I recently went on a tour of Milwaukee's very own Cream City Ribbon and I am more than anxious to share my experience!
Broadway Paper and Cream City Ribbon have a very intimate connection. The owner of Cream City Ribbon, Lorette Russenberger, bought her business in 1988 and was located at 181 N. Broadway, just a few doors down the street from Broadway Paper's current location.
Lorette decided to open Broadway Paper as an outlet to sell her ribbon in a retail environment. Her original intention was to open as a seasonal store during Christmas of 1988, but the response was so great, she kept it open year-round. It was only the second retail store located in the Third Ward and they developed a loyal following of customers.
In 1996, Linda sold the store and moved her production facility to a larger historic cream brick building close to Milwaukee's downtown. The rest is pretty much history... onto my tour!
Spools of cotton yarn are used to make Cream City ribbon. Each ½” wide ribbon is composed of approximately 52 strands of cotton yarn running parallel to one another.
The yarn is then put into the glue tank and the glue is used to bond the yarn together. This gives it it's curling and shredding capability.
The ribbon drying.
Cream City ribbon is produced from renewable, biodegradable cotton fiber, grown and processed responsibly in the USA with water based dyes and without chlorine bleaches. All of the inks that is used are soy based and non-toxic.
Cream City Ribbon is currently the only U.S. manufacturer of this unique product. Trademarked in 1995, Cream City Ribbon is the only environmentally friendly, American made ribbon on the market today.
Broadway Paper and Cream City Ribbon have lost touch a little bit over the recent years, but believe you me... the connection has been rekindled and I'm pretty sure you'll be seeing a lot more of their ribbon around here soon.