I’m a man of simple tastes. I’m always satisfied with the best.
– Oscar Wilde
Speak with any great tailor and you will soon learn they were raised by a great tailor. Sharon Terry, the owner of Tailors On Blake, is no exception. Under her grandmother’s tutelage Sharon began sewing clothes for her Barbie dolls at a very young age, and she made her first dress when she was 12.
It is very likely that Sharon’s family has passed down sewing techniques since the dawn of thread.
“I have always loved sewing,” said Sharon, “and never expected to do anything else. I attended a great trade school back in the ’70s where I studied under an old German master tailor. For my final exam I had to make six men’s suits – beginning by measuring the men themselves.”
Sharon’s theses were masterpieces, yet very few people leap right into custom tailoring out of trade school. She honed her talent on alterations at a local custom shop for a few years, eventually realizing that it is better to make oneself a tailor than wait for someone else to. Sharon thus founded Tailors On Blake 38 years ago.
“Tailors On Blake started out small, but with time I found the specialists I need to offer virtually any tailoring service. We have two people who are strictly devoted to wedding dresses. Another two specialize in hemming pants, and their work is, to put it plainly, unbelievable. I have had one gal with me for 30 years whose repair work is without equal. Our clients often ask for her when they need another tailor’s mistake fixed!
“And I think that’s the beauty of what we offer. There are plenty of mom and pop places around town that might specialize in one or two things, but you can come to Tailors On Blake for everything from a single button to an entire wedding party.
“I especially love working with grooms and their groomsmen. A lot of young men these days aren’t accustomed to how to wear a suit well, and teaching them how to look sharp is a passion of mine. Don’t get me wrong – making sure all the bridesmaids match and look beautiful is very rewarding, and the bride always reigns supreme with her own personal seamstresses – but I do know their dresses are bound to become one and done affairs. A groomsman, on the other hand, is going to wear the suit we tailor to him for life.”
Sharon genuinely means for her clients to wear their garments forever. Whether they have lost weight or attained a certain degree of robustness, they may take their favorite suits or dresses in for alterations. Many times Sharon’s team has breathed new life into a fine suit for less than one tenth of its original price tag.
“About 12 years ago we purchased an embroidery machine,” Sharon continued. “Since then we have helped many people give one of a kind gifts to brides-to-be, graduates, newborns, and high school students proud to wear their first letterman jackets. We couldn’t have anticipated how popular our embroidery service would become during the pandemic – it’s incredibly easy to place your order to us by phone or email.
“As a nonessential business we were hit especially hard by the pandemic. But within a week of the shutdown, we got more calls requesting face masks than we could count. So we spent an entire weekend designing the best fitting mask, and during the month of April we sold nearly 1,500 of them.
“Our masks are incomparable to the mass-produced ones you would find online. They’re perfectly fitted and comfortable, made of pure cotton, and available in any fabric you could dream of. Our gentlemen clients are often relieved to find high quality masks without patterns they would be embarrassed to wear in public. We also cater to proud UofM students and Vikings and Packers and Twins fans!
“One of our embroidering specialists invented what we call ‘My Face Mask.’ If you send us a photo of yourself, we can actually print your smile right onto one of our form-fitting face masks. It’s amusing, but also a great way to show people your smile again. The world could certainly use more smiles right now!”
Tailors On Blake is still humming along like they always have for nearly four decades. Whether you’ve a special occasion on the horizon, a cherished piece of clothing that deserves new life, or wish to see how comfortable a face mask really can be, you need only visit tailor-minneapolis.com or call Sharon’s team at (952) 933-6585. You may rely entirely on mail for their work, or schedule curbside drop-off and pick-up at 5706 W 36th St in St. Louis Park.
By David Scheller