On Friday afternoon got a sneak preview of the new Kindred Boutique, located downtown Raleigh. The boutique is non-profit and their mission is to incubate emerging artisans via mentoring and the shop. The space is a collaboration between Michelle Smith, a stylist and artisan, and EntreDot, a business mentoring organization. Michelle told me she had been envisioning this project for over three years. Downtown Raleigh has many great bars and restaurants, but is lacking retail stores and Kindred is the perfect addition.
The space has an Anthropologie like feel, a beautiful mix of vintage furniture and eclectic decor, not to mention all of the goods for sale. The boutique carries products from many North Carolina artisans, including jewelry, bow ties, teeshirts, pillows, chocolate, handbags and more. It is great place to find a perfect gift for friend or family member. Michelle thanked me for coming by giving me a sweet bottle that we applied a Kindred tattoo to (bottom right photo courtesy of Michelle Smith).
Along with supplying a low-rent space for artists to sell their goods, they also offer business mentoring and networking opportunities. The hope is that artsits will eventually be able to expand into their own store fronts. As a designer without a business background, this would be a great advantage. Kindred will also offer business workshops to the community, with topics ranging from blogging to accounting to Photoshop.
Kindred is in the middle of a Kickstarter campaign to help pay some of the startup costs. If you can spare a few dollars, help them out and get a great thank you gift!
Congratulations to the Kindred team (from left: Amber Ball, Whitney Robinson, Michelle Smith, Elizabeth Burke, missing Tracy Antonik) from what I have seen, Kindred is sure to be a hit! Follow them on Facebook and Twitter for information on products and coming events.
I know I will be making a trip to Raleigh to do some Christmas shopping, being sure to stop at Kindred and Furbish Studios!