Albion woman’s basket creations featured in national magazine

Photo by Tom Rivers: Laurie Kemler, owner of Laura Loxley in Albion, is pictured with some of the vintage coiled-rope baskets she makes.

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 3 October 2018 at 1:32 pm

ALBION – Laura Kemler was teaching an art class over the summer at Forrestel Farm in Medina, when she started dabbling with tie-dye and fabric manipulation. Kemler wanted to do more than the typical tie-dyed T-shirts for the students.

She started experimenting with different fabrics. She found she enjoyed tie-dying cotton ropes, and turning them into colorful baskets.

The baskets are popular to store envelopes and stationary. Kemler makes them in a variety of colors and themes.

“It’s bringing back those iconic items that your grandma had that you love,” Kemler said.

The baskets have been so popular that Kemler turned it into a business about three years ago. This month her baskets are featured in a national magazine, the 45th anniversary issue of Old House Journal. Her baskets get praise on page 11 of the October issue. The magazine did a spread on “clever” American-made items used for storage.

Kemler said the unexpected attention has given the business a boost. She had been looking to expand anyway. She is currently in the Microenterprise Assistance Program through the Orleans Economic Development Agency, researching how to best expand her business. She is looking to buy more supplies in bulk and automate some of the work.

She hopes to move the operation out of her home to a commercial site. She would love to hire single mothers to help make the baskets, and perhaps other products. She would cater to the schedule of a single mom.

Kemler named her business, Laura Loxley, because she likes the English-sounding name of Loxley. She sells most of her baskets for $10 to $100 through Etsy.

For more on Laura Loxley, click here.

Return to top