Today we’d like to introduce you to Taylor Barkin and Tanner Barkin.
Taylor and Tanner, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Our story starts back in high school. We met and started dating when we were 14. A few years later, we were hungry to do something different from the traditional path set forth for us. We spent our summer before our junior year learning the ins and outs of screen printing in Tanner’s parents’ garage. We had no idea what we were doing but we were determined to learn. We quickly fell in love with the idea of creating a business and building a brand that we truly cared about.
We worked really hard through college to grow our brand. Our first year in college we grew out of the garage and moved into our first Denver warehouse. This was a huge and scary leap for us as we went from being a hobby company that could really have gone in any given direction to a true business that we set out to see grow. We continued to work really hard and hustle every day to grow our brand for many years until we ultimately outgrew our first official shop. The growth and challenges excited us to keep growing our business so we moved into our current workshop, creative space and production facility on Steele St. We’ve spent many years perfecting our craft and are now excited to be growing the passionate team that’s helping us grow every day.
Tanner has always been the creative behind Moore, drawing everything we have by hand. Taylor has always loved the idea of building a business and loves running the operations of the company. We have two very separate passions but it all works because we are able to balance one another out and bring different things to the table that we both genuinely care about. We continue to work together to develop our products and make everything in the house in our Denver shop.
Not every day is easy and we face many challenges as we continue to grow but we wouldn’t trade the ability to both works for ourselves doing what we love every single day.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
We don’t think any road to growth should be smooth and we wouldn’t be truthful if we said that this journey has been easy for us. People often ask us what we would do differently or what we regret about things we’ve done on our journey up to this point. The answer is always that we wouldn’t change a damn thing and that’s not at all because everything has been perfect.
Like just about everybody dedicating their life to growing a business, we never had a path to follow and we never knew the answers to growing our business. But we figured it out and continue to do so every day. Sometimes, our risks paid off and other times they haven’t. When we experience successful moments, we are so beyond excited. On the other hand, when things don’t always go as planned, it can feel defeating, especially in the beginning when you are in the phase of questioning everything you do. Every seemingly defeating moment at the time has been a huge learning lesson for us and we try to continue seeing things that way. When we screw up we know we won’t make that mistake again and it also makes us appreciate the moments that are exciting and rewarding.
Running and growing a business is the biggest freaking roller coaster. There are days where we want to cry from joy because of how proud we are of where we’ve come and some days in the past where we question burning it all down but at the end of the day, smooth road or not we love what we do.
While there hasn’t been a defining moment of “screwing up,” we deal with challenges that come up daily that we have no choice but to deal with if we want to continue on this journey as business owners.
People often tell us that from an outside perspective, it looks like we effortlessly have our shit together and that they are impressed with our ability to grow a business while still finding time to enjoy our lives outside of work. While we feel like we mostly have our shit together, it takes so much work and hustle to get to that point. Not just in the beginning, but every single day. There’s a lot that goes on that people don’t see and a lot that we have done to grow our business that from the outside might look easy but truthfully it’s not easy and effortless for anyone!
We put the work in, we hustle and we aim to work smarter over harder every day. We often work 14 hour days every single day of the week and sometimes push ourselves harder than we should. But when you live a life and work a career full of passion and excitement of knowing anything is possible if you put the work in, it’s worth it.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Moore Collection – what should we know?
There are a few things that set us apart:
1. We hand print all of our tees ourselves and make the majority of the rest of our products in house as well.
2. We don’t design things just to design them. All of our designs and products are either created from our own life experiences or are created based on things we genuinely enjoy.
3. We are a husband and wife duo! Tanner is the artist, Taylor is the business brain.
4. Every single design is drawn by hand by Tanner.
5. We’re known for being young business owners. We started this journey at age 16 and now at 25, we’re living the dream we’ve always had.
6. We are proud to say that everything is made with purpose, that we put the hard work in as business owners to be as good of a company as we can.
7. We overhauled an old bread delivery truck to be a shop on wheels and we’re pumped to drive it around Denver welcoming people into our place.
8. Our Denver shop is an open concept for people to come in and shop with us while being able to see our products being made in the back. We encourage anyone in our community to come in and talk business, art, life or whatever! We love getting to know our community.
Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Hard work, hustle, and compassion is what it all comes down to.
We were never the kind of people in school that excelled with our grades. In fact, Tanner failed science class and the only reason we met was that he had to retake it. As we’ve gotten older and built a successful business, we’ve realized that being book smart is not at all the reason for our success. What has been, is our ability to work hard and put the time in to learn the things we don’t know and put the hours in to grow.
It’s overcoming challenges as they are thrown at you and persevering through times that aren’t easy-and those times will always exist. It’s never made sense to us to think that it will be an easy ride. It’s not about hoping that objections or failures won’t come. It’s about knowing that they will and be ready to face them head-on when they come at you. but also knowing it’s okay to cry or scream once in a while to get through it.
We are also trying to continuously innovate within our brand to keep our customers excited and engaged. It’s one thing to put out an initial run of shirts that people like but it’s a whole different animal to continuously create things that keep people engaged with our brand. When we started, it took us about 4 months to put out 4 shirt designs but as Tanner has grown as an artist and as we’ve put the effort in to know our customers, we can do that in about a week.
Lastly, it’s about embracing the community. What’s amazing about the maker community in Denver is that we are friends with our competition. We are all here to lift people up. It’s important to welcome anyone into our life and take the time to get to know them. From fellow business owners to customers it’s important to give them the time of day. Most of our growth has been from networking and word of mouth left and right. Have a good attitude, get to know people, give people the time of day and don’t ever think or act like you are better than someone. We truly believe that by believing these things and following them has been what’s made us not only grow our sales but grow as people as well and that’s what it’s all about.
- Address: 3851 Steele St.
Denver, CO 80205
- Website: moorecollection.com
- Phone: 720-352-3733
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @moorecollection
- Facebook: /moorecollection