What’s the Best Part of ThreadX, A Screen Printers Perspective.

What’s the Best Part of ThreadX, A Screen Printers Perspective.

Sure, I thought ThreadX was a blast last year and we are signed up to go, speak and sponsor (ThreadX 19) coming to San Diego this February, but what do your fellow printers think. Since ThreadX is geared to garment decorators I thought I’d ask three of them what they thought and what the are looking forward to this year. There is what Brian Dezavala, of Screen Works USA (screenworksusa.com), Justin Moore of Barrel Maker www.barrelmakerprinting.com and Jeremy Conder of Huge brands and Spilt Ink (www.hugebrands.com) thought.

First, I wanted to see what their expectations were going into it. Brian and Jeremy Echo’d they weren’t quite sure going into it as it was the first of its kind, but they were excited to see what it brought as it was targeted to garment decorators but wasn't expecting the event to be as constantly interactive as it turned out. Jeremy was anticipating a more traditional keynote and panel exposition, but was floored by how the conversation started with a presentation and snowballed into day long think tanks between attendees, sponsors, speakers, suppliers are even event staff.

The speakers were also a big hit! Brian said, he felt like he took something away from each of the speakers. From tips on operations, marketing, and e-commerce, to sustainability. But the speaker who stood out the most was riCardo Crespo (who is headlining again this year) because it made him think differently about how to inspire creativity throughout my organization. Justin’s favorite was Steve Weiss with Mute 6 because his job relies Barrel Maker heavily relies on creative marketing and his presentation gave me some great first hand practical information I could use.

Besides the speakers Jeremy really dug The opportunity to get to hang with so many passionate entrepreneurs that happen to be as big of nerds and as passionate about our industry as they are. He described the vibe as “Extremely collaborative and it isn't just sit back, listen and take notes. ThreadX is learning new ideas and then exploring and digging in with colleagues and experts while having a drink. Kinda has that first day of High School vibe where yo feel like you're finally somewhat of an adult and are finding your people.

This year is no different and here is what they said about going back!

Thread X provides a unique opportunity to step away from the day to day, to be listen to some very creative speakers, to commiserate with your peers, and perhaps to take away knowledge and inspiration that will allow you to improve your business and our industry as a whole. ~ Brian

Justin Advised “Don’t go. Stay stagnant. (yes, he’s a bit sarcastic” JK! I’d say if you are looking to network with other people who are in your same type of situation, maybe some behind you and some way ahead of you and you can keep an open mind, then you will walk away from this conference with a huge boost of motivation and likely some great new friends too.

Jeremy said “I'm really excited to see where the show has pivoted. I don't think last year anyone knew what the event was actually going to be like. Turns out when you get passionate people together naturally a really cool experience evolves. Now that there is an opportunity to grow upon that is really exciting.

And a for some final advice from Jeremey! Get out of your shop and lift your head up! We all love to focus on our craft, but if you're not expanding your horizons some way or another the work will end up just being work. Come hang and learn with new and old friends!

Full Interview Questions

Brian Dezavala

What were your expectations going into Thread X last year?

[BdZ] I was not quite sure what to expect going into the first event of its kind. But I was motivated to attend because it directly targeted garment decorators and I welcomed the opportunity to interact with others in our space and to potentially be inspired to consider some more creative business strategies.

Who was your favorite speaker or speakers and why?

[BdZ] I feel like a took something away from each of the speakers. From tips on operations, marketing, and e-commerce, to sustainability. But the speaker who stood out the most was riCardo Crespo (who is headlining again this year) who made me think differently about how to inspire creativity throughout my organization.

What was your favorite part of the event besides the speakers?

[BdZ] Just mingling and sharing experiences with other garment decorating entrepreneurs was enlightening and inspirational.

How would you describe the overall vibe?

[BdZ] It was and extremely positive vibe having so many industry leaders, creative thinkers, and people just trying to find a way to do things better all under one roof.

What would you say to another garment decorator looking to attend this year?

[BdZ] GO! Thread X provides a unique opportunity to step away from the day to day, to be listen to some very creative speakers, to commiserate with your peers, and perhaps to take away knowledge and inspiration that will allow you to improve your business and our industry as a whole.

JUSTIN MOORE Barrel Maker Printing

What were your expectations going into Thread X last year?

Going into ThreadX I definitely had some high expectations. The ticket price was significant + flights + hotel and compared to other shows that are free it set an expectation for me right out of the gate that this show should be on another level…and honestly, it was. Like all shows it was great to see industry friends and hang out, but the education at this show was packed tightly in. I left motivated and re-energized to help continue pushing my business!

Who was your favorite speaker or speakers and why?

This is hard to answer since there were so many great takeaways. Johnny Cupcakes energy was amazing, as was Ricardo Crespo, but my overall favorite was actually Steve Weiss with Mute 6. My job with Barrel Maker heavily relies on creative marketing and his presentation gave me some great first hand practical information I could use.

What was your favorite part of the event besides the speakers?

