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Two friends took their fashion-forward dream of launching an online boutique and made it happen. Learn more about it and how they’re making a brick-and-mortar boutique debut in Old Milford soon.

 

Jackson Whitacre is currently preparing to open its first brick-and-mortar location in Old Milford.

Friends Julie Crowthers and Haley Kemp have a passion for do-it-yourself projects. The two have completed a number of projects in their own homes including unique light fixtures, custom counter tops, shutters, and various home decor projects.

“We jokingly toyed with the idea of starting our own shop,” laughs Kemp. “We didn’t know exactly what it entailed, but no matter where we were or what we were doing, the subject always came up.”

Then, thanks to their DIY abilities, friends, family, and coworkers began asking the two to make pieces for them. Kemp says she doesn’t know when it became official, but the seriousness of starting their own business venture began.

Kemp and Crowthers began planning and purchasing clothing and home decor items for their new business in March 2016. Then, on May 2, 2016, they officially launched Jackson Whitacre.

“Jackson Whitacre is an online retail shop that sells homemade furnishings for your home as well as custom nursery pieces along with trend apparel and other home decor,” explains Kemp.

When you shop at Jackson Whitacre you’ll find a wide variety of women and children’s clothing and accessories, custom made nursery products, homemade home furnishings, trendy home decor pieces, and natural bath and body products.  

A goal for Kemp and Crowthers was to keep their prices pocketbook friendly, and they did just that. “We offer something for everyone, with pricing starting at $5.95,” says Kemp.

According to Kemp, what makes Jackson Whitacre unique is the wide variety of products they offer. “We strive to keep prices in a moderate range so people from all walks of life can find something for themselves or a loved one,” adds Kemp.

This year promises to be something big for Kemp and Crowthers at Jackson Whitacre. Kemp says the two will be opening a Jackson Whitacre storefront in Old Milford in the coming weeks.

To learn more about Jackson Whitacre, visit www.jacksonwhitacre.com. You can also follow along on Facebook and Instagram.

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    For our annual kids issue, we chat with a local lady who has a passion for turning fetes into fairy tales. See how The Picture Party Place combines her love of photography and theater while providing an outlet for other artists to showcase their talents and creativity.

    The Picture Party Place helps bring events to life for children by featuring their favorite characters.

    Caroline Hall launched The Picture Party Place in October 2013 after finding inspiration from a little shop in Michigan called the Book Nook and bringing it to life. The store in Michigan, where her family went on summer vacation for 27 years, has evolved and changed throughout the years.

    Today, it’s not only a shop for books but also for performers to come and play on the weekends and for local artists to showcase their work.

    “When you entered the shop, it was so relaxing and enjoyable that I wanted to create a similar environment,” she explains.

    That’s when Hall decided to bring her own little store to Cincinnati. Although she closed up shop last year due to family responsibilities, she was determined to keep the business alive.

    “We love to perform and entertain, and I also love photography,” says Hall. “The business was a way to marry two of my passions. We do our best to bring that passion and love to all of our events.”

    The passion for The Picture Party Place not only comes from Hall, but from her family as well as the area’s up-and-coming performers in the local theater community.

    The Picture Party Place has become a way for Hall to run a business where magical memories can be made. Hall, who herself has an extensive background in theater, has had a long line of success. She started two children’s theater programs that are still thriving and typically involve more than 100 children in the productions.

    The Picture Party Place is where you can let your imagination run wild. Hall’s business offers several types of photography packages and specializes in character-themed photos.

    “You can have a photo taken with your favorite character or have them perform at your party or event,” explains Hall.

    What makes The Picture Party Place so unique is that Hall and her team can customize their characters to fit your theme. “If you have an idea, we will work with you to bring it to life,” she says.

    The performers at the Picture Party Place are highly trained actors and vocalists, so you’ll be sure to entertain family, friends and other guests with top-notch talent. Hall can put together characters and songs to provide the entertainment you’re looking for.

    There’s even a Patriotic Quartet and Victorian Caroling group special for holiday gatherings. In addition to a unique business type, the party packages available through The Picture Party Place are one of a kind. “[Our party packages] are designed so that all you have to do is show up, we take care of the rest,” says Hall.

