Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Back in the day

Monday I had a visit from Anne Jones from The Black Sheep near Orlando.  She bought the shop from Caro about 10 years ago.  She drove over to pick up the canvas taping machine that Needle Nicely has owned since about 1986 or so.  It has been tucked into one of our many cabinets for lo these many years.  Marcia and I discovered it several weeks ago while looking for something else.

It was nice to spend some time chatting with Anne.  And a nice sidebar is she discovered the empty DMC cabinets.  It was love at first sight and the last 8 boxes disappeared quickly into her car.  I'm doubly glad they are gone--firstly because Anne was so pleased; and secondly because my customers were noticing them after my recent sale.  They were more and more convinced that I am closing.  Not in this lifetime.  Just look at all the inventory!  What was so perfect about Anne's buying the cabinets is that she drove over. The shipping on the boxes is almost as much as I was selling them for ($37.50).

Anne and I spent some time talking about the industry.  I mentioned how 40 years (or more) ago Trubey discovered that other designers were less than helpful about sharing tips about production, paints, sources for supplies.  Barbara Eyre was a notable exception.  Pru di Vincenzo, the original owner of Tapestry Tent, told Trubey and I she wouldn't walk the show floor because people were so quick to make accusations of copying of designs.  Anne told me that Caro had warned her that many shop owners were determinedly not helpful.  I'm proud to say that Needle Nicely has offered advice to 3 shops--Holly from Absolutely Needlepoint in Coconut Grove, Miami; Kathy from Needlepoint Alley in North Palm Beach, and Erin from Needlepoint Land in Stuart.  My feeling is some business decisions can be costly mistakes.  If I can help others avoid them, all the better for the success of their business.  Brick and Mortar Needlework stores now have a private facebook group where we can ask for dyelots of fibers or what company sells something, or just share thoughts, so the ice has thawed.

Anne brought a Christmas present for me, which I thought was so thoughtful.
It looks especially lovely when the lights are shining.


  1. You're a font of information about the needlepoint industry, and I, for one, know just how generous you are with sharing your information and advice. Thanks, Mary Agnes!

  2. I'm glad that the shops help each other. Small businesses need to stick together--it's a hard world out there.

  3. I like Anne but Caro was a dear dear friend. In the last 5 years of her owning the shop - I was a guest in her home for any classes I wanted to attend and I wouldn't take anything in the world for the experiences I had and relationship I developed with her. When she and Lois Hoeft who owned A Stitch in Time in Jacksonville for 35 years both sold their shops at the same time - I went into needlepoint mourning and didn't touch np for years. I've gotten over it but it's still hard not having those two terrific mentors and friends. Christmas cheer to you! Mel

    1. I have many fond memories of both women from over the years. It is nice to have such sympatico associates.