I once knew a little girl who would start her stories with “Once upon a time, a long ways ago…” This project started a long ways ago as well–the summer of 2006, to be exact. Mike and I had made the journey from Pennsylvania to Tennessee to give our son Ryan, who was working with the summer horse program at Indian Creek Camp, a surprise high school graduation party. My mom lived near Nashville at the time so we spent a few days visiting her as well.
While there, my mom told me that she had made something to help keep my grandmother’s hands and arms warm. (Grandma was in a nursing home and was always cold.) She pulled out this funny looking polar fleece “thing” and told me to try it on. Being summertime, I wasn’t cold, but I put it on anyway; and as soon as it settled around my shoulders, my first thought was “Ah-h-h-h! This would be great for keeping my hands and shoulders warm on cold nights when I read in bed!” My second thought was “I know a lot of other people who would like this too!” Its design was so simple yet so totally unique, all I could think of was how to manufacture and market it.
While talking of the possibilities, my mom told me that the large fabric store there in Madison was going out of business. That we should stop in and see if any of the fleece was on sale. Well, if you have ever been in Nashville, Tennessee in July, you know that polar fleece is the last thing on anyone’s mind, and the fleece section was still well-stocked, despite the fact that the store was 75% empty. A couple hours later, the store was down to a few bolts of Tennessee Titan fleece that I didn’t figure would be a huge seller in PA, and we pulled away with over 300 yards of the stuff in the trunk and back seat of our car. I was committed!