Despite the pandemic, Port Alberni businesses are moving forward with new locations, new products and renovations.
And some innovative entrepreneurs are starting new businesses. Like 10-year-old Quinn Sayers. He has started Lil’ Brick Shirthouse, a vintage t-shirt company. He hunts down vintage heat transfers online from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s and heat presses them onto t-shirts. Quinn started the business with help from his dad Graham after he spotted the decals online. They purchased a heat press and Quinn printed his first shirt July 1. Since then, he has created more than 400 shirts, selling them next to the blueberry stand at Alberni Liquor Store on Saturdays and online.
Quinn relies on his dad’s experience to choose which retro transfers will be popular, since he wasn’t born when most of the images he prints were current.
“My dad helps pick them out from old shows he watched as a kid,” explains Quinn, who says King Kong has been popular recently.
Adult t-shirts are $35 and shirts for kids are $20. Images include rock bands, iconic movies, cartoons and TV shows. Quinn, who starts Grade 5 in September and is saving up for a computer, hopes to continue the business online throughout the year. www.lilbrickshirthouse.com.
Alberni Electric has opened a storefront location on lower Third Avenue across from Budget. The store offers electrical supplies, security system installation and monitoring, smart home devices and, as always, free consultations with certified electricians. Call 778-421-4080. Alberni Electric is online at www.albernielectric.ca or order online and pick up curbside through www.betterbuyportalberni.ca.
Coby in Color is back on 10th Avenue across from Quality Foods. Hair stylist Coby Schafer has reopened her salon-like shop in her home, along with stylist Kayla Wells. By appointment only. Call 250-731-5555 or 250-731-9418.
Animal Ark has expanded their line of Canadian pet foods including larger value bags of Canidae. They are also carrying Arcana, Lifetime, Farmina, Go! Solutions and Orijen. Find them on Facebook or call 778-421-3698. Grooming appointments are available by calling 604-379-7836.
It’s never too early to think about Christmas, especially if you are a quilter or crafter. Kismet Quilts has new Christmas prints, panels, layer cakes and jelly rolls (that’s fabric, not dessert!) in store now. They also have elastic cord used in making face masks. Check out their new online store at www.kismetquilts.com, where you can browse before you shop or order for pick up or shipping.
Staples is ready to help families get back to school, however that looks at your house. But not everyone can afford the supplies their children need, so Staples is once again collecting monetary donations for Stock the Lockers. Consider making a donation at the cashier when you check out this month. All proceeds will go to school supplies for local children in need. www.staples.ca
Teresa Bird is the Alberni Valley News publisher. E-mail your business tips to her at email@example.com.