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Messages - Mojo

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The Business Of Upholstery / Exit Strategy
« on: May 18, 2018, 06:13:57 AM »
Most of you know that I utilize consultants when it comes to making major business decisions. I typically come up with a plan, strategy or idea and before putting it into place run it by my son and 2 others who are friends and extremely successful business owners. I always want to see all Pro's and Con's before taking a leap into the unknown.

During a meeting with one of our friends/consultants he brought something up that neither my wife or I even considered - an exit strategy. When he asked what ours was we looked at each other dumb founded and admitted we had never considered it.

Do we plan on retiring and selling the companies ? Do we plan on holding on to both companies and go into semi retirement and bring in someone to run them for us ? Or do we plan on closing them down, selling off the equipment and inventory and retiring ? We thought we were going to turn the companies over to my daughter but she has changed her mind and is pursuing a new career.

We still have not figured it out yet. I was just wondering do any of you have a planned exit strategy ?


General Discussion / Re: OMG I need Help
« on: May 18, 2018, 05:53:44 AM »
Congrats on your retirement. I would be careful. I have retired twice. :)


General Discussion / Re: How did Walt Disney make it?
« on: May 18, 2018, 05:52:08 AM »
He had an amazing imagination. Just so happens Americans loved his imagination and made him a gazzillionaire.

I used to be a voracious reader and gobbled up all kinds of books. There were some individuals who had awesome business brains - J Paul Getty, Richard Branson, John D Rockefeller, Dupont, Singer and the list goes on. Then there were those who had imaginations and became millionaires by accident through their inventions - Disney, Gates, Job's, etc.

I have a deep respect for all of them. It is always mind blowing to see how some of these people started so broke they couldn't pay attention, like Branson who got his start selling rabbits and ended up with a billion dollar iconic brand - Virgin. Disney did the same thing. Pretty dang awesome.



General Discussion / Re: The Joy Of Upholstery
« on: May 12, 2018, 08:42:36 AM »
Do you guys think the USA will someday run out of antique furniture to restore ? So many people have little clue as to what they have and throw out Grandma and Grandpa's old furniture.

I just wonder if the millenials have any attachment to antiques at all and just toss stuff out.

On another note I have traveled extensively in Europe. The furniture trends there are different then here. Their styles are very cosmopolitan and futuristic. Squared off, flat cushions, steel, etc. I am not a fan of this type of furniture and I find it ironic that Europe produced some of the greatest furniture designs back in the Victorian age and now the trend is more in line with the Jettson's.


The Business Of Upholstery / Re: Over Looked ?
« on: May 10, 2018, 07:02:20 AM »

I learn something new everyday. Just when I think I have something figured out a change blows my comprehension all to heck.

I enjoy learning new things except when it comes to technology. My old brain grasps with computer based technology. I do fine with many different programs but find learning some new programs a real challenge sometimes. One thing I have found is that new software is becoming more intuitive and easier to use.

I will admit that upholstery was a hard trade for me to learn as my entire life was corporate based. But I had a huge interest in upholstery since I was 18. I just found that there was more money in the corporate world and chased the almighty dollar. I can remember when I was 19 a guy hired me to recover his poker table chair's. That was one of my first upholstery jobs but I never stuck with it. My time became limited as the demands of a young family and work trounced my wanting to be a stitcher. 

I find it amazing just how fast things change. Even in our trade. Fabrics are evolving, thread, etc. In the awning industry every year brings new assembly types and problems we have to work around to accommodate the changes. We have to maintain our knowledge base with the older assemblies while quickly learning the new ones. I have never counted just how many different assemblies there are out there but it is a lot. I am still amazed at how a simple square awning can require precise measurements, tapers, etc. in order for the assembly to work properly.

I believe that each of us will continue learning to the day we die.


General Discussion / Re: The Joy Of Upholstery
« on: May 10, 2018, 06:43:07 AM »
One of these days I am going to find the exact chair I have had in my memory which is very similar to the one in the article. I have fond memories of seeing my grandfather sit in a chair similar to that. If I had my way I would have a home filled with these treasures.

But then again I am an antique nut. :)


The Business Of Upholstery / Re: Over Looked ?
« on: May 07, 2018, 07:18:04 AM »
Oh Boy. This is a great topic. It happens in so many trades. I can remember a few jobs early in my career where I focused on materials and lost my proverbial ass in labor.

I can remember 2 jobs where I really overlooked labor and when the job was done I calculated I worked for about $ 3.50 per hour. One job I really remember and that taught me a lesson is one I completely lost my ass. I would have been money ahead if I gave the customer a crisp $ 50 bill and told him to hit the road. :)

Sometimes we get tunnel visioned and do not look at all costs associated with a job. That is the one thing about awnings. All I need is dimensions and I know exactly what every single tiny cost is going to be from thread to labor. I wouldn't even know where to start on pricing a job like you furniture guys do.


General Discussion / Re: pot question
« on: May 07, 2018, 07:10:34 AM »
I know jack sh** about pot. Smoked it once as a teen and the smell made me sick. I was doing a real hard round of chemo back in 2003 and they were nuking me hard. The sickness was terrible. My next door neighbor came over and gave me a joint. I sat outside on a porch swing and lit it up and took one toke off it and put it out and took it back to my neighbor. I to,d him it made me sicker then the damn chemo did.

