> Out and About: Kate Gardiner, owner of Fair Street Crafts

Out and About: Kate Gardiner, owner of Fair Street Crafts

Out and About: Kate Gardiner, owner of Fair Street Crafts
Interview by Tracy Rotkiewicz
Photo by Michael Taylor

Kate Gardiner is the co-owner of Fair Street Crafts, which she started with her husband, Jim. The Gardiners originally came from Maine. Due to Jim's job as IT at Berkshire Blanket in Ware, MA, a move was necessary. They chose Springfield as their new home, but soon went back to Maine. Only, Berkshire Blanket did not want Jim to quit. So, the Gardiners once again headed to southern New England.

In October 2013 the couple had discovered the website marketplace Etsy, where they wanted to try their hand at selling handcrafted burlap table runners. Kate was skeptical of the whole online selling venture, but it did take off and proved profitable as she states, "Burlap is very popular." She stuck with it for a couple of years. Kate says, "So naturally the next big step was going to be a storefront." Jim found the building at 55 Poquonock Ave. "We just thought it fit the character of our shop. An older, rustic kind of building." The location seemed to fit their needs as the couple had moved to Somers, CT., in July 2015. They opened the shop in May of 2017. Kate had worked the Etsy shop full-time, until the grand opening of their physical store, Fair Street Crafts.

Getting the shop off the ground has proved challenging, as with any start-up business. Kate says that a lot of the marketing is word of mouth. There isn't too much foot traffic in the area. During the holidays though, it gets busy. "The people who have come in are really great. They've really loved the shop. They've been very welcoming." Along with Kate's crafts, she wanted to showcase other crafter's wares from the Etsy community. All of the items are American made. Competing with the big craft retailers doesn't deter some customers when it comes to Fair Street Crafts though. Kate further goes on to say; "I think it makes them feel good when they're buying something local and unique." She explains about her own feelings when she first started selling her own wares online. "I know that it was pretty exciting for me when I started making stuff and people were buying it. Suddenly, I'm sending stuff to Dubai and Australia. It's cool to think your table runner, that you made with your hands is somewhere in Japan or wherever." Fair Street deals in selling a lot of home decor that can only be described as farmhouse
style or shabby chic.

Kate and Jim found Windsor to be very quaint. It's a small town, but big enough. They take advantage of a few various businesses. Fair Street Crafts is a member of the Chamber of Commerce as well. As cat owners, the Gardiners have used the services of Happy Cat Hotel for their feline family. Kate loves going to Get Baked for their gluten-free fare as she
notably answers, "I have a huge sweet tooth."

On her off time, Kate likes to read, loves to watch birds, learning how to crochet. Three words that describe Kate: Family, creative, cozy.

