Editor’s note: Startland News shopped Kindred’s Oak Park Mall store as part of the newsroom’s five-part holiday gift guide that identifies locally made goods and supports the call to shop small. Click here to read the multi-day gift guide as it develops.
Local designers always have a spot on the rack within the Kindred Shops.
“Kindred exists to help inspire and foster growth among fashion entrepreneurs,” said Adam Pfeifer, co-owner of the local retailer.
Customers browsing the Oak Park Mall-housed shop will find the latest creations from local labels such as Flint & Field and SewKC. But they’ll also discover a creative outlet, filled with opportunities to succeed in a heavily saturated industry, he added.
“Our main goal is to provide some of the necessary resources to grow a boutique business here while also working to remove some of the barriers to entry,” Pfeifer explained.
“We’re strong believers in the entrepreneurial spirit that Kansas City embodies and our business reflects our desire to build others up through our partnerships.”
Click here to read more about another small business heavily influenced by Pfeifer: Sandlot Goods — which just released its entirely KC-made line of hats.
As the mid-pandemic holiday shopping season opens, Pfeifer hopes Kindred can double down on its mission to elevate fashionpreneurs and help them survive what could be a rocky winter.
“It’s an important time for us because it helps us through the rest of the year,” he said, noting the widespread demand for online sales amid the pandemic could see customers spending their money with bigger-name retailers who boast high-tech, high-volume online sales engines.
Meeting customers at the online sales counter — with the same level of customer service and attention staff would in-store — could make all the difference heading into a new year, Pfeifer said.
“Aside from the cash injection we get, the holidays also introduce us to more customers and reinforce our bonds with our existing clientele,” he said.
“We go into the holidays with our customers in mind, because we know that if we make good impressions and lasting connections during this season, we’ll be better for it during the rest of the year.”
And every dollar spent at Kindred is guaranteed to help the metro come back even stronger than before, he said.
“I hope [customers] think about the impact of their spending choices, especially during this season. When folks choose to shop locally, that money is circulated into their local economy far more so than money spent with a large corporation,” he explained.
“For companies like us, the bulk of our cash goes to other small businesses and to employees who live in this community. So I hope [customers] spend wisely this season!”
Five picks to support local makers
The Startland News team selected a handful of products from within Kindred to showcase the variety of Kansas City-made or designed gifts available for purchase.
Black Lives Matter enamel pin — $8
Show your support from the Black Lives Matter movement with the BLM enamel pin designed by Kansas City creator Jon Marzette. (Black and white T-shirts also are featured at Kindred.)
Available in store. Click here to shop more from Kindred.
SewKC Shine On premium knit beanie — $30
The sun always shines with this premium knit cap by SewKC.
1KC The Goat Tour crop hoodie — $46
Boasting football lace details on a familiar and iconic logo, 1KC celebrates Chiefs Kingdom with its Rolling Stones inspired concert tee.
SewKC Vintage Vibes sweatshirt — $45
Get Red Friday ready with a KC pride classic made by the crew at SewKC.
1KC Thank Yue Boys tribute tee — $36
“Thank you boys for uniting our city,” the team at 1KC said in description of its Kansas City Chiefs celebration tee, inspired by ‘Girls Girls Girls’ by Motley Crue.
This story is possible thanks to support from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, a private, nonpartisan foundation that works together with communities in education and entrepreneurship to create uncommon solutions and empower people to shape their futures and be successful.