Makeshift Says Goodbye

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I suck at goodbyes.

Let me get this over with: Makeshift is closing doors this month. Our last day is Friday, August 26th.

The first thing people always want to know is why, and the answer to that question is so complicated. Expenses were higher than income and for an old-fashioned storefront business, that’s the kiss of death. I’m not ready to go into it in any greater detail right now, but if you’re business-oriented, here’s a FAQ.

But what else? Makeshift is the fourth brick-and-mortar business I have started in the last 11 years, and the third one I have closed. (Happily, Rare Device is thriving under the care of awesome people.)

Makeshift was a grand experiment; it felt like the culmination of interests that I didn’t even know I had. And then a funny thing happened: it shape-shifted into its true self. I wanted a sunny window seat to read design books in and work on a laptop, a little room to meet with friends or clients, and a tiny loft that you accessed by a vintage library ladder so you could take a nap. And it had all of those things, sure, but that’s just the physical space. Makeshift started as a place and became a community.

A wonderful community! A band of creative people who talked and laughed and pitched ideas to each other and became friends and collaborators. People who shared homemade cookies and threw toys for the dogs and cooed over the babies who came to work next to their moms. People who recommended each other for jobs and edited copy for each others’ Kickstarters and took headshot photos and coded websites. The DNA of Makeshift is now a part of so many other businesses, and I still hear about the successes of our members all the time. Personally, I am still pulling from the network of people I met through this business to help me, every day. That means something.

Last year, my business partner Bryan wrote a far more eloquent goodbye letter when we closed the Brooklyn location. I’m going to keep it short and sweet and just say thank you for supporting us. You’ll see me around town.

Rena

PS Huge love and thanks to Ashley and Nicole who are everything.