About Us

A classic 19th century New England mill transitioning into a state-of-the-art 21st century art & gathering space.

Eric Pivco Property Manager

Eric PivcoProperty Manager

Eric Pivco, managing partner of the Stonington Borough’s Velvet Mill complex, is a man with a vision.
Pivco envisions the massive former American Velvet Company mill in upscale Stonington as more than a random collection of artist studios and small businesses. He views the Velvet Mill as a lure for visitors. Specifically, he’d like to see the former fabric mill become a destination unto itself, a place where families and tourists and everyone can come and spend a few hours.

Pivco has taken an active role as property manager. He and the Velvet Mill have become viable for the local community and tourists. The tenants welcome the upgrades, from parking lot and lighting improvements to complete interior renovations to tenants’ specifications. Tenants understand and appreciate the amount of work that has gone into making the Velvet Mill an excellent location for business diversity. The Velvet Mill is an ideal location for sculptors, painters, weavers, and dancers, to name just a few. It is a place where one may interact with the artists and take the time for classes or a moment to learn a new skill.

With enormous energy and attention to detail, Pivco has changed the image of the Velvet Mil and with this momentum, tenants are thrilled to be part of the new appealing community the offices and studio space attracts.

 

History of The American Velvet Company

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The Velvet Mill, Aerial View
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Jacques Wimpfheimer with employee in the Finishing Room
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Mill Employees (undated photo)
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Slashing equipment in the weave shop
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Employees pose during Fourth of July Celebration (undated photo)
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Photo Shoot from The Velvet Touch with Rosalind Russell, at the American Velvet Mill

The American Velvet Company opened in 1892 at the height of the Industrial Revolution, transforming a sleepy fishing village into a manufacturing powerhouse. The company enjoyed its heyday in the 1950s when it employed 450 people.

By the end of the 20th Century, rising labor and manufacturing costs in New England prompted the company to move its operations to Virginia. The factory closed in 1996, however, the structure itself is an historical monument.

Today, the mill is undergoing an amazing rebirth that keeps pace with changing times and the transformation of Stonington Borough into an upscale shopping venue with incredible seaside views, beautiful homes, and excellent schools, while retaining the charm of an old New England village.