If it hasn’t been made evident by now, we love people here at AAT! We love hearing about their stories and passions for our community, but we also love hearing about what our fellow locals do and why they do it! For example, we have some wonderful neighbors who own/manager some fantastic local businesses and serve our town tremendously by doing so! This fact is why AAT has partnered up with our good friends at B3 Glass, to bring you all “Small Business Fridays!” Each week, we’ll feature a different, local small business and talk with its owner and hear about their journey, their business in general, as well as their heart for their customers and our city.
This week, we’re joined by Tosha Kerby of Kerby Lane DIY Creative Studio. Now, Tosha’s studio is located on Mountain City HWY, right next door to a Family Dollar. The Family Dollar is a store I (Anthony Crosby) often will stop into because one, It’s close to my home, and two, it’s a Family Dollar! Therefore, I would notice the signage for the DIY business, but I would never take the time to see what it was all about. That’s where the beauty of living in a great community comes in! I would hop on social media and see multiple, smiling people sharing their positive experiences at Kerby Lane. I could tell that it was more than just a simple “craft store.” So, I knew it was time to check it out for myself, and I’m glad I ended up making that decision!”
Thank you for joining us this week, Tosha! Before we learn about how you and your family started a crafting business, can you please explain what exactly Kerby Lane DIY Creative Studio is for those who may be hearing of you for the first time? “We consider ourselves Pinterest, live! If there’s anything out there you see and want to make, we want to help bring that to life. We do workshops for making signs, centerpiece boxes, lazy Susan’s, pillows, canvases, and even furniture. We even do workshops that include making chunky-net blankets and macramé. Everything needed to create these crafts, you can purchase here, so you don’t have to come to a workshop; we try to keep our prices cheaper compared to other places, so you can get the supplies and DIY at home. We have our retail space where you can find products from other local businesses such as Sawdust and Sage, The Pink Porcupine, and Hello Wild Baby Co.”
Thank you for clarifying who you are as a business, Tosha. Now, how did you end up becoming a crafting studio owner in the first place? “I grew up in Moab, Utah. My family moved there when I was in third grade after living in Saudi Arabia prior to that; my dad was a pipe coater. I lived in Utah until I met my husband, then we moved here as he had grown up in Carlin.”
” I have always been around craftiness. It started in 4H; growing up we had to put a lot of scrapbooks together. My mom was super crafty as well; she was always scrapbooking, sign making, or doing macramé. However, the idea for the business came from the fact that I had many friends who wanted to craft but didn’t feel as if they wer very crafty. They would ask me to make them things for them. I loved to make stuff, but I knew they could be crafty as well if they learned how, so I told them I wanted to help.”
“I had a craft room in my house, but I busted out of there because I had so many different projects I wanted to do! I talked to my husband about the wild idea of getting a space, mostly for my crafting stuff but to also have workshops for people who wanted help creating crafts. Everything after that happened really fast. On October of 2017, we got the space and opened up! We both still had mining jobs at the time; however, we always had this dream of him not working at the mines. Eventually, the business grew, and we (Tosha’s family) outgrew our property out in Hamilton Stage. So, we were able to purchase a ranch out in Pine Valley (thirty-six miles past Carlin). Because the ranch keeps us busy during the Summer and the Studio always keeps us busy, my husband was able to quit his mining job. We just jumped all in and trusted in the fact that hope floats, and that’s how this whole business got started!”
That’s a great story Tosha! You and your husband must enjoy what you do, especially to commit to driving into town, from your ranch, to run the studio. What are some of your biggest motivators for coming into work every day? “Well, who doesn’t love to craft? It’s always been one of my passions, and now it’s my job! Besides that, it’s the people. People come in, and they’re happy, they’re laughing even sometimes drinking! We’re the escape for many people. Stress stays at the door, so you don’t have those negative vibes when you come into work as some jobs have. It blows my mind that I get to wake up every morning and meet new people and help them find their inner craftiness. Plus, it smells amazing in here!”
Tosha, what do you think separates Kerby Lane from a typical craft store? What do your customers celebrate the most about your business? “Anybody can go to a store and buy a sign, but I think it brings a whole other meaning when you can say you made your sign! Not only do you get the sign, but you also have the two-three hours’ worth of memories of making it with your spouse or friends. We’re not doing anything new; there’s not anything in the studio you can’t practically buy online or anywhere else. However, you can’t go out and buy the experience and pride of making something yourself, online.”
Finally, as a Utah girl, what are your thoughts on Elko? How do you and your family plan on keeping Kerby Lane DIY Creative Studio involved in the community? “I love it! I love that we get both dynamics of the big and small-town feel, here. Every time someone needs help, there’s always this big wave of people looking to offer support. When we first moved here in 2011, it took me a minute to actually dive into the community, but I got wrapped up in it; I feel like this is my hometown now, and I believe I’m here for a reason.”
“We are here to try and provide for the community. So, we open for a lot of events like birthday parties, bridal showers, and bachelorette parties. We try to incorporate many things found within the community. I like to keep things local while trying to support other local small businesses, so if someone is looking for a personalized gift, then please come seek us out.”
You can stay caught up on everything going on around here at AAT by checking out our “Stay Connected” page! Make sure you never miss a feature!
See you around, Elko!