F R E Q U E N T L Y A S K E D Q U E S T I O N S
What is KLEUR?
Kleur is a boutique and makerspace. During the daytime regular business hours, it’s a shop that curates and sells over seventy unique products lines, almost all of them handmade and crafted by extremely dedicated makers and artisans who call these lines their livelihood. We also carry some vintage clothing and housewares, though that’s minimal in comparison.
We are also a makerspace. A makerspace is a public place where people can come together to test or learn new skills, share ideas, learn how to use tools or certain media, and in general feel safe to work through things. We have hands-on creative workshop, practical life-skill workshops, and community discussions, book clubs, talks, and idea-sharing events. We also hold events more entertaining in nature: music performances, play readings, book readings, to name a few. Aside from workshops and events that require heavy equipment or lots of space, we can do or host just about anything. We have these events in the evenings, a few days a week. We are currently seeking to expand and increase that number
uring regular business hours, when we are not holding a formal workshop, the space is open and free to everyone and anyone to use as a work space. Whether it's a meeting, or just an individual wanting to come in and get creative with tools and materials, we welcome the community to come in and use our resources! We have WiFi, coffee, tea, a tool library, and a supply of random materials for you to choose from. Or you can bring your own! Plan a lunch date at our work table. Give your professional team a change of scenery for your next meeting or pitch. Or, come in and read a book on our couch! We'll even let you take a nap on our couch. We're here for you, however you need us.
The workshops and events -- How much do they cost?
We are committed to keeping our costs as low as possible for our events, so as not to exclude anyone! Workshops are between $5 and $25 per person. They usually last between 2-3 hours. Discussion-based events are always free. Entertainment events usually have a low suggested donation.
Who leads these events?
Anyone, really! We book a lot of our workshops and find instructors who are skilled at what we are hoping to workshop. Other times, people come to us and propose leading a workshop about a skill or technique they know well. We get emails all the time asking to collaborate for this-and-that, and as long as it’s not discriminatory, illegal, or otherwise questionable in nature, the answer is usually a
I've never seen a shop like this before! Where did you get the idea?
There are many, many shops out there in the world similar to Kleur, both in mission, logistics, and aesthetic. The idea to create Kleur was a slow-building one, which began years ago as the owner became acquainted with shops that held the same business model. As Social Media has grown in the last ten years, learning of shops similar to Kleur, as well as the products of makers worldwide, have been more and more accessible through the likes of Instagram. As years went on, Molly began following an enormous collection of makers, products, and small businesses that had the same appreciation for craftspersonship, dedication, quality, aesthetic value, and -- most importantly -- empowerment. In 2015 she decided to make a pipe dream a reality by opening up a shop of her own. The emphasis on the maker space was the driving force behind the decision, and by mid 2016 the opportunity to expand into a bigger space, with a dedicated work area, finally allowed the dream to be full realized! The events offered to the community beautifully co-align with the hard work that builds the products that are for sale in the shop. In North Carolina alone, there are several shops that are similar to ours, including Edge of Urge (Raleigh and Wilmington), Ramble Supply Co. (downtown Raleigh), Gather Goods Co., and the Makery at Mercury Studios (Durham), to name just a few.
Who picks what is sold in Kleur and how do you choose?
Everything is curated by ownership and is picked for three things: quality of the product, aesthetics, and (most important) for a maker’s dedication to their brand. If it is evident that a product is made with care, and that the maker has spent a lot of time, energy, money, other resources, and thought into what they do, interest is piqued and product line is pursued further. Product designs that fit the shop’s aesthetic are streamlined, minimalist or simple in design and nature, usually follow a certain color palette, and have either extremely traditional or extremely modern design qualities. Less is more, for sure.
Where do you find all the stuff that you sell?
