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Helga's History

Helga, one of triplets (all girls, one died at birth) was born to Gerdrut Bader of Stuttgart Germany. Gerdrut was one of Stuttgart's noted Schreiderin (a woman with a degree in tailoring). When Helga and her sister Trudy were not at school, they were busy with their chores and being taught the trade by their mother. Helga employed all of the teachings in her shop when she opened it in Arlington in 1981. Her artistic talents in sewing were attributed to her mother, however, her father, Felix, also added to the family talents. Felix was born Austrian and drafted into the German army by Hitler. He died on the Russian front in 1944. He was a very gifted artist. His civilian job was painting and restoring religious scenes on the ceilings and walls of German churches. What madness to have taken a brush from an artist's hand and replace it with a rifle. Helga's husband, Larry, who died in 2010 worked with Helga in her alterations shop. He handled the management activities of the business as well as the tuxedo line for men. He enjoyed a very colorful life spending time as one half of the Lindstrom Bros, as duo magical illusionists appearing in Las Vegas well before such acts as Siegfried & Roy. He later spent most of his time in the motion picture business until settling down in Arlington working with Helga.

In 1981, Helga opened Helga's Custom Alterations in Arlington on Park Row Drive. There she began her alterations shop providing custom alterations for prom, wedding and special occasion dresses. At that time, Helga's also offered tuxedo rentals. As business grew, Helga's added uniform alterations, serving several Fire Departments in the Metroplex area.

In 1993, her daughter-in-law, Cindy, joined the company helping grow the business. Not only was Helga's doing custom alterations for their own individual clients, several corporate accounts were added to the business - one a premier national bridal shop. Specialty clients were also added, from signature ball caps to corporate accounts such as AT&T Stadium Concierge Suite Services and Arlington's Martin High School Choir and Band.

After 22 years in the business, Helga decided to enjoy life more and work less and sold the business to Cindy. If you come into the store today, you will still get the pleasure of meeting Helga, hear a story or two and, of course, enjoy the benefit of her expertise.

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