Heartland celebrates 60 years of selling handwoven rugs

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AVA, Ill. (KFVS) — A Heartland company is celebrating its 60th anniversary this weekend.

The Ava Craft Center 2.0 SEMO brought people in to enjoy food, drink, good conversation, and to see what the company had to offer.

They have been in business since 1962 and specialize in rag rugs from recycled fabrics made from antique looms.

The company started in Ava, Illinois over four generations.

“It’s very exciting,” said Lorri Yount, owner of the Ava Craft Center. “We are happy to share the art of weaving and the history of weaving, so one of our goals here today is to share the history of these looms, how they started and how they came about. had an impact on small communities and what they have meant through the ages.

Yount said their business has survived many challenges over the past six decades and even changed location from Ava, Illinois to Burfordville, Missouri.

“Every place we went, whether it was in Illinois or here, we were placed in a small community,” Yount said. “When you’re in a community it can be in the tough times but when you’re in a small community people bond and even in Illinois our storefront isn’t there at the moment even people from Illinois always come here and support us.

Yount said she appreciates the customer support they’ve had over the many years.

“The support from your friends and family and those around you from your past know it’s overwhelming,” Yount said. “It’s just a great feeling that you have so much support.”

Nancy Amsden made the trip to visit the employees during their 60th birthday celebration. She said it’s been great to see this business survive and thrive over the years.

“You see very few companies that have been through everything this family has been through,” Amsden said. “And to keep it alive and the generations alive and interested. It’s an ancient profession that comes from so far away, so many years ago.

The Ava Craft Center took several people on the trip from various states across the country.

“I personally didn’t realize how much reach our little page had,” Yount said. “We had people from Indiana, Illinois and surrounding areas coming to our event today. Even for our rug weaving class, I had a rug weaver from New York, a rug weaver from Georgia. People have come from afar to come and share this business with us.

The owners even invited historians of the antique loom as special guests from Texas to talk to guests about the trade at the event.

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