ALBANY, OREGON 97322-6373
OUR GOAL IS:
EVERYTIME, ALL THE TIME
WE SELL FLAGS OF ALL TYPES, UNITED STATES, INTERNATIONAL AND STATES FLAGS FOR OUTDOOR AND INDOOR USE. PRESENTATION SETS, SPORTS FLAGS, MILITARY FLAGS, ADVERTISING AND ATTENTION FLAGS. WE ALSO CARRY AUTO DEALER FLAGS AND PENNANTS.
PRESENTING THE HIGHEST QUALITY PRODUCTS FROM THE FOLLOWING MANUFACTURES:
CF FLAG COMPANY
EDER FLAG MANUFACTURING COMPANY INC.
NATIONAL BANNER COMPANY, INC.
L. PH. BOLANDER & SONS
This story was written about us and published in the
Albany Democrat-Herald: www.democratherald.com
Flag seller: U.S. Gets Colors Right
By Kim Jackson
Friday, March 25, 2011
Jim Vause show flags he sells from his south Albany home. and the flag pole in Jim's front yard.
(Photos by David Patton/Democrat-Herald)
Jim Vause of Albany knows flags.
After more than 30 years in the business, he can get you any flag from any country in the world, from very small to the giant ones used in stadium ceremonies. But there is one thing he won’t do: sell you a U.S. flag that isn’t made in America.And not just because it seems un-American.
“They can’t get the color right,” said Vause, 71. “A U.S. flag has a very specific red and a very specific blue. Foreign manufacturers think red is red and blue is blue. But I can see the difference. And when I see one up on a pole, I just burn.”
According to Wikipedia, the exact red, white, and blue colors used in the flag are specified by the Color Association of the United States in its Standard Color Reference of America, 10th edition.
“That’s what every U.S. manufacturer uses,” Vause said. “I could switch manufacturers and you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.”
In fact, most of the products at Jim’s Flag Sales are made in the United States. Vause runs the business out of his south Albany home, where he has some stock on hand, but if you need something specific, he can get it for you. He also sells through his website at jimsflagsales.com.
“We sell all kinds of flags, for car dealers, international flags, state flags,” he said. “We also have flag poles.”
Vause said the smaller flags and poles he has in stock, but the big ones, some flags as large as 45 feet by 100 feet, he’ll special order and have them shipped direct to the customer.
Vause sells mostly American flags, the most common size being the 3-by-5-foot house flag. They come in either nylon for $32 or polyester for $35.
Flags are no longer made of cotton, unless by special order, Vause said, and nylon and polyester flags hold and carry just like cotton ones on a flag pole. And they are more durable, he said, but added that people are mistaken when they think a flag should last forever.
“People go out and buy a flag and fly it 24/7 and get upset it only lasts six or seven months,” he said. “In reality, it’s amazing they last six or seven months up 24/7 and in this weather.”
Vause said a flag used normally — brought in daily and used for special occasions — should last three to four years.
“I’ve even had people go out and buy a flag from another store and then call me up and chew me out because they don’t last,” he said with a laugh.
Historical flags were a hot item this past year, Vause said, particularly the “Don’t Tread on Me” variety used in the runup to the election by tea party members.
“Historical flags like the Culpepper ‘Don’t Tread on Me’ are legitimate U.S. flags,” he said. “No U.S. flag expires.”He also gets orders for a few international flags. “I sell two or three from Great Britain each year,” he said.
Vause got into the flag business about 30 years ago while living in Seattle. He worked for the phone company, and when a round of layoffs were announced, he thought he’d better have something to fall back on. His dad had been in the flag business, so he called him up and was able to start using some of his father’s old contacts.
Vause continued to work for the phone company and was later transferred to Bend, where he said he developed a good clientele for the flag business. He retired from the phone company about 15 years ago, and about five years ago he and his wife, Nancy, moved to Albany and set up business in their garage.
Business has been slow since the economy tanked, Vause said. “If I sell a flag a week, I’m doing good.”
He recently secured a deal with Linn County, and will offer discounts to other county and city agencies. He also says he’ll give a hefty discount to soldiers returning from duty. Vause himself is a veteran, having served 41/2 years in the Marine Corps Reserve, then another 61/2 in the Air Force, including a tour during the Vietnam War.
Vause hopes an improving economy will help boost business, but he says staying with it involves a little patriotism as well.
“It’s something I believe in,” he said. “Having my opinion, every American should be flying an American flag. And that’s not just a matter of business. It’s just having a little pride in country.”
Kim Jackson is news editor for the Democrat-Herald.
Posted to this site with permission
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