Tag Archives: True Blue Goods & Gifts

Being True Blue to Friends Old and New

August 1, 2016 by
Photography by Bill Sitzmann

True Blue Goods and Gifts looks a bit like the popular web-based store Etsy set up a storefront in NoDo. True Blue is a retail store stocked with handcrafted goods from local and regional makers, as well as national vendors creating products not found elsewhere in Omaha. Jewelry, quirky handmade cards, vases, and baby onesies promoting “The Good Life” line shelves.

TrueBlue3It is beyond Etsy, though. Not even a year old, the store one-ups the online site with a gallery of rotating shows and regular classes offered for adults and children. Owned by Omahans Melissa Williams, Jessica Mogis, and Jodie McGill, the store is set up to showcase local artisans, providing them with a brick and mortar outlet in which to sell their wares that eliminated shipping costs.

A stack of soy candles by The Wild Woodsmen are made by a 12-year-old boy named Nic. Nearby lays jewelry by Heather Kita. Kita’s jewelry is one of the most popular items in the store. “She’s become a good friend,” says Williams.

Friendship’s a theme that carries throughout the store. “We had a lot of help from people—friends and family,” says Mogis. They sell bags made by Cody Medina, a friend who also built their display tables. The hanging pots in the front window are by their pal Andrew Bauer. The owners convinced Bauer to sell his goods at their store after seeing one of his handmade gifts.

The three women are first time entrepreneurs—Mogis was a teacher and Williams worked in hospice. McGill continues her law practice. “We wanted a change,” says Mogis.

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The setting, located in the Saddlecreek Records complex, fits their needs and personalities. The shop’s loft doubles as inventory storage and a holding corral to entertain the owners’ children while their moms manage the shop downstairs.

The storeowners started out selling goods from their friends—who happened to be talented artists—and creatives they encountered at different markets. Artists now approach True Blue with their wares.

TrueBlue4Williams, Mogis, and McGill curate their store with the eyes and minds of art gallery owners, intentionally maintaining the vibe of a boutique from the coasts. A rotating gallery of fine art fills one wall of the store. Each showing is kicked off with an opening night event.

Like artwork, many items sold at the store have “Meet Your Maker” signage explaining the artists’ backgrounds. The ladies behind the counter will fill in the missing details as you shop, explaining how the collage-maker from Ashland used pages from an old dictionary found at Bud Olson’s Bar, or how the store’s popular Brucie Bags are handmade by Williams’ dad.

The jovial relationships the storeowners have forged with their vendors also extends to customers. On a recent afternoon, a woman walked into the store and Williams cheerfully greeted her like an old friend. There’s no long history between the two—she’s a regular customer who’s been folded into the family that is True Blue.

Visit truebluegoodsandgifts.com for more information.

l-r, Jodie McGill, Melissa Williams, Jessica Mogis

l-r, Jodie McGill, Melissa Williams, Jessica Mogis

Obviously Omaha

June 15, 2016 by

Matt1Celebrate 
The Old Mattress Factory Bar (The Matt) is self described as Omaha’s Best Event Bar. The Matt has everything you’re looking for when it comes to lunch, dinner, a night out in Omaha, or in planning your next event.

Blatt1Savor
Blatt Beer & Table boasts an attractive food menu, along with a sweeping lineup of beer options. Holding close to its Omaha roots, the Blatt gets its namesake from the old Rosenblatt Stadium, and every Tuesday the Blatt offers half off any beer brewed in Nebraska.

Filmstreams1View
Founded as a 501c3 nonprofit in 2005, Film Streams is a two-screen cinema committed to screening films based on their creative, artistic, and social merits. Film Streams plays host to the film fanatic and the leisurely movie goer alike.

Hotel1Rest
Homewood Suites Omaha Downtown is a classic, extended stay hotel that sits just across from TD Ameritrade Park. Enjoy restful nights during the hectic College World Series in the traditionally furnished rooms, which come with fully equipped kitchens, dining tables, free WiFi, and flat-screen TVs. A free hot breakfast is provided, as well as a complimentary light dinner and drinks.

UrbanOutfitters1Threads
Urban Outfitters is known for a vast array of on trend fashion choices, accessories, and home-decor items. Looking to take your aesthetic to the next level? This is your place. Explore the multi level establishment where you will find everything from record players and hipster duds, to coffee mugs.

TrueBlue1

Shop
True Blue Goods and Gifts strives to highlight national and local artisans as well as unique-to-Omaha merchandise including visual art, jewelry, pottery, bags, children’s goods, home décor, candles, cards, and much more!