I used one as above and one I cut a new mount for so I could frame a picture I made for Nik.  It's really hard to find good square frames on the high street - the Ikea ones are just too big and limited.  I prefer a real wood frame if I can get it and the M&S one is the perfect size at 40x40 rather than the Ikea 50x50.

I know it looks slightly rectangular here but it's just the angle, it's definitely square!

So I decided that I wanted 9 of these frames in black for my gallery wall.  Problem number one - I was waiting patiently for them to do another promotion of 20% off home as they had done before.  Lots of promotions happened - 25% off women's clothing, etc... but no home discounts.  In the end I couldn't wait any more as we wanted it done by Christmas, so I just ordered them on the website.  (I've never seen the square version in the shops for some reason, only the rectangular ones.)  The website stated they had over 10 in stock (that was another reason I didn't want to wait too long to order them in case they ran out - Nik had done a search to try and find similar cheaper ones but couldn't find anything suitable!)

Unfortunately after ordering them last Monday to be picked up at our local store on Sunday, I received an email on Friday afternoon saying that my order was cancelled due to stock availability!  I immediately checked the website and they are still (even now) available saying more than 10 in stock.  I phoned the number on my email and they said it must be something to do with the manufacturer and they can't check stock allocation in shops for me but provided me with about 6 numbers to try ringing round myself.

I got through to a lovely, helpful man in the 2nd of our local shops who said they didn't have any but that he would phone round for me to try and find them.  I gave him a full description, price and item number and he said he'd call back which he did a wee while later saying he had found me 6 out the back of his shop but was unable to find another store that had them in stock.  I immediately went onto the website to try ordering another 3 (in case they had just cancelled due to the large number I ordered - hoping they might at least have 3 left!)

That night I went on the hour long (should be 6 minute) trip to the shop in Christmas frenzy traffic, reminding me why I try and avoid the shops at this time of year - online shopping all the way for me!  Only to get there to discover he doesn't know the difference between a square and rectangle!  The item numbers didn't even match up - so disappointing!  The woman at the collection desk was very helpful and could see my new order said despatching soon which she said looked hopeful.  She checked the stock which showed none in the warehouse but that there were 44 waiting to go to the warehouse so that they would definitely be getting more stock.  She also explained why they can't check the stock levels in stores at this time of year is due to them being out of date as stocks change so quickly when it's busy but she said Aberdeen MIGHT have some as they were showing 4 in stock.

On my way home I called the Aberdeen store (since I have a friend up there who could possibly pick them up for me) to see if they had them in stock and spoke to a useless woman who kept telling me to go upstairs as if they had any they would be upstairs!!  She didn't seem to understand I was on the phone and not standing in front of her!  I tried explaining that I was calling from Glasgow to see if she could tell me if they had them there or not and she just didn't get it.  (I don't generally call stores to ask for directions to their items if I'm in there!!)  I politely asked to speak to someone else (instead of saying what I was thinking) and was put on hold for 8 minutes before they just hung up.  Nice.

I asked my friend just to have a look next time she is in the area if she could find them for me instead.

When I got home I tried ordering another 6 frames just in case and it seemed to work so far - no cancellations of orders yet and as of right now, they SHOULD be in the shop.  My account says all items have been despatched so fingers crossed!  I had tweeted looking for help finding more frames and M&S replied telling me there were none of these frames left and there would be no more ever, so Hmmmmmm.

 Marks & Spencer 

 thanks for tweet. Unfortunately this is no longer available in any of our stores and isn't coming back into stock.

Nik is off to try and collect them tonight so I will let you know tomorrow (when I blog this anyway) if they are there or not!

Overall a little disappointed with M&S as I usually receive excellent service.  It's a shop I love - I have recently mentioned the amazing tights and cushion I bought there.  Hopefully they might get their staff trained a little better answering calls and tweets and looking for items (and to actually check item numbers when putting things aside).  Although members of staff were always polite and generally very helpful, a few of them - in particular the one who kept telling me to go upstairs on the phone as if I was standing in front of her - could have perhaps tried a little harder to help.

Update: We have the frames, all 9 of them!  Hooray!  I will of course post a picture of the wall when they are all up so you can see what all the fuss was about!

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