Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: Free Yom Kippur Sewing Machines

Good Day To You My Dear Friend,

Today, Friday September 29 at sundown is when Yom Kippur begins.  As most of my avid readers know, I am of the Jewish faith and proud of it.  I am not an overly religious person though, but Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) are the few times that I do attend temple.  For those that do not know, Yom Kippur is a Day of Atonement.  It is considered to be the most important Jewish holiday.  This day marks the 10 Days of Awe, a period of repentance and introspection, that follows Rosh Hashanah.  This is also a time when we fast.  The fast begins tonight at sundown and ends tomorrow (Saturday) at sunset.  Then we break fast (no, not breakfast) and stuff our faces with anything and everything we can get our hands on.

Enough with the religious lesson though.  In honor of this special day, I would like to announce a couple more winners of Scott’s Free Sewing Machines.  Winner winner Yom Kippur dinner, here we go:

  1. Mary Behnke thanks to her friend Donna Lynn Gerhard who sent in a request on her behalf.
  2. Julie Ann thanks to her great aunt Kathy Combs.
  3. Bennie Brookshire of Orange, Texas.  This is the second one going to Orange, Texas so I guess they all got hit pretty hard.  Big shout out to everyone in Orange, Texas.  Good luck getting your lives back in order.  I am thinking and praying for all of you…or should I say, “Y’all!”

All the other machines have shipped this week, so previous winners should be expecting machines next week.  And you know what that means?  Yes, I am waiting for happy pictures of people using their new sewing machines and photos of all the great things they are making using their new machines.

Thanks for your time.  Have a blessed weekend and wish me luck with the fast.  I will pray for you all.  Amen!

Free Sewing Machine Scott

 

Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: Big Macher!

We interrupt this program for my regularly scheduled Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive blog that has nothing to do with that Free Sewing Machine Scott (FSMS) fellow.  I have had loads of blogs in the cue as I was trying to get ahead of my scheduled posts and then I was rudely sabotaged by this FSMS for like the last 3 weeks and I am not sure I see an end in sight.  Boring!  Annoying!  Free sewing machine….blah, blah, blah. Whatever!

This week I am bringing back an oldie but goodie. The Fabric Yenta is bbbbbbbbbaaaaaaaaccckkkkkkk! I am starting a new series under the Fabric Yenta moniker.   It’s called Big Macher.  I am going to sporadically talk about people that I meet in the fabric industry that I consider to be big machers.

If you didn’t know, a big macher is a Yiddish term for someone who is a big shot. I am going to lob a name out there.  This is a no-brainer to me. Pepper Cory is the first big macher that comes to my mind.  Pepper is so cool. She’s a true sage in our industry.  She knows everyone or should I say everyone knows her?   Not only am I happy that she is on my team, but she is also a friend and confidante.  Thank you Pepper, you BIG MACHER!

Big Macher #1!

By the way, if you are going to quilt market Pepper has a schoolhouse that you should attend especially if you want to meet a big macher among other things.  Besides meeting the big macher herself, at the schoolhouse, you can come and see some new works from industry designers using Peppered Cottons.  You can also learn how to adapt Pepper’s marketing program “RSVP-Designers” to create your own sales buzz and excitement in your shop.  I digress.

The timing of this blog is perfect because we are nearing in on quilt market and I am definitely expecting to see some potential big machers and chat them up for further additions of …..say it with me, BIG MACHER!!!!  (I hate multiple exclamation points, but I couldn’t help myself). Stay tuned.

Speaking of Quilt Market, I will be at booth 2319 (Studioe Fabrics) and booth 2218 (Blank Quilting).  Please come by and see me and all the new lines we are showing.  Also, you can take a look at the EverSewn sewing machines that FSMS is giving away.  Finally, if you would like to set up an appointment with me, please email me at scott@jaftex.com.

We interrupt this program for FSMS.  Darn it!  This FSMS dude doesn’t go away and he is driving me crazy, but making me happy nonetheless! I may have to boycott this clown or give him a beat down.  Oh, just go ahead already you big rude jerk….there is another winner to be announced, so I hope that Stephanie Hogan is reading this blog now.  Stephanie, may this sewing machine help to bring just a little happiness to your family during these difficult times.  Thanks for sharing your heart warming story!

Enjoy the rest of the week,

This is the Fabric Yenta and his alter-ego Free Sewing Machine Scott

534 words including these (you are the bomb Yenta!)

Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: Scott’s Free Sewing Machine Update

Happy Monday everyone.  I am not sure how it happened, but all of a sudden I have lots of new followers to my blog and all of my company social media sites which is definitely a good thing.  I am just joking, I know exactly how it happened and so do you.  I woke up one day and was like, “I should start giving sewing machines away for free to people suffering through tragedy.”  And that’s where it all started….let’s call it:  Scott’s Free Sewing Machines.

