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    Laminated Cotton Reversible Planters for Succulents

    There's nothing like a deadline!

    There is nothing like a deadline. I am proud to say that I completed samples of my new products for my first trade show of the season fully 2 day before I boarded the plane for @IndieMarketBayArea. This is progress towards my New Year's goal of getting more sleep in 2019! In the past, as any good entrepreneur does, I have pulled 3am bedtimes or all-nighters before a deadline. Not this time - it's 2019.

    I managed to carve out time BEFORE midnight to finish a bunch of our new reversible bucket bags and they were met with smashing success!  They seem to have hit a chord.  I flew into San Francisco (6 hours late), then stopped at the cutest East Bay Nursery in Berkeley. I spent too much time enjoying the huge array of succulents to behold.  I enjoyed picking out a bunch in 4-6” pot sizes to merchandise the tubs as planters. I finally got to the amazing Craneway Pavilion to complete set up in a record 2 hours! (another deadline - YAY!)

    Everyone who came by my booth was enthralled and delighted and placed orders for these so look for them soon in a store near you!  I sold all my samples to the Marin Museum of Art as well.


    After a delayed flight, and my shopping trip, I had successfully procrastinated in getting to the venue to set up my booth until 2 hours before they closed it, allowing me to learn that I can complete a set-up in exactly 2 hours. Old habits do die hard. I was, however, so flustered by then that I dropped my rental car keys in a bag (that I had already stapled to the wall of my booth). Instead of driving my rental car to the Airbnb as planned, I hailed a Lyft and had the best conversation with a hard-luck but coming-back driver who told me that my own hard luck of losing my keys meant that I had set myself up for a day of success tomorrow. Fortunately, he was right. My rep, Patty Plowman, came in the morning and announced that her grandmother had crowned her the “finder of lost things” and proceeded to pull the keys out of the pocket of the bag that I had already looked in 10 times.

    The keys were found and the show was awesome and I loved being there.

    Onward!

    joy 2019 fabric designer napkins corporate gifts

    Joy to you in 2019!

    Joy to you in 2019! 

    Our 2018 was full of ❤️, orders (thank you), fantastic trips, family 💛 & coffee! We traveled to see you in Houston, Las Vegas, Cleveland, San Francisco & Seattle. Our website sales grew like never before & I am growing my fabric offerings as fast as I can. I have loved how y’all have embraced our new fabrics which really come from my heart. Thank you! 

    I have met so many wonderful people who really “get” me & what I do & why I do it. @quiltmarket has been a #gamechanger 

    Polka dot love to all of you! Shall we do a polka dot fabric? 

    As the new year starts I am busy creating a fun new product while refilling best sellers 🌟Stay tuned! 

    We are looking for more business gifting/collaborations in 2019. This photo shows our shipment of 150 sets of napkins as gifts for @reilykitchengroup clients. Do you need this service? 

    I wish you much joy & happiness & lovely fabrics in the new year. 

    .

    PS. I’ll be at @indiemarketbayarea (booth 19) this Sunday-Tuesday Jan 6-8. Come see me! In the beautiful @cranewaypavilion 

    Thankfulness and fabric we all love.

    Thankfulness and fabric we all love.

    I have been very fortunate in my life. I have been able to pursue my passions, dreams and now design & produce my own dreamy laminated cottons. Who does that? These are truly Not your Grandma's Oilcloth!!  Each time I meet a customer who gushes over my fabrics and pets them (that is every customer), I am reinvigorated to keep going and make more. 

    My favorite thing, now that people are able to purchase my fabrics to make their own amazing goodies, like the beautiful pouches by Mary Mulari, is that now they send me photos. I love that! Keep it up. I am most thankful. I mostly love that people who are makers are getting their hands on our fabrics and feeling inspired. How much more fortunate can anyone be? 

    I faced my fears and met with success - Quilt Market, here we come

    I faced my fears and met with success - Quilt Market, here we come

    Our first fabric show. Quilt Market May 2018

     

    I had been afraid to try it. I had always said that I wanted to be a fabric designer. Now I had 14 designs under my belt and was nervous to really put them out there in the world.  I have become comfortable with having my products in stores, but to actually stand in front of fabric store buyers and owners seemed really scary… I made myself sign up for the show (it was in Portland where I could stay with family (see photo below). how bad could it be?

    superman

    BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR!

     

    I signed up for a booth in the Quilt Show, a fabric tradeshow which I attended for years as a buyer for years while making reversible children’s playwear. I faced my fear of showing up in front of quilters, fabri-holics, and the reps I used to buy from. It turned out, they loved my fabric, raved about it, brought their friends, and bought over 1200 yds of it in 3 short days! I had found my people.

     

    So when I got to Portland, I showed up at the blank spot which was my booth in the very back of the hall surrounded by a weird configuration of pipes and drapes, creating boxes around a huge pillar. I stood for a moment feeling overwhelmed, but soon snapped into action.  What if I just took all that mess down and opened it up all around me creating more space and visibility (even if it was only to the last aisle of the hall)? Down came the drapes. I grabbed an adjoining table, threw on tablecloths, and now had a plethora of surfaces and display opportunities. I hung all the tablecloths, stuffed and puffed bags and products, creating an inviting showroom.

     

    HOW TO SELL TO THIS CROWD?

     

    I had a display cubicle in the lobby of the building and stuck my cute husband out there next to it wearing an apron that said “Touch ME”.  He was a buyers’ magnet!

     

    I had a whole stream of women coming into my booth for days asking to see David. I would ask them what was wrong with me and they would titter and make an order.

     

    I had learning to do. I am selling something into the fabric stores now that is different than what they are used to. First, it’s 58” wide, not the usual 45”. Next, it’s coated. But it’s so soft! Feel it! And the wheels start turning… What can I make with it??

     

    Now I had an idea. I had to show them. Stores were interested in my products too. I could sell them the fabric, and samples of my products to show folks what to make out of it. All I had to do is make sewing patterns, right? How do I do that? All kinds of folks were circulating the show.  Pretty soon I had cards from pattern designers, online sales platforms, distributors, and interested parties of all kinds.  Many folks wanted scraps to play with. Could they quilt with them? What else could they make?

    QuiltMarket2018 love Cosmetic pouches by Mary Mulari

    Mary Mulari (shown here with David Krauter) took my scraps and made some adorable ditty bags.

    She has gotten the attention of Gutterman Treads, Schmetz Needles and now Threads Magazine for me. She teaches classes all over the country and will introduce new stitchers to my fabric… I feel the love! 

     

    I even had visits from a couple of new reps and one I used to buy from and she is now carrying my line.  She has gotten us into one Ben Franklin store of all things!  I am always so delighted with the places my reps visit and I love thinking about the end users and how they will delight in using my fabric in their projects.

     

    David enjoyed noticing how “well dressed” our customers were. Not dressed up, but with interesting colors and coordinated accessories. Of course! As I always say:

    It’s all about the the fabric!

    And color, duh.

    Fabric stores love laminated cotton

    Bottom line: Go for your dreams. You and they are worth it!

    Sewing with Laminated Cotton

    Sewing with Laminated Cotton

    It’s easier than you think to see with laminated cotton. The matte finish coating stitches up like a dream! Try it.

    Read more