Vermont Country Store buys Mountain Weavers
MANCHESTER — The Vermont Country Store has purchased Mountain Weavers of Dorset to make sure its popular handcrafted table linens remain a staple of its catalog.
In addition, The Vermont Country Store will be the exclusive seller of Mountain Weave products.
Long-time Mountain Weavers owners David and Bonnie Rihm of Dorset are looking to retire, prompting The Vermont Country Store to do something it's done a few times in the past — purchase a company that makes a prized product to ensure it stays available to customers.
"We've offered Mountain Weavers products for decades, and their tablecloths and napkins have long been among our customers' favorites," said Eliot Orton, Proprietor of The Vermont Country Store. "In many ways, Mountain Weavers is very similar to us - family owned, based in Vermont, and offering high-quality, unique, and time-honored products. It's important to the Rihms and to my family that these heirloom linens can continue to be made the same way they have for generations."
Mountain Weavers has become part of The Vermont Country Store's existing operations, which is entirely located in Vermont.
Orton said all seven current employees of the Mountain Weavers operation have become employees of The Vermont Country Store, but will continue to work from the Dorset facility.
"Everyone of them are going to stay on," Orton said. "They all seem really excited about that."
The transition began earlier in 2019.
"We began work earlier this year to ensure a smooth transition for Mountain Weavers and their employees," said Jim Hall, CEO of The Vermont Country Store. "We are looking forward to working with them to bring their products to a growing number of customers."
Orton said The Vermont Country Store plans to expand the Mountain Weavers offerings with new patterns and expand and grow the products.
Orton said Mountain Weavers products have been part of The Vermont Country Store's offerings since the mid-1970s dating back to his dad and grandfather's days.
He said they've known for a long time that if the Rihms ever wanted to get out of business, the Ortons wanted to make sure they could continue to offer their products.
"We've had the conversation with them going back probably 30 years now," Orton said. "It's important to us and important to our customers. It just made sense for us to continue to make it and to carry it."
Orton said this isn't the first time The Vermont Country Store has purchased a supplier to continue a product's offerings.
He said one example came in the late 1970s when the old Cross Cracker Company of Montpelier went out of business and was sold to a New Hampshire company. But they didn't make it so the Orton's bought it.
And they still sell the Vermont Common Cracker.
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