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Fruits of the Loom

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Written by Liz Borod Wright

Photographs by Jennifer Causey

They may hold fine-arts degrees, not MBAs, but Owyn Ruck and Visnja Popovic recognized a great business opportunity when they saw one. After searching New York City for a studio where they could work on their textile projects, the two friends decided to open one themselves. In spring 2010, Popovic put up the initial funds, and the two opened the Textile Arts Center, an educational hub in an airy Brooklyn space where people of all ages can take classes, attend events, or drop in for studio time. The course roster includes machine knitting, embroidery, sewing, block printing, and shoemaking, which the founders teach along with a small staff. Below are their tips for small-business success:

To get our name out there : We post on Facebook, Twitter, and our blog. We synced the accounts so that one post will appear on multiple platforms.

To help us stay organized: We write everything down in a Moleskine 18 Month Weekly Notebook (from $15).

We wished we had known about: NEACT for our class-registration software. It allows customers to log in, search, and see their course history.

We couldn’t live without: Popovic’s ultrasharp scissors, which were hand-forged by the Parveen family of India.

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