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Local couple who owns online business with large international customer base opens store in east Idaho

Small Business Spotlight

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Photo courtesy Amberlee Murdock

UCON — If you’re a fan of Minky fabric, then you may be familiar with Scott and Tiffani Duff.

Tiffani began making and selling custom-made Minky products about 10 years ago. Her online business, Sometimes I Sew Minky Designs, has a global footprint with tens of thousands of followers on Facebook.

But on Saturday, she and her husband, Scott, opened a retail location under a new name. About 100 people attended the grand opening of The Minky Supply Company in Ucon.

“We haven’t ever opened (a shop) to the public before,” Tiffani tells EastIdahoNews.com. “Opening day was fun and a little hectic.”

Scott and Tiffani worked with Randy Waters at SVN High Desert Commercial and Century 21 High Desert in Idaho Falls to lease the 3,500-square-foot space.

The Minky Supply Company offers the widest variety of Minky available in eastern Idaho, Tiffani says. Their inventory includes blankets of all sizes, pillowcases, taggies, which are sensory items for babies. Watch Tiffani make a taggie in the video above. Other items include tooth fairy pillows, travel pillows and throw pillows for a couch, king and queen size comforters, crib sheets, and anything else bedding-related.

“It’s all about that snuggle factor. Minky is nice and warm and it’s a very luxurious fabric,” Tiffani says.

Minky is also very durable, according to Scott.

People of all ages love it, says Tiffani, including men.

“Ever since you were a child, you liked stuff animals because they were soft and cuddly. As people, we don’t ever lose that (desire to snuggle something soft),” Scott says. “There are so many different textures, colors, and styles now that it really appeals to a broad range of people.”

Blankets, by far, are the most popular item, and they have everything from a black-and-white skull and crossbones pattern for men to a pink rose pattern with sparkles for women.

“These are not inexpensive blankets, so when you spend the money, you want to make sure they’re durable and will last a long time, which they do, but you also want to make sure it’s exactly what you want,” Scott says.

Swatches inside their store showcase what they have in stock, but Tiffani and her employees can custom-make any blanket with the pattern or image of your choice.

Facebook photo

Tiffani got her start doing craft fairs in 2007. She recalls making Christmas stockings for a craft fair at Bonneville High School. It wasn’t very profitable because of the time it took to make them. Churning out Minky pillowcases was much more profitable and her interest grew from there. She made pillows for her daughters the following Christmas and they were a hit.

“I like the social aspect of craft fairs — the oohs and ahhs,” she says. “I liked how much my kids liked the fabric. Every sleepover they were taking those pillows with them.”

The idea later grew into a business venture that began in the basement of her home and eventually an office on 17th Street in Ammon. About six months ago, the Duffs began moving into the space at 3170 East 113 North, Ste. 1A.

Their clientele extends across the globe to Australia, England, Canada and a dozen other countries. Most of the company’s sales come from out of state, and now that they have a retail location in eastern Idaho, they’re hoping to capitalize on the local market.

Many of the customers who visit The Minky Supply Company want to learn how to make their own blanket, Tiffani says, and that’s why she started teaching classes every Saturday for anyone who is interested.

“As we’ve done different shows around the region, I’ve found that Idaho Falls and Rexburg particularly, it’s a bunch of makers,” Tiffani says. “They go to craft fairs to see what they’re going to make. So if you want to come here and learn how to make it, I’m totally good with that.”

You can reach out to The Minky Supply Company on Facebook for information about the classes.

They’re also hoping to launch some new product lines in the future and be involved in giving back to the community.

“This community has been great to us over the years with helping us grow this business. We want to be able to return that favor,” Scott says.

The Minky Supply Company will be offering Minky fabric at a discounted rate for Black Friday and all the finished products will be on sale. To make a purchase or to learn more, visit the company’s website. More information about Black Friday will be posted on The Minky Supply Company’s Facebook page.

The Minky Supply Company is off Ucon exit 315, west of Automart. It is open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday, but you can shop online anytime.

If you want your business featured in the Small Business Spotlight, email rett@eastidahonews.com. Please use “SBS” in the subject line.

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