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Quilt shop opens on Knowles Avenue

Alicia Cypher (right) and her daughter, Chasity, have done the majority of the work to prepare the store for opening. (Photo by Jenny Hudalla)

Knowles Avenue has seen its fair share of cafes, trinket shops and pizza parlors, but it hasn't seen anything quite like the recently opened quilt shop called A Little Piece of Mind.

Located next to Mr. Movies, the store is a treasure trove for avid quilters, offering everything from fabric and patterns to needles and rotary cutters. According to owner Alicia Cypher, the shop features approximately 2,000 different fabrics from 15 manufacturers.

The idea for A Little Piece of Mind came to Cypher four years ago, when she was sitting with some of her quilting friends and discussing her desire to open an online quilt shop. Thinking out loud, Cypher said, "You know, when I come upstairs to sew, I just get a little peace of mind."

From there, the rest was history. With a background in information technology and online sales, Cypher's online shop flourished. It wasn't until this spring that she began to pursue an actual storefront based on requests from the quilting community. Indeed, Cypher said her successful grand opening on July 27 reflected the need for a quilt store in the New Richmond area.

"We were consistently busy throughout the day," she said. "A lot of people came in and said, 'This is what we needed. This is what we've been waiting for.'"

Because Cypher has a full-time job, the shop currently operates part time, open Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. and every first and third Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

However, Cypher said she hopes to be open full-time in the future, and she plans to begin holding classes and monthly gatherings where people can sew, socialize and ask questions.

"I love talking about quilting and sharing my passion with other quilters, especially the new ones," Cypher said. "I fell in love with quilting when my friend took me to a quilt retreat. That's where it started, and for me, it never ended."

New quilters aren't the only people that Cypher is reaching out to. In fact, she said her Hispanic heritage and military background have inspired her to operate her shop with a global perspective. Having done business with people in Australia, New Zealand, Switzerland and Germany, Cypher can always find a way to connect with people.

"Quilting spans many different cultures," she said. "It doesn't matter where you come from. People are quilting all over the world."

Jenny Hudalla
A senior at Bethel University, Jenny Hudalla is pursuing degrees in journalism, Spanish and reconciliation studies. Having graduated from New Richmond High School in 2011, she served as editor-in-chief of the Tiger Rag before taking a job as editor-in-chief of Bethel's student newspaper, The Clarion. After completing her internship with the New Richmond News, Hudalla plans to move on to a career in social justice.
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