Shop Talk

Flowing and Growing

“We produce up to 50,000 yards of leather lace per day. The largest category we sell is leather lace.”
— Greg Sartor, president, Silver Creek Leather Co.

You never know when a real opportunity will come knocking. It might even appear in the guise of a company closeout.

In 2002, Caldwell/Moser Tannery of New Albany, Indiana, in business since 1878, shut its doors. Among its employees was Greg Sartor, who had been working for the tannery for only two years. At the time, he ran its leather lace department and was a minority owner.

“Most of my customers were in the footwear industry, and while running that I added craft lace into the mix. We were making lace at the tannery and shipping it to Korea,” he recalled.

Typically, business shutdowns are devastating events. But Sartor allowed himself to be galvanized by the moment. Instead of seeing a company closeout, he envisioned a door opening. “It was an act of self-defense,” he said, candidly, of his 11TH-hour decision to launch a new business as a leathercraft supplier.

His epiphany did not appear magically, like a rabbit pulled out of a hat. It was born largely from personal experience. Sartor had been a leatherworker since high school, so he had a hands-on affinity for the craft. Prior to working at the tannery,

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