Tales of a Fourth Generation Textile Executive: The Big Macher Induction

Pepper Cory gives a hand to Hope Yoder as congrats to Hope’s introductory fabric line, Roses and Arrows with Blank Quilting Corp

Yup, you guessed it.   It’s a big macher induction at the quilt market. (Please refer to my big Macher blog if you don’t know what I am talking about).

It’s so cool to be in the presence of quilt industry royalty.   Today I asked big Macher number 1, Pepper Cory (left) to induct big Macher number 2 and here you have it in a Kodak moment.

I hope (no pun intended) you know who she is, but if not, allow me and Pepper to introduce you to Hope Yoder of Designs By Hope Yoder.   She is a new designer for the Blank Quilting Corp among other things. See more about those ‘other’ things here.  I am so excited to add her to our team.   Her new line, Roses and Arrows,  has been a hit at market. See the digital quilt of her design in the above photo.  This line ships in April, is offered by the bolt, in fat quarters and strips too.

In addition to this little Macher moment that I captured, I attended 2 school houses by Hope Yoder, who was helped by her bright daughter and right hand, Olivia.  The school houses were very helpful and I love Hope’s cute sense of humor and how adorable she is.  I am not sure all the attendees caught all her jokes, but I certainly enjoyed it and was definitely chuckling away in the back. My favorite thing of all about Hope is that she is a rainmacher (autocorrect is amazing, we just made up a word and I love it) and a doer.  She sets goals and makes things happen.   These are all great attributes and we should all aspire to do the same.   Without further ado, please welcome Hope to the Macher-ena.   You remember that Macerena song?  I couldn’t resist.  But seriously, please welcome Hope to our team and the land of big Macher.  I hope to work with Hope and Olivia for many years to come.  Thanks for all that you do and thanks to Pepper too!

Hopeful Scott

PS…I think I just drank my fourth bottle of $5 water in the hotel at Quilt Market.

PSS…several friends felt bad and offered to buy the water for me and I took them up on it.   It feels so much better when they pay.  Very refreshing.  Thanks!

 

 

 

Tales of a Fourth Generation Textile Executive: Interesting Evening

it is 1140 pm and there is so much noise outside from the World Series game just finishing. People are so rude.  Don’t they know I am trying to sleep bc I have a busy day tomorrow and an early breakfast.

I might as well share a story about my evening.   Tonight I had dinner with a lovely group of industry big machers. Not only that though, we had a very special surprise guest.  Could you guess who it was?

I had an amazing representative from The Freedom House, a place where kids are saved from human trafficking, join us for dinner.  She spoke so eloquently about the organization.  Let’s say there were lots of tears and emotions in the room.  Several dinner guests were figuring out ways to help this great cause. I even saw a guest give a cash donation.  Such kindness!   Thank you.   Anyway, I am reiterating my support for this great organization, even more so after the stories I heard tonight, and I hope you too can help.  Let me know if you want to do something….anything to help and I can get you details after I find out what they are in need of.  As I like to say, cash is king…if you could spare it.

Good night.   Make sure to visit me tomorrow at booth 2319.

ps.   Today I learned how important it was to put in a ps because for some reason everyone likes a good ps.

Pss.  If they like ps, they really must like pss.

Psss.  Not funny anymore.

Goodnight scott

ps.  I am so thirsty, but i just can’t get myself to buy the $5 bottle of water in my hotel room.

StudioE Fabrics Designer RSVP Program Takes Flight

We are inviting authors, pattern makers, and template designers (micro-influencers) to create a 16″ block with Peppered Cottons in their personal and unique style.

We will feature the designer and their block right here on the Studioe Blog and on our Studioe Fabrics Facebook page in a manner that highlights their career, talents and skills including showing off the block they produced for StudioE Fabrics.

We will show a few of the early Designer RSVP blocks at the upcoming October 2017 Schoolhouse, and show some of the early blocks in our booth at Quilt Market.

What we want to do is to show this concept to shop owners in the schoolhouse that Pepper Cory is giving called  “How to use and adapt a Designer RSVP program” to aid in the shop’s marketing mix.

At the end of the 12-months Pepper will make a (or maybe two) quilts with all the blocks.

