Miriam Mades

Founder of AlterKnit

Miriam Mades is a successful entrepreneur based in New York City. In 2003, Miriam opened Knit New York, the first cafe and knitting store. Initially, they offered custom knitting and finishing on hand-knitted items and eventually expanded to create AlterKnit New York online to reach customers nationwide. After launching her website, the company received a huge response. They noticed a gap in the market for niche repairs in New York and beyond for fibers such as cashmere with moth damage. Miriam decided to establish a company that provides high-quality reknitting and reweaving services on ready-to-wear garments. Over the years, people from different parts of the world have sent her clothes for restoration.

Unlike tailors or dry cleaners who don’t have the skills, time, or resources to carry out specialized repairs on garments, AlterKnit New York was established to address the gap in the market and provide the finest reweaving and reknitting services in the nation.
Miriam Mades’ passion for her work and the level of preparation she and her team put into each repair are some of the reasons why the company has grown into the premier restoration company..

The team of AlterKnit has over 30 years of combined experience in repairing various types of garments. The company’s experts are able to restore damaged areas with remarkable results. To guarantee that the company’s clients get the best possible outcomes, all of the work is done manually by the team.

The team of AlterKnit is skilled at repairing various types of garments using the original design and pattern. No other company can match the company’s results. AlterKnit takes on any challenge and provides its clients with immediate notification if it cannot fix their items. Some of the company’s specializations include repairing damaged clothing caused by insects and burns.

Apart from her skills as a skilled craftsman, Miriam Mades’ ambition sets her apart from other individuals in her field. In the future, the company is adding garment care products to further help customers maintain and care for their favorite clothing. Currently, she is focused on bringing joy to those who are looking to preserve their treasured wardrobe.

Originally from outside of Boston Miriam studied at New York University, eventually making NYC her home. In her spare time, Miriam enjoys reading, music, and walking her dog.

What is your typical day, and how do you make it productive?

6 am wake up, walk my dog, drink coffee, eat an apple, and check to see how many new orders we have for the day. I am always the first one in and the last one out. I typically get working for a few hours, then break for exercise. Then back to work. I of course, still fix holes but I prefer to do that when everyone has gone home and it’s just me, the magnifying lamp, my dog, and Audible. It’s not difficult for me to be productive because there is always something to do, always something that needs fixing. I love it!

How do you bring ideas to life?

The first thing I do is think if I can bring this idea to life by myself or if I need help. And if I do need help, who can I find asap to help me?

What’s one trend that excites you?

World Peace it’s been trending for a while.

What is one habit that helps you be productive?

I make daily lists of what needs to get done, and I keep a lot of notepads around.

What advice would you give your younger self?

Don’t think you can change anybody, But if you should think about it, certainly don’t go try and do it.

Tell us something you believe almost nobody agrees with you.

It is empirically not good to eat food while lounging in bed.

What is the one thing you repeatedly do and recommend everyone else do?

Take the risk that you are afraid will destroy your life.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business or advance in your career?

The devil is in the distractions…when you see one coming for you, refocus fast.

What is one failure in your career, how did you overcome it, and what lessons did you take away from it?

I have had many, many failures as an entrepreneur. I get back up on the horse and ride again.

What is one business idea you’re willing to give away to our readers?

I have a lot, but I can’t tell you. What if I need it?

What is one piece of software that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

We recently added a chatbot to our website. We are a small team, so I was worried that it would be a distraction and cut into productivity by being pinged all the time but the customers are really liking it. We are seeing an uptick in sales because of it, so what’s not to like!

What is the best $100 you recently spent?

They are a little over $100.00, but I recently bought these Ugg puffy clog shoes. I have been wearing them every day, and they make fun of me in the office, but I don’t care. I love them. Clearly, we don’t have a dress code!

Do you have a favorite book or podcast from which you’ve received much value?

Cheap: The High Cost of Discount Culture by Ellen Ruppel Shell

Key learnings:

  • Time is the one thing we cannot make and something we cannot truly measure.
  • It is one thing to read the soundbite. It is another to truly make decisions based on it.
  • Practice using time efficiently; the better you get at it the greater your success.