I was in Sydney, AU and heading home and had a connection in Auckland, NZ. I had time during my layover so wandered the shops. I stopped into one and seen this button down shirt that was amazing. It felt like no other fabric I had ever felt before. I told the clerk " I will take it ". She asked where I was headed and I told her the USA. She said, I don;t think you want to buy this shirt then. You are going to have some major headaches and every dope sniffing dog will be after you in customs. Being dumb I asked why ? She said it was made from hemp. What the hell is hemp ? She basically explained it was made from pot plants. :)

I personally have no issue Darrel with them legalizing pot. There would be a lot less fighting and violent crimes if everyone is stoned. :)


General Discussion / Re: Friday Funny
« on: May 07, 2018, 06:58:29 AM »

An Engineer dies... and goes to Hell. Dissatisfied with the level of comfort, he starts designing and building improvements. After a while, Hell has air conditioning, flush toilets and escalators.
The engineer is a pretty popular guy.
One day God calls and asks Satan, "So, how's it going down there?"
Satan says, "Hey things are going great. We've got air conditioning and flush toilets and escalators, and there's no telling what this engineer is going to come up with next."
God is horrified. "What? You've got an engineer? That's a mistake - he should never have gone down there! You know all engineers go to Heaven. Send him up here! "
Satan says, "No way. I like having an engineer on the staff. I'm keeping him."
God says, "Send him back up here or I'll sue."
"Yeah, right," Satan laughs, "and where are you going to get a lawyer?"


General Discussion / Re: Excitement
« on: May 07, 2018, 06:55:15 AM »
I think my biggest accomplishment was a boat interior I did. Seats, Gun Wales, padding, engine cover, etc. It was a big job. It was the first one I did, the first time using all sport vinyl with dissimilar vinyls and mixing a lot of different colors together into patterns. I lacked a lot of confidence when doing the project but felt good afterwards as the job came out well. My wife encouraged me all along as did the members here.

One other project was a golf cart canopy I did that had to slip over a frame and then become extremely taught. That projet taught me how to use bias to my advantage. I wanted my seams hidden under and behind the rail and with the stretch that had to be made when slipped over the frame it was a test in patience. I lacked a lot of confidence in that job but it turned out well afterwards. I also did this job very early in my career and with the help of some of the " Old Guys " got er dun.

I should mention this forum has been awesome. A lot of the old timers here, Big Mike, Ricat, Ed, Gene, Sofa Doc, Darrel, Russ, June and a few who are no longer here provided so much moral support as well as showed me different techniques. I started my career years ago and became a member here right away so I essentially apprenticed under all of these people. :)

I forgot what year I joined but it was in the mid to late 2000's or somewhere around then. I suffer from CRS so do not know which year it was. Does anyone know when this forum started ?


General Discussion / Re: Church Job
« on: May 07, 2018, 06:30:16 AM »
Having grown up in the Catholic church and attending Catholic schools I have attended many masses. One oddity of the Catholic's is their kneeling during certain parts of the mass. I always thought that was to keep people from falling asleep.

Now at my age I kneel down on those padded kneelers and then I pray I can stand back up. :)


General Discussion / Re: Serger
« on: April 29, 2018, 08:02:03 PM »
We bought a new Juki serger last year from Toledo Bob. I used it once and then let Ingrid deal with it. All I know is it is a heavy duty 5 thread model that will sew several layers of acrylic and will sew with V92 thread. It sure as hell wasn't cheap.

Ingrid has been using sergers since she was a teenager doing alterations and dress making. What I know about serges you could fit into a thimble. It is essentially her machine. I stay clear of it. She knows sergers inside and out. I know enough to stay away from it.

Paul, if you want to stop by the shop and take it for a test run, help yourself.


The Business Of Upholstery / Re: New Website Technology.
« on: April 22, 2018, 02:53:42 PM »
Give Inmotion a try. They have good prices but they really shine with tech support. Use Wordpress and Bold Grid together to build your website. Inmotion also has a bunch plugin's like contact forms, photo sliders, etc. Find a template you like and start making it your own.

I did that entire website myself and let Inmotion do the coding in the backend to make it go live to the public. They never charge for tech support. I am not very good with technology but wordpress and bold grid made it much easier and gives you professional results. Check out youtube videos on boldgrid. That is what I liked about wordpress and boldgrid. There are tons of youtube tutorials.

I looked at other web hosting sites but didn't like their support and some of their web site building programs suck.
Wordpress and boldgrid while being easy to work with is very powerful.


The Business Of Upholstery / New Website Technology.
« on: April 21, 2018, 10:22:36 PM »
I just finished 2 web sites and I must say, things are getting easier to produce nice websites.
I use Inmotion hosting and built the websites using wordpress and bold grid. Because our manufacturing company is selling a lot of parts now including he ones we manufacture, we had to get an online store started.

I dreaded trying to do that. What I found out was that it was fairly easy and it directly linked to our square account. It is pretty cool now as the orders come via e-mail, the shipping address is included and the parts already paid for. Before that we had to handle every sale over the phone and it was damn time consuming.

One of the reasons I went with inmotion is their tech support. I have really screwed somethings up with a wrong setting and took the website off line by accident. They immediately got it back up and running and made the correct setting changes. I think they take mercy on my old self.

If anyone is looking at building a new website or want to spruce theirs up I strongly suggest inmotion hosting as well as using wordpress & boldgrid. There is a boat load of how to youtube videos for both of these programs.

Here are the two sites I recently overhauled.




20 years ago I bought a complete bedroom outfit. It cost a small fortune back then but was solid Oak and made in the USA. The manufacturer was called Bentwood. No idea if they are still around or not. Bed, nightstands, armoire, dresser, mirror, etc.

It has held up exceptionally well. I cannot remember what it cost back then but $ 5,000 sounds familiar. Both my kids want this outfit someday. It is very ornate, hand carved and I cherish it.

Is Bentwood still around and do they still make high end furniture ?


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