Stay tuned here for DESIGNER RSVP highlights where we will introduce you to the awesome group of designers, and show off their talents.

This is a great time to revisit the beauty and glamour of Peppered Cottons!

Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: Quilt Market

Happy Monday Folks,

In anticipation of the Quilt Market in Houston, that begins later this week, I wanted to share some words of wisdom so we can all maximize the potential of Quilt Market.  As an industry, there is nothing we all need more than to have a successful show.  No matter how things play out, my team and I are going to keep a positive attitude, keep our heads up, have smiles on our faces and work as hard as we can to SELL FABRIC!

What we aren’t going to do is be Debbie Downers, bashing on what might be the weaknesses of market.  There is no more time for that anymore.  It is what it is.  Everyone, and I mean everyone attending market, needs to unite to maximize the potential of this show because our industry needs it badly and the people of Quilt’s Inc. need it too.  Not only that, but the people and city of Houston could certainly use our help through our patronage of local businesses.  Come on people, let’s get pumped up.  Stop the negativity and let’s make things happen.

Enough with my preaching.  I want to give some pointers on how we can make things run more smoothly to the benefit of everyone attending and working the show.  Here goes in no particular order:

  • Be mindful of your quilt market etiquette which would not be much different from your regular etiquette.  Don’t forget that many people are on the clock working and not there to mess around and be distracted.
  • Avoid interrupting people that are in the middle of meetings.  Yes, all customers are important, but the person sitting in front of me at any particular time with a proper appointment is my priority.  If you need me, there are plenty of other people at my company that can help you.  They can also take your business card so that I can get back to you asap.

  • Try to stick to your schedule and don’t over book.  In theory it is good to have big plans, but once that schedule starts to run late and fall apart, your day is totally screwed as are all the people that you have appointments with.  If you are running late for an appointment, communicate that with the person you had the appointment with so that they could use the time productively and not just linger waiting for you.

  • Keep in mind that everyone is under a lot of different stresses and pressures and everyone handles them differently.  Try not to add any undue stress to those working.
  • Be respectful of company booths.  Ask to take pictures.  Ask to touch.  Don’t leave your trash in the booth or candy wrappers on the floor.  Don’t linger over people that are working at the booth.  Don’t chat on your phone while people are working nearby.  It’s all about respect people which unfortunately seems to have been lost a little in this day and age of technology.  Common courtesy is critical and is greatly appreciated by all.

  • Smile.  Say hello.  Make eye contact.  Introduce yourself.  Don’t be afraid to say, “I am sorry, but I can’t remember your name.”  I love meeting new people and I love it when people come up to me and say hello.  I promise to welcome you with open arms as will the rest of my team at the Studioe Fabrics, The Blank Quilting Corp., the Henry Glass Fabrics, the A.E. Nathan and the Fabric Editions booths.
  • Don’t be insulted if I don’t remember you.  I probably remember your face, but maybe not your name or company.  Please understand that I meet tons of people every year and if I meet you at just one or two quilt markets a year, it isn’t easy to remember everyone as you might imagine.  It is nothing personal at all, so please don’t let it hurt your feelings.  With that being said, please make sure that your quilt market badges are facing in the right direction so that people can see your name clearly and no one has to be embarrassed.

To have your badge spun around makes it difficult, drives me crazy and makes the name badges useless.  Sometimes you will see me attempting to spin the badge around by waving my hands in a fan motion or trying to blow the badge around very subtly when the person isn’t looking.  That’s a joke, but make sure you badge is working for you and not against you.

  • Speaking of not being insulted, I can’t help myself from having a wandering eye at market as much as I try not to.  Don’t take this personally as you need to understand that I have a crew of people that I need to manage and make sure everyone is doing what they should be.  I try to stay focused, but sometimes I just can’t help myself.  Sorry in advance and thanks for understanding.
  • Be careful what you say and who you say it to.  Everyone knows everybody in our industry and you don’t want to embarrass yourself by saying something stupid to the wrong person.  As I like to say, “Loose lips sink ships.”

