JUKI Spotlight: Blossoming with Flower Sew!

From quilting to bag making, Flower Sew has you covered! Today we’re meeting up with Daisi Toegel, Flower Sew’s shop owner. In 2017, Daisi founded Flower Sew only one year after learning how to sew. Flower Sew began as an idea out of curiosity for the sewing world. After watching endless videos of other sewists creating bags and projects on video sites, Daisi found herself wanting a sewing machine to start her journey in the community. A year after seeing these videos, Daisi’s boyfriend surprised her with a sewing machine to begin, and the rest was history.

Daisi went on to practice and practice some more after receiving her gift. Finally, a year after receiving her gift, Daisi began constructing bag patterns, creating and selling them. Since completely self-teaching herself, she sewed and sold bags for three years at her local craft fairs and on her online e-shop, Flower Sew, named after her now husband’s pet name for Daisi, Flower.

After three years of focusing on bag creations and patterns, 2020 changed the course of Daisi’s business. She began creating and selling masks during the pandemic, creating and designing over 2,000 masks. Daisi, later on, realized she wanted to take a step back from sewing masks and find a new craft within the sewing world. So she began venturing into the quilting world, where she taught herself to quilt, and began expanding her knowledge and business along the way.

Taking a step back from her bag-making days, Daisi jumped into the quilting world head-on. Using her social media platforms, she began sharing her progress and work with her followers, re-building her brand along the way. 

Now focused on quilting, Daisi has held six ambassador roles over the years that range from small notions to beautiful fabrics. These programs helped her not only grow her business but allowed her to make connections in the sewing and quilting community.

After discovering her passion for creating quilts, she moved on to pattern designing, a hobby she had picked up in her bag-making days. When she started patterns for her bags, she was inspired to design something different and new. Quilting was no different. She bought a design program and began drawing! Starting small, Daisi began with baby-sized quilts and built herself up through trial and error. Through this practice that she’s been able to create seven patterns; 4 on her own and 3 in collaboration with different craft and sewing magazines. Many of her patterns interwork the ambassador programs she’s involved with by including their notions and fabrics. 

As someone who’s been able to grow her business and obtain credibility from other sewing and quilting brands as an ambassador, we asked Daisi what advice she has for those out there trying to build their brand.

“Forget about money. In the beginning, it’s all about gaining value and confidence before you gain any money. If you need to give your time, work, or product for free, do it. The reward is certain, just know everything has its own time to come. Being an ambassador doesn’t involve anything but receiving products in exchange for your time and work, and it is the most wonderful experience I have had in the quilt world; it’s fun, and I learn a lot. There’s nothing that says that.”

Daisi’s brand continues to grow each day through her social media channels filled with new pattern works, projects, and her quilt progresses. What makes Flower Sew unique is the designs and patterns created by Daisi, inspired by ideas that bring her happiness and not trends. Focusing her attention on bright colors and fun designs, Daisi’s page is filled with bright fabrics and colorful looks. As she continues to grow her skills in quilting, we’re looking forward to seeing more patterns released!

The future of Flower Sew is blossoming beautifully! Daisi’s plans for her small business include more original pattern creations, with the hope for a pattern book soon, and continuing her ambassador programs with new possible positions. Currently, a sketch is in motion for membership for Daisi’s business, but we’ll have to wait and see for that one JUKI lover!

We hope you enjoyed getting to learn more about Flower Sews and its owner Daisi Togel! When you’re building your brand, learning skills like pattern designing or diving into ambassador programs are great ways to get yourself out there and grow your business. We hope reading Daisi’s story in how her business has grown and changed over the years inspires you to begin yours!

To follow along Daisi’s journey, follow along below.

Visit Flower Sew’s shop here!

Follow Daisi’s quilting journey here!

JUKI Spotlight: Tails Up, Pup

Photo credit: Tails Up, Pup

So many of our furry best friends are spoiled, and companies like Tails Up, Pup is here to help you do more of that! Tails Up, Pup, a small business run by Danielle and her husband Nick, is a dog mom shop that believes your dog deserves to be spoiled while keeping you in mind. They create the perfect duo for dog moms and their dogs, customizing and matching clothing items with pet bandanas! Follow along as we speak with Danielle about what it was like becoming her own boss and opening up Tails Up, Pup.

The Tails Up, Pup journey began in Danielle and Nick’s basement in 2018. After creating dog bandanas for her very own furry friends, and posting her final projects on social media, friends, and others started requesting their very own pet bandannas! With time Danielle realized her shop was growing, and after hosting her first black Friday sale, she brought in her husband Nick to help fulfill orders.

