Southern California Drapery Manufacturer, Sew What? Inc. Aims to Help Nurture New Entrepreneurs

Megan Duckett, president of Sew What? Inc. reports their intended business purpose includes helping nurture new entrepreneurial spirit in others.

January 27, 2014
Contact: Lynda Vaughn (310) 639-6000

Rancho Dominguez, CA – One wouldn’t expect the head of two successful soft goods and drapery manufacturing and rental businesses (together grossing nearly $7 million in 2013) who is responsible for the working lives of 32 employees and supplying stage drapes for music legends like Sting, Elton John and Madonna’s tours, to have time for much else beyond minding the company’s bottom line. Wrong.

On November 15, Megan Duckett, president of Sew What? Inc., a noted stage and theatrical drapery manufacturer, spent the morning giving a factory tour and inspiring talk on what it is like to run a business to a very important group: Girl Scout Brownie Troop 15445. The 10 energetic and intelligent second-grade girls and their leaders were sponsored by the local Torrance YMCA . The YMCA’s director reached out after reading an article about Duckett in More Magazine. The piece described Duckett as having “stitched together her love of rock and roll and her talent with a sewing machine to launch what is now a dream business.”

The word has gotten out that Duckett regularly takes time out from running Sew What? Inc. and sister drapery rental company Rent What? Inc. to inspire and nurture others with budding entrepreneurial aspirations across Southern California. Duckett’s calendar is regularly meshed with important tasks like tour guide and guest speaker for a wide swath of would-be entrepreneurs, including students in elementary, middle, high school, and college, as well as adults attending small business conferences. In October, Duckett enjoyed a new role: as one of three judges for “Get Started OC,” an Orange County business pitch event that garnered a small business candidate $10,000 in seed money to help drive new local entrepreneurship and product innovation.

Why does Duckett do it? She says working with groups that encourage youth entrepreneurship and entrepreneurship training, particularly in lower economic environments such as Compton, California is a personal priority for her. She sees it as a means to improving not only their lives, but ultimately our communities and the nation.

Says Ms. Duckett, “It’s so much fun working with kids and aspiring entrepreneurs, challenging them, involving them, and helping them realize their own potentials for success.” “It’s also tied to that ‘purpose beyond profits’ notion,” states Duckett. She sees her own purpose and by extension, that of her company, as one that goes beyond just the duty to make a profit.

Duckett follows a growing notion among many company heads that organizations have a responsibility that reaches beyond its shareholders; it includes other stakeholders like employees, suppliers, customers and the communities within which they operate. It is a philosophy in ethics which states that persons (including corporate persons) who act to further the interests of others (or the interests of the group or groups to which they belong) ultimately serve their own self-interest.

What’s coming up next on Duckett’s busy calendar? Duckett’s looking forward to mentoring a local small business owner she discovered who is expanding into the digital marketplace with their product. “It will be the opportunity to provide some actual one-on-one coaching,” Duckett offers excitedly. “I hope I can offer them some “best practice” suggestions and possibly present a road map of potential hazards, having been there myself.”

About Sew What? Inc.:
About Sew What? Inc. Sew What? Inc., located in Rancho Dominguez, California, is a well-known stage and theatrical drapery manufacturer known for its dramatic theatrical drapes and fabrics used in major rock concerts, top fashion shows and other artistic staged venues. Their drapes have dressed the stages of Sting, Elton John, Madonna, and Rod Stewart to name a few. The company has received numerous awards for innovation, including the Dell/NFIB Small Business Excellence Award, and was featured on the 1000th cover of Rolling Stone. For information, contact Sew What? Inc. at (310) 639-6000, or email

About Rent What? Inc.
Committed to providing an ultimate experience in drapery rental products and customer service, Rent What? Inc. is proud to be woman owned and operated. The firm, located in Rancho Dominguez, CA, has set the stage for artists including Beyonce, Nickelback and Demi Lovato. In addition to its large inventory of Inherently Flame Retardant stage drapes, traveler tracks and portable dressing rooms, the company is widely regarded for its basic pricing schedules, innovative damage waiver policy and fast and friendly service. For information, contact Rent What? Inc. at (310) 639-7000 or visit