Carey DeWitt is happy to be back home in Washington State after several years away, and to be offering a unique service with an enterprise she created herself.
Carey’s Custom Canvas is a business that designs and manufactures custom made canvas or vinyl products. She can make custom tarps and wall tents; and covers for anything from boats to bbq’s to air conditioners to motor and engine covers.
“I also repair these types of items, as well as zippers for tents, sleeping bags, duffel bags or backpacks,” said DeWitt. “I can repair most anything that can be sewn on a heavy duty machine.” DeWitt is not doing upholstery projects right now.
DeWitt said she learned to sew in the Navy, which she joined after growing up in Washington.
“As a low ranked airman, I learned to make custom sized tool pouches for my squadron,” said DeWitt. “Tool pouches were a necessity, as it would be a disaster if a tool was lost in a jet engine or a cockpit.”
After being discharged from the Navy in 1995, DeWitt moved to Colorado, where she worked for Pueblo Tent & Awning for over 14 years; managing it the last ten.
“My parents moved to this area about five years ago. I was interested in moving back home to Washington. I love this state, as it was home, and I wanted to be closer to my parents as they got older,” said DeWitt. “After visiting the area a few times in the summers, I got to wondering if the business I had in mind would be viable. Turns out, there really isn’t anyone who does this type of work; at least, not that I could find easily. I put my plan for a business in action after moving here last year.”
DeWitt said she got help putting her business plan together from a SCORE counselor. SCORE is a nonprofit association dedicated to helping small businesses get off the ground, grow and achieve their goals through education and mentorship.
“I felt like I was finally ready, after acquiring a sewing machine, business licenses and some inventory, to get my name out,” said DeWitt. “I think I have a viable skill, in that I can make or repair almost any item that comes my way. I can also offer great customer service.”
DeWitt works out of her home in Riverside, so she’s able to go to customers instead of them coming to her.
“During the winter it will be more difficult to work on larger projects that might need to be worked on outside, but I will still be able to work on smaller projects and repairs that can easily be managed in a small space,” said DeWitt. “I hope to someday get a large shop that has enough space inside to make the bigger projects without being subject to the weather as I am now.”
DeWitt will be putting her skills in Hospitality Management and Culinary Arts to use up at the Loup this winter, but available for her Custom Canvas jobs Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays.
She can be reached at 509-322-5144 or firstname.lastname@example.org. To see a wide variety of her work, check out www.facebook.com/CareysCustomCanvas/.