Without investors, Sew Steamboat’s run on Lincoln Avenue may be coming to an end
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — For nearly a decade, Sew Steamboat has been the place to go for those looking for yarn to knit a scarf or sweater, the materials needed to create everything from pajama bottoms to a quilt and the expertise from those who know.
“It’s a community,” Sew Steamboat co-owner Lynn Wunder said. “Our customers come in looking for what they need and to get help with their projects. They know they will have someone here that can help them.”
But baring a miracle, Wunder said the store will start selling off its inventory on Labor Day and will most likely close the doors of the store that was started in 2010 by former owners Gayle Dudley and Mariana Ishida.
“Unless someone comes in before Labor Day and says, ‘Oh yeah, I really want to do this,’ or if someone comes in and really wants to buy it — that would be great — we will close,” Wunder said.
Wunder was one of nine owners who bought into the store in 2013. Each of the partners owned a share of the store, and each of the owners played a role in running the store and helping customers. But, Wunder said recently many of the partners have come forward saying they no longer plan to continue.
“When we started, it was supposed to be one shift a week. We might teach classes, and there were enough of us to spread it around,” Wunder said. “But, some of the owners have just left, and some have sold their partnerships.”
Currently, the store has seven owners including Wunder, but that number is expected to drop in the near future. The current owners include Wunder, Donna Henderson, Cho Tin Tun Kirkpatrick, Cindy Clark, Stephanie Labossiere, Carol Mikkelson and Nancy Paul.
“We could probably get by with five or six owners,” Wunder said. “But now, it appears that the number is going to fall to just four.”
She said that just isn’t enough to fill all the shifts during the week, and if someone were to get sick or wanted to get away for an extended period of time, it would be difficult for the remaining owners to carry the weight.
“It will be sad,” Paul said of closing the store. “We have a lot of regulars who come in here looking for the things that they need. Now they are going to have to go to Denver, Grand Junction or Fort Collins.”
The store is also home to a knitting group that comes every Friday and often opens it’s doors to members of the 4-H sewing program.
“We feel like we are letting people down,” Wunder said. “They are coming in to get help with their projects, and they know that there will be somebody here. We say you can buy it online, but they are not going to help you with your pattern.”
To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.
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