Many people have old t-shirts lying around or other pieces of clothing that are difficult to get rid of.
This week on Locally Made Monday, a Fort Wayne business can take those old clothes and turn them into something new.
Imagine getting some extra use from that old, worn out sweater.
Or a teddy bear made from old neck ties.
Keepsake Threads in Fort Wayne is not only the one place that does it locally, it's also one of the only places in the country that can turn anything into anything.
"We create textile products that are meaningful to people out of clothing or sentimental value,” says owner Kathy Carrier.
When carrier founded Keepsake Threads three years ago, she says she saw value in those sentiments.
"Most people have t-shirts from high school or college, or some sports team that they love, that they just can't quite get rid of. We repurpose those into other items that they'd like to keep. Like quilts or pillows, and stuffed animals,” Carrier says.
Several years ago, her mother-in-law made bears out of a family member's wardrobe for Christmas.
Carrier decided to take it to the next level.
She found companies that made t-shirt quilts, some that made memory bears, but nobody that did it all.
Today, they make the shirts and quilts, and they also take baby clothes, wedding dresses and neck ties.
"We've done a lot of wedding dress work. Christmas tree skirts are really cool if you make them out of wedding dresses,” carrier says.
Their work is advertised in national catalogs, and some of it is sold at the NPR store in Washington D.C.
But most of their work is local, as she is at many local fairs and festivals.
"We had one client who brought us I think it was the woman's entire wardrobe. She was in her early thirties. We made items for her mother, her husband, for all of her friends, for her mother-in-law,” Carrier says.
They can even take photos or pages from books and print it onto cloth.
Carrier says it's all about the memories.
If you want to get a hold of Keepsake Threads, check them out at-