Positively Milwaukee

Starting up a small business is hard for any artist, but there are even more barriers if you have an intellectual or developmental disability. Kristin Byrne found a Cedarburg business that proves anyone can be an entrepreneur.

If you’re shopping for unique art luxury bath products and trendy fashions Cedarburg Mercantile is the place to go.

So personally, I love the curly topped tees but beyond that what I really really have found that each piece of art that comes in here each product that we have in the store it really does tell its own story.

Mercantile is the brainchild of Samantha Bear and Cindi Purnell the profits from the store will support Blossom IDD which aims to help individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

So, they’ve opened up space for people like Aiden Dow who has autism to sell their work. Aiden said creator of these curly top tees.

It really gives people the opportunity in the the ability to share what they have to offer. And aside from developing their artistic talent vendors get a chance to build their professional skills like marketing and communication. It gives us a prime opportunity that we can create a safe environment for individuals who may get shut down in other areas like maker markets or big fairs.

Because they do they do get overlooked a lot Cindi knows that through raising her daughter Dakota. Dakota attended Bethesda college at Concordia University a program designed for young people with disabilities Samantha was a teacher there. She stayed with us for the next couple of years and my daughter now is living in Cedarburg in a home with three other roommates and she is becoming very independent.

Cindi and Samantha’s friendship helped create this business they wanted to see other people find Dakota’s success and that means doing more than just giving vendors a place to sell. We originally had wanted to do something that was employment based, Come in and learn different things and find what they really like to do and we’ll help them then hone in on those skills and help them to move out into the world so they can become more productive citizens for our community.

These women say they just want to help people grow Blossom so to speak!

Very nice and artists at Cedarburg mercantile get paid for their sales at the end of every month Samantha says a paycheck is something many of us take for granted she wants her clients to feel that same success as any other small business owner

For those that are interested in using the space or any general inquiries can be sent to Bear at director@bloomandmercantile.com.

For vendors who are interested in selling items in the store can contact vendor@bloomandmercantile.com.

For more information and updates, follow the store on Facebook at Cedarburg Mercantile & Bloom IDD.

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