In the spring of 1976, Randy Smith got a big opportunity – Richard Sweet, creator of Marüshka and Randy’s former art teacher, asked him to drive around Michigan and sell the company’s stretched fabric prints.
“I had reconnected with Dick over the winter of 1975 when I was helping remodel Dick and Mary’s cottage in (Grand Haven’s) Highland Park,” Smith said. “That next spring, Dick knew that I was interested in the business and gave me the opportunity to try to sell the smaller stretched prints all over Michigan. I drove around in my red Ford Torino station wagon and sold them out of my car. A Petoskey location was the first store to sign a deal with us.”