  • I suggest chatting random people up at market.  There are so many smart and knowledgeable people at market and you should certainly get to know them.  Usually when I grab lunch in the convention center, I try to sit with random people and stir up some conversation.  This is not a time to be shy.  What do you have to lose?  You just never know who you are going to meet and how meeting that person is going to change you or your business for the better.
  • Quilt Market is very conducive to an unhealthy and tiring lifestyle for a couple of days.  Make sure to take care of you.  Try and eat healthy.  Drink lots of water.  Don’t over drink alcohol.  Exercise. Get plenty of sleep.  Go out of the convention center and walk around the block.  Whatever it is, know that we all need a break and need to take care of our mind, body and soul to be able to work at full capacity.

  • Get involved.  Go to school houses.  Go to take and teaches.  Go to events at booths.  Make the best of this trip because there is so much to take in which can certainly help your business thrive.

I am sure there are lots more suggestions on how to make the market work for you, but these are the first ones that come to my mind and I am sticking to them.  I wish everyone attending market a safe trip and I look forward to seeing you very soon.  If you need me, I can be reached at scott@jaftex.com or 917 751 5487 and I am at booth #2319.  Now let’s have some fun and make this an awesome show for everyone and make sure all those that aren’t attending see all the greatness they are missing out on so maybe they will reconsider and in fact attend the next show.

Quilt Market Sage Scott

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Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: Some New Bits ‘N’ Pieces

SCOTT’S FREE SEWING MACHINES (SFSM): 

Call me gullible.  Call me a sucker.  I always seem to give people the benefit of the doubt because it is just in my nature.  When my wife and I review all the SFSM requests, she laughs at me because I say “yes” to just about every single one.  Let’s call a spade a spade that someone could be a good liar and get a free machine from me if they really wanted one.  You know what, if they want it so bad, they could have it.  Such is life, but I just don’t think that the people I am dealing with are the types that would do anything like that.

As I give away the free sewing machines, I think everyone is still in a little bit of disbelief.   It’s funny when I speak to candidates on the phone to discuss their request and I say to them, “You will get this awesome and free EverSewn machine”, there is always a dead silence.  Then they say, “Seriously?”  I say, “Yes!  Seriously!”  Then I say, “Keep your eye out for the Fedex delivery person.  Talk to you later.”

You will be happy to know that I finally tracked down Linda Yarrow (thanks to a little help from a friend), one of my first SFSM winners. Recall that she is the one who is helping young girls, at The Freedom House in Conroe, Texas, who were rescued from the slave trade. Rather than sending a new Eversewn machine, I decided that they should get multiple machines since there are like 20-30 girls/women involved.

Anyway, if you remember, my good friend, Joanne Hubbard, bought a bunch of machines from a local school and fixed them up. She did some creative bargaining and bartering and the results were great.  In all, she ended up with 7 fully functioning machines.  These will ALL go to The Freedom House (see the photo she sent me of one box with machines and some fabric).  Joanne and I couldn’t be happier about trying to help these poor ladies. Perhaps this will give them hope….just a little or maybe a lot. But what if this changes their lives?  We will just have to wait and see…..and pray……and hope of course.

In addition to the machines, I have sent them a large, nearly 200 yard, roll of fabric.  I know this will go to good use and when they are done with it, I will send more.  On top of all that, I am going to make a donation of $1000 to The Freedom House.  This is not the end for me people of The Freedom House.  I am going to continue to be in touch with Linda and the people at this great organization because I am now compassionate about this cause. It’s like selecting winners for SFSM, I know it when I read it. Linda’s request hit a chord and piqued my concern in a big way. I am going to help them indefinitely.  Sometimes you just get that feeling and right now, I have that feeling.  You ladies can count on me for years to come! Check out their website  or their Facebook page and try not to cry.

QUILT MARKET

As much as my audience probably wants to hear me say something about quilt market, I am going to withhold judgment until after and go with my new optimistic and HOPEFUL me.  Did you hear that collective sigh of relief?  I am hopeful that this Quilt Market is a true success for everyone.  Amen to that!

Speaking of market, please don’t be shy about setting up an appointment with me.  I always get the, “You are too busy nonsense or you are the President.”  I am there to work, so please email me to arrange an appointment as I am not above meeting with anybody…scott@jaftex.com or 800-294-9495 x 218.  I welcome the opportunity to work with existing customers and meet new customers as well.  Booth #2319.

