THREADX Delivers the Goods

Scottsdale, Ariz. got a burst of apparel creativity (and wisdom) when THREADX 2020 arrived last week. Crisp air, sunny skies, and a sense of community made for a great few days of inspiration, camaraderie, and networking. Here's a play-by-play overview of all this year's highlights.

First, it was a sold-out event! More than 200 diverse members of the apparel decorating community took in a bevy of thought-provoking presentations.

Aaron Draplin (Draplin Design Co.) had the audacity to talk about “Things No One Talks About in Graphic Design” to a room full of waiting ears. The informative presentation, coupled with his unchecked authenticity and childhood-like sense of adventure, made for the best way to spend an afternoon.

Blog_THREADX20_AudienceJay Baer (Convince and Convert consulting firm) told us that 81% of millennials need to “summon up the courage” to make a phone call. As a Generation X guy who actually prefers the phone to anything else, this one blew me away. Sure, I know that texting is preferred by many people in younger demographics, but 81%? I call my daughter ... a proud member of the 19%.

Kelly Curnutt may be my favorite lawyer in the Lower 48, granted it’s not much of a contest. But any lawman that will tell you 10 ways to avoid a lawsuit can’t be too bad a guy.

The founding fathers would have been proud. The town hall was packed with wisdom and enthusiasm and a standing room-only crowd. The diversity of our industry was on full display and the common thread of decorating clothes gave way to sharing on many levels.

With a deep dive into how to create a virtuous business culture, Pete Lovelace made everyone want to work at Booster Spirit Wear (Go Pete)!

Justin Lawrence (Oklahoma Shirt Company), Austin Crossley (Red Tuna Shirt Club), and Joel Lewis (Merch by Amazon) waxed and waned on the virtues of the T-shirt subscription model.

OmniPrint impressed, as did Epson. Stahls' showed why they are a stalwart of the industry, while M&R tossed the moneyball around, sharing how to improve productivity and profitability.

Ted Pidcock (Chillybears) showed off his 31 years of business challenge experience (you know we love you, Ted). SanMar made us all feel good about the future and ROQ (Ryan Moor) opted for a keyboard.

If we only had Sam Adams (the person) at our Beer and Brats event on Monday night! However, we did have six types of mustard, and the pretzels were grand.

There was Ink in the Kitchen and aspirin available for the over served. Poolside networking and fireside chats made for thoughtful exchanges. Cotton mixed with poly in many different ways but that is best left until next time.

Don't let the learning and networking stop with this event. Stay up to date and connected on everything that's happening for the apparel community on