Next up in our Meet the Sponsors series is Fabric Supplies, an Etsy shop run by the husband-and-wife team of Charlie and Lindsay Prezzano. They specialize in contemporary quilting-weight cottons from all of today’s favorite modern designers, at a discount. As you will see, they are definitely a home-based operation — I’m amazed at how neat and uncluttered everything looks considering they are up to their ears in fabric bolts (not to mention they have two young children)! Lindsay answered my questions and shared the glimpse inside their home.
Fabric Supplies is giving away two sets of four fat quarters of Art Gallery Fabrics‘ new collection, Revive, to two readers. Just take a look over at the shop, then come back over here and leave a comment mentioning the designer or collection you were most pleased to see, and/or fabric(s) you would like to see them carrying. Comments will close next Monday, March 30, around noon central U.S. time, and they will choose the winners shortly thereafter.
Where do you live? What is the textile/crafty scene like there?
Charlie and I Live in Albany, NY. This little city definitely has a funky feel, but the availability of crafting supplies is limited to the standard chain stores. That was in fact the impetus that inspired us to open our own shop.
How and when did you start selling fabric?
We are thrilled to have just celebrated our one year anniversary for being in business. If we ever get a sitter for our toddlers, perhaps we’ll truly be able to celebrate with a night out! We opened our shop with just a handful of prints, and with the incredible support of our customers, we have been able to grow to over 700 prints currently in stock.
What surprised you most about the business?
We continue to be surprised by the strengths each of us brings to our work. While we have known one another since elementary school, it’s so refreshing for us to talk over creative ideas for the shop, and see various aspects of our personalities and capabilities emerge. As a husband-and-wife team, we have an interesting dynamic for running a business that we feel we’re able to make work in our favor.
Is this your full time job? If not, what do you moonlight as?
Charlie has a day job, but I am home with the shop and our two little ones full time.
How would you characterize your shop?
Fresh. We spend many a late night scouring the web for new fabric to carry in the shop, often from little known designers and manufacturers.
What are your hot sellers right now?
We just got in the soothingly soft Revive Line, another great from Patricia Bravo for Art Gallery Fabrics. Also warmly received have been Anna Griffin’s two new lines, Riley and Darcey, Kitty Yoshida’s City Bloom, and Jennifer Moore’s, aka Monaluna, three great current lines, Metro Market, About Town, and Mingle.
Are you online only, or do you have a brick & mortar shop? If you don’t have one, are you planning to open one?
We sell exclusively online at present, but we never know what may be in store for us.
Do you run the shop alone or do you have help?
Charlie and I have run the shop ourselves, but we will soon open our doors to ensure that our customers receive the speedy customer service they have come to depend on.
How do you deal with the challenges of the current economy, and increasing competition on the online fabric retail market?
With the economy, I do sometimes feel like I’m rolling the dice when placing my fabric orders. We remain hopeful for that change of pace, and continue to move full steam ahead. In regards to competition, we truly see it as a great aspect of running a shop. Competition drives business. It makes us all strive to be better, which inherently makes for exciting options for customers in the fabric market.
What are the (other!) biggest challenges — and biggest rewards — of being a fabric merchant?
Inventory is always a challenge, and can make or break a shop. Furthermore, it’s always time to shop for fabric somewhere in the world! Having a 24 hr online business can be a challenge, and we’re still working on finding that balance between work and play.
What’s your personal stash like?
It’s full of those now out of print fabrics that I could not bear to sell, stashed away for a rainy day.
Who are your favorite designers, from the past and/or from the present?