By Luke Baynes
Stitched is not your grandmother’s sewing shop.
Nor is it your mother’s sewing shop – unless your mother is a certified Bernina sewing machine technician with an affinity for power tools.
“I want to make it cool to sew,” said Jennifer Buffington, the 38-year-old owner of Stitched, whose penchant for brightly colored fabrics mirrors her buoyant personality.
Stitched (aka the store formerly known as Strawberry & Rhubarb) had been located in Maple Tree Place near Best Buy until March 30. On April 3, it was back in business in the building on the southwest corner of Taft Corners, which used to be known as the Calvin Morse Tavern around the time dirt was discovered in Williston.
“Who wouldn’t want to be in this building?” Buffington asked. “This is the best location I could possibly have asked for in Williston.”
Although Stitched won’t hold its grand reopening until May, it’s now open for business in a space twice as big as its prior location. The added size will give Buffington more room to hold sewing classes and to display her array of Bernina sewing machines.
“They are the finest sewing machines in the world,” Buffington said of the only brand she stocks. “They’re made in Switzerland (with) all metal parts (and) they’re the only sewing machine company that’s still privately owned in the world. They’re more expensive, but if you buy Bernina, it’s the last sewing machine you’ll ever own. It’s like a finely tuned instrument.”
While Bernina machines can range in price from $149 all the way up to $12,000, Buffington put the higher-end machines in perspective for those who truly love to sew.
“You could spend $6,000 to go to Hawaii, and it’s gone within a week,” she said. “You could spend that money on a sewing machine – if that’s your passion – and you can use it 365 days a year.”
Buffington, who was named “most outstanding” in her eighth grade home economics class and later obtained an accounting degree and worked in commercial lending, appears to have found her niche at Stitched.
“I love opening the door every day,” Buffington said. “When you have a hobby and other people share that interest, you just love talking to other people about it.”
Although she works a rigorous schedule – 12 days on, two days off – Buffington isn’t complaining.
“I just love what I do, so it doesn’t really feel like work,” she said. “That’s what everybody should strive for in life.”