Lydia Montgomery’s long-time vision of opening her very own sewing education and seamstress business was finally realized with the opening of “Lydia’s Daily Thread” in the Gear Factory at the corner of West Fayette and South Geddes streets in the westside of Syracuse.
Lydia’s first Open Studio was held on October 6th, inviting participants to stop by for “Encouragement and Abundance” as she welcomed old members of her sewing community and new friends and neighbors to become part of that community she has developed over many years of working out of her home. Lydia’s focus on individualized service and instruction, along with in studio work-spaces for students and other makers, makes hers a unique location for the sewing and fabric arts in Syracuse.
First coming to the SBDC in February of 2019, after being in operations since 2015, Lydia already possessed a large amount of inventory and supplies and was looking to expand into a storefront location. SBDC Business Advisor Frank Cetera mentored Lydia and discussed the different types of entities she could choose for her business, pros and cons of locations/types of physical spaces, as well as service rates and educational program planning. Cetera also provided Lydia with template model documents for planning and financial projections for clarifying her contexts and thoughts.
"Working with Frank helped me with clarifying my goals and strategy, and deciding if I wanted to invest myself in this effort,” notes Lydia, about her time working with the Onondaga SBDC.
As we as a planet started to climb out of the COVID-19 pandemic this past spring and summer, Lydia saw the opportunity, as so many others have during the “great re-consideration" of employees, to take the steps to move from her full-time job as a teacher, and into her new role as a community educator and seamstress. She met again with her Advisor in October 2021, after she had signed her lease, for mentoring in start-up timelines, marketing, and crowdfunding strategies. Cetera also advised Lydia on continuing to use SBDC services for analyzing ongoing financial statements and business plan review.
"It was important for me to have space to grow and branch out from my dining room table, that could especially accommodate bigger projects and collaborations with others in the creative and maker community” says Lydia about her motivations for obtaining a studio space.
Lydia teaches students young and old how to sew, mend, and make fabric creations of all kinds such as clothing, cushions/pillows and specialty items. In addition, she does repair and alterations work on fabric items of all kinds. Lydia plans on having another open studio event in December, and plans on other types of events such as the recent Cosplay Stash Drive, which for a small workshop entrance fee, opened up the studio to attendees to work on Halloween costumes under her guidance. Being located at the Gear Factory, a community of musician and artists' studios and live/work spaces, also opens up the potential to build collaborations and partnerships with many other people in the creative community of Syracuse.
Daily Thread is open limited hours during the start-up, for special events, and by appointment.
Please see schedule or make contact via the Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/lydiasdailythreadstudio
Article published in the 'The Central New York Business Journal' on December 13, 2021
Frank Cetera is an Advanced Certified Business Advisor at the Small Business Development Center located at Onondaga Community College. Contact him at email@example.com
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