    Party packages are available at the Loveland Castle, Cocoa Bites in Loveland and at The Parlor in Milford. Photography packages start at $125 and party packages start at $160.

    Hall offers photography sessions for just about everything. “We offer character-themed photo sessions, head shots, photos for theater productions, senior pictures, bridal portraits, family photos, fantasy photos and casual weddings, “she says. “We also offer packages to photograph parties and events.”

    The price of party and event pricing (starting at $160) includes a photography packages. The birthday party packages include a photo with a character for the group as well as individual photos with the character for the children in addition to all the shots snapped during the party.

    Hall says that the best thing about running The Picture Party Place is seeing the smiles and joy on the children’s faces. “One of the best things, and one of things I miss most about my theater programs is hearing little voices sing,” she says. “You will often see ‘Madame Shopkeep,’ as the performers call me, wiping a tear while listening to the kids sing along with the performers.”

    She also enjoys doing events for the Dragonfly Foundation of Cincinnati, adding that one of the goals she had when starting the business was to be able to do things for that organization.

    Doing events at the Loveland Castle is another big thing for Hall, saying that their partnership has been a great pairing.

    Hall says that there’s plenty on the horizon for The Picture Party Place. “We are doing more performances at events, so you will see us customize our characters to fit various themes,” she says.

    The group recently had Miss Hannigan, Rooster and Lily St. Regis requested for a party. They also did songs from Seussical featuring Horton, the Cat in the Hat, Mayzie and Gertrude for a Dragonfly Event.

    The Picture Party Place will be doing a ‘Princesses and Heroes’ breakfast at RSVP Event Center in Loveland on July 25 as a fundraiser to support the Dragonfly Foundation campaign to build a new facility, partnering with Sweet Moments Events and Parties to bring the best characters for the kids to enjoy.

    “There will be singing, super hero training and crafts for the kids,” says Hall. “We also perform at the Loveland Castle’s show days which are the third Saturday of every month April through August.”

    On July 18 some of the group’s favorite villains will be there while on August 15 they’ll feature fairytale characters.

    Hall says The Picture Party Place will also continue creating new things as long as they have the imagination to dream them.

    To learn more about The Picture Party Place, check out their website. You can also “like” The Picture Party Place’s Facebook page to see upcoming events and the Green Faerie Productions page to view photos.

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    Learn more about this kid friendly salon -- complete with fun themed chairs and an indoor playground -- that’s fun for adults and children alike!

    Junior Cuts in Milford is the perfect place to take your little one for their next cut.
    Junior Cuts in Milford

    In March 2014, Sarah Callihan and her husband opened the doors to what is now Junior Cuts. Located in the Recreations Outlet in Milford, the salon offers access to an indoor playground while you wait and fun chairs ranging from cars to full-sized salon chairs for teens and adults.

    As strategy consultants and business owners, the Callihans knew where and how to perfect a business concept all the way through execution. “We had the ability to offer something different and better,” says Sarah, adding that before their arrival on the market, there weren’t many kid-focused salon options.

    Junior Cuts is decorated to appeal to kids without being overwhelming to adults. Each station has a TV to provide the kids with entertainment and each stylist is primped to keep the child amused and occupied. In addition, each stylist has special training with Applied Behavioral Services for children with autism and sensory process disabilities. For infants, Junior Cuts has provided special supportive chairs for those who haven’t developed enough to sit up on their own yet.

    Junior Cuts recently earned the Hulafrog “Most Loved Kids’ Haircut and Salon” award twice and the Best of Parenting Award this past December. Callihan foresees future growth within the business due to the rising amount of clients and appointments being made weekly.

    If the growth continues, the Callihans have considered the idea of expanding and opening up other branches, and at this success rate it is not improbable. As of right now, though, they’re working on perfecting their current concept. In the near future, they do plan on the prospect of “glamor parties” for kids and/or birthday party events. Being that they’ve had a few in the past, which have proven to have good turn outs, they’d like to continue on with similar functions.

    A new addition to Junior Cuts is its newly launched Story Time series. They’ve partnered with Clermont County Public Library and have readings every Tuesday at 11:00 a.m., and are sometimes lucky enough to snag a few local authors! For more information, visit www.juniorcuts.com.

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