We had the good fortune of connecting with Emily Kulpa and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Emily, can you tell us more about your background and the role it’s played in shaping who you are today?
I am from Mentor, Ohio, a suburb of Northeastern Ohio, where I experienced a modest, yet very fulfilling upbringing. No stranger to hand-me-downs, I learned to master the art of thrift shopping at a very young age. It taught me to find the truly durable pieces, or how to truly standout from the Abercrombie&Fitch uniform of my peers. I fell in love with finding the different, the obscure, the loved, and the truly broken-in. Living a life committed to sustainability, I chose to use my fashion as a catalyst for a deeper conversation with my customers about why buying secondhand is important.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am so proud of the business and the professional relationship I’ve built with my business partner, Zach. When we first met, it was very apparent how obsessed with vintage clothing we both were. Living in a small town like Crested Butte, it’s rare to find someone who has the same eye or same vision as you, let alone have the same ideals. We jumped right in and have now expanded twice in the past year and a half. Facing all of the challenges that accompanied this year’s pandemic, we’ve found ourselves stronger as a team, and more developed in our mission.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I love this question! Our town is so unique and I am so lucky to experience it everyday, so when I show someone around, I go all out. Shopping- Bramble and Bloom is one of the most beautiful plant shops I’ve ever been to, and the women working there are so talented! Rooted Apothecary is our shop neighbor and we are so happy they are. I love my herbal healing and Briana is so knowledgeable and caring. Chopwood Mercantile is an awesome space for a more outdoorsy vibe. I was recently buying gifts from there, and everything I was interested in, the owner told me a story about either the production, or the material, and it was amazing. When I buy any good, I am very intentional in where my money goes. Being able to hear all of the information about my choices made it really easy on my decision making. Scout’s General Store is across the street from our shop, and I pop in there ALL the time. Not only do they have an amazing selection of perfectly curated gifts, they also have the perfect little food market where I can grab a locally roasted coffee or cold brew from First Ascent, or a CBD soda and some local cheese and bread. Drinks-I spent 10 years working and playing in the world of food and drink, so I’m very particular about my cocktails. The bar manager at The Divvy is incredible. I’ve worked my way through his takes on the classics and his own recipes, and they are fantastic. The chef and owner, David, is extremely talented, too. Happy Hour right after a long day of skiing is perfection. Montanya’s Rum Distillery is always delicious. Dogwood CB Cocktail Cabin is the coziest place to get some light snacks and delicious drinks. I love the house-made, seasonal shrubs. Local beers, Eldo Brewery. Food- Brunch at Sunflower. No, dinner at Sunflower. No, dessert at Sunflower. Ok, all 3. Just move in there. Locally sourced menu and a wine list that really makes you order outside of your comfort zone, probably because the owner’s are very helpful in swaying you one way or another with their amazing recommendations, I love the beer list at the Brick Oven, and the wood fired crust is always on point. Butte Bagels for breakfast. You won’t be disappointed and you’ll probably get to experience THEE nicest humans on the planet. Activities- Skiing, Hiking, Fly Fishing, Mtn, Biking and when things get back to normal, live music. Did I mention the coolest bluegrass band hails from Crested Butte? Floodgate Operators. The Public House has a great basement live music venue, and is a taproom for our local brewery, Irwin.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My mother, Denise. I have been lucky enough to admire my mother’s seamstress work for my whole life. She made her prom dress, she made my little sister’s prom dress, and I will forever strive to be as good as she. In life, and at the sewing machine.
Taylor Ahearn Tina Lam