TACOMA, WASH. - Tinkertopia is a creative gathering space that sells some of the oddest art supplies you'll ever find. Stocklist offers timely gifts, many with a Northwest flair. Rotator is a three man creative agency that specializes in graphic design.
All three got their start through Spaceworks --a joint initiative between the City of Tacoma and the Chamber of Commerce. It all began back in 2010.
“Tacoma is full of creatives and artists,” said Program Administrator Heather Joy. “At the time it was full of vacant storefronts and so Spaceworks was trying to match up those vacant storefronts with artists and creatives to help add vibrancy to the streets.”
Among the first businesses to catch big breaks like free rent was Tinkertopia, one part reusuable craft store, one part creative workshop.
“I think we owe so much to Spaceworks,” said co-founder Darcy Anderson. “I mean we're artists. We went into this without much know-how to run a business.”
Spaceworks provided the training and support to get things rolling right. In the past seven years they have helped more than 250 artists and entrepreneurs , and Heather Joy said they're just getting started.
“Now the message is ‘Come and get support from Spaceworks, launch your business, and that Tacoma is supportive of entrepreneurs and Spaceworks is one of the resources available to them'.”
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