Joan Friedrich

As an educator, Joan said the most valuable skill she's learned comes from constantly encouraging the people she teaches.

"You will be rewarded. It's so wonderful when I go back to a retailer or someone emails me and says 'I did this because you taught me the how and why,'" she said.

She added that the best part of teaching is the variety of different people she encounters.

"I love meeting all of the great sewists across the country and sharing my love and knowledge with people of all ages and genders," she said. "People help to inspire (what I call) the 'go juices' inside of you with the art of sewing."

As for the highlight of her career, Joan had an immediate answer.

"Meeting Nancy Zieman," she said. "Being on her show and working with her was one of my greatest experience in my sewing career."