Buy, sell or create at Humble Fabric & Crafts in Grass Valley
January 7, 2014
Hardwood floors, an abundance of natural light, rows of colored yarn, a warm stove, locally handmade gifts, a loom and spinning wheel, a cozy couch for knitting. As it turns out, Roxanne Page has landed in the perfect East Main Street location for her store and workshop, Humble Fabric & Crafts.
Last summer, when Page first learned she would have to vacate her retail space in the Holiday Center off Dorsey Drive, she worried she wouldn't find another centrally located spot. She was wrong. When she heard through the grapevine that a local thrift store, Touch My Junk, would be closing, she jumped at the chance to move into the highly visible space across from the Chapa De Indian Health Clinic.
With roughly twice the floor space, the move has turned out to be a blessing in disguise, said Page, as she now has room for a broader range of merchandise and a cozy nook for knitting, crochet, sewing classes and more.
Years ago, Page's love of sewing led her to eventually create handmade items for sale. Due to the high price of fabric, she began scouring thrift stores and garage sales for affordable remnants. Once she had accumulated a surplus, she would routinely set up tables of fabric for sale in front of the now-defunct U.S. Sewing Machine Company on Nevada City Highway. In time, people began seeking out Page's affordable, unique and varied offerings. She found a distributor and expanded her inventory of discount yardage, but she was growing weary of lugging bins of fabric around to different locations and setting up tables.
Then, one day, she hit the jackpot.
"At a garage sale I discovered a person's 60-year accumulation of fabric, from floor to ceiling," said Page. "I bought it all."
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The massive acquisition was what spurred Page to finally look for a store front. Her business took off from there.
"The business has evolved into much more than just new and previously owned fabric," she said. "We've got incredible handmade items made locally, craft supplies, yarn, quilting supplies (including the hard-to-find wide quilt backing), recycled patterns and craft books. I really want to promote local artists and authors."
Humble Fabric will purchase pre-owned fabrics in exchange for cash or store credit.
"I've got all kinds of fabric, including flannel, fleece — even a little Spandex," she said with a laugh. "I also have drawers full of supplies like zippers, buttons, etc. If you have fabric, yarn or other items in good condition that you want cleared out of your closet, I may be able to help."
The intent of the business, said Page, is not to compete with other large retail establishments but to complement what's already available locally by offering affordable and previously owned materials.
"It's about humble offerings — not being so wasteful," she said. "We don't pressure customers here. We just want to help you create your projects. I love to help customers who ask about sewing techniques, but I also love learning from them."
Page said she is in the process of adding more class offerings in addition to those already in place, such as knitting taught by knitting expert Constance Moynahan and weaving and spinning with Terri Nelson.
"The best part of this business is getting to know all these talented people in our community," said Page. "I truly appreciate and admire their skill and creativity. Finally we have a large, light, warm space to allow the business to evolve and grow."
To contact Staff Writer Cory Fisher, email her at Cory@theunion.com or call 530-477-4203.