by Katy Houston-Hartshorn, Downtown Partnership
Rebecca Moon and I met a few months ago (long before the pandemic hit) at a cozy table soaked in sunshine at The Perk Downtown. Across the table from me, an ambitious, unassuming young woman illustrated her plan to launch a sustainable clothing boutique in the Downtown core. As I listened to her present her blueprint and describe the road she had taken to arrive in this place, it was hard not be impressed by her business savvy.
Moonbeam Clothiers, opening May 29 at 113 N. Tejon St., is a makerspace that designs and produces an in-house label, Rebecca Moon Designs. The shop also represents a variety of global brands and offers custom alteration services. In addition to ethically made, sustainably sourced women’s clothing, home goods and body care, the boutique will offer a casual menswear line, something that is in short supply in the Downtown market.
Growing up just a mile from Downtown, Rebecca has nostalgic memories of her hometown. “Almost every day in the summer my siblings and I would ride our bikes to T&L Market (now Stellina Pizza) for a soda or piece of candy. Between my mom playing in the Philharmonic and my study of ballet, I spent a lot of time in the Pikes Peak Center. We would go to concerts and stop at Josh & John’s on the way home.”
Rebecca studied International Business and French Literature at University of Denver and London’s City University. “I discovered a love of exploring and understanding people’s culture and stories, especially how tradition is kept alive–something that very much influences my business values.”
Downtown is for the dreamers
She returned to Colorado Springs in 2017 and found the city had done some growing of its own. She found a collaborative community of people that worked to encourage dreamers like herself. She fell in love all over again. “This is a place where you can have ambition; I love what it is and what it is becoming,” Rebecca said.
It was then that Rebecca decided rather than going to design school she would launch her own brand, writing the first iteration of her business plan for Moonbeam Clothiers. While working as a barista at Wild Goose Meeting House and Good Neighbors and a bartender at Shame & Regret, Rebecca was adopted into the supportive startup ecosystem unique to Downtown. “Russ and Yemi [owners of Wild Goose and Good Neighbors] created a hub of people, all trying to make big moves. I made dozens of incredible connections during my time as barista and manager at Good Neighbors Meeting House and the Wild Goose. Most recently, I’ve worked for Joe Campana and Matt Baumgartner at Shame & Regret. They’ve been wildly generous with their support, time, and expertise in helping me to launch my own business.”
Opening during a pandemic
Rebecca signed the lease on her storefront at 113 N. Tejon late in 2019 and got to work making the space her own. When COVID-19 hit in March, plans came to a halt. “COVID has caused a significant delay but I’m grateful for the extra time I have had to make everything exactly the way I want without pushing too hard. Financially, it has been tough. I’m operating on a very tight budget, but I’ve been able to do much of the work myself or with help from our community.” While the delay wasn’t ideal, Rebecca acknowledges that she feels more prepared than ever to open her doors. “Frankly, I don’t think I had the skill set, client base, connections, or support that I needed to succeed until now.”
Why Downtown Colorado Springs?
When asked why she chose to open her business Downtown, Rebecca replied sincerely, “Downtown is an amazing incubator for change, passion, and avant-garde ideas. This is why I chose to build my dream here, in the heart of our city. I want to give and take of the inspiration and value of the others here.”
Join us to celebrate the grand opening 4-8 pm Friday, May 29.