We had the good fortune of connecting with Andrew Crowe and we’ve shared our conversation below. Hi Andrew, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business? I am a recovering alcoholic and at that time I had only been sober one year. I needed something to fill the void left by my not drinking anymore. I needed to keep busy and wanted something to do where I would use my brain and my body. I talked to my dad and he suggested that I make rope doormats and sell them to make a little extra money. I was working at Walmart as a cashier and wasn’t making a lot of money so I thought that would be great. He had an old knitting machine in his garage and he told me he would give it to me and I would be able to make rope on it to make rope mats. With his help, I was able to get it running and make rope. I had an old video of how to weave rope mats from my 25 years in the rope business. That is how the business started. Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more? I started working in a rope mill when I was 7 years old. I worked with my aunt running a rope machine and she paid me out of her pocket. When I graduated from high school, I went to work at Crowe Rope in Warren Me. I was given the hourly rate of $3 an hour and my dad told me if I could do every job in the factory he would give me a raise. I spend the next 20 years learning and doing every job in the entire company except accounting, DP, and maintenance. I could run the machines, drive the forklift and manage every factory he owned. I could make any type of rope, cordage or twine and knew how to make it right. After 15 years in manufacturing I was moved into sales. I was a part of the team that grew to the company from a million dollars in sales to 35 million in sales. The more I learned the more responsibility he gave me. Eventually I was the president and sales manager. In 1995, he sold the company due to offshore competition and government regulations. We had over 600 people and 12 factories in 8 different locations in Maine at that time. I moved to Texas and got out of the rope business for about 10 years. I was a sales manager at a car dealership. When I got sober in 2008 I switched to furniture and soon became a sales manager for a privately owned furniture store. in 2010, I started making and selling rope mats while still managing a furniture store full time. I did this until 2017 when I gave up the job and devoted all my time to the mat business. Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc. Texas offers just about anything you want to do. It is a huge state. There is the coast where there are beaches, restaurants, clubs, resorts and lots of fishing. You can relax on the beach or go out on the town. There is lots of casual dining with all the native and many other types of food. There are also very high end restaurants serving up whatever it is you like to eat. You can go bay fishing, deep sea fishing for the day or overnight. You have hill country where there are many small towns with lots of Texas heritage and history. You can stay at a B&B or at a hotel probably owned by a local person from there. They have lots of lakes, swimming, tubing, water skiing, fishing and dining too. There are festivals (where I sometimes sell my rope mats) and outlets malls for whatever your taste. It is very nice country with something for everyone. The people are where the word southern hospitality comes from. So to come here for a vacation there is no shortage of whatever it is you like to do. It can be very affordable or you can get all the 5 star attention you need. Who else deserves some credit and recognition? My Dad deserves all the credit. He gave me the idea. He gave me the machine to start the business. He supported what I was doing with my life. He helped me every day with knowledge and moral support. He lived in Maine and didn’t come to Texas we did it all over the phone and the internet. Without his help I would not have been successful. My back ground is not mechanical. The oldest machine I have is 50 years old and it used to break a lot. No matter what broke he would tell me how to fix it. Where to get parts that he couldn’t make himself and how to keep going. When I was discouraged he would always tell me to keep on plugging and you will get there. November 2019 he passed suddenly at the age of 87. I miss him every day. Fortunately I have learned enough to get by and the business has grown enough so that I was able to purchase some newer machines which don’t require as much maintenance. May he rest in peace knowing that he taught me everything I needed to know in my life to survive and prosper. Website: rockportdoormats.com Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/rockportdoormats/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/RockportDoormat Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rockportdoormats
Dear Mr. Crowe,Earlier this summer we bought a green and sand colored Rockport Rope Doormat for our very traditional cottage on the coast of Maine. Rope doormats had long been a source of contention between my husband and me because he loved them the first time he saw one years ago while I did not think the bright colors and plastic texture were appropriate for our house. When I found your mats, we could finally agree. We love the soft texture, and the colors you offer are perfect for a traditional cottage. That the mat can be machine washed is an unexpected bonus. When my brother-in-law visited recently, he loved the mat and promptly ordered several for his New Hampshire home. Your mats are stunning, they function superbly, and the shopping experience is efficient. Buying your mats saves marriages and strengthens relationships among in-laws.Mary C
We bought a mat at the Grapevine Wine Festival last month for our chocolate lab, Missy. We bought a ultra plush pet mat, extra large. It fits perfectly in her corner and she loves it!. When it gets washed, she sits in the corner and stares at us until it is put back in place. It's a winner and she (and we) couldn't be happier.Thanks so much for a great product!Kimberley and ChrisArlington, TX
I wasn't sure what to expect, but I'm extremely pleased with my new Rockport Rope doormat! It's so soft and "easy on my feet" that I hesitated to put it outside. It's an attractive, sturdy, friendly welcome to those who ring my doorbell. I ordered the mat on Saturday and it arrived the following Wednesday. Very fast! Can't wait to see how it holds up over a Kansas winter! R Murrow
“My Rockport Rope mat is wonderful. It is Tan with a gray Insert. The colors are true, the quality exceptional. The best part however is the softness. I use it in the kitchen and stand on it when washing the dishes. It is soft and provides excellent cushion. I would recommend it to family and friends and will probably purchase soon.”
