Utah woman sews success with her own online quilt shop

Dec 5, 2021, 11:38 PM | Updated: 11:41 pm

LEHI, UtahThe patchwork of life can form unpredictable patterns. For one Utah County woman, life felt like it was all leading up to one critical moment.

“My mom taught me to sew when I was seven,” Adana Manookin said with a laugh while folding pieces of fabric. “She let me make all the doll clothes I wanted, so my dolls had quite the wardrobe.”

Manookin studied clothing and fashion in college, with big dreams of becoming a designer.

“Managing an institutional laundry is what I ended up doing,” she said.

The future didn’t quite knit together how she planned.

“I gave up my corporate job with benefits and insurance,” Manookin said.

She’d saved up enough to take the leap.

After decades working for someone else, Manookin decided to strike out on her own.

“I take a notebook with me when I go to other shops, and I would take notes about things that I liked.”

She researched. She planned. All with the goal of opening her own quilting shop.

“I started looking for buildings and stuff,” Manookin said. “I had one all picked out on Lehi Main Street.”

Then, the dream unraveled.

“The day I called about it, they said ‘Oh, we just went under contract,'” Manookin said. “I felt like someone had punched me. I was like no, it was the perfect spot.”

That’s how Manookin found herself folding fabric in a spare bedroom of her home, kept company by her business partners Daisy and Emma, two small dogs who take a strong interest in keeping an eye on her.

Manookin says her prepackaged bundles have proven to be big sellers. Manookin hoped to open a shop on Lehi's Main Street, but her plans fell through. Manookin's dogs Daisy and Emma keep her company while she works in a spare bedroom. Manookin's website ships fabric all around the world.

She opened her own online business called “Sweet Daisy Quilt Shoppe.” But the timing felt like her plans were coming apart by the seams. Just a couple of months after she started, the pandemic hit.

“What if now, you know, if the whole economy’s going south?” Manookin asked, remembering the worries that ran through her mind. “What if people stop quilting? What if.”

“What if” went just her way. Sales exploded.

“In March of that year, they doubled,” Manookin said. “For six months in a row, it just kept doubling.”

She thinks the pandemic worked in her favor, as people were looking for activities they could work on at home.

Packing pre-matched bundles of fabric became a global enterprise.

“I ship a lot to Canada, and for some reason, Australia is a really popular place to ship to,” Manookin said.

From clothes for dolls, to cloth delivered down under, Manookin’s weaved a tale of triumph — and says it’s never too late to find a way to stitch together a life doing what you love.

“If I had to make the same decision over again, hopefully I would’ve made it sooner,” she said

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Utah woman sews success with her own online quilt shop