We work side-by-side 40 hours a week in an insurance agency, but we still enjoyed having a creative outlet outside of the office. As we made my t-shirt quilt, we daydreamed about creating custom quilts for others, and eventually turning it into a business.
"Eventually" came along very quickly as people saw our first quilt, which was a patchwork of t-shirts from the past 15 years or so of my life. The quilt included middle school, high school, & college shirts. Even the smallest pieces of my t-shirt logos made it to the quilt, unlike many t-shirt quilts that we'd seen in the past.
Within a year, word of mouth spread quickly, and we made over 15 T-Shirt Quilts for friends, family, & friends of friends. We hired a graphic designer to design our logo after deciding upon a business name. Our business name, Fishtail Designs, comes from baton twirling lingo, as we wanted to market primarily toward baton twirlers (I am a former high school & collegiate majorette and currently coach baton). Our market has since expanded beyond baton twirling into a general market that continues to surprise us.
We joined Etsy in 2009 after so many friends encouraged us to check it out, and have since found a home where we feel so welcome as a creative duo. We have one Etsy shop together where we market the T-shirt Quilts, along with vinyl art & other crafts that we make.
Although we spend many hours a week together in a professional setting, we thoroughly enjoy a couple of evenings a week and some weekends sewing, creating, & spending quality mother/daughter time together. We have a great balance of skills in the business. We both contribute to the design of the quilts, the preparation of the materials, and the process of sewing the shirts together. My mom sews beautifully and has given me many tips so that I feel confident now to sew a straight line. I spend a lot of time marketing our T-shirt quilts on Facebook, Etsy, our Blog, and anywhere I can spread the word.
This business has also encouraged my husband & my dad to spend more one-on-one time together. They've become golfing buddies and can spend hours watch sports or hanging out with a cold drink by the grill!
It is such a joy to work with my mom, and our creativity together gives us hope for a future of full time T-Shirt quilting...