Photo credit: Tails Up, Pup

After 18 months of setting up shop in her basement, Tails Up, Pup found its first office space in Marietta, Georgia. Primarily an eCommerce business, Tails Up, Pup has grown into a storefront shop, where the company has continued to see new fans and customers every year! As time passed and Tails Up, Pup continued to be a success, Danielle and Nick decided it was time to grow their space and expand to the office next door.

With two offices under their belt now, Danielle could designate a production office and shop! Over time her team has grown to its current line-up, three full-time employees and one part-time. It’s a great success to hire your very own team, and at their small business, everyone has their hats to wear. Tails Up, Pup’s current team members include Lauren, their head seamstress; Connor, their cutter and handyman; Ensley, their Inventory manager; and Keelan, their other seamstress. With each member bringing in their own set of skills, Danielle says, “we wouldn’t be able to do what we do without them.”

Using their JUKI TL-2000Qi machines, the Tails Up, Pup team has created slip-on and tie-on bandannas for their shop. Small businesses like Tail’s Up Pup are a great example of how small items like bandanas can turn into their very own business when you let yourself be creative and have fun! Starting from just a piece of fabric, their team uses personalized stencils for sizing, sewing techniques to keep their products looking clean, and pressing to create the perfect bandana. In addition, with machines in their line that can do embroidering, they also offer the chance to personalize your pet bandanas with your pet names! Using embroidery in your projects is one of the easiest ways to give a product a touch of personalization that you can’t find everywhere.

Having a great product isn’t the only reason so many customers continue to love Tails Up, Pup, but in fact, it is the community they have been able to grow and create through marketing on social media platforms! Social media marketing has been in their company DNA from the start, and as they first started as an eCommerce-only shop, social media marketing was a no-brainer for getting their brand out there. By consistently posting and interacting with their followers, they were able to see real growth in their shop! While Danielle shares Tails Up, Pup’s social media wasn’t an overnight success, it can instead be seen as an example of how a long and steady process can help you grow in the long run.

Since building their following online, Danielle shares how the community within Tails Up, Pup makes the business unique. When she and Nick first opened up their social media pages, they hadn’t set out to do anything special; Tails Up, Pup just happened. When they legitimatized Tails Up, Pup as a proper business, Danielle says terrific things started to happen.

“We started to find an amazing community of dog lovers that shared many of the same passions as us. Over time this has become what we like to call the Tails Up, Pup Family.”

This community has focused on inspiring others to pursue their passions, helping people build their confidence and spread happiness when the opportunity is there. With the TUP family ever-growing, Danielle and her team appreciate every new member that follows along and joins their journey.

Since Tails Up, Pup has opened, they have continued to grow their team, followers, customers, and even property. When asked about the future of Tails Up, Pup Danielle brought us back to how this business wasn’t even an idea three years ago. While we don’t know what the future holds, Danielle shares this, “I hope we can continue to add to the TUP family and keep pursuing our mission of inspiring others to pursue their passions, helping people build their confidence, and spreading happiness in any way that we can.”

It’s a big transition to becoming your own bosses like Danielle and her husband Nick. The hardest part was knowing when it was time to take a break. If you’re planning to open your own small business, it can be difficult finding that balance between work and personal life sometimes, but it’s essential to figure it out early on. Starting a business isn’t always fun and games and includes a lot of moments where you can be physically or emotionally drained, but being prepared will make life easier. As Danielle says, “-if you are prepared for the difficult times to come, running your own business can be extremely fulfilling and rewarding. Nick and I wouldn’t trade what we get to do for anything.”

Before closing our interview with Tails Up, Pup, we asked Danielle what advice she has for those out there who have been dreaming about owning their own business.

“My biggest advice would be to just start. Good and done is better than perfect and incomplete. Taking that first step is always the hardest part.”

Take advantage of the resources available and enjoy what the internet can do for you! Use the internet to start your side hustle when it’s time to open your business. Then, grow and transition from your old job to your new career. Financial stability is one of the most critical pieces of the puzzle when you own a business, so prepare yourself by creating business plans, marketing ideas, and learning your finances.

We hope you’ve enjoyed learning more about Tails Up, Pup, and how Danielle and Nick were able to grow their company from their basement to where it is now! With so many small businesses popping up over the past few years, we at JUKI love learning how you create and start your businesses. So check out the links below to learn more about Tails Up, Pup, and how you can get a sweet matching set for you and your furry friend today!

Click here to visit the Tails Up, Pup website!