Depends. Often we turn to Instagram, or we will travel to maker markets in different cities. With social media, I can start by checking out shops with similar aesthetics and community goals, see what they are carrying, and start following the Network Rabbithole from there. Shops always lead to new makers. Makers always lead to more makers, whom they follow, are influenced by, and admire. This leads to finding other shops, and the cycle can repeat and repeat. Becoming friends with other shop owners has been a terrific way to find new product lines -- instead of being in competition, we've found this Maker-savvy circle we move in is always more than ready to spread word and share quality goods. Other times, makers approach Kleur via email because they’ve followed us on social media or were turned onto us by a friend (or one of our makers!) - The networking aspect is truly astounding and super rad to witness and be a part of.
Is everything local?
Nope. A nice portion of our goods are made from Winston-based folks, but many are spread all over the country, some from overseas or across borders. We do have many from other parts of North Carolina, like Durham and Raleigh, Charlotte, or Asheville.
Why isn't everything local?
We are very supportive of the Maker Movement that has been spreading worldwide since the turn of this century (See What is the Maker Movement, below!). As such, being a part of this vast network of makers and tradespeople has offered a wonderful opportunity for the Kleur makers who ARE city- and state- local! Through the happiness of Instagram, other Social Media outlets, and personal connection, many of these local makers have contact with the faraway makers also represented in the shop, resulting in new network connections. Several of our local makers have gotten their work into other shops like ours in distant cities, directly because of these newfound relationships! It's a beautiful thing to witness and be a part of!
Where can I learn more about these product lines and the people behind them?
Our website features profiles on all of our product lines and makers! Click on the page called MAKERS and you can browse the stories of who these folks are and how they got started. Links to their own pages and contact are there, too! We encourage you to get to know them. They're wonderfully dedicated people who we are very proud to represent!
How long have you been around?
Kleur started in a smaller location a few blocks away, in October of 2015. We just expanded and changed locations, re-opening in the Trade street location in September 2016.
Why did you move?
To put more emphasis on the Makerspace and community events! Our older location was very small and not very fitting for group meetings or workshops! We also more than tripled our inventory of what is sold in the shop, now that we have more space.
How can I find out about workshops or events?
We have a detailed calendar on our website that you can check in on at any time! Also on the site there is the option to subscribe to our mailing list (at the bottom of every page). At the beginning of each month we email out an overview of what is coming up. You can register for workshops on our website as well.
When and where are workshops or events, usually?
They typically happen on Wed, Thurs, Fri, and Sat nights, beginning around 7pm. Always double check. Sometimes we have one in an afternoon or an unusual day. We also sometimes have events that are offsite, at businesses that we love or are collaborating with! You can always find out specifics on our website, on the calendar.
So, is Kleur a non-profit?
We are not. We are sustained by the sale of our merchandise, and rely on business flow to be able to put on the events and workshops for you. Keeping them at low cost is a priority, so while we are slowly building a cushion of money-flow to keep the makerspace and events available to the community, we are also accepting in-kind donations to help us stay afloat while we get traction in this dog-eat-dog business world! It's not always easy, but this town has been WONDERFULLY supportive of us, and the City of Winston Salem does a lot to try to help small businesses like us! We are eternally grateful for every morsel of support we've received!
I want to help! How can I donate? What do you need?
Money contributions are always helpful, and can be made by clicking on our DONATE tab, above. You can also donate by cash or check in the store. In addition to money, we are always looking for tools for our library, books, materials, art supplies, paper, printer ink, or any other digital media resources! Email firstname.lastname@example.org to see if you have something we can use!
I’d like to have an event here, how can I get started?
There is a tab on our website called COLLABORATE. Click on the option “Workshop and Event Proposal” and fill out the form. Someone will be in touch!
Can I come in during the day and use the space?
Absolutely! If you want to have a meeting, by all means come in and have your meeting in our makerspace! You can come in and use our tools and materials to work on a project, or just to get some creative juices flowing. We have free WiFi, a coffee maker, and some tea as well! You're welcome any time.