Holly Aiken Bags and Stitch retail store is leaving Raleigh

Stitch is leaving downtown Raleigh.
Stitch is leaving downtown Raleigh.

Holly Aiken Bags and its retail showroom Stitch, which opened in Raleigh almost 15 years ago, is moving to the coast.

Aiken, an N.C. State School of Design graduate, made the announcement on Facebook Friday. The whole operation — manufacturing and retail shop — is moving to the Wilmington area, near the Intracoastal Waterway at the Wrightsville Beach Drawbridge.

“It’s been a hard decision,” Aiken said in a phone interview Friday afternoon. “But (Wilmington) is where I live and where I have been living. My daughter is 3 now and my family is here, so it’s just been getting harder and harder to commute. So we decided to move it all here and hope for the best.

“I hope everyone still remembers us in Raleigh and comes to see us in Wilmington,” she said.

Stitch first opened on West North Street in the Glenwood South district near downtown in 2004, selling distinctive vinyl purses, totes and accessories. The store moved to its current location at the corner of Hargett and Wilmington streets in 2008.

“We’re going to miss Raleigh a ton,” Aiken said. “Raleigh has been so supportive of us for years. But the time came that we needed to make a change.”

Aiken said current Raleigh employees are settled here and will not make the move to the coast, but she will do some work remotely with Raleigh employees, and she’s looking for new people in Wilmington.

“I don’t plan to change anything about the business except where we’re located to do it,” Aiken said. “The company isn’t downsizing or anything. We’re hoping to continue to grow it.”

Right now, everything in the Raleigh Stitch store — and everything online — is 30 percent off. That includes custom orders and the sale lasts through March 10.

Aiken said the store should be open at least another week after the sale ends on March 10.

Brooke Cain is a North Carolina native who has worked at The News & Observer for more than 20 years. She writes about TV and local media for the Happiness is a Warm TV blog, and answers CuriousNC questions for readers.