Free Spirit Fabrics to Be Shut Down by Coats Effective Immediately

Free Spirit Fabrics will be shut down by parent company Coats. In a letter sent to designers today Stephanie Leichtweis, who became president of North American Crafts at Coats in October, stated, “We have worked diligently for the past few years to make this a successful part of the Coats Craft business here in North America.  But I am sorry to say that, despite our best efforts, we have continued to struggle with an inherent weakness in the business model and have not been able to demonstrate a profit.” The letter goes on to say, “We will not be producing new Westminster or FreeSpirit Fabrics from today onwards.”

Etsy Neglects Established Programs While Tightening Focus on Core Marketplace

Handmade marketplace Etsy is neglecting programs other than the core Etsy.com marketplace and sellers are feeling the effects. Some of these programs, like Etsy Wholesale, were established years ago and serve thousands of sellers, while others, like Etsy Studio, were launched more recently and haven’t yet built momentum. Now, they seem to be abandoned.

F+W Media Ousts Top Executives in Effort to Accelerate Digital Growth

The board of directors of F+W Media has ousted the company’s top leadership. A letter to staff sent out this morning stated that CEO Tom Beusse, COO Joe Siebert, and CTO Joe Romello are no longer with the company. The board has appointed Greg Osberg as interim CEO.

McCall’s Simplicity Merger Points to the Market Impact of Independent Sewing Pattern Companies

The home sewing industry is sorely lacking in good longitudinal data. The Association for Creative Industries does a survey every few years about the crafts industry as a whole, and Quilts, Inc. does the same for quilting but granular data about the sewing pattern market is very hard to come by. This makes it hard to know how the industry is changing.

Those of us who are involved in the sewing community know that over the past 10-15 years independent sewing pattern designers have poured onto the scene, many of them creating thriving businesses with lots of momentum. This year, I think we’re seeing hard evidence of their impact on the industry for the first time.

Recorded Webinar: Take a Peek into Retail Life with Three Brick-and-Mortar Craft Shop Owners

Brick-and-mortar retailers are a cornerstone of the craft industry, but the retail environment is going through drastic changes right now. In this panel discussion three brick-and-mortar craft shop owners will give us an honest picture of the challenges and opportunities they’re currently facing, and how designers and suppliers fit into the retail picture.

An Offer is Not a Gift: Why Negotiation is Necessary Even If It’s Scary

Asking for what you want or need is hard. In your personal life, that’s called advocating for yourself, whether it’s for more help around the house or saying no to toxic relationships. In your business life, it’s called negotiating. It’s funny that saying no to a friend that is rude or overbearing makes perfect sense, but asking for better terms from a business partner strikes fear in the hearts of even the savviest entrepreneur.

Craftsy Acquired by Comcast NBCUniversal

Comcast NBCUniversa has purchased a majority ownership share in he online learning and ecommerce platform, Craftsy.com. In announcement today on the Craftsy website CEO John Levisay wrote, “I’m absolutely thrilled at this outcome. It will provide us tremendous resources and a massive distribution platform to further pursue our vision of becoming an iconic brand in the makerspace via ‘edutainment’, classes and supplies.”

Chad Dickerson Steps Down as CEO of Etsy

Effective tomorrow Chad Dickerson will be stepping down as the CEO of Etsy. Josh Silverman, formerly of American Express, Skype, and Evite, will be his replacement.

Craftsy to Release Courses as DVDs

In a move that may appear to be a technological step backward to some, Craftsy will soon be releasing a selection of classes as DVDs.

Pay Cuts for Michaels Teachers Put a Damper on an Already Frustrating Job

Over 1 million people took a class at a Michaels store last year. Michaels is the nation’s largest art and craft retailer and customers can take classes in painting, drawing, scrapbooking, cake decorating, knitting, and crochet at their local stores. But what is it like to teach those classes?

Pin It on Pinterest