As applications for the 2009 Inc. 500 | 5000 arrive, we thought it would be worthwhile to shine a spotlight on some of the companies that are vying to appear on our ranking of the fastest-growing private companies in the U.S. (For more information and to apply, go to One that caught our eye was Rancho Dominguez, California-based Sew What? Inc.

As a premier provider of custom-sewn theatrical drapes and fabrics, Sew What? has worked with some of the biggest names in the entertainment business to create brilliant stage displays. One of the most challenging projects for the thirty-four person staff was Rod Stewart's 2007 "Still the Same" tour.

"We had to recreate the Stewart family's Scottish tartan in massive quantity—enough to cover the entire stage set," says Megan Duckett, Australia-born founder and CEO. "We couldn't buy that fabric anywhere. We had to recreate the tartan in Photoshop and enlarging it 200 percent. We made almost 2,000 yards of custom fabric just for this show," she says. "It was one of the most spectacular scenes that we've been involved in."

Duckett, whose husband is the CFO, credits the success of her business to hard work, good timing, trusting clients, and dedicated employees. "We really are a family business, along with folks who work with us and have done so for many, many years," she says. "The first employee I ever hired, in 1997, is still with us. We're just a rocking awesome group of people who love what we do."

For more information and to apply to the 2009 Inc. 500|5000, go to