How We Got Started:
In the Fall of 2013, we opened My Red-Haired Auntie, LLC. I chose the name because I have red hair and 21 children in my life who call me "Aunt Beth." Most of them are actually my nieces and nephews but some are children of friends whom my husband Brian and I have adopted as if they were our own. It's funny how tribes grow in this way. We don't often live near relatives anymore; thus we create new connections for children and adopt people into our close communities. My dad and I adopted each other so I well know how folks can share love without a bloodline. My husband is from a small, quite normal, family in Green Bay. I'm from a southern, crazy, creative, scientific, musical, mashed-up, everyone's-got-an-opinion, drives-you-nuts-but-you-love-them-to-pieces kind of family.
I began making gifts for all of these nieces and nephews over twenty years ago and I found that my creative genes came through. We come from a long line of self-sufficient women and our mother is one of the most talented and creative people I've ever met. She taught me to sew back when I really had no interest. I dusted off her old Singer 500A (what I thought was a relic turned out to be a diamond in the rough) and began to relearn to sew. I started with making NeNee's Soft Blankies, a blanket we've made in our family for over 50 years. Later, I added an embroidery machine and then learned how to digitize my own designs.
I began buying carpentry tools in 2009. I have always been fascinated by wood and the promise it held. I bought many books on carpentry, watched show after show (most girls like rock stars, I liked Norm Abrams), checked out YouTube videos, and made a lot of mistakes. I learned a lesson from each of my mistakes. I also decided there wasn't anything I couldn't do if I worked hard enough. After all, I am a well-educated woman, a pretty accomplished musician, and I don't just have rocks in my head! I thought at the time that making furniture for my nieces' 18" dolls would be enough. I truly enjoy making toys. I make them sturdy enough so that they won't break (screwed and glued), and I use certified non-toxic glues and paints. Then I found exotic woods! I fell in LOVE!!! I started making exotic wood cutting boards and haven't looked back since. I still make doll beds and a few other items around the holidays but the cutting boards and cheese slicers allow me to be creative every single day!
We love our Labrador Retrievers, Louie and Clarke, and that led into engagement with other folks who shared our beliefs about animals and their welfare. I began this part of the journey in the fall of 2014 making some shirts for a fundraising craft fair for the Dane Country (Wisconsin) Humane Society. Now it seems that this has become the primary focus of our business. We focus on dog events for the most part, or general animal events, but we sometimes find ourselves at Ferret Fiesta! So, we'll continue to grow along this path. We truly enjoy the people we get to meet and are amazed at the dedication they have to the animals that share their lives.
Everything we make is top quality, utilizing good craftsmanship. We simply don't sell it unless it meets our strict personal standards. Yes, you can go buy something from China or India that is cheaper but you won't find the quality that My Red-Haired Auntie embodies. We are company based in Sun Prairie, Wisconsin, that believes in families and the American worker. We stand behind everything we sell. Welcome to the shop that treats you like family!
"Only an Aunt can give Hugs like a Mother, keep Secrets like a Sister, and share Love like a Friend" -- anon
Louie & Clarke