Johanna Hertz is a member of our guild and is also the proud owner of Cloth & Bobbin in Narberth. Earlier this summer I had the opportunity to speak with Johanna over the phone and ask her a bunch of fabric related questions which she answered with zeal!
Since it was a phone interview and I couldn’t type quite as fast as the answers were coming, this will follow a bit of a different format than other interviews. The best part of this interview was stopping by the shop to photograph all the offerings.
Even though it was pouring down rain outside, I was fully and completely distracted by all the lovely colors! Read on to learn more about this jewel of a shop - maybe tucked away in a neighborhood near you!
Johanna Hertz has been sewing since junior high but her quilting began more recently. She made her first quilt at age 55, the same year she opened her store (more on that in a bit).
Once the need presented itself, Johanna diligently did her homework by conducting market research in the area and talking to salesmen. She proceeded to stock the shelves and opened Cloth & Bobbin in September 2007.
Cloth & Bobbin is located in Narberth, PA and is run mainly by Johanna with help once a week. The store is well stocked with brightly colored fabrics and is chock full of patterns, notions, and information.
Johanna chooses fabrics and patterns that she believes will be popular with others but appeal to her most of all. She chooses items people will be attracted to and patterns that are doable but not too difficult or long term.
The two Berninas at the shop are her machines of choice thought as she said, “as a store owner, sewing all day doesn’t occur”. Any sewing that she can make time for does occur at the store since there’s no need for a sewing room when she has a whole shop!
These days, almost 100% of her sewing is to make samples for classes so she labels them as such, but doesn’t add personalized names or labels to the creations. Her store related goals are to build the business through marketing and increased classes. Currently the classes are mainly sewing and quilting (hand appliqué, techniques, handbags, children’s clothing) but she’s hoping to add more general classes to bring in more crafty people of all kinds.
It was a thrill to interview Johanna and hear someone so happy and satisfied with all that she’s accomplished. Through it all, she says her current occupation is a very rewarding business to be in.
Hopefully you can stop in when your in the main line area! And thanks to Johanna for answering all my questions.
Until next week!