Our Small Business Series feature this month is on my top 3 list of favorite places in OKC. Please meet the lovely ladies of Verdigris, Kimberly & Melissa! They are the sister team that keeps the wheels rolling behind the beautiful shop Verdigris, and just this year expanded to a larger space on Hudson & 7th. Their business tagline is "recreate. repurpose. reinvent." which is right up my alley. I love finding old treasures and making a new purposes for them. I had a great time getting to know the two to them through the SBS series, make sure to stop by and say hello during H&8 tomorrow!
Name: Kimberly Spicer & Melissa Graham
Business Name: Verdigris
Kimberly – my mom's frozen strawberry dessert, my nana's turtles, my memaw's chocolate chip cookies, & mint chocolate chip ice cream
Melissa – Ditto...except no mint chocolate chip ice cream for me! I'll take chocolate meringue pie & banana cream pie any day!
Kimberly – I love all kinds of music!
Melissa – I love anything with a good beat!
When did you start your business: January 2011
What inspired you to start it? We grew up entrepreneurs constantly coming up with ideas, such as selling hand-made hair barrettes & jewelry stands, paint pen monogramming, having summer day camps for neighborhood kids & babysitting. We also spent a lot of time at our grandmother's (nana) interior design shop. We would hide in the closet and run blank credit card carbons through the credit card machine, play with the adding machine, and would “help” with cutting fabric. We also spent a lot of time at market. After going our separate directions during college and early adulthood, we finally came back together in OKC to combine our past & current interests to create Verdigris.
What would you say was your biggest challenge to overcome? The biggest challenge to overcome is balancing family life with self-employment in the retail industry.
Who/what was your biggest encouragement & why? Each other. While we both enjoy all aspects of the business, Kimberly is more right-brained & Melissa is more left-brained. Due to our differences, we rarely have conflicting views or concerns. We are constantly learning from each other which encourages us both to continue thinking outside the box.
What is your favorite part of the business?
We both enjoy being a part of the local business community & seeing the revitalization that is happening throughout OKC. We also love our customers & business partners that we have met along the way!
Kimberly – I enjoy hunting for unique pieces & then putting them together to form unusual displays.
Melissa – I enjoy the hunt & staging...but I would rather be in the office working on the accounting, payroll, media relations, or even creating a spreadsheet that we haven't determined we even need yet! :)
If you had advice to anyone who might be starting a business like yours? Find what you love, create a plan for your business, seek advice from professionals, and go for it! Plan to succeed, but it's okay if you fail!
Anything else about your small business that you're passionate about? We are both passionate about helping to incorporate the environmentally friendly business concept of reusing, recycling, repurposing, etc., into the everyday lives of others.
I love, love, love that you were entrepreneurs from childhood! Loved that part of your story, thank you so much for being part of the series Kimberly & Melissa!