It’s clicks to bricks for one new Clintonville storefront. What started as a successful Instagram account is now a retail storefront as Marigold sells it second-hand wares at 3045 Indianola Ave.
Owner Jolie Ankrom opened the boutique in mid-February 2019. Marigold offers a curation of children’s and women’s clothing, as well as housewares largely discovered through Ankrom’s thrifting adventures.
Buying second-hand has long been a hobby for Ankrom whose boutique is actually her second entrepreneurial venture. She started her career not in retail, but instead as a high school Spanish teacher. When she and her husband welcomed their first child, Ankrom opted not to go back to teaching but to stay at home with her daughter.
Just a few weeks in and asking herself what she had done, Ankrom was then on the path to entrepreneurship. She started her first business, Brim Papery, which is still operational and has its own nook in the store, six years ago. She sold Brim Papery’s collection of calendars, mugs, cards, notepads and the like exclusively online for four years before landing a studio space to store inventory and teach workshops.
Ankrom says her Instagram following started growing organically with her business, when it collided with her second-hand shopping. She would post examples of her thrift hauls, or post closet clean outs, selling items from her closet before donating.
“At that point it became pretty clear like, wow, it’s actually really efficient for me to sell my clothes through my Instagram,” Ankrom says.
She also started getting the, ‘you have such good luck at thrift stores, if you see something in my size…’ comments. She started a separate Instagram account, @marigoldcurated, and began casually selling a few items when the whole operation ballooned.
“People were super interested because of the price point I was able to offer,” Ankrom says.
That price point generally falls in the $3 – $25 range.
Soon, Instagram turned into website and the occasional pop-up at her Brim Papery studio. The success of the pop-ups got her thinking long-term about starting a consignment or retail store. That was the five-ish year plan.
However, on her frequent drives on Indianola Avenue, Ankrom noticed the Danny O’Connor field office and wondered what was happening with the space post-election. She got in touch with the landlord. The space was right. The price was right. The long-term plan became the now plan.
The success of the pop-ups and the fallback of continuing to reach a national audience with online sales made Ankrom more comfortable taking the leap to a physical location. As did the classic notion that many people prefer to try clothing on before they buy it.
“To be able to sell online actually was really shocking to me because of how variable women’s clothing are,” Ankrom says. “I was surprised that customers were willing to take the risk to buy from me online without having the option of trying it on.”
She did her best to provide product descriptions and insights, but still heard from local and non-local customers alike, they wished they could try things on. Especially those that weren’t as familiar with buying second-hand.
With Brim Papery, Ankrom had never wanted a store front. Customers didn’t need to see that type of product in person. Marigold was different and for Ankrom felt like the brand that could actually survive a physical location.
Ankrom still hunts for the mix of vintage fashions to modern classics that line the racks at Marigold. She loves being able to offer different brands and fits of clothing, instead of just one line of clothing. Marigold stocks women’s clothing through 3X, and Ankrom is always open to expanding her sizing based on quality finds. Children’s wares run newborn through size small. Outside of clothing, Marigold’s home goods have a more mid-century flair with a side of boho.
Only a few months in, Ankrom has been excited by the reception.
“A lot of customers are people that know me from Instagram, but there’s also been a good deal of foot traffic, people who have never heard of me and just see the yellow storefront and want to pop in,” she says.
She adds the neighborhood has also been embracing a second-hand clothing store in a strip of shops where there hasn’t been one.
Marigold will continue to sell online, with Ankrom selecting about 15-30 items to post each week. Local customers will also have the option to order online and pick up in store.
Marigold’s store hours are Wednesday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
For more information, visit marigoldcurated.com.
All photos by Susan Post.