by Ardeana Hamlin
of The Weekly Staff
BANGOR — It is a fact universally acknowledged that those in possession of items of clothing they love and don’t want to part with, eventually will find themselves in need of a seamstress who can mend a seam, replace a button or put in a new zipper. In which case, those persons can turn to Katie Landry, owner of Happy Hens Sewing Co. “We all have clothes we love, that get worn, seams that let go — but we don’t have to get rid of it, it can be mended,” Landry said.
She chose the name Happy Hens for her business because she likes the pleasant sound of the two words placed together. “It sounds retro and fun,” she said.
Although Landry’s business is a little more than a month old, she has been sewing since she was child. “I have always sewn,” said Landry. “My mom taught me. My grandmother was a home economics teacher. I made my first dress when I was twelve, and I sew for my daughters.”
Happy Hens Sewing Co. differs from a traditional sewing and alterations business in that Landry goes to her customers, by appointment, assesses the work that needs to be done, brings the garment to her home in Bangor, does the repairs, then returns the garment to its owner.
“I arranged to meet a woman in the Hannaford parking lot, once, and she gave me a coat with a broken zipper to be fixed,” Landry said. Going to her customers, instead of the other way around, is convenient for those with busy schedules, she said.
The cost of Happy Hen sewing services is determined by the amount of time the job requires and the complexity of the job, though general alterations and repairs range in cost from $10 to $20.
Landry’s list of sewing services includes, but not limited to, hemming, mending, replacing broken zippers and sewing on buttons. She will work on men’s, women’s and children’s clothing.
Landry said she also will take on special projects, especially unusual ones. She is working on a flag that will bear a family crest and be flown at a camp, and recently she made a Harley Quinn cartoon character costume that one of her clients will wear to a comics convention in Portland. She also will sew Halloween and Christmas costumes.
The only thing not in Landry’s sewing repertoire is wedding gowns, prom gowns or other formal wear.
Landry uses a Husqvarna C-20 machine and sews in a snug room on the third floor of her house where her work space and the tools of her stitching trade are neatly and conveniently arranged.
“It’s not a fancy machine, but it gets the job done,” she said.
Most jobs, she said, can be completed within a week, sometimes sooner, depending on complexity.
Landry, whose father is an entrepreneur and always worked for himself, said she likes the freedom of owning her own business, and that she gets direct results from hard work.
“Sewing is practical and creative, and at the same time what you create will be used and, hopefully, loved. Sewing takes something old and makes it better,” she said.
Landry schedules appointments 5:30-8 p.m. Monday through Friday, anytime Saturdays and Sundays. For information, call her at 907-0874, email email@example.com, or find the business on Facebook.