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Congratulations Stars

At the FabShop Market Kick-off Dinner, we had the pleasure of presenting the second annual FabShop Star Awards to six shining stars. These individuals and companies were selected by the FabShop membership as providing contributions to our industry.

Please join us in congratulating each of the winners of the 2011 FabShop Star Awards!

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Sue Carmichael

View online:
www.quilterscupboard.ca

Star Shop

Sue Carmichael, Quilters Cupboard

For Sue Carmichael, owner of Quilters Cupboad in Uxbridge, Ontario, owning a quilt shop is all about the friendships. It is taught to the staff, shared with the students and it is how the customers are greeted. Sue believes that visiting Quilters Cupboard should be like coming home to an old friends house and her shop’s motto is, “Fun, Friends, Food and, Oh Yes, Fabric!” Serving her customers every day and building new programs that allow women to gather and foster friendships is one of Sue’s goals, and she and the Quilter’s Cupboard team do this with their class selections, monthly clubs and special events—they all provide an opportunity for women to meet together.

One of Sue’s proudest achievements is having held two 30-Hour Quilt Marathons and raising over $72,000 for the support of people living with cancer. Having walked that path herself in 2007, she is certainly aware of the challenges and needs during that year, and Sue says that being able to give back is a wonderful feeling.

The shop is now in its ninth year in business and named a Top Ten Quilt Shop by Better Homes and Gardens Quilt Sampler magazine in 2010.

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Karen Montgomery

View online:
www.thequiltcompany.com

Star Communicator

Karen Montgomery, The Quilt Company

Karen Montgomery is the owner of The Quilt Company, a full service quilt shop located in Allison Park, Pennsylvania. FabShop Members will know her best for her column "Savvy Buying" in the FabShop News, the informative posts on the FabShop Forum, or her business lectures that she presents at International Quilt Market. In addition to her day-to-day duties as a shop owner, Karen has developed The Quilt Company line of best selling patterns and often designs fabrics for Timeless Treasures.  The latest addition to her creative endeavors includes the Quick Trim Ruler for Creative Grids.
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Terry Atkinson

View online:
www.atkinsondesigns.com

Design Star

Terry Atkinson, Atkinson Designs

Atkinson Designs is a family-run quilt pattern business known for having simple, clean designs and easy to follow instructions. Terry designs the quilts and writes all of the pattern instructions, while her husband Kirk is the company's business manager. Terry taught Home Economics for four years, adult quilting classes for 15 years, and even taught preschool! This teaching background inspires Terry's instructions—they are written as if she is right there explaining it to you in class. According to Kirk, Terry's attention span is pretty short, so you know the quilts will be quick and easy. Atkinson Designs always has new projects in the works, and Terry says her favorite quilt is always the one she is just starting. In addition to the business and her hobbies of quilting and knitting, Terry enjoys traveling with Kirk.
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Bret & Cindy Cloward

View online:
www.rileyblakedesigns.com

Rising Star

Bret and Cindy Cloward, Riley Blake Designs

Bret and Cindy Cloward launched Riley Blake Designs just over two years ago, but that's not where their story in the fabric industry begins. Bret grew up in the fabric world and learned the business from his father, Blake. His parents, Blake and Kathy, owned fabric stores along the Utah's Wasatch front.  After college, Bret worked in the corporate world for over 15 years and the couple moved around the country. While living in Washington State, Nevada, and New York, Bret learned what it takes to make a business successful. They moved back to Utah after the death of Bret's father, Blake, and have owned Christensen Wholesale for over 11 years.  They started manufacturing their own flannels in 2005 under the Alpine fabrics brand. The first Riley Blake Designs fabric line, Just Dreamy, was premiered at the spring 2009 Quilt Market in Pittsburgh. Just Dreamy was an instant hit, launched the Riley Blake Designs brand.  They have increased their offerings from one fabric line every six weeks to three fabric lines a month. They credit their success to hard work, talented designers, a dedicated staff and their supportive family. They have 3 sons and one daughter (named Riley).
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Rob Krieger

View online:
www.checkerdist.com

Star Supplier

Rob Krieger, Checker Distributor

Always a family business, Rob Krieger's parents started Checker in 1948 and began working at Checker as a seven year old sweeping floors and stocking shelves. In 1971 after college and the Army, Rob chose to go to work for Checker. In 1982, he took over as the President. Growing up in the family business, Rob learned that small business is the backbone of America and the desire to own your own business is ingrained in the psyche of Americans. Small business has many challenges to hurdle and competing with the chains is a big one—as a result, Checker has chosen to only supply Independent businesses. We keep 100% of our efforts focused on helping Independents succeed. His parents' philosophy of "You cannot serve two masters, Independents and chains" is alive and well at Checker. This core value lives with the entire staff as well as Rob's son Brad, the third Krieger generation at Checker.
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Jim Salinas

View online:
www.unitednotions.com

Star Sales Rep

Jim Salinas, Moda Fabrics

Jim Salinas graduated from the University of Texas in 1971 with a degree in English Literature and Political Science, and spent the early portion of his career with Hancock Fabrics as a store manager and then as a district manager in Arizona for 17 years. In that role, he was responsible for the retail operation of 18 stores. Jim eventually left Hancock to join Cloth World, rising to the position of Vice President of Merchandising. When Jo Ann's purchased Cloth World, he joined Michael's Arts and Crafts as their Director of Fabric Merchandising. He ended his 26-year chain store career as Executive Vice President at House of Fabrics and has been a successful sales associate for United Notions and Moda Fabrics for the last 14 years.

Jim believes that the quilt shops of today are the fabric stores of tomorrow and that the future of home sewing lies with the independent retailer. He believes that sharing the knowledge he has accumulated over his career will help independent shop owners increase their profits.

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Click HERE to see the 2010 FabShop Star Awards

2010 Star Awards

 

 
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