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Sewing and alterations shop opens in downtown Hudson

Deborah Anderson has opened a tailoring shop downstairs from the Dragon Pearl Chinese Restaurant at the corner of Second and Walnut streets. She's standing next to a lace vest that she redesigned.

A lifelong sewing enthusiast has opened a tailoring, alterations and sewing shop in downtown Hudson.

Deborah's Custom Sewing & Alterations is located at the corner of Second and Walnut streets, downstairs from the Dragon Pearl Chinese Restaurant in Suite 103.

Proprietor Deborah Anderson has an unusual resume for a tailor. She is an ordained Lutheran minister and pastored a church in Iowa for four years.

"Pardon the pun. Sewing has been the thread of consistency throughout my life," she says with a smile that makes her eyes sparkle.

A River Falls native, Anderson started sewing at age 5, taught by her mother and grandmother.

There was a Singer treadle sewing machine in her bedroom that she learned how to use as a girl.

"It was probably a decoration. And I said, enough of that. So I opened it up," Anderson remembers.

She made most of her own clothing in high school, including prom dresses. She sewed her own wedding dress, and after her two daughters were born, made their clothes "until it wasn't cool anymore to have mom's homemade fashions."

Anderson did sewing to help pay for her college and seminary education, and has had home-based businesses at different times throughout her life.

She had to say good-bye to a thriving home-based business when she moved to Hudson recently.

"It's been a hobby. It's been a passion. It's been a lifeline for me when I needed it," Anderson says of tailoring. "I just feel really, really blessed to be able to hang a shingle now and call it my business. This is my first attempt at bringing my business out of my home and having a storefront."

She expects alterations and repairs to make up the majority of her business.

"Zippers wear out. Zippers break. People buy jeans that come in one length, so they have to be hemmed," she explains.

"Clothes are expensive. People want to repair them. Or we have favorite clothes. Sometimes they are almost to the bare threads, and people can't throw them away."

Anderson also looks forward to doing dressmaking, custom sewing, and design and redesign work.

"I have done everything that can be done with a sewing machine, from baby clothes to repairing icehouses made out of canvas to re-upholstering boats," she says.

The dressmaking isn't limited to women's dresses. She has experience making all kinds of clothing from scratch, including men's tailored shirts and suits, children's clothing and wedding dresses.

"If someone is interested in designing their own wedding or prom gown, that's something that we could sit down and work on together," she says.

Anderson also offers wardrobe planning services. If someone wants help coordinating their wardrobe, she can provide it.

"It's just trying to make the wardrobe united and workable," she says. "It's making sure you can wear everything in your closet and don't have extras, things that you haven't worn for five years."

She reads about fashions to stay current with trends, and gets help from her daughters Katy Endres of St. Paul and Kirsten Anderson of Center City, Minn.

The hours for Deborah's Custom Sewing & Alterations are 10 a.m.-6:30 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 7 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday, and 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Saturday.

The business can be contacted by telephone at (715) 386-5225 or by email at

Randy Hanson

Randy Hanson has reported for the Star-Observer since 1997. He came to Hudson after 11 years with the Inter-County Leader at Frederic, and eight years of teaching social studies. He’s a graduate of UW-Eau Claire.

(715) 426-1066