KENTWOOD, Mich. (WZZM) - Weathervane-making started off as a hobby for Debra Kelch.
"We want something that holds up good, so when you put it in your yard, your roof top, you can go out and four or five years later, it's going to look exactly like the day you put it out," said Kelch.
She started by selling the weathervanes she made at craft shows in the 1990's. "They actually did very well, so we knew we were on to something," continued Kelch. So she and her family took a chance. She quit her job as a machine builder at Steelcase and starting making more weather vanes in her barn, selling them at local shops.
As the business grew, the family moved it out of the barn, and into their own little factory in 2007, calling it EZ Vane Inc. "We make everything right here. We do a three step coating process which is what makes our weather vanes so durable."
There are only seven employees at EZ Vane and most of them have the last name Kelch. "The unique thing about our weather vanes is all the tops are interchangeable." They make over 150 designs, and the collegiate designs are only licensed to EZ Vane. "We sell all over the country, (and) all over the world."
Kelch credits attention to detail and good customer service for the company's great success and growth every year. "Every weathervane that goes out of here needs to be the highest quality," catching the attention of bigger companies, some international, but the Kelches have turned down every offer to buy them out.
"We plan to stay right here...it's our community."
Buy one of their weather vanes here: www.ezvane.com