Made in the Valley: Rugged Heart

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A Fresno mom's business takes off across the country (KFSN)

The buzzing of the jig saw and the smell of fresh sawdust is a familiar sight inside Jennifer Curtis' garage.

"I love cutting, you kind of get addicted to it," Curtis said.

The Fresno mom is a maker, a population of people that make goods by hand. She owns Rugged Heart, an online business making wooden signs. She started the company after her job came to an end. "I needed something to be creative and just get out there and help bring in income," Curtis said.

So she took a leap of faith with power tools. "I was afraid at first to work with power tools," Curtis said. "I got in my head, I couldn't do it and maybe a guy does it better and then I started thinking I can be handy and I can learn how to use a tool."

Jennifer was able to get some help from her dad to learn wood making and by trial and error, she got better every time. Then she shared her creations online. "It's so much easier to get the word out," according to Curtis.

"You use a simple hash tag and they find your stuff and like your page or you follow you and what to see what you're doing."

Jennifer has been able to use social media to expose her Fresno business to the valley and the country.

"I might never get the chance to go to Maryland or Alabama, but on of my signs did," Curtis said. "So I love seeing that."
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