Wow! Can you believe 2020 is over? It was the year none of us expected, and that seemed to last FOREVER, but fly by at the same time. We started the year off with so many plans and dreams for Style Maker Fabrics, but that all got thrown out the window by the end of March. We spent the rest of the year totally isolated, trying to keep our heads above water as we navigated life and running a small business during a pandemic. Here is a look back at some of our favorite highlights from the past year!
2020 kicked off with us hitting the ground running with plans for Sew Expo and the year ahead. The start of the year is always crazy for us, with one big event after another and all the planning happening simultaneously. February took us to the annual Sew Expo in Puyallup, WA, and brought some of our closest sewing friends in town to visit and help out with all the festivities. It was wonderful to spend time with Lindsey (@insidethehem) and Lori (@girlsinthegarden.sews); who knew this would be one of our last visits with friends for a VERY long time?
Back in the shop, we feverishly prepared for our Spring Launch and our very first (and last, for the year) hosted retreat at Makers Hideaway! The retreat was a huge success, and we safely got it in right before the world shut down the following week. Crazy, right?! Now we wait patiently until a time when we can safely gather together again!
Life Goes On…Virtually
As the world headed into quarantine in late March, none of us had any idea what to expect. Here at Style Maker, we were getting ready to launch our spring fabrics and kick off our Spring Style Tour, but was it the right time? Yes, it was! We all needed something to look forward to and take our minds off of everything else going on.
We also launched a special photo challenge on Instagram to help bring the sewing community together during this difficult time. For 12 days, sewists from all over the world shared a bit more about themselves and their passion for sewing using #sewconnected. Today, there are over 8k posts, with more being added daily—we are all in this together, even if it is virtually!
Two of our biggest highlights of the year were our Spring and Fall Style Tours! We so look forward to these explosions of inspiration that help kick off the two biggest seasons of sewing, and this spring and fall tours were no exception! We met some new faces, welcomed back some long time friends, and got so many ideas for our handmade wardrobes. Find full recaps of both style tours HERE (Spring) and HERE (Fall, shown below).
On the business side of things, the pandemic made us quickly change how we do things here at Style Maker Fabrics. From suppliers being shut down, item shortages, and shipping delays, this year has kept us on our toes! With more of you only able to shop online, we also fast-tracked our plans to expand our selection of must-have notions and tools to help make sure your quarantine sewing could continue uninterrupted. From sewing machine needles and rotary blades to interfacing and elastic, we’ve got you covered. Oh, and don’t forget about matching thread and buttons—two of our favorite and most exciting new additions!
Instagram Top 9
Let’s take a look back at our year on Instagram. Here is a peek at your favorite posts from the year. Such a fun mix of fabrics, makes, and details—we can see why these were the favorites!
- Erica’s Watercolor Floral Canvas shorts with the BEST button fly!
- Stunning new rayon prints from See You at Six.
- Sam’s double gauze Kalle Button-Up Shirt.
- The latest additions to our curated button selection from Pigeon Wishes.
- Must-have fabric/pattern combo—Wiksten Shift + Linen Blend
- #SewConnected—Our spring photo challenge to bring sewists together as the world headed into Quarantine. Little did we know we’d still be stuck inside…
- Sylvia’s gorgeous Cotton Eyelet dress from our Spring Style Tour.
- Karen’s statement black & white rayon top using her new favorite pattern, Closet Core’s Cielo.
- Terracotta, please! Three fabrics in one of our favorite colors for 2020.
Favorite Indie Patterns
One of our other favorite ways to look at the past year is to see the favorite indie patterns. Here is a look at our five most popular patterns, three of which have appeared on this list in previous years. This group also pretty much sums up all of our wardrobes this year—comfort, simplicity, and coziness!
- Elastic Pants, please! (Find our full comparison HERE)
- Returning Favorites (with Updates)
- Wardrobe Staple—Liesl + Co.’s Camp Shirt + Dress
Plans for a Fresh Start
As we head into the new year, we have high hopes for some much-needed change and new beginnings. We’re all a little tired of not being sure what the next month, or even week, will bring and are looking forward to a time when we can plan into the future again!
Our start to the year already looks a little different. Sew Expo is going virtual this year, and while we aren’t sure what that is going to look like yet, we are excited that even more of you will be able to join us this year! Watch for lots more details to come in our email newsletter over the next month or so.
Longer-term plans for the year include getting our retreats up and running again. With vaccines on the way, we hope to be able to gather in person again around mid-year. We had to postpone Lladybird’s Jeans class from last summer, but lucky for us, Lauren has agreed to stay with us for two weekends this August. We have lots of other retreats we hope to get on the calendar, including a jacket retreat with the Jacket Queen herself, Karen of @intostitches! Planing your own sewing escape for 2021? We’d love to have you stay with us at Makers Hidwaway—our sister company and retreat center!
Behind the scenes, we have some exciting changes coming to Style Maker Fabrics! First, we are working on a new look to our website and store with lots of new features and improvements we know you will love. We hope to have these launched in just a few short weeks!
Bigger goals for our small business include expanding the Style Maker team once it is safe. We have been running things as a two-person team and to say we are exhausted is an understatement! We look forward to when it is safe to be around others, and we can add a few new people to our team to help with everything from order fulfillment to social media.
Phew! 2020, what a year?! We can’t thank you all enough for your love and support of our small business over the past twelve months. We have been proud to be a source for quality fabric, notions, and patterns that you can count on, even during a pandemic. We look forward to continuing to improve and grow to better serve this amazing sewing community this coming year and many more to come!
If you have any suggestions, comments, or recommendations, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or contact us through our website HERE. We love hearing from you and want to help make shopping with us the best experience possible!
Cheers to 2021! We’re ready for whatever you are going to throw at us. Hopefully only good things, though!
Michelle & Sharon