New Britain embroidery shop, formerly home-based, now in former barbershop space

Published on Thursday, 6 February 2020 18:34
Written by Ciara Hooks


NEW BRITAIN - Mayor Erin Stewart hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday afternoon at NCM Embroidery and Sportswear, 426 S. Main St.

“We’re really excited that Nancy moved the business to this location a little bit more prominent than being in her house,” said Stewart. “But that’s how you grow.”

NCM Embroidery and Sportswear is owned by Nancy Mariano, who has been running the business in her home for the past 10 years. She offers custom embroidery, screen printing and more on items including shirts, jackets and hats.

“We (she and her husband, Joe) bought this house in 1969 and he took the first three rooms and turned it into a barbershop,” said Nancy Mariano.

Joe Mariano operated his barbershop there for over 50 years. He died in May 2019.

“I thought, since we owned the whole place, I’d try it out,” said Mariano. She said the barber chairs, sink and waiting-room furniture were removed.

Mariano opened NCM in November 2019, has been running the shop by herself and has a steady stream of regular customers - from businesses to schools to police.

“I do projects for New Britain, Bristol, West Hartford, Berlin, and all the bus companies,” said Mariano. “This guy here (a customer named Jordan) keeps bringing me hats. I do a lot of hats for him. I do the Bees hats for the New Britain Bees and (hats for) the Junior Canes.”

She puts logos or whatever the customer requests on the items. Each project’s time depends on the size of the logo. Some projects take her 16 minutes, others 22 or 30 or maybe more. All the details are programmed in her embroidery machine.

“We’re thrilled she offers another service that’s definitely needed in the City of New Britain,” said Bill Carroll. “And Nancy’s personal story about her emigrating from Italy and doing this all her life and then the transition from being a seamstress and working with her hands going to computerized machinery is pretty cool.”

Nancy came to the U.S. from Italy when she was 11 years old. She learned to be a seamstress from her mother and aunts as a young girl. The family made its own clothes growing up in New Britain.

“I encourage everyone to come down and check it out. If you have specialty needs especially when it comes to embroidering her work speaks for itself. It’s beautiful and nicely done and her attention to detail is very important to,” said Stewart.

For more information, contact Mariano at 860-223-1589.

Ciara Hooks can be reached at 860-801-5082 or

Posted in New Britain Herald, Business, New Britain on Thursday, 6 February 2020 18:34. Updated: Thursday, 6 February 2020 18:36.