WILDER DRY GOODS
Words: Renée Girard / Photos: Janine Kropla
On a chilly winter's afternoon, we met with Brendon Friesen from Wilder Dry Goods to kick off an exciting new series for us, A Maker's Tools. A series that highlights the tools that play a significant role in the making process. Ones, that makers could not live without. Brendon worded it perfectly, "You're only as good as the tools you have." Here are a few (as there were many) that Brendon was kind enough to give us each their story.
1. TOOLING HAMMER
Made from raw, un-tanned cow hide, this is a tool that holds such character with a story behind it that none of us could even dream of. Brendon has had this little guy since the beginning of his Wilder days. The one and only Frank Ostrowski was the original owner, and made sure to share many words of wisdom with Brendon before parting ways. Some of those being, “Make belts. There’s money in belts.”
2. THE EASTMAN BLUE STREAK- Reciprocating fabric knife
It’s the cat meow, according to industry standards. This machine allows inches of thick canvases to be cut all at once. “You have to choose ways of speeding up the process that doesn’t diminish quality.” Luckily, having been gifted this tool; the Wilder boys were able to do just that. It was a vital step in the right direction of becoming more efficient.
3. OLD NEW YORK FOOT PRESS-
Perhaps one of his oldest, but most cherished tools. It allows him to set grommets and rivets. Brendon purchased the foot press alongside his first sewing machine, from a kind-hearted gentleman by the name of Ken. A man who made a living making tents, and inspired him to continue his craft.