Adjusting to a bigger shop

July 1, 2022  |  Interiors & Upholstery, Projects

In 2019, I moved Chicago Marine Canvas into a new 2,500-square-foot space, and by the summer of 2021, customer projects were piling up on top of one another. An additional sewing table had been made under a low storage loft, we were constantly moving projects in the middle of production to complete …
Workflow in a seasonal environment

July 1, 2022  |  Business

As I have grown Precision Custom Canvas Inc. from a single-person operation to a business of four full-time staff and two seasonal positions, I have struggled with the concept of providing a consistent living wage to my employees through the off-season while snow blankets the boats and ice fills the…
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The Value in Variety

July 1, 2022  |  Ask the Expert

You won’t find Dan Fouratt holed up in an office working on the next big idea for marine fabricators and upholsters. Instead, the director of sourcing for Trivantage, the nation’s one-stop shop for fabrics, hardware, accessories, and expertise across industries, can be found at marinas, boat sho…
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Space management 101

July 1, 2022  |  Features

Clutter. Claustrophobia. Continual need for more storage. Those are possible hazards of working out of a physically small marine fabrication shop. Yet it’s understandable that many fabricators choose to house their companies in conservatively sized spaces to better control overhead costs.
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Next-gen sewers

July 1, 2022  |  Features

It’s not easy. Attracting, hiring and keeping sewers is perhaps one of the most challenging issues facing marine fabrication shops today. But the good news is that it is not an insurmountable challenge. Many people want to put their hands to work and make something beautiful and functional from av…
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Small tools and machines deliver big benefits

July 1, 2022  |  Features

The “right tool for the job” has long been a maxim for success. Marine fabrication can involve the use of large, complex tools, but those are not the bread and butter of most operations. It’s the smaller tools used daily, over and over, that can often determine if a shop is efficient and effec…

July 1, 2022  |  Editorial

If we humans are good at anything, it’s adapting to change. You might think I’m talking about pandemics, but I’m actually talking about business in general. Running a business means continuously adapting to forces both within and outside of your control. It’s about remaining flexible while h…
New Members

July 1, 2022  |  New Members

The Marine Fabricators Association (MFA) provides resources and programs for marine fabricators and establishes standards of excellence for business practices, products and craftsmanship. The MFA is a division of the Advanced Textiles Association, formerly known as IFAI.
ATA Industry Events

July 1, 2022  |  Events

All calendar events are subject to change. Please check websites for updated information.
Tough upholstery fabric

July 1, 2022  |  Products

Made to withstand harsh outdoor conditions, Agora® fabrics are made of 100% solution-dyed acrylic that incorporate treatments to cope with the most demanding environments, ensuring excellent performance. The fabrics’ qualities include strength, durability, easy care and top-notch resistance to fa…