Rockport Rope Mats soft flat braided rope matsHi there. I am writing to let you know that I recently purchased two of your mats. I live in Miami, FL and am using them indoors. One is by the door that leads in from the patio where we have a swimming pool, the other is in front of the kitchen sink. I love them as they very functional and are soft enough to stand on barefoot. I am curious as to the name of your company-Rockport Rope. I am originally from southern New England and was initially attracted to your business as I thought you were from Maine (love and miss New England, and Maine). Is that the case? Chris W
Just a note to tell you that I don't LIKE my mat...l L O V E it!! As you see it matches perfectly. Thank you. Thank you.!!!!!!!I will give feedback to Amazon, but haven'tdone so as yet.Again, I appreciate your flexibility in working with and accommodating my needs. Thanks, Andrew... I will spread the word!!Chris
Our new mat from you has arrived and has met or exceeded all expectations! Great customer service and a perfect mat at the front door.
Our front door has been a challenge for years because we don’t get much sun there and doormats quickly look uninviting. After going without any mat for a while, I purchased a Rockport doormat. It looks great, like new even after a few months and a lot of rain. It is handsome, feels comfortable on the feet, and it’s effective. I’m so happy to have found your excellent product. What a bonus they are made in the USA. -- Washington, DC
PS: Please, if you decide to publish this testimonial, I prefer to remain anonymous. On a personal note, my family goes way back in Rockport, MA. It is a place near and dear to my heart. A meaningful bonus and connection for me. Thank you for a great product.
All the best,
“My Rockport Rope mat is wonderful. It is Tan with a gray Insert. The colors are true, the quality exceptional. The best part however is the softness. I use it in the kitchen and stand on it when washing the dishes. It is soft and provides excellent cushion. I would recommend it to family and friends and will probably purchase soon.” Mary O
Customer Reviewon November 21, 2017I wasn’t sure if the mat would work as a bath mat but it’s fantastic. Feels great under bare feet and you can’t beat the look! Very happy with this purchase. Bonus: made in USA, y’all.
07/05/2018Dear Andy, my mats just arrived & I am sooo very happy! Easy to order, speedy delivery & in perfect condition! Thanks for such a quality product! Peg BakerSent from my Verizon Wireless 4G LTE smartphone2 Attachments
Yes, I just saw that it was shipped. I love how your mats feel when I step on them, and they look really nice at the thresholds.I appreciate your quality product. Who knows, I may decide that the other doors need to match these, and order a couple of more of yours!
Louis & Denise 04/2018 'This is my second purchase from Rockport after having my first mat for several years. It stood the test of time, weather and more. Living in the Northeast, it handled our hot summers and snow and cold all winter. I just received my second one to now match our new colors of our condo and it is awesome. You will immediately see the quality and care that goes into each mat. I am a customer forever. The price is extremely fair for this quality item and free shipping. You must try them. Job well done!!!!'
My doormats Hi Andrew, Received my mats yesterday and I love them. They look great where I have placed them. I purchased 3 and they were delivered very promptly. Quicker than I expected. I will be sure to spread the word.
Dear Andrew, Received the doormat yesterday and it's exactly the right color and what I wanted. Thanks so much for your speedy shipping and wonderful product.
Good morning Andrew , I am John Hodges girlfriend, and I wanted to drop you a line to let you know how incredibly nice those mats are ... When I step on the mat a signal instantly goes to my brain saying " extreme comfort "...Thank you for everything , and we will be spreading the word to our friends about your excellent product!
19" +0" x 52" Rockport Rope Doormats Navy Blue, listing #159890606 Hey there the rug arrived today and it just couldn't be more perfect it is just beautiful and so unique but also fits the space perfectly I am so glad I discovered your shop!! I'll leave an outstanding review! So happy! Thanks so much!
Gary and Karen
Gary Bloomfield Jul 28 (5 days ago) to me We received our mat today and it is gorgeous. Thank you very much.
Dick C, Spring Branch, TX
Hi Andrew, We just received the mats. They are OUTSTANDING!!! Beyond our expectations! Thank you,