Scot Shop seeks new tailor team for letter jackets
Jose and Yolanda Hernandez have sewn various patches on most Highland Park High School jackets and uniforms for 40 years.
“I pin them; he sews them,” Yolanda explained. “And we still do alterations.”
But now the beloved couple plans to slow down to a pace closer to retirement, much to the chagrin of the Scot Shop’s Shelly Power.
The couple’s long association with Scots letter jackets began after they opened Preston Shoe and Tailor at Preston Center in 1973.
“We started getting patches coming in,” Yolanda recalled. “Parents would bring in the jackets, and we would fix them.”
They closed that shop 19 years ago and began working out of their Farmers Branch home.
“We started picking up at the Scot Shop,” Jose said.
“And delivering them to each individual house,” Yolanda finished.
“No one can believe they got that kind of service these days,” Shelly interjected.
Home deliveries ended about a year and a half ago.
“It got to where it was a lot of driving,” explained Jose, who looks younger than his 86 years.
Shelly’s sister, Laura Graham, also works at the Scot Shop. She described Jose and Yolanda as “the most loyal, hardworking, kind people I’ve ever met.”
“Joe’s been bringing us tamales on Fridays and gift baskets at Christmas,” Shelly said. “They really take care of us when we’re the ones who should really be taking better care of them.”
She emailed about their semi-retirement and “had droves of jackets coming in – as if no one else in the world could do it like they could.”
During the school year in the patch sewing business, every season is busy season.
“In August, just before the pictures for the yearbook, we’re bombarded with jackets,” Yolanda said. “There’s football, basketball, tennis, track, golf, some swimming, powerlifters—”
“And the band,” Jose added.
“We’re never going to find anyone like them,” she conceded. “But we’re working to partner with somebody because the parents are asking, ‘What are we going to do?’ We’re really going to miss them.”
“Apparently, that’s a trade that’s just dying because not many people are doing it anymore,” Jose said.
Though stepping back, Jose and Yolanda don’t plan to give up the trade entirely.
“If we retired, we’d probably die tomorrow,” she said. “We are still capable of working, and as long as we’re capable, we’ll continue working.”
“We can still do the job,” a grinning Jose said, adding, “if they want to drive out to the house.