Follow their Instagram here to keep up with new products!

Check out behind-the-scenes footage on their TikTok here!

Lastly, don’t forget to follow their Facebook here!

JUKI Designer Ambassador: Adolfo Sanchez

Introducing Adolfo Sanchez, designer, and owner of the Adolfo Sanchez brand. Based in Los Angeles and focused on creating luxury designs, he founded his brand in June 2015. His fashion and style take you on a journey to a world of freedom where women dare to be strong and different. Understanding how saturated the fashion world has become, he shows people that there are still unique options available and his creations are one of them. 

Adolfo’s career started in 2006, where he began to grow his business into a brand that offers custom, ready-to-wear, accessories, bridal, and couture. His gowns are different from those commonly found in the Los Angeles area, focusing on luxury wear. Focusing on the intricacy and hand-beaded designs that need unique craftsmanship when creating his pieces, his gowns are bold and unique, perfect for those wishing to be different.

“I would have never thought that I would have ended up in this industry, but it just feels so right that I know it was meant to be,”

Getting to his current position in the fashion industry by taking risks and learning new techniques, Adolfo is constantly pushing his brand to the next level. By staying true to his passions and fighting for his final vision when creating, he’s able to present pieces he’s proud of. Thankful to his team, including seamstresses, pattern makers, and factory workers, he wouldn’t be where he is today without the support he received along the way and his motivation to create awe-inspiring pieces.

“I’m inspired by everything – people, places, music, and there is so much more to do that I sometimes wonder if I have become obsessed with this industry.”

We are so excited to have Adolfo on board. Follow along with our social media as we continue to update you on Adolfo and our other ambassadors! Learn more about Adolfo and our Ambassador team here https://jukiquilting.com/ambassadors today.

JUKI Designer Ambassador: Kiki Kitty

Introducing Kiki Kitty, owner, and designer of K. Milele, as one of our new JUKI Designer Ambassadors! A member of the fashion industry since the ’90s, where she started off with FUBU’s womenswear, Kiki Kitty is a force to be reckoned with.

One of five siblings, Kiki grew up in a home where she and her family would focus on creating everyday items to stay entertained. Creating projects like ragdolls, pillows, and slippers, she was inspired by her mother, who found art in everything. Taught by her mother, Kiki would create using natural pieces like pinecones and other found items to create projects like home décor whenever inspiration struck. Through these small projects that Kiki learned how to build her creative eye, assisting her for years to come when it was time for her to design fashion.

Finding sewing as another art medium, her first lesson was thanks to her mother. A fun activity for her and her siblings, Kiki would complete little projects to train herself on the machine and work her way up on project size and complexity. One of her favorite parts about sewing has been the freedom to explore new techniques and concepts. Through her excitement to learn, she sees each mistake as an opportunity to learn something new.

“I love when a mistake turns into the greatest thing about a garment because it forced me to have to look at it in a new way.”

Kiki’s love for the hobby has grown, leading her into the fashion industry in the ’90s as a designer for FUBU, a women’s streetwear fashion line. Motivated by her need to artistically express herself, she finds the process to be therapeutic. Seeing this as a way to express her thoughts was her first step in learning to express herself. “It took me a very long time to find my voice, to verbally express myself, and to stand up for myself. Expression through art was always my outlet. And even now that I’ve discovered my voice, creating remains to be my most powerful expression.”

While her time at FUBU led to her first brand K.A.Kitties, a venture she’s proud and fond of, her most tremendous success was only recently accomplished in her latest fashion collection K.Milele, “This is My Protest.” Using her JUKI machines, our MO-20000QVP, and HZL-NX7, she states she was finally able to create a collection that is 100% her self-expression. With the opportunity to explore prints, patterns, and textures, she hopes to create beautiful, one-of-a-kind pieces representing her and those she designs for.

Her newest collection has trends like gathering, a favorite of Kiki’s since the ’90s. Loving how the final product looks, she finds it’s a simple technique that elevates the simple styles into sexy numbers, something her line embodies. Loving anything that creates fabric manipulation is her favorite trend in sewing. A must-have tool she keeps on hand for these projects is her tweezers. Allowing her told the fabric in place and keeping her fingers away from the machine after one terrible accident in her time at Pratt University when she first began sewing on industrial machines, she finds this tool to be a finger saver.

