St’Art Up 317: 602 N. Park Avenue

Photos by Michael Cottone

Launched just last year, St’ArtUp 317 is a competitive program aiming to match vacant commercial spaces in Downtown Indianapolis with artists, brands, startups and established businesses to create pop-up stores. With a similar goal in mind and new ties between PATTERN and Develop Indy, a sector of the Indy Chamber, this year St’ARTUp 317 will feature 30 pop-ups at 10 locations in and surrounding Downtown in order to showcase the authenticity of Indy’s creative class and in hopes to secure long-term tenants for underutilized storefronts, enhancing the overall cultural identity of our city.

This series of stories highlights artists, entrepreneurs and businesses that were selected to participate in this year’s return of St’ArtUp 317.

BLACKSHEEP COLLECTIVE

Dedicated to spreading love, compassion and inspiring others to embrace their authenticity, Black Sheep Co. is a creative force and brand built on the foundation of faith. Founders April and Byron Elliot use various artistic mediums and outlets, including their clothing line, to execute their mission of creating stunning works of art that embody their faith in Jesus Christ and follow the premise of acceptance of one’s own uniqueness and individuality.

Tell us about yourself?
Blacksheep Collective is a faith based lifestyle brand focused on encouraging people to embrace their God given individuality and uniqueness.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice?
The art is what we like to refer to as visual parables. Each art piece is thoroughly thought out and intentional.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
We hope to get more awareness and more people to join the movement. Everyone feels like a black sheep in some way or another. If we can come together and celebrate it then that makes me happy.

Keep up with Blacksheep Collective on Instagram and Facebook or visit their website for more information!

THE MODEL BRAND

Founded by American Model and Miss Indiana, Mahogani Johnson, The Model Brand fosters a unique shopping experience that brings the concept of being a role model to the realm of fashion modeling, emphasizing that both identities can coexist. With the help of influential fashion designers and public figures, The Model Brand provides a space where professionalism meets style and inspiration.

Tell us about yourself?
I am an American model, host, creative director and an entrepreneur known to design full fashion editorials for published work. I have also won numerous pageant titles, and love representing my home state as Miss Indiana. Motivated to thrive as a business woman, I obtained my Bachelor’s of Science in Finance at Kelley School of Business, which began my path to truly becoming, what I call a “model mogul.”

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice?
My consistent love for helping others has led me to create The Model Brand. The Model Brand creates a shopping experience for real models and role models. It was created to remind people that it’s ok to be both. I have called in some of my influential friends from known fashion designers to politicians to help push the message that, “We are all Generation Model, we can do both!” That is what being a professional poser is all about, going from a styled photo shoot to the courtroom in the same fashion. Rocking these amazing eco-friendly fashions with phrases that every model is thinking, but just won’t say.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
By creating a shopping experience where real models and role models can come in to take professional styled photos and shop the looks they love, I plan to make The Model Brand a movement to cultivate new mentors and models who can do both. With multiple businesses from fashion to finance this model mogul has no plans on slowing down.

Keep up with The Model Brand on Instagram and Facebook or visit their website for more information!

2EZE CLOTHING CO.

Two friends, one vision. This was the foundation of 2eze Clothing Co., a brand aiming towards bringing the Indianapolis community together and strengthening faith in others to persevere through any struggle. Since 2015, Nate and Joshua have been expanding their clothing line, however, within the last two years their annual “Unity in the Jungle,” fashion show has been their main focus in hopes to cultivate a strong community of creatives.

Tell us about yourself?
My name is Ikechukwu (Nate) Robert-Eze. I am a 23-year-old entrepreneur born in Lagos, Nigeria and raised in Indianapolis, IN. I started 2eze in 2015 with our co-founder Joshua Sims who is from Northwest Indiana. We went to Ball State University, found that we had similar interests and the rest was history.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice?
2eze™ Clothing Co. was founded to offer encouragement to people by reminding them that they will be able to get through whatever they are going through as long as they have faith. Within the past two years we have been laser focused on unity as we have been throwing our “Unity in the Jungle” fashion show which brings many diverse brands, designers, models and people into one room. Lastly, we are big on giving back to our communities, and advocating our values through our apparel, events and philanthropic acts.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
We hope to spread our message of inspiration, and mental support for people around the Indianapolis area and other surrounding areas by getting more of our products out there. We hope to change lives, boost self confidence and strengthen the faith of others.

Keep up with 2eze on Instagram and Facebook or visit their website for information!

CLASSA BOUTIQUE INC.

Mother and fashionista, Johnetta Kerkula, brought affordable, sophisticated looks catering to a variety of sizes to Indianapolis with Classa Boutique. With the empowerment of women at the center of thought, Classa Boutique provides an outlet for women to express themselves through high-class fashion trends with a dash of edge without breaking the bank.

Tell us about yourself?
My name is Johnetta and I’m originally from Liberia, West Africa. I have been living in Indianapolis for over 10 years. I am married and have a beautiful two-year-old baby boy that has changed my life. I am a Social Worker by profession.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice?
Classa Boutique is an affordable online destination for women with trend, edge and classy-sophistication. We empower women of all sizes (XS – 3X) worldwide who strive for simplicity, elegance and luxury! Shop cocktail dresses, party dresses, gowns, accessories and more! Thirty-five percent off all proceeds goes to support youth in West Africa and right here in the United States.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
I hope to get more exposure and brand awareness.

Keep up with Classa Boutique on Instagram and Facebook or visit their website for more information!

LUXURY AFFORDABLE BOUTIQUE

Luxury Affordable Boutique, also known as The L.A.B., was founded by mother, entrepreneur and author Kim Outlaw as an accessible and affordable means to luxurious fashion. By offering a variety of upscale trends and looks at lower costs, Outlaw is hoping for new clients and more exposure for the boutique.

Tell us about yourself?
My name is Kim Outlaw. I am an author, entrepreneur, motivational speaker, pastor and yes the CEO of Luxury Affordable Boutique. I have been married for 21 years and have three sons, the youngest is getting ready to graduate from Pike High school

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice?
I started The LAB (Luxury Affordable Boutique) to offer Indianapolis an alternative to luxury fashion.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
I hope to gain new clientele that have an appetite for unique and luxurious fashion, not at retail price, but at affordable costs.

Keep up with Luxury Affordable Boutique on Instagram and Facebook!

RESTYLED BY

Providing an environmentally friendly alternative to fashion, Restyled By offers gently used clothing at low costs to the Indianapolis community. For two years, Restyle By has provided a variety of looks including well known brands to both adults and children, with some of their signature pieces consisting of distressed jean jackets and Levi cutoff shorts.

Tell us about yourself?
My name is Linda Souders. I am a full-time nurse who turned her passion for thrifting/bargain shopping into a business.

Tell us a little bit about your business or art practice?
ReStyled by is a resale shop focused on bringing gently used, affordable on-trend pieces to my customers. We are also known for our custom distressed denim jackets, cutoff Levi’s shorts and jeans. April 28th marked two years in business for us.

What do you hope to get out of this opportunity?
I am hoping that ReStyled By benefits from the exposure from participating in the popup with St’Art Up 317. Our permanent location is not prime retail; so our store could definitely use this opportunity to connect with fellow Hoosiers, get them in and show them that there are more great resale shops than just the big chain companies out there that they already know and love.

Keep up with Restyled By on Instagram and Facebook or visit their website for more information!