Barbara Crown has been to 17 Sturgis motorcycle rallies, always working at her vendor booth Chaps and Bags out of Edgewater, Fla. There, she sews patches onto vests and custom-fitting leather for bikers and rallygoers. She has worked for the business for 25 years but has owned the business the last eight years.
When did you learn to sew? I learned to sew in high school, and I've been sewing for 30 years now.
Why do people like your booth so much? They like the immediate gratification. They come in and buy something, then it's on their vest before they walk out the door. They also like that everything fits them well. We do custom-fit leather, so it fits them the right way.
What's the business about? It's a family business I run with my daughter and one other seamstress. The people you see here are the entire business — it's just the three of us. We run the business back in Florida, and we manufacture all of our goods.
How many patches do you sew on a day? We sew on hundreds of patches on a day. We also sew and alter clothing and other goods.
What keeps you coming back? Just take a look out on the street. We've met so many people here over the years. We've even seen families grow up throughout the years. There was one customer who brought in his two sons when they were 16 years old, and we watched them come back every year.