Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: The Rise Of The Superfan

I am totally obsessed with the television show Curb Your Enthusiasm lately. I went back and started watching the original episodes and I just can’t contain my laughter. I am talking belly laughs, drooling, hyperventilating, headache kind of laughing.  You know what I am talking about, right?

In a recent episode, Larry David, the star, has a whole schtick whereby he judges people on whether their appreciation or thank you is in line with the kind gesture of another.  In this case, Larry’s act of kindness was to let a co-workers’ married relatives stay at his house for a couple days.  It’s freakin’ hysterical and you should check it out. Long story short, it turns out that the house guests were swingers, but that’s a story for another day.  Needless to say, it was nothing short of brilliant comedy as usual.

Anyhow, in light of our recent acquisition of FreeSpirit, I wanted to say that the thank yous have WAY exceeded our actions.  So we are all good now and we can still be friends.  My family could not be any more appreciative for the outpouring of love and support.  Thank you for coming on this amazing journey with us.  I promise to continue to give you a birds eye view of what’s going on behind the scenes and keep you on the inside track the whole time.

This all reminds me about the Social Media Marketing World conference that I just attended in San Diego.  Many of the speakers harped on attaining the ultimate superfan.  This is what everyone should be looking to achieve for their business, the super fan.  That person that eat sleeps and breathes you and everything about you or your company or your product.  You can do no wrong by them.  These superfans actually work for you, but they don’t even realize that they work for you and you aren’t even paying them. (Let’s try to keep this between us).  In our case, it is the total and complete obsession with the FreeSpirit designers and their fabrics.  I have never witnessed anything like this before. I truly had no idea and let’s say that I am ecstatic about these obsessions.

With that, I want to remind everyone that FreeSpirit is back in business and ready to serve you with amazing fabrics and inspiration. Please just bear with us as we transition to the new ownership and deal with the immediate changes and challenges.   All the Jaftex companies are still in business too and ready to serve you as well.  Call your sales reps. Call your distributor. Call your local quilt shop proprietor. Call customer service.  Get on the website!  Call me! When the person on the phone answers, you should just start rattling off all the fabrics you want to order by FreeSpirit or any of our awesome family owned companies.  You got this.

What are you waiting for? Go go go!

Superfan Seeker Scott

Have a great week!

P.S……Here is where you can sign up for my Executive Facebook page.   

P.S.S… Also, please subscribe to my blog and get notifications when new blogs are posted.  Look up on the right side of this blog to register.

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Author: Scott Fortunoff

Author of Tales of 4th Generation Textile Executive Blog. President of Studioe Fabrics, The Blank Quilting Corp. and A.E. Nathan Co., Inc. Co-President of FreeSpirit Fabrics. V-P of Henry Glass Fabrics. President of Scott’s Free Sewing Machines. Creator of the #sewrevolution.

41 thoughts on “Tales Of A Fourth Generation Textile Executive: The Rise Of The Superfan”

  1. I am looking forward to all good things! I know that Free Spirit designers will continue to be great choices for my handbags. Best wishes for continued success–for all of us!
    Joan Radell

  2. Great article – Curb your Enthusiasm is the bomb! Love that show. I’m really excited to follow you on this journey and I hope that we see bigger and better things coming all the time. I’ll be emailing you this week now that the jet lag has slowed. 🙂

    1. Hi Brenda,
      Yes Curb rocks. I am excited to take you on a journey so I think we are on the same page. Pack your bags, we are going for a ride.
      Have a great day.

  3. Hi Scott
    Nice job. I’m new to the blog thing. I’m thinking it’s just an extended fb?
    Anywho, I enjoy your writings wherever they are. You seem genuine in your surprise and appreciation for the fans and inquiries that have come by way of Free Spirit. Did u not have that kind of attention before to the companies if Jaftex? Or is it that the attention is now also from a personal consumer base and not just the store owners? For me, the excitement is focused on the artistic sources and products that happen with fabric. Listening to lectures, classes, podcasts, etc. by Kaffe Fassett, Phillip Jacobs and Brandon Mabley are appealing to me because they seem so open in sharing their artistic journeys. There’s a sense that their talent should somehow separate them from the mortal followers yet they present themselves as just average people. Maybe even someone one of us could be!! They aren’t surprised by their own talent nor are they surprised when they see it in others. There’s something very grounding in that. And that is what draws me in. To me, you have a very similar quality. You seem to have the ability to fly above and share a view of your position in this life with a humorous yet appreciative “how the heck did I get here?” attitude. Your generosity, to me, proves your genuineness and makes me want to hear what you have to say. So keep writing, talking, posting, etc. I just used a lot of words to say…keep up the good work and energy!! There’s something big happening here!!!

