'Worst retail environment ever': Textile Traders moves online
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'Worst retail environment ever': Textile Traders moves online

Textile Traders, the fabric and sewing business that has been a household name in Western Australia for more than three decades, is closing its bricks and mortar locations, blaming the "worst retail environment the business has experienced".

"The decision has been made to exit the retail stores and move to an online retail model. A full retail store closure is aimed for August 2018 and Textile Traders will work with landlords to exit these premises," the company said in a statement.

Textile Traders has been a fixture of Perth's retail scene.

Textile Traders has been a fixture of Perth's retail scene.

Photo: Textile Traders

"The family-owned business has 11 WA stores, a national online website and employs about 70 employees in its retail stores, including full-timers, part-timers and casuals," it said in a statement.

"The hardest part of the process will be saying goodbye to many long-term and loyal team members that have become like family. The business will work with and support team members during this transition period."

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Many Western Australians will remember the advertisements, with their jingle "Hey, come in and save, Textile Traders," and their appearances from managing director Benny Reuben, who showed a surely genuine passion for his trade, and spun lovable puns such as "upholstery? We've got you covered!"

Textile Traders has been a fixture of Perth's retail scene.

Textile Traders has been a fixture of Perth's retail scene.

Photo: Textile Traders

And when this journalist needed 40 metres of red velvet for her wedding (don't ask) it was Textile Traders, Victoria Park, who offered a much-needed discount.

"Textile Traders has been an important part of Western Australia's retail scene over its life and this difficult decision has not been made lightly," the company's statement said.

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Consequently, the move to a more cost effective and nimble online model is the right decision in order to keep in advance of the retail curve."

Textile Traders will continue to sell its fabrics, craft supplies, sewing machines and home decorator products at www.textiletraders.com.au.

Emma Young

Emma Young is a Fairfax Media journalist based in Western Australia, breaking news with a focus on science and environment, health and social justice.

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