3 generations of Fortunoff’s. From left to right (backrow): my nephew (Oliver), my brother (Greg), my other nephew (Benjamin), my dad (Robert) and yours truly. Front row (left to right): my youngest son (Brett) and my older son (Aaron).  Missing my sister (Jill) and her kids (Julia & Evie).  My dad, brother, sister and I are all currently in the business working in harmony.

Speaking of where it all started, I thought this would be the perfect time to plug all of the fabric companies run by my family in case you want to support my family business by buying our beautiful fabrics or by asking your local quilt shop to carry our fabrics if they don’t already.  Please note however that I am not looking for anything in return for the sewing machine giveaway at all, but I would be remiss if I didn’t put it out there for the world to know who is making sewing machines rain from the sky over the US.  Also, when I called some potential free machine winners over the weekend to chat, I was dismayed to know that a few didn’t know much if anything about our companies.  Therefore, I thought it was important, at the least, for everyone to know about our companies and our unique family business.  As you could learn from my blog moniker, I am the fourth generation in the family business which is 87 years old.  Yes, 87!  These are our companies:

  • A.E. Nathan Co., Inc. specializes in flannel fabric and more moderately priced fabrics in general including cotton prints and fleece.  Products are sold in quilt shops and chains that sell fabric.  I am the President.
  • Fabric Editions, Incspecializes in pre-cut fabrics as well as kits.  In addition, Fabric Editions has a line called 3 Wishes and Quilter’s Palette.  Products are sold mostly in the chain stores, but the 3 Wishes and Quilter’s Palette lines are sold in quilt shops too.  The company is in Greenville, S.C.
  • Henry Glass Co., Inc. caters to quilt shops only and is our strongest and most well known brand. Hopefully you know this one!
  • Studioe Fabrics was spun out from Fabric Editions when we purchased it  years ago.  We moved it to New York and I became the President.  Studioe sells to quilt shops only and the brand is gaining in popularity.
  • The Blank Quilting Corp. was purchased in the last 3 years.  Like Studioe, Blank sells to quilt shops only and I am the President too.  I am working hard with my team to grow this brand and make it a household name.
  • Lastly, you should know that our exclusive sales force sells these lines too:
    • Air-Lite Batting.
    • Oasis Fabrics.
    • Stof of Denmark.
    • Sykel Fabrics….think NCAA, Real Tree, etc.

I am feeling so good about Scott’s Free Sewing Machines that I have determined that the giveaway will go on indefinitely.  I hope to giveaway about 40-50 machines this year and next year a minimum of 1 machine a week.  AND THE CROWD GOES WILD!  YEAH!  In my humble opinion, sewing machines are the essential ingredient that will help to grow the fabric industry so at the least I am helping to continue to keep sewing alive for many more generations of Fortunoffs among others.  It’s like the movie Field of Dreams….”if you build it, they will come.”  In our industry, if you bring the machines, they will sew and quilt.  I also believe that sewing begets more sewing and these machines will certainly contribute to the continuity and growth of our great industry.  We need to keep this industry alive, thriving and flourishing.  I am one person, but I am trying to do my part just a little bit at a time.  I challenge my competitors in the fabric industry to do their part as well in helping to grow our industry.

Before I announce the winners for this week, I wanted to let everyone know that I had a chance to test drive the EverSewn machine that I am giving away.  It is so smooth.  You should feel how it handles the turns.  It just purrs like a kitten.  Just messing with you, I don’t know how to use a sewing machine, but I have heard from a bunch of people that they love theirs.  I understand that this isn’t the best or most expensive machine ever made, but I couldn’t be happier about the quality of the machine and I wanted to thank EverSewn for working with me to get these machines in the hands of so many great people.  Thanks!

I am sure everyone is anxious to hear about the free sewing machine winners.  The crazy thing is that I never realized how hard it would be to give away free machines.  I spent much of my weekend between my kid’s sports and birthday parties calling potential winners.  The biggest problem that I am running in to is that a lot people have machines or have access to machines…which is a good thing.  However, for this year, I am trying to focus my energies on giving free sewing machines to people with no access to machines whatsoever.  So if you have a machine that isn’t working at full capacity, that is still a machine in my eyes and it is a lot more than others have. I hope everyone can understand where I am coming from on this front, so please only submit a request if you don’t have a machine at all.  Ok, ok….the winners.

