Sky Valley Ink is a home based, family owned business on 10th Street in Sultan, run out of Jim and Kari Fulcher’s garage and back yard shed.
Jim Fulcher grew up in Sultan, graduated from Sultan High School and went on to get his AA degree at Edmonds Community College. After that he attended Central Washington University where he took many classes and unfortunately stopped going to school only two classes shy of receiving his degree in fire command administration. Jim retired from UPS in June where he worked for 33 years. He is now the deputy fire chief at Snohomish County Fire District 5, where he has been a volunteer for the last 27 years.
Kari moved to Sultan 21 years ago when she met and married Jim. She ran Sky Valley Child Care (an in home daycare) for 11 years out of their home on 10th street. After that she accepted a job at Sultan Middle School as a para-educator. Kari worked with the special needs kids in the resource room for nine years. Three years ago she decided to quit her job at the school district and work full time for herself.
About 30 years ago Jim saw a need for low cost printing in the Sky Valley and started screen printing one color T-shirts for local schools, nonprofits and churches. Together, Jim and Kari created the business, Sky Valley Ink. They grew the screen printing business to include not only screen printing but also vinyl window coverings, banners, political yard signs (a lot of city council seats) and much more.
Jim and Kari are the sole owners of Sky Valley Ink; Jim does all of the computer design work and makes the screens while Kari does all the printing. Their business has grown quite a bit the last three years, for example in June 2017 they made over 1,500 shirts for multiple churches, Bible camps, family reunions, business uniforms, adoptions and the Sultan Shindig car show shirts!
Some of their clients include Bubba’s Roadhouse, Sahara Pizza, NW Sport Taekwondo, Timber Monster Brewing, Ponderosa Pacific, Sonshine Preschool, Pacific NW Camp and also many of the local fire departments. They also make quite a bit of the spirit wear that you see at the SHS, SMS, SES, GBES and MHS. They have customers all the way from Federal Way and Auburn. But the most fun they have had making shirts for was the children’s camp in Haiti. A couple years ago they made about 400 shirts to send on a mission trip to Haiti and were blessed to see the beautiful pics of the kids wearing their shirts.
They do their best to help with fundraisers, giving back approximately $2.00 per product to the organization. “We have tried to do many more fund raisers but no one has taken us up on our offer,” Fulcher said. Jim and Kari love to give back to the community in any way that they can.
In the next 3 – 5 years they would like to see their business moving to a property they own on US 2 for expansion. Ultimately they would like to build a new shop with more space for automation. Jim and Kari would like to move from using a manual press to the ease of an automatic press.
This transformation will definitely require more room than what they currently have in their garage. When they open their new shop, which will include a walk in storefront, they will possibly be looking into hiring an employee in the future. This employee will probably be one of their adult children.
Jim and Kari do their share of volunteering in the community in their spare time. They volunteer at Crosswater Community Church whenever it is possible, serve as the Awana High School director at FBC Monroe, they both serve for one full at Pacific NW Camp (a week long kids camp at Cedar Springs), Kari and a few kids in her youth group adopted Main Street for a while and Kari works with Kelly Clifton and the Sky Valley Community Outreach every week.
“I want to thank all who have used us to provide them with a product they need and want,” Jim graciously commented about all of their customers.