Get Your Kicks On Route 66 With Lisa Wakefield
You guys! 11th street on Route 66 in Tulsa, Oklahoma is my place right now!! This part of Route 66 is breathing new life and it's so exciting to witness. I recently stumbled into a store right next to Lola's where I lunch and let me tell you, it was love at first sight. I love it when a store transports me somewhere new and ignites my five senses. I was literally gasping for air but in the best way. Jenkin's and Co.swallowed me up heart and soul. Everything is so wonderfully curated and I will seriously do all of my shopping here for birthday's, holidays, and every other single life occasion. If you send me a wedding registry, sorry not sorry, but I am buying your present here! (wink) Just look at this goodness! (and seriously something for everyone..including the men in your lives, kids, and our beloved four legged friends)
I am going to need everything!! I was so happy to have met Jenkins and Co. owner and Tulsa native, Lisa Nelson Wakefield (Lisa Jenkins Nelson is her maiden name and where the store name came from) and was even happier when she said yes to being interviewed for the blog. Come meet this extraordinary lady! I love an entrepreneur and I love seeing my current hometown doing some amazing things. I feel like it truly is the era of the creative! And Jenkins and Co. is truly a special place that will literally take you around the world.
Lisa Wakefield interview:
-When and why did you start Jenkins and Co.?
I opened the store in November of 2015. I love design. I love to shop. But I also love so many of the crafts and artisan goods that are made across our country and all over the world. I was hoping to bring some of these things to Tulsa. There were things that I were always searching for online or when I was traveling because I couldn't find them here. Tulsa needs some retail diversity and I wanted to contribute to that.
-Name three successful personality traits that have helped you become a successful entrepreneur?
Passion for my vision. Determination to work through obstacles. And love for my city and the community
-What was the biggest hurdle to founding a company?
Just deciding to do it. There are hurdles everyday. The hardest one is the decision to get started.
-What is the best advice you would share with other entrepreneurs?
I am so new at all this that I am not sure I have mush solid advice, but I would definitely say that you need to have a specific vision. Not that your vision doesn't change a little along the way..it probably will and the you have to be flexible. But when the days are hard and a lot of them are , then you need to remember why you started in the first place
-Who is your hero and why?
I have a lot of amazing role models. My parents are supportive and give sound, practical advice. My brother has several successful businesses and he has been a huge support, but I would have to say my hero is my husband. Brent runs his own business, which by nature is very challenging, and he does it everyday with a smile on is face and compassion for the people he cares for. He keeps everything in perspective, reminds me of why I am doing what I am doing, and always has a positive, upbeat attitude. He can truly put a positive twist on anything. It's an amazing quality to have and he makes me a better person.
-What would be a dream come true?
Right now my store is a dream come true. I would love to be everyone's place to shop.
-How do you stay inspired?
I am constantly looking at magazines, following blogs, scrolling through instagram. Visiting new stores and restaurants here and out of town whenever I have the chance. My poor family is used to making unscheduled boutique pitstops.
-How do you define success?
Right now I feel like any positive feedback is success. Return customers and refereed customers are a huge compliment, I think.
-What are your fave things in your shop right now?
I love The WRF Ceramics. They're modern, but have a handsome organic quality that is so beautiful. And they're practical and useful. I also love all of the beautiful, handmade pillows from India that are in the shop right now. Traditional craft with a modern twist-old and new all at the same time.
-The store is so beautifully curated! How do you find such great inventory and what do you look for in this process?
Thank you ! I look all over for inventory. I go to traditional markets, non-traditional markets and I've always got my eyes open. When I started, I thought I just wanted things that are different. But then really started to focus on things that are beautiful AND useful. Handmade where possible and products that come from a company with a great story that is doing great things. The goal is to buy from the maker themselves, or companies that focus on ethically made products.
-Route 66 location, especially in the new bigger location...was this always where you wanted to be in TUL?
-When I would drive around town (which I do a lot because I have three kids), I would think about location If I were to ever open a store. It was important that the location reflect the vision of the store. Route 66 (11th street is how TUL thinks of it) is making a comeback. We're in a part of town that is rich in history and tradition. (the iconic Meadow Gold Sign is across the street), has a lot of character and is truly an ideal location between The University of Tulsa, downtown, Cherry Street and The Pearl District. It's exciting to be in a location that is a little unexpected. I guess that's what I am hoping the store is..a nice surprise!
-What are your hobbies outside Jenkins and Co.?
My hobbies are my family! Since I am working full-time now, my free time is with my children..as it should be and I wouldn't have it any other way! So my hobbies are soccer, horse-back riding, tennis, and boy scouts. Cooking and cleaning if there is time for that! Ha!
-What's next for Lisa?
Good question! I've got a million ideas, we'll see if I can get organized enough to work on any of them!
Seriously experience the beauty Lisa has created from all over the world under one roof! Jenkins and Co. ...I love you!
Shop my favorite TUL exploring looks here..