These are the people that touched my heart and I feel most compelled to give a machine this week:

  1. Trish Jurkowski for her daughter Amelia.
  2. Lisa E. Jones.
  3. Morgana Laucer for her mom, Susan.

To be honest, I intended on giving away 7-10 machines this week, but like I mentioned before, so many had access to a machine already and the weekend is only so long.  Many of those people will be getting some fabric from me as a consolation prize.  Finally, finally, I am still searching for Linda Yarrow who was my second winner so that I can get her a machine for the Freedom House where people are rescued from the slave trade.  If you know her, please have her contact me at scott@jaftex.com.

Have a great week friends and keep being kind to others and keep on sewing and quilting!  As someone said to me, “May all my gifts be appreciated and used.”

Free Sewing Machine Scott

1162 words including these words and I hope you read them all.

Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: I Can’t Believe The Stories I Am Hearing

In spite of not wanting to be the President of Giving Away Free Sewing Machines, I think that kind of happened naturally. I am proudly overwhelmed with everything that has transpired since I offered out free sewing machines.  The last couple of days I have been glued to my phone and computer in awe of the sad stories I am hearing.  I have been carefully reading what so many of you are saying and I have also tried to reply as much as possible….and yes, it is actually me who is replying…not anyone else.  There are so many compelling stories and I am going to do my best to giveaway a lot of machines to those that need it most.  The truth is that giving the machines away is like a drug for me.  It is euphoric to be able to help people who are down on their luck.  Not only that, but just imagine all the beautiful things that will be created by those who receive free sewing machines.

The problem, which really isn’t a problem, is that your requests are a little bit allover the place now i.e. they aren’t only on the blog as was supposed to have been the plan.  It has spread to our company Facebook pages.  This is all fine and well, but if you are planning on sending in a plea that you want to be considered by me, I would greatly appreciate it if it came through in the comment section on the Studioe Fabrics’ blog where I introduced the giveaway originally.  This is the easiest way for me to manage the madness so to speak and not lose my regular day job.  Here is the link to that original blog in case you were wondering where to find it.  Go to the way bottom of the blog, even past all the comments, and hit post comment and then you can post your comment.

I am absolutely floored by so many of the stories that I am hearing.  These are stories that you can’t even make up and situations are going on in America that I never even realized existed.  The world can be cruel sometimes unfortunately, but it can also be kind.  In this case, I am trying to be the one bringing the kindness especially to those who are enduring undeserved cruelty and suffering, whatever it might be.  I am saddened by these stories, but they are absolutely eye opening for me and I will be glad to know that I did a small part in helping just a little bit to brighten the world.  If I can get someone to smile for a second or feel good about themselves, even for just a minute, I will have contributed to making someone’s life just a little better and that is definitely a good thing.  Everyone does deserve some happiness in life!

Please keep the requests coming and make sure to share the message with anyone who might be eligible.  Try to only send in a request if you do not have a machine at all as those are the people that I am really trying to focus on at this time.  However, sometimes the emotions overrule everything else and someone does deserve an additional machine.  I plan to carefully review many of the requests that I have received and I hope to send out a couple more machines by the end of this week.  Before I wrap things up though, I wanted to give a quick shout out to the first winner and also wanted to name a second winner.

The first winner was Mary Burnette who does God’s work at The Polk County Texas Quilts For Comfort where she teaches sewing to some woman that are down on their luck.  She was definitely worthy of the first machine.  She was also fortunate to have been the first one to send in a request and had good timing because I was anxious to show everyone that I really was going to send out machines and that I was not messing around.  Congrats to Mary and the people of Polk County, Texas.  We can’t wait to see the picture of your face when you receive your new sewing machine and can’t wait to see all that you create.  Please post on Facebook for everyone to see and like.  Keep up the good work!

As I mentioned above, sometimes the emotions overrule everything else and right now I am going to name another winner (but I will have to confirm all the info is legit this week) because when I read her plea, I wanted to breakdown and cry because you know I can be an emotional guy.  This request came from Linda Yarrow of Conroe, Texas.  She made a request for Freedom House which is (HEAR THIS PEOPLE!) the first place young women are placed after being rescued from the SLAVE TRADE.  OMG!  Did she say SLAVE TRADE? I can’t even imagine, but I feel sick to my stomach nonetheless.  In spite of the Freedom House having machines already, I would have to imagine that everyone would agree that this place is deserved of another machine and probably so much more.  Linda, you will be hearing from me this week (email me your phone number to scott@jaftex.com) and I plan to make you my friend and do so much more for your great organization besides the machines.  These poor souls deserve everyone’s help.

So friends, in closing, I want to tell you all that no matter what happens here with the sewing machines i.e. whether you win or not, you should know people are being helped and you should never give up your efforts to help others in need.  In the end, some good things will have come out of tragedy and that is the best we can do.  Hoping that everyone facing tragedy and adversity is starting to get their lives back in order.  You are in our thoughts and prayers.  So we say together “AMEN.”  Have a great week and be safe.