A lot of people are intrigued by my SFSM project so I decided that I would block off 2 hours during the quilt market if people want to visit with me at Booth #2319 on Sunday from 10-12 (STUDIOE FABRICS) to discuss SFSM.  I will have one of the Eversewn machines at the booth if you want to check it out.  In addition, since a lot of people want to contribute in their own way, we can discuss other possibilities.  One suggestion on how you could help is by sharing fabric and sewing tools with some of the winners who really don’t have much if anything.  I am also open to any ideas that you may want to share.  I hope you can stop by to chat.  Thank you.

Just as I was wrapping up this blog post, I got an surprising email from my new friend Philipp Ueltschi of EverSewn.  He advised me that he would be donating 10 EverSewn Starter Kits to the next 10 SFSM winners.  How amazing and generous is that?  I can’t get over how so many people want to contribute to this great cause.  Anyway, if any of my readers are attending market, I urge you to go visit EverSewn at booth 734 & 735 to see all the great products they offer or just to go say hi to Philipp and thank him and his team for being an integral part of SFSM.  I think that would be very nice and I know that I plan to buy Philipp a drink….or 2 at market.

Have a great week.  12 days until schoolhouses and 13 days until the Quilt Market floor opens to visitors.

Scott

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Scott’s Free Sewing Machines Update

It’s so hard for me to say ‘no’ to people when I speak to them on the phone about Scott’s Free Sewing Machines (SFSM).  People are so honest.   People are hurting.  People are proud.  People are doing the best they can under the circumstances.  Maybe these sewing machines will make them a little happy.  But, what if it makes them really happy?    Kind of like medication.    What if it changes their life for the better?  What if?  As my dad likes to say, “I don’t do what ifs?”

Anyway, I like to hope.   It’s sad to see and hear what’s going on in many of these peoples’ lives.   I know it’s all relative, but I would be hurting badly if I were in a lot of the SFSM recipients’ shoes. In any event, I am happy to announce more well-deserved winners this week, here goes:

Kaitlin Rhodenbaugh– Given at the request of Nancy Tiede who was teaching Kaitlin to sew, so she could have her own machine.

Alesia Steinberger – Hurricane survivor who sews for charity.

Sharon Lattis – Grandparent who is raising grandchildren, retired without a machine.

Michele Mcdonald-Lost everything in Texas storms.

Rachael Worley-For one of her (8) adopted kids who wants to learn to sew. 

Lindsey Jarvis– A mom that I met in Kansas with a very sad life story.

Tiffanie Kimball Dougal-A mom with 5 daughters she home-schools and who survived storms in Texas.

Shelley Christopher-Homeless woman who just got into housing with her disabled husband. 

Renee Bednarczyk-Had borrowed a machine and it was ruined in Texas.

Susan Shaw-Very ill woman without a sewing machine. 

Hogan Family – Sent machines for the other two sisters in the family who lost their sister. 

To keep you updated on SFSM, here are some points and pointers:

I am still looking for a woman named Linda Yarrow, who sent me a very compelling comment on the blog.

I am not in the sewing machine business and unfortunately can’t fix machines for you.  Ask you local handyman to try and fix it for free or figure out another creative way to get it fixed, but don’t give up on it because your sewing machine is an integral part of your life.

Please post your sewing machine requests only in the comments section of any blog on the Studioe Fabrics website for Tales of a Fourth Generation Textile Executive.  Please try to avoid emailing me at my work email.

Please be patient with me as I work through all the requests.  There is a lot of ground to cover and I still have a day job and once again the job is not President of Giving Away Free Sewing Machines.  That one never gets old for me.  LOL.

Please continue to share my giveaway with anyone who may be worthy.  The giveaway is going to go on indefinitely or until I stop getting requests.  Thank you for your support and kind messages.

Scott

Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: There IS Hope

As I delve deeper and deeper in to Scott’s Free Sewing Machines, I have had a lot of time to reflect.  I am realizing a lot of things about myself, people, life and the world.  In spite of all the crappy, pathetic and sad stuff going on in the world right now:  the hate, the terrorism, the bullying, the hypocrisy, the politics, the tragedy, the stupidity, the depression, the meanness, the insensitivity, the lack of respect, etc., I am hopeful.  Call me foolish.  Call me overly optimistic.  Call me blind.  There are still lots of good people out there. Allow me to provide some examples all from this past week.

