Kate Mills and Ashley Sheehan co-own Old Made Good (better known as OMG), a Nashville, TN, store featuring all things vintage, thrift, reclaimed, reimagined and handmade. Housed in a 1,200-foot blue bungalow in Riverside Village in East Nashville, the two have curated a collection of followers drawn to their eye for style and their penchant for pushing the envelope.
When their landlord informed them the rent was about to nearly double, the two began to look for a new home for OMG. They found one with nearly 6,000 square feet on the main road running through their part of town. This would not only allow them to house all their classes and community events under one roof, but would provide ample space for all their furniture finds and refinishing projects, which had been scattered between storage spots and their homes.
Co-owner Kate Mills is the personality behind social media, where many OMG fans connect thanks to her hilarious knack for telling it like it is. So when the two ran into a bit of a problem with the new space, Kate turned to the virtual community for support.
Gold Glitter Floor (GGF)
The idea came from a pair of Kate’s shoes – her gold glitter-covered pumps provided just the right amount of glam to an outfit, and shouldn’t a shop floor do the same?
With that inspiration, they set out to create a gold glitter floor for the F OMG (Future OMG). They ordered the largest bulk quantity they found on the Internet, 25 pounds, so they’d have more than enough. “I was thinking, we got this; we’ll have leftover glitter for years,” Kate said.
That’s when the glitter hit the fan, so to speak.
With 2,500 square feet of floor space to cover in the main area, 25 pounds didn’t go far. So they went to local stores and bought “more and more” glitter. Even worse, the glitter kept coming up – even after multiple coats of polyurethane.
There was no blueprint for what they were attempting – no “glitter to floor ratio,” as Kate described. “It’s kind of like everything in the shop. We just do it by doing it. We just decide we’re going to do it and then you just keep going.”
So they did. Folks on Facebook and Instagram doled out advice. Locals dropped off glitter donations to the store. Someone even mailed a note with a check toward the cost of the floor.
“Everybody told us, ‘Well, okay, lay down a coat of poly, that will do it. Okay, lay down another coat of poly, okay that will do it’ … We were all high for days. And so, we kept wasting all this money when the first thing [Ashley] said it should be was epoxy. And we both knew it, but epoxy is like–”
“It’s just seemed out of reach,” Ashley said.
“It’s ridiculously expensive,” Kate added. “The lesson learned is to go with what works if you know it’s going to work, because we would have actually saved money in the long run had we just bit the bullet.”
About this time a friend of the shop suggested on Facebook that the two set up an Indiegogo campaign with some really fun perks to raise money for their project. “A lot of people were chiming in saying the same thing, and I kind of felt like it was strange as a business to ask for money. That really kind of felt weird to us.”
“Because it wasn’t like a cure for cancer or anything, you know?” Ashley said.
“But we realized that people wanted to do it, and they felt invested in it, and they want to see it,” Kate said. “At that point it really stopped being about us and became bigger than us, and that’s a really cool feeling.
“Everybody’s talking about gun control and politics and so heavy and serious – and we’re like, ‘Hey, we need glitter.’ I think it’s like a breath of fresh air. It’s lighthearted and funny and something that comes at a time when people are sick of all the heavy stuff that’s going on.”
Within 48 hours the “Glitter Done” campaign reached its initial $5,000 goal, thanks to exposure from a blog post by Nashville’s Style Blueprint. The girls hired a professional – Alfredo with True Foundations Concrete – and the glitter floor was indeed done.
Since the floors ate away at their already tiny budget, the overage from the campaign (which ends in 4 days) is going toward the rest of the renovation.
“We’re kind of at the break-even point,” Kate explained. “We had to postpone hiring craftspeople to finish build-out, delay buying new inventory, etc. We took the entire renovation of 6,000 square feet on with me acting as the GC – no loans and often us and our families doing the work.”
Kate and Ashley are counting on the generosity of their fans and virtual community to help them build “the most unique store this side of the Mississippi.”
With gold glitter floors, they’re well on their way.
“I guess there are worst things that you could be known for, but I would never ever imagine this happening,” Kate said. “Frankly, I don’t like glitter! It’s not like either of us are girly girls. I mean, it turned out beautifully. Once we put everything in, it’ll be kind of that juxtaposition of the very shiny and glam and high-end with just crap. I mean, really – we built dressing rooms out of salvage wood from a salvage yard, our counters are old general old store counters from whatever – so it’s really this mixed bag – kind of like we are.”
Which is why the community loves them. Local artist Herb Williams recently gave his “stamp” of approval as well. Best known for his 3D crayon sculpture of Barack Obama as part of the first inauguration festivities, Herb “stamped” the side of the F OMG building with one of his designs – a multi-colored fawn. When the girls discovered who was behind the art, they promptly invited him and the community out to sign and sell prints of the OMG fawn, and to celebrate new beginnings.
“It really has turn into a community space and we’re not even open yet, so that’s great,” Kate said. “Nashville is really helping us build this store. It’s kind of incredible.”
4 days left to help fund the Glitter Done Indiegogo campaign
Gettin glitter wit it – Photo courtesy OMG
Note and check from an out-of-town fan – Photo courtesy OMG
Glitter Lung illustration featured in the Indiegogo campaign video
The Royal Tenenbaums collage by Ashley Sheehan
In Good We Trust No One
OMG exterior, with fawn stamp by local artist Herb Williams
Glitterville’s youngest fan, Ellenor, with Ashley and Kate
-Story, photos (unless otherwise noted), and baby in pink pajamas by Cara Davis