With Love,

Sewing Machine Scott

1023 words (so much to say!)

 

 

 

 

 

FREE SEWING MACHINE CONTEST FOR THOSE MOST IN NEED (ESP. TX & FL)

Good morning!   How are you today? I hope you are withstanding all the crazy storm madness which has thankfully slowed down a bit it seems. This too shall pass, so hang in tight and don’t forget to breathe.  Can you hear me alright? Okay then, let’s get this contest going.

People keep asking me what I am doing about helping those in Texas, Florida and surrounding areas who have been adversely affected by the storms. That is a great question that I too keep asking myself and I think I have finally found the answer. Yeah, I could make donations as I have already done. I could send blankets and food which I have already done too. But most anyone could do those sort of things. But you know me, I like to beat to my own drum and do my own thing. With that, I am going to go out on a limb and try something, well…..unique. Call me crazy, but here goes.

As I mentioned in a very recent blog post, I was going to give away the sewing machines that my good friend Joanne Hubbard donated. By the way, Joanne is my BlogFF (BFF). I digress. So yeah, the sewing machines. Aside from offering the machines from Joanne, Brewer is generously donating a machine for the giveaway from their Eversewn brand. But that just isn’t enough for me.  You know what I am saying? That would be around 5 machines and I want to do more….way more. Why the heck not? People are suffering and I want to do what I can to ease the pain, even if it is just a little bit and helps to put a smile on someone’s face. I am sure you are wondering what am I going to do. So let me tell you already and stop blabbing away.

I called my new friend Philipp Ueltschi, the Brand Manager of Sewing Machines at Brewer (his brand is EverSewn), and he kindly agreed to sell me machines at a special discounted price for my self proclaimed great cause. These are machines that retail for $200-$400. After I give away the 5 or so machines that I already have, I am going to start giving away BRAND NEW machines on a weekly basis for an indefinite time period. Yes, you are hearing me correctly. Now hear this one more time! I am going to buy machines, a lot of machines, and give them away for F—R—-E—-EEEEEE to people that lost their machine in the storms, never could afford to buy their own machine in the first place or a young person that wants to learn how to sew. I am open to other reasons as to why someone should earn a new machine. One more time, let’s say it together because it sounds soooo freaking good. Free. I can’t hear you. You can do better than that. One more time. FREEEEEEEEEE. Weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!  Now you got it!

For starters, I am seeking requests from people in Texas, Florida and surrounding areas who have been adversely affected by the storms. I would like the pleas to be short and to the point. Maybe 200-250 words maximum as to why I should gift you a machine. I unfortunately don’t have time to read a novel so keep it tight. Or, you can even send me a photo with a caption that you think demonstrates why you OR SOMEONE ELSE should earn a free machine. Please enter all pleas into the comments section of this blog post. If you could figure out how to attach a picture to the blog, please do so. If not, email me the photo in some form with the caption. The top pleas will be selected by me and I will reach out to that person to confirm all the details and make sure all pleas are legit….no offense of course, but the scams are endless these days. By the way, this is not a scam, joke or trick. Make sure to include your city, state and email address so I can contact you for other info.  This contest is for people in the US only.  Make sure to be careful to enter all the info into the computer correctly because if your email address is wrong by even a single letter….NO SOUP FOR YOU! (Seinfeld Reference)

In addition to the free machines, I will be sure to include some other goodies…..maybe some fabric, maybe some notions, maybe some batting, it will be a surprise, but it will be “beast” as my son likes to call it and that is a good thing no doubt.

With that, let the requests start flowing in. And yes, please have fun when submitting your requests. Send any and all questions to scott@jaftex.com, but please don’t drive me crazy because I do have a regular full time job and it isn’t President Of Giving Free Sewing Machines Away if you know what I mean. No phone calls. You will be sure to know through our social media venues and my blog who the winners are as I announce them. Please know that this is my contest and I make the rules and all the final decisions. That’s just how it needs to be.  I am also giving myself permission to post details of all requests and pleas so if something is very private or you don’t want your name used, please make sure to let me know.

Good luck! Please make sure to share this with anyone you know who might be eligible to win especially in Texas, Florida and surrounding areas.  The last thing I want to say is that I can’t wait to see the faces of the winners when they find out that they are getting a new machine from me. That to me is priceless. Therefore, if you happen to be a winner, make sure to post a picture of your smiley face and your new sewing machine on any or all of my company’s (Studioe Fabrics, The Blank Quilting Corp. or Henry Glass Fabrics) Facebook, Instagram or other social media arenas.

Sewing Machine Scott

1024 words (did the best I could)