As you know, I have been announcing contest winners lately.  One of the winning applicants was requesting a machine for her grand niece.  I have been so inspired by people who are nominating others to get a machine. Not for themselves, but for a loved one or friend who is deserved.  This is inspiring and makes me realize people are good.  Anyway, after her grand niece was announced as a winner, she emailed me to let me know that their machine was fixed and she no longer needed it.  She didn’t have to say anything, but she chose to let me know so I could share the sewing machine with someone else who didn’t have one.  In Yiddish, there is a word “mensch” which means a person that is a true gentlemen or woman with integrity or honor.  There is hope people.

After announcing some winners on Facebook recently, I started to get a bunch of personal messages and emails.  The ones that I was most focused on were where people didn’t want a machine, but rather they wanted to help me share the love.  People are sending me money. In fact, I was at a quilt shop and a woman handed me $20 and said use this for a machine. Also, people are asking for the addresses of the winners so they can send them fabrics from their stash.  To me that is shocking because I know no one wants to part with their stash.  Lol!   Then there are the people that are offering me machines to give away.  The outpouring is unreal and inspiring.  Hear me out people, there is hope.

The other day after the tragedy in Las Vegas, I was looking at a friend’s post on Facebook.  She said that her kids were scared about the tragic and sad events in Las Vegas.  So she shared with them a quote from Fred Rogers which many of you may know and I believe Jimmy Kimmel referenced it too one night.  The gist of the quote was to not focus on the tragedy, but rather to focus on the people running around and helping those who were in trouble.  You always see people helping.  Keep that in mind the next time you are watching the news.  Flip it around and focus on the good and try not to let the badness bring you down.  And I shall repeat, there is hope people.

Just the other day, I was traveling through Kansas with my sales rep in that territory and we made a pit stop.  As I proceeded to the checkout to pay for my protein bar, a young lady came in and inquired about the cost of a soda and whether the store accepted a certain type of payment which I never heard of.  The woman behind the counter advised they don’t take that form of payment.  The young lady was disappointed, but the clerk said she would buy it for the young lady.  So let me get this straight, the woman working the register is going to start buying things for customers?  Wow!  That blew my mind.  Of course, me being nosey and all, I asked the cashier what that was all about.   She told me the young lady was going through a rough time.  And I shall repeat yet again, there is hope people.

Spread the love and kindness and it will shine through all the tragedy and make the world a better place.  Amen!  Have a great week.

Spread The Love Scott

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Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: What’s The Point?

I was in this massive car accident.  As I lay on the side of the road thinking that I am going to die, I start to fade in and out of consciousness.  Suddenly, a bright light shines in my eyes and I am thinking that it is time for me to go to heaven (I am an optimist).  My life flashes before my eyes in an instant.  Is it my time?  Is this it?

Then, out of nowhere, I see a beautiful silhouette of a woman.  I can’t speak or function because I am so badly injured, so she grabs my wallet to try to figure out who I am and any other info that might help her take care of me.  She first looks over my license and a big smile develops.  With my eyes, I kind of say, “What are you smiling about?”  She replies to my eye question, “I know you.”  “You know me?”  “How?”  You are Free Sewing Machine Scott.  A chill runs through my body.  “Are you freaking kidding me?”  “Is this for real?”

The angel then proceeds to save my life by bringing me to a hospital for proper care.  Had she not taken care of me, I would have been left for dead.  She stayed by my side the whole time while I recovered.  She took such great care of me.  While I was resting and recovering in the hospital bed, I started hearing this very soft and familiar voice saying, “I had a nightmare, can I sleep in the bed with you?”  Now, I am thoroughly confused.  Suddenly, I awaken to realize that it was all a dream….that my 6 year old son so rudely interrupted.  I peek at the clock and it is 315 am and I am alive and now sleeping in the bed with my wife and son.

What’s the point?  I think I better keep giving away more sewing machines.

With that being said, I wanted to let everyone know that I have lots more machines to give away and not so many requests.  Please keep sharing the information and tell people to send in their request for a new machine.  Thank you.

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