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Custom Needle Alterations store offers more than just stitches

Kim Schaffer, left, and her staff Heidi Olson and Gwen Edwards have opened Custom Needle Alterations in Hudson at 226 Locust St. Photo by Margaret A. Ontl

Kim Schaffer, a Twin Cities native, has spent most of her professional life in Wisconsin, including the last four years in River Falls.

"I love to sew," said Schaffer, who recently opened a branch of her River Falls' business, Custom Needle Alterations, in Hudson. She has been doing alterations, repair work and taking measurements for over 25 years, most of it in Eau Claire for clients such as Dayton's, J.C. Penney's and Scheels Sports.

"When I started to serve the Lord, I thought a good Christian must be able to sew," said Schaffer. So when her husband was in college and they had started their family, she started on her stitching journey. "I have had an abundant number of people who have taught me. We have a rule: If you can do it faster and better, you have to share your technique."

In the 25 years since she started in the business the alterations are essentially the same but the fabrics are different.

From patching blue jeans to replacing zipper pulls Schaffer feels she can save the customer a lot of money.

If you need your suits or clothing altered due to weight gain or loss, she can do it. Heming and cuffing slacks is one of her most common requests.

"For me, it has been a really good business," said Schaffer. "I feel really blessed."

Whether it is measurements for a tuxedo or fitting a wedding dress, Schaffer and her staff can do it all.

For Hudson customers Custom Needle is also a drop-off spot for shoe repair and dry cleaning as well as leather and suede cleaning and repair.

A new feature is the opportunity to order custom-made men's dress shirts and semi custom-made slacks. Schaffer is working with a New York firm. She takes the measurements and they create the product.

Hours for the Hudson location at 226 Locust St., Suite 102, are Tuesdays 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Wednesdays and Thursdays 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. or by appointment. The River Falls location at 208 South Main Street is open Monday, Tuesday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Fitting rooms are available at both locations. Once the measurements are taken, the fit is guaranteed.

"When it comes to alterations we try to make it look as close to when you bought it as possible," said Schaffer. "In this economy we can save folks a lot of money."

For more information, call (715) 386-0907. The River Falls phone number is (715) 426-4088.