Meet Mutts and Mittens located in Denver, CO. They are our featured retailer this week. A special thank you to owner, Shannon, for your time and energy in helping us get to know your shop better. YAY! Mutts and Mittens!
What do you do in your store to nurture your community culture?
We donate 10% of all online sales to a different animal rescue or animal charity each month. There are so many dogs and cats that need homes and tons of groups out there trying to help, but funding is a constant battle for them, so we are happy to help them out with what we can!
What trend do you see in your indie business that you're excited about?
I just see the community as a whole coming out and supporting small handmade businesses more and more. I think shopping locally is becoming the "cool" thing to do. I personally love buying things that have a story to go with it and getting it straight from the hands of the maker.
What's the best advice you can share that will apply to everyone?
My favorite quote - “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take” – Wayne Gretzky
What's something you feel people should do more of?
Spoil their pets!
What changes or improvements do you have planned for your business in 2016/2017?
I am trying to focus more on marketing, specifically my own website. Since the inception of Mutts and Mittens our primary online presence has been through Etsy. Now, we have grown up and have our own e-commerce site (www.muttsandmittens.net) and I am focusing on driving traffic and sales to the new site instead of Etsy.
What's something in your business you're glad DIDN'T work out as you hoped?
Mittens!!! A lot of people ask where the name Mutts and Mittens came from. When I first started my Etsy shop I was a knitting fanatic. I thought I would sell both my knitted items AND dog stuff under the same name. I quickly realized that for me, knitting was way too time consuming and the amount of time put into hand knit items i.e. mittens would not be profitable. The name stuck, but the knitting did not!
What's the most recent kind gesture you received from someone you didn't know?
It may not seem like much, but when I am doing a market and someone tells me they came just to see me, or they tell me they bought their last dog collar from me, that is really the most kind gesture a customer can make.
What's a success you'd love to see someone close to you achieve?
I would love to see Spinster Sisters products EVERYWHERE. For those that aren’t familiar with Spinster Sisters MicroSoapery, they have the absolute best soap and skin care products I have ever used (and I have used a lot). The owner, Kelly Perkins, and I started our businesses around the same time and she is absolutely crushing it! Seriously, I dare you to try their products and not love them!
What's been one of the most pleasant experiences of running your business/your job?
Meeting the dogs, of course! Most events that I do in Denver are dog friendly, so I love getting to meet all of the four-legged customers, and if they aren’t there in person, people are always showing me pictures of their pups. I just LOVE it!
What successful choices have you made in your business that others should consider doing?
I would say not being afraid to jump in head first. You never know if something is going to work unless you try it!
What makes you say YAY!?
This probably isn’t a surprise, but I would have to say DOGS!!!