Linda Fiore turned her passion into a business that has been in operation for more than a decade. While Linda always enjoyed her hobby, she was a legal secretary for 35 years before taking the leap to open Tiny Threads Boutique in North Haven in December 2000.
Tiny Threads Boutique is a children's clothing store owned by a designer who makes clothes exclusively for children, though the boutique also carries popular brands, including le top, Biscotti, Anita G., Katie Rose, Bebe Monde and more.
"I have a room totally devoted to Christening gowns and accessories," said Linda. "I can make Mom or Grandma's wedding gown into a Christening outfit for a girl or boy, whip up an outfit for a theme birthday party, organize the small fry in a wedding with tuxedos and flower girl dresses, produce a take-me-home outfit for a newborn and have been crocheting personalized hats and sweater sets for over 40 years."
Linda learned to crochet when she was 11 and learned to sew at 13. She began to make her own clothes and when she had kids, she began designing and making their outfits.
"Until they became tweens, then they would not come near me," she said.
Even during her career as a legal secretary, she never left her hobby, often crocheting on the bus, train or in the waiting room of a doctor's office. Even before opening Tiny Threads Boutique, Linda sold her designs to acquaintances, at craft fairs and at home parties.
Linda, who lives just around the corner from her North Haven shop, enjoys doing business in her hometown because "the people are friendly" and she loves what she does.
At the end of a visit to Tiny Threads Boutique, kids can visit the "Magic Mirror" and receive a prize. The shop offers gift wrap for free, accepts all credit cards and mails a gift for just the price of the postage and more.
"I run after toddlers when the moms are shopping, drag out a chair for a Grandma or a nursing Mom, warm a baby bottle, occasionally deliver to someone's house and give child rearing advice when asked, and generally try to offer service like it used to be," she said.
"I love the freedom of designing children's clothing as I can be so whimsical and I love the kids – they are so funny and beautiful," Linda added. "Infants look so angelic in their Christening outfits, and the excitement of a little girl in a new dress is wonderful. I have the best job in the world. When my customers tell me they love what I made for their child, it makes my day."
Tiny Threads BoutiqueAddress: 448 Washington Ave., North Haven
Phone Number: 203-239-7644