From FUBU to her current collection, Kiki’s journey in sewing is far from over. We hope you enjoyed getting to know our ambassador today and that you keep up with her future projects! Kiki’s new collection can be found on her socials here, and we’re so excited to see her projects come to life! Kiki’s final note to you JUKI lovers is this, “When you’re trying it [sewing] out, don’t get frustrated about making mistakes. Often mistakes make way for the opportunity to be creative and discover that there’s more than one way to achieve a great outcome. Even if it’s not the idea, you started with. Be flexible. See the beauty in what’s in front of you.”

JUKI Designer Ambassador: Charles Lu

Introducing Charles Lu, Canadian fashion designer, “Next in Fashion” Alumni, and our new JUKI Designer Ambassador! Born in Ontario, Canada, Charles began sewing at a young age, inspired by his mother’s career. Developing a keen interest in sewing, he continued practicing, motivating him to move to London, UK, at the age of 18 to train at Istituto Marangoni, the London school of fashion and design. It was here that Charles further developed and mastered his technique in garment construction. As a result, Charles has designed and produced garments for global clientele, showcased his collection in London, and created his label. Follow along as we deep dive into Charles’s story and follow his journey to where he is today.

Charles’s journey in fashion began with his mother, his true inspiration. Charles’s mother assisted in her aunt’s clothing manufacturing company in pre-wear Vietnam and then for Levi’s and OshKosh when she first arrived in Canada as a refugee. Charles was strongly deterred from using her sewing machines as a child but was fascinated with her sewing room ever since he could remember. They often went shopping for fabric together in the bargain section, where Charles watched on mesmerized and begging for her to teach him her art. When this failed, due to Charles young age, he moved forward and began visiting local libraries in the hope of finding books on sewing to be learning. Starting with hand-stitched projects, the only sewing he could do, Charles found his creative outlet in life.

“Now, my mother and I have this special language and mutual passion for sewing. We love to sew together, and she is who I always want to impress first. She’s my biggest supporter, and her heart lives in my work.”

By the age of 10 or so, Charles was finally granted permission to work on his mother’s JUKI industrial machine. Two decades later, Charles still loves his mother’s JUKI, now his own. He adds, “it’s intuitive and makes sewing a true pleasure despite how frustrating the sewing process can be. I often use materials that are on the cusp of resistance to regular machines, so I find it comforting to have something I can fully rely on.” Claiming himself as a perfectionist, willing to correct each small detail he notices, he considers his JUKI an extension of himself. “My brand and JUKI share the same ethos of precision and quality, so being an ambassador is an honor and a fitting dream.”

In the present, Charles finds himself enjoying his journey in sewing, claiming his most tremendous success has yet to come. While he found success in the accumulation of a finished collection in the past, he realized this mindset wasn’t allowing him to enjoy the final product and present, as he was always thinking of the next project. His new outlook in his creative process has allowed him to enjoy each collection individually and mentally process his creations. With a desire to learn how every kind of garment is created and understand the construction and materials, Charles focuses on understanding each project’s technical aspect and concentrating on small details. As he states, “perhaps my greatest success is constantly expanding my arsenal of knowledge in my craft.”

His motivation to continue learning stems from his domination of past design failures, and a desire to create a story through his work. Each piece he’s made can be seen as a snapshot or extraction from a period in his life. In many ways, he claims his fashion and art are a memoir and a stamp to his life’s journey, allowing him to keep a visual representation of a diary alive. He finds his favorite projects are those driven by passion. Continuing his goal to constantly keep learning, he used this past year as a form of exploring new avenues in the fashion world he had shied from before. Facing these new projects with apprehension but excitement, he was able to produce over 30 individual pieces on his own for his collection, ranging from corsetry to puffer coats.

As Charles continues his pursuit in the art of fashion, he’s excited to see how the industry has grown recently. “The resurgence of home-sewing and growth of eager creators/designers. There is a beautiful return to craft thanks to part in the sharing of knowledge due it social media. A lot of luxury clothing has reached an entirely unattainable price point and conversely, fast fashion is oversaturated with issues from lack of sustainability, quality, and ethics. I respect anyone who tackles this sort of craft.”

Like many of you, his love for sewing shows itself at that moment when you can see a project and design finally coming together. He understands those moments when it feels like so many things can go wrong, and they do, but he also knows something is rewarding and comparable when the garment finally starts to take shape and come to life. His advice to new sewers is to remember those moments when mistakes are made, to permit yourself to do so. Creating these mistakes is only a step in uncovering secrets that sewers can only find through trial and error.

“It is through the failures that we learn, improve, and innovate.”

We hope you enjoyed getting to learn more about Charles Lu with us!

Follow along on his journey with us and learn more about our designers at (ambassador website) today!