Owner and founder of G&M Sportswear, Marilyn Frank (nee VanEvery) first opened her doors in October of 1995. Located at 583 Mohawk Road, between First and Second Line, G&M Sportswear has anything you need: from work wear, work boots, to team shirts, team shorts and embroidery and digitizing items. Digitizing items include various logos, which can be put on such products as memory sticks.
Open for 19 years now, G&M Sportswear has customers from all over, from as far East as Quebec and as far south as Wisconsin. Asked what she sells the most, Frank explained, “Mostly promotional items, such as bracelets, key chains, water bottles, embroidered scarves, things like that.” Frank does her own sewing of some items and also has her own embroidery machine right in her store.
She has done a lot of promotional items for the Oneida Nation Museum in Wisconsin, ‘mostly toques, hats, scarves and golf shirts,’ said Frank.
Frank also sews for custom orders. “No order is too big or too small,” explained Frank. You can also find her at Pow Wows, and some sporting events.
Frank spoke a bit of why she decided to own her own business. “It was really my mom’s dream,” said Frank, “but she passed away four months before the store opened.” Despite this tragedy, Frank persevered and opened the store in honour of her mom and has worked extremely hard admitting, “It’s been a struggle ever since,” in keeping the store open while having suffered numerous other losses since then. “Some people get consumed in negative things like drugs or alcohol as a means to cope with the loss of a loved one,” explained Frank, “but I got consumed in sewing. It’s all I did after my mom and brothers passed away.” Yet Frank stayed determined to keep her business open and was proud to say she now has her loan paid off, even if it meant, ‘coming in at 6 am and not leaving the shop until 10 pm.’
When G&M Sportswear first opened back in 1995, Frank went from sewing tank tops, t-shirts, baby outfits and eventually graduated to embroidering such items as hats and baby blankets. “People would come in and want to have their baby blankets embroidered with the babies name and birth weight, so that was a big selling item,” said Frank.
G&M Sportswear is tax-free and has a lot of clothing items and footwear you can find at bigger chain stores like Mark’s Work Warehouse. G&M’s is located at 583 Mohawk Road and you can also reach them for more information at 519-445-0215.