    1. Hi Jessica,
      Actually the blog is way older than the FB page. FB page isn’t very old. FreeSpirit has opened an entirely new world. Life will never be the same after this deal. The attention is coming from every angle.
      This is such a great comment. I am smiling reading it. I appreciate you Jessica very much. You hit the nail on the head.
      You have a great day. It sounds like you might be a superfan….

    2. Awesome description. If I had read that anywhere I would have clicked just to see her talking about!

  4. Scott, again so thankful you and your family acquired Free Spirit Fabrics. My favorite designer is the Kaffe Fasset fabrics. Just looking at the fabric makes me happy!
    A Fabric Fan
    Ruth Scott

  5. This post made me smile. Glad to see such an enthusiastic fan of fabric and quilters! Keep up the great work .

  6. Will you be reprinting the old Amy Butler fabric from her lotus and belle line? I miss those most of all.

  7. You’ve made a lot of people very happy with this acquisition. You also have a great writing style and I’m looking forward to reading more from you

  8. I’ve been a pseudo superfan since you started gifting sewing machines to those in need (just pseudo because I hadn’t subscribed to your blog until today). Now that you and your family have saved Free Spirit, count me in!!

  9. Scott, Scott, Scott…I thought you knew…I AM that Superfan, always have been, always will be! Even before Free Spirit! Keep rocking the fabric industry!

  10. I am grateful the Free Spirit line has a company that is excited about selling fabric, the best designs. The sad thing is I have don’t have any local quilt shops left, and have to depend on the monitor which does not have the feel and true colors of the fabric. Thank you for stepping up to the plate for the quilt world.

  11. Scott, as in any business …. most customers do not know what they need until you tell them. The designers from Free Spirit has done that. The diversity and international flair of style has opened the quilting world,since its earlier days in the 70’s when young women started quilting again and we waited for Family circle magazine to know style. Our style was traditional. Now … Add the social media to this and the world has opened creative minds of all generations. Diversity is key to stability …. in this industry and will take Fabric to a whole new level. International designers and business is imperative. It’s like America gots talent …..what is the next fantastic quilt and fabric line that is going to hit the market. Wishing you the best and I will always be a super fan and supporter.

  12. I agree, Curb your Enthusiasm is hilarious. I should rewatch it again, too! I probably don’t qualify for a sewing machine because I have one. I’ve had it for awhile and I love it. But here’s the story. My oldest child graduates from high school this June. He’s decided to join the Marines as an engineer. He leaves 5 days after graduation. To help me with my heartache over the Summer, my step daughter is flying her 9 yr old daughter, Olivia, to spend 10 days with me (and my husband). I’m taking time off from work and Olivia and I plan to sew. She loves to sew and her mom doesn’t know how. So her and I will be hiking and sewing Our troubles away. I’d love to surprise her with her very own sewing machine. 🙂

  13. Scott, if more people were like you, the world would be an awesome place. I agree that it is all about giving, not receiving. If you are still looking to give away a sewing machine, I would love one for our step-granddaughter. We only get to see her every other week and they live an hour away. She is extremely creative and is learning how to quilt, but only when they can come to our house. I just want her to know that even though we aren’t blood related, she is so loved. Thank you!

    P.S. Thank you for saving some of the best designers in the business to join my favorite Kim Diehl!

  14. Good evening Scott,
    I would like to know, do you sew at all? I’m new to your site, would like to win a sewing machine to give to a high school girlfriend that has Cancer. I don’t sew but have many years making stained glass and the past seven years making jewelry, my next will be sewing. lol
    I too had an Uncle in the sewing business he had 3 Singer Sewing Machine Shops in NYC, I bet he new one of your family members. “It’s a smallworld” when it comes down to it!
    It’s my pleasure to meet you via internet and enjoy your stories. Robert Frost was buried on the hill behind my house growing up in Bennington Vt he is one of my favorites…..
    along with Poe 😉
    and your writing is up there too!

    1. Hi Lisa,
      I am in the process of learning how to sew….I am one lesson in if that counts. Gotta make time for it.
      Regarding your friend, I have emailed you directly for your friends name.

  15. Newest superfan here. I am SO old! I want to pinch your cheeks and call you hun. I looked up your name because you showed up on my FB page and I continued reading because I LOVE your spirit…. and the fact that you and your family “saved” my favorite line of fabric. You give back some of the fortune that has been given (with tons of hard work, I’m sure) to your family. I want to see you succeed wildly. Love, love, love the machine give away. So next, how about franchising LQS’s so ALL FS fabric is easier to find.? I know, conflicts with those you sell to but…. uummm… 🙂 work it out.

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