Auglaize Broderie is a multigenerational family business

WAPAKONETA — The next time you see a local athlete wearing a fancy lettered jacket or local firefighters with a logo-adorned shirt, it could be the product of a local family’s embroidery business.

Brian Bailey, owner of Auglaize Embroidery and associated business Bailey’s Equipment and Apparel, said that although he took ownership of Auglaize Embroidery in 2021, the business is a family business in its own right which includes its wife, parents and other relatives.

“We purchased Auglaize Embroidery in March 2021, but it’s one of Wapakoneta’s oldest embroidery designs,” Bailey said.

The business, located at 4 N. Wood St., Wapakoneta, was originally founded by two of Bailey’s uncles in 1999. When the duo decided to retire in 2021, Bailey purchased the business so to carry on the family tradition.

Now there are 11 employees between the two companies, including his mother, father and wife.

“We got a lot of support from our uncles and all of our family,” he said.

The company specializes in embroidered apparel, including shirts for local fire and police departments as well as varsity jackets for local high schools. Client high schools include Bath, Elida, Lima Senior and Wapakoneta.

“At Bailey’s, our primary customers are police and fire departments,” he said. “Here (at Auglaize Broderie), we work with a lot of companies in Wapakoneta. With the schools, we make letterman jackets, and we also do a lot of screen printing.

In addition to running the two businesses, Bailey works as a full-time firefighter with the Shawnee Township Fire Department, a job he has had for 18 years after starting as a cadet at age 15 with the department. Cridersville fire.

Staff working on embroidery at both companies are highly experienced, Bailey noted, with an average tenure of at least 15 years.

Bailey said he had to teach himself the art of embroidery as he became more involved in the businesses.

“It’s really on-the-job training. I was self-taught. I learned to do it on my own, operating the machines, watching YouTube videos,” he said. “It’s a lot of trial and error.”

The companies do not use hand embroideries, but rather fully automated, computer-assisted sewing machines.

Bailey said the machines provide a high level of detail, as well as a safer environment for workers, who don’t have to worry too much about sticking their fingers with a needle.

Being able to continue the family business started by his uncles has been an emotional journey for Bailey, who said it makes him proud to carry on the family tradition and provide jobs locally.

“To enlarge it gives me a lot of joy. To expand it beyond what they started brings me a lot of joy,” Bailey said. “(My uncles) wanted to retire, the business needed a new owner, otherwise it would close. I just walked in at the right time one day. It gives me joy to continue their legacy.

Liza Mowry prepared a piece of vinyl for a Valentine’s Day sweatshirt she recently made at Auglaize Embroidery in Wapakoneta.

Aaron Garcia prepares settings on the automatic screen printing press at Auglaize Embroidery in Wapakoneta.

Aaron Garcia demonstrates the automatic screen printing press at Auglaize Embroidery in Wapakoneta.

The embroidery machines are lined up and ready at Auglaize Broderie in Wapakoneta.

Products are displayed inside the Auglaize Broderie showroom in Wapakoneta.

Products are displayed inside the Auglaize Broderie showroom in Wapakoneta.

Contact Jeff Forward at 567-242-0391.