Sunday, October 1, 2023

Pink Hillbilly Boutique Opening Its First Storefront August 13 in York County

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YORK-The owners of Dirty Quads Motorsports and Graphics in York County are gearing up to open a new business.

Cindi and Mike Strickland first opened Dirty Quads Motorsports and Graphics in Village Square at Kiln Creek shopping center in November 2021. Initially, Cindi Strickland operated her embroidery, screen print, vinyl, and graphics home-based company, Pink Hillbilly, from the shop, but soon ran out of space. Recently, she decided to open a storefront solely dedicated to showcasing her creations. She found the perfect space nestled between Walker’s Martial Arts and All For U Salon in the York Stores shopping center on George Washington Memorial Highway in Grafton.

Strickland studied interior design in college and developed her natural talent in graphic design along the way, but her niche in clothing personalization was ignited by chance.

“A friend of mine gave me my first sewing machine on September 11, 2001,” said Strickland. “I bought my first embroidery machine a few years later, but I didn’t have anyone to teach me how to use it, so I learned slowly, by trial and error. It all started with my aprons. I started making them in 2009. While we were living in Chicago, there was a famous chocolate shop that asked me to start selling aprons at their store and from that I began selling to different boutiques in the city.”

From Chicago, the couple moved to Tennessee, where Strickland stumbled across screen-printing equipment through an acquaintance at their church.

“Three months after I purchased the equipment, Mike got transferred again,” said Strickland. “We then moved back to Chicago, then to Raleigh, and then to Colorado.”

The mother of four made good use of her time and taught herself the art of screen printing over the next three years. She and a friend officially established Pink Hillbilly in 2012, though Strickland is now the sole owner.

“I have a large clientele across the country and am also getting ready to open a storefront in Colorado,” said Strickland. “Locally, we work with a lot of sports teams like Grafton Tabb Youth Football League and also help small businesses build their brands. Right now, I’m working with a local company that’s building a clothing line, so we’ve been working with them on their printing. We do all of our work in-house.”

Strickland has also done work for Woodside and Bethel high schools and one of her biggest clients is Bennett Air Conditioning.

“I’ve worked on their employee uniforms, car wraps, Christmas gifts, and things of that nature,” she said.

Strickland described the boutique side of Pink Hillbilly as having something for everyone.

“It’s not your typical ‘girly’ boutique,” said Strickland. “While we have a few ‘girly’ items, the vibe we’re going for is geared toward having trendy items for high school kids that want to represent their schools. We’ll be selling items like sweatshirts, T-shirts, collared shirts, jewelry, handbags, for example, and we’ll also have a section dedicated to Virginia and Yorktown.”

The Pink Hillbilly is preparing for what has historically been the company’s busiest time of the year.

“We get slammed when football season begins,” said Strickland. “That’s one of the reasons we decided to open a storefront in Colorado, too. We realized that we were spending thousands of dollars on shipping to Colorado, so it just made sense. We’re excited about what lies ahead.”

Pink Hillbilly will open for business on August 13. The new store is located at 5317 George Washington Memorial Highway in the space where Your Southern Heart Boutique was formerly located. Hours of operation will be from 10am to 6pm Monday to Saturday. For more information, call 757-375-2733 or visit the shop’s website or Facebook page.

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