Definitely the location. I love Palm Desert. It’s got such a cool vibe to it and if you are going to travel for a show the location is crucial in helping it really feel like a vacation too. Plus everything surrounding the event was first class.

How would you describe the overall vibe?

Focused. The attendees here definitely came for a true learning experience, paid attention and were eager to hear the various presentations. I wish there was just a little bit more downtime to just chill!

What are you the most excited about for this year?

Getting to learn some more useful pro tips. Also, since I am on a panel discussing my company liveprinting.com I’m pretty stoked for that as well!

What would you say to another garment decorator looking to attend this year?

Don’t go. Stay stagnant. No, I’d say if you are looking to network with other people who are in your same type of situation, maybe some behind you and some way ahead of you and you can keep an open mind, then you will walk away from this conference with a huge boost of motivation and likely some great new friends too.

JEREMY CONDER, SPILTINK | HUGE BRANDS

What were your expectations going into Thread X last year?

Last year I was really wasn't expecting the event to be as constantly interactive as it turned out. I was probably anticipating a more traditional keynote and panel exposition, but was floored by how the conversation started with a presentation and snowballed into day long think tanks between attendees, sponsors, speakers, suppliers are even event staff.

Who was your favorite speaker or speakers and why?

Tim Williams was pretty incredible. YR Store has achieved and incredibly innovative platform within the printed apparel industry. I feel like the beauty of that lies in their almost wonder like approach to our industry from more of an outside perspective.

What was your favorite part of the event besides the speakers?

The opportunity to be sitting with, eating with so many passionate entrepreneurs that happen to be as big of nerds and as passionate about our industry as we are was absolutely the most powerful benefit of the event.

How would you describe the overall vibe?

The vibe was extremely collaborative. The event isn't just sit back, listen and take notes. It's learning new ideas and then exploring and digging in with colleagues and experts while having a drink. Kinda has that first day of High School vibe where yo feel like you're finally somewhat of an adult and are finding your people.

What are you the most excited about for this year?

I'm really excited to see where the show has pivoted. I don't think last year anyone knew what the event was actually going to be like. Turns out when you get passionate people together naturally a really cool experience evolves. Now that there is an opportunity to grow upon that is really exciting.

What would you say to another garment decorator looking to attend this year?

Get out of your shop and lift your head up! We all love to focus on our craft, but if you're not expanding your horizons some way or another the work will end up just being work. Come hang and learn with your friends!

Threads X of Success!

I got into the official “screen printing industry” in 2004 directly out of the world of punk rock, warp tour, recording and touring. While some aspects of the industry were fun like the creation of art and seeing it come alive on a garment, helping new printers start, learn and grow, and experiencing massive growth ourselves with all the fun and challenges that come along with that. There was one thing that was very clear to me, the industry lacked the business energy, learning, motivation and ultimate personal and corporate growth that comes from this. Education was focused on technical skills and while learning inside the industry seemed to be strong, there was so much left on the table outside of it.

15 years later I am excited to say that has all changed. In the last two years the focus on personal and business development and growth has become alive and well inside of garment decoration. It’s no longer enough to go to a tradeshow and hear the same seminar that has been taught for the past 20 years, or get on a forum and talk about EOM, thread diameter, and tension, the bar has been set to search outside of what we know and learn from what others have done outside of our world of ink, squeegees, and t-shirts because after all, if we aren’t pushing ourselves and others around us to learn and grow, the only other option is to die.

Two years ago my friend and industry leader Brett Bowden pitched and idea to me that would bring the content, thought leaders, and movers and shakers together in one place to feeI off the goodness and energy we were all craving and frankly needing. A year later in 2018, this launched as ThreadX 2018! In February, 200+ screen printers, garment decorators, and thought leaders gathered in the Palm Desert to kick off this inaugural and what I would consider to be momentous event. The energy was alive and the speakers were primed.

I was asked to speak and entitled my topic “stand up or shut up” which I built to inspire and motivate the audience to push themselves and this industry forward, stop settling, stop compromising, and stand up. I speak a lot and can honestly say I have never been so nervous and excited to speak to a group of people in my life, why? It wasn’t the number of people, it wasn’t the subject, it was the reason behind why everyone was there. They were there to grow, to push themselves forward, to achieve something collectively I have not seen in the industry for the 14 years I had been it it.

At the end of the day, I can honestly say that SGIA delivered on our expectations and helped to make a new stage in the garment space. This belief that we must grow, we must learn, and we must drive ourselves and each other forward is something I hold core to the bone and events like ThreadX help pull all that together! With the success of the first year ThreadX is poised for an encore presentation February 17-19 in San Diego, CA. This year the stage is set with panels on “live screen printing”, major league garment decoration, and thought leading speakers like Aaron Draplin on branding, development and motivation. The best part is that SGIA has made it more accessible to more printers and garment decorators by increasing the number of seats, lowering the fees, and making the location easier to get it!

Whether you’re feeling on fire or stuck, in needing new ideas and motivation, or just want to have an amazing time with your industries co-horts, I hope to see you at ThreadX 2019. https://sgia.swoogo.com/threadx19/

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