Photo by Mike Taylor


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Events

Kiwanis Shad Derby Road Race
May 21 at Elm and Broad Street
Second Annual Clothing Drive
May 21 at CT Cat Connection, 40 Stevens Mill Lane, Windsor CT 06995
Shad Derby Day
May 21 at Windsor Town Green
Snap Back Fitness Boxing
May 21 at Stony Hill School
Tickborne Illness Support Group
May 21 at LP Wilson Community Center, 599 Matianuck Ave. Windsor
Open Classroom at the WAC Studios
May 22 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Hypertension Workshop
May 23 at Video Conference via Zoom
Intermediate II Art for Adults
May 23 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Windsor Toastmasters Club
May 23 at Zoom meeting, possible in-person meeting
Bring Your Gadgets to the Geeks
May 24 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
May Business After Hours
May 25 at Windsor Chamber of Commerce office, 261 Broad Street
Advanced Adult Art
May 26 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Book Buzz Event
May 26 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
Monthly Veteran's Coffee Hour
May 26 at Senior Center Cafe
Yoga Strong
May 26 at Wabi-Sabi Yoga and Wellness Center, 88 Day Hill Road, Suite 203
First Town Chat
Fridays at 161 Broad Street, Windsor
Second Annual Clothing Drive
May 28 at CT Cat Connection, 40 Stevens Mill Lane, Windsor CT 06995
Snap Back Fitness Boxing
May 28 at Stony Hill School
Open Classroom at the WAC Studios
May 29 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Intermediate II Art for Adults
May 30 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Bring Your Gadgets to the Geeks
May 31 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
Advanced Adult Art
Jun 2 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Yoga Strong
Jun 2 at Wabi-Sabi Yoga and Wellness Center, 88 Day Hill Road, Suite 203
First Town Chat
Fridays at 161 Broad Street, Windsor
Second Annual Clothing Drive
Jun 4 at CT Cat Connection, 40 Stevens Mill Lane, Windsor CT 06995
Tickborne Illness Support Group
Jun 4 at LP Wilson Community Center, 599 Matianuck Ave. Windsor
Open Classroom at the WAC Studios
Jun 5 at Windsor Train Station Studios
WAC Portrait Painting Workshop
Jun 5 at WAC Train Station Studios
Gardens in the Hudson Valley
Jun 6 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
Hypertension Workshop
Jun 6 at Video Conference via Zoom
Intermediate II Art for Adults
Jun 6 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Join our new Men's Club!
Jun 6 at Windsor Senior Center
Bring Your Gadgets to the Geeks
Jun 7 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
Advanced Adult Art
Jun 9 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Virtual Book Club
Jun 9 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
Yoga Strong
Jun 9 at Wabi-Sabi Yoga and Wellness Center, 88 Day Hill Road, Suite 203
38th Annual Chamber Cares Auction
Jun 10 at Mill Brook Clubhouse, 147 Pigeon Hill Road
First Town Chat
Fridays at 161 Broad Street, Windsor
Second Annual Clothing Drive
Jun 11 at CT Cat Connection, 40 Stevens Mill Lane, Windsor CT 06995
Open Classroom at the WAC Studios
Jun 12 at Windsor Train Station Studios
WAC Portrait Painting Workshop
Jun 12 at WAC Train Station Studios
Intermediate II Art for Adults
Jun 13 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Learn How to Lead Like a Pro
Jun 13 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
Windsor Toastmasters Club
Jun 13 at Zoom meeting, possible in-person meeting
Bring Your Gadgets to the Geeks
Jun 14 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
Board of Directors Mtg
Jun 14 at online
Advanced Adult Art
Jun 16 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Camino de Santiago Lecture
Jun 16 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
Yoga Strong
Jun 16 at Wabi-Sabi Yoga and Wellness Center, 88 Day Hill Road, Suite 203
First Town Chat
Fridays at 161 Broad Street, Windsor
Second Annual Clothing Drive
Jun 18 at CT Cat Connection, 40 Stevens Mill Lane, Windsor CT 06995
Tickborne Illness Support Group
Jun 18 at LP Wilson Community Center, 599 Matianuck Ave. Windsor
Windsor House Tour is Back!
Jun 18 at Windsor Historical Society
Open Classroom at the WAC Studios
Jun 19 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Intermediate II Art for Adults
Jun 20 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Join our new Men's Club!
Jun 20 at Windsor Senior Center
Programs Committee Mtg
Jun 20 at online
Strawberry Festival and Vendor Fair
Jun 20 at Brown's Harvest 1911 Poquonock Ave
May Business After Hours
May 25 at Windsor Chamber of Commerce office, 261 Broad Street
38th Annual Chamber Cares Auction
Jun 10 at Mill Brook Clubhouse, 147 Pigeon Hill Road
Board of Directors Mtg
Jun 14 at online
Programs Committee Mtg
Jun 20 at online
Kiwanis Shad Derby Road Race
May 21 at Elm and Broad Street
Second Annual Clothing Drive
May 21 at CT Cat Connection, 40 Stevens Mill Lane, Windsor CT 06995
Shad Derby Day
May 21 at Windsor Town Green
Snap Back Fitness Boxing
May 21 at Stony Hill School
Tickborne Illness Support Group
May 21 at LP Wilson Community Center, 599 Matianuck Ave. Windsor
Kiwanis Shad Derby Road Race
May 21 at Elm and Broad Street
Second Annual Clothing Drive
May 21 at CT Cat Connection, 40 Stevens Mill Lane, Windsor CT 06995
Shad Derby Day
May 21 at Windsor Town Green
Snap Back Fitness Boxing
May 21 at Stony Hill School
Tickborne Illness Support Group
May 21 at LP Wilson Community Center, 599 Matianuck Ave. Windsor
Open Classroom at the WAC Studios
May 22 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Hypertension Workshop
May 23 at Video Conference via Zoom
Intermediate II Art for Adults
May 23 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Windsor Toastmasters Club
May 23 at Zoom meeting, possible in-person meeting
Bring Your Gadgets to the Geeks
May 24 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
May Business After Hours
May 25 at Windsor Chamber of Commerce office, 261 Broad Street
Advanced Adult Art
May 26 at Windsor Train Station Studios
Book Buzz Event
May 26 at Windsor Public Library 323 Broad Street Windsor, CT
Monthly Veteran's Coffee Hour
May 26 at Senior Center Cafe
Yoga Strong
May 26 at Wabi-Sabi Yoga and Wellness Center, 88 Day Hill Road, Suite 203
First Town Chat
Fridays at 161 Broad Street, Windsor
Second Annual Clothing Drive
May 28 at CT Cat Connection, 40 Stevens Mill Lane, Windsor CT 06995
Snap Back Fitness Boxing
May 28 at Stony Hill School
First Town Chat
Fridays at 161 Broad Street, Windsor
Kiwanis Shad Derby Road Race
May 21 at Elm and Broad Street
Second Annual Clothing Drive
May 21 at CT Cat Connection, 40 Stevens Mill Lane, Windsor CT 06995
Shad Derby Day
May 21 at Windsor Town Green
Snap Back Fitness Boxing
May 21 at Stony Hill School
Tickborne Illness Support Group
May 21 at LP Wilson Community Center, 599 Matianuck Ave. Windsor
Open Classroom at the WAC Studios
May 22 at Windsor Train Station Studios