Monday, December 23, 2019

An Origin Story

It will be just shy of 26 years when the door to the brick and mortar store closes to the public for the last time, but it won’t necessarily be a sad day. Just one door closing so another one can open in its place.
As I mentioned a short while ago, the store has already gone through a few changes so what is one or two more?  I found a few pictures from the humble beginnings in the basement of Nowco Home Hardware as well as some from the building most of you recognize as ‘the craft store’.

As a retired school teacher many people wondered whatever possessed me to open a craft store. Retail and education do not necessarily go hand in hand. My answer was simple. I broke my circular needle.

??? You broke a needle so you opened a store???  I don’t get it.

When I finally got tired of dealing with hormone driven teenagers in my former life, I came home to work in the family business. Outside of work hours I was busy crafting because I was no longer spending my personal time grading students’ work. The hundreds of stitches wide blanket was worked on a 40” circular needle and took a full hour to complete four rows. When I was in the middle of one of those rows, I felt the blanket go slack then noticed that one of the ends had detached itself from the cord!

I quickly taped the two ends together and went on a frantic search for a new needle. Wildflower Creations didn't have circular needles. Woolworth's didn't have the size I needed. I drove  to Lewiscraft in Red Deer to finally get the needle, all the while muttering that Lacombe was big enough for a real craft store. So with a little research and a slightly bigger loan, The Crafty Lady was born. Don't you love the original colour scheme?

I'm not sure how many of you have ever been in the basement of Nowco Hardware but the picture below shows Mom and Dad helping me get it ready for the boxes and boxes of stock that showed up Feb 14, 1994.

The newspaper article shows the whole Nowco and Crafty crew sitting on the stairs that led to the basement that housed both The Crafty Lady and the toy section.

Nestled into one side of the basement, the original location was smaller (and shorter at 7ft) than the current location. The silver bins were waiting patiently for yarn while the white gondolas were waiting for things like raffia, pompoms and whatever else was popular back in 1994. The opening you see behind the silver bins was the L-shaped storage area.

Since everything is on sale right now,
I just want to emphasize that
all things stitching must go!
This is a great time to stock up on floss,
blending filament and fabric because
I am not reordering any of it.
written by Lori, happy TCL owner who can't wait to have all the products re-entered into the new online store. I'll sleep for a week after it's done (if allowed).

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