Ernst & Co.
I am Tanya Ernst, owner of Ernst & Co., Ltd. I have a dedicated home workshop, sewing room, and office where all of my potholders, bags (and other creations) are constructed. I have six children and two cocker spaniels. The kids are taught at home and the dogs keep us all entertained. Somehow, we make it all work and still manage to run kids to their baseball games and ballet!
My business began, as most do, as a means to use my skills in order to contribute to the household income. I started my bag business when I needed a new bag and couldn't find one that was made in the United States. I had the skills and did enough woodworking to be confident that I could develop a pattern. I have also been fortunate enough to have worked with antiques. I often incorporate some of those elements into my "New Vintage" designs.
The potholders were the result of a bag display I had at a local bank. I placed each of my suede color samples on the table and each and every one of them was stolen. I wondered what use they would be to someone, as most people do not have a sewing machine strong enough to go through 4 ounces of suede. I placed a piece of suede in my hand and brainstormed. The only thing I could come up with was a potholder. I quickly cut out some suede, stitched them together and created my first pair of potholders. My suede potholders sales have steadily grown and proudly includes some very well known kitchen stores!