Funky Pumpkin vintage clothing store opens in Morton

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MORTON – A beautiful space inspired a mother-daughter duo to open vintage clothing store Funky Pumpkin in downtown Morton.

The place, which once housed Miller Bakery, was such a neat space that Stephanie Brown and her 16-year-old daughter, Olivia, felt compelled to make it their own.

“This building is so cool,” Stephanie said during a recent tour of the two-room space. “The owner of the building made this yard. He was part of this room. I think she ripped the roof off and put that wall up. The yard is also ours.

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Part of the deal was a gigantic ventilation hood and huge table, both of which were to remain in the space. The mother and daughter have creatively transformed the extractor hood into a walk-in closet, and the table is now covered in jeans.

Although the two men weren’t sure what kind of business they wanted to start when they first entered space, it wasn’t long before they had the idea for a vintage clothing store.

“Vintage clothing is something we both love,” Stephanie said. “We go to thrift stores all the time, wherever we’ve lived. We lived in California for a while, and they have nice shops like this, so we kind of wanted to bring that back to Morton, stuff we like in other cities.”

Stephanie Brown, left, and her daughter Olivia, 16, opened their new vintage clothing boutique The Funky Pumpkin in June in a former bakery at 142 S. Main St. in Morton.

The Browns sell clothing for men, women and children. They get their clothes from a vendor in California who spends hours rummaging through outlets where clothes are sold by the pound.

“They have a list of what we are looking for. They send us high quality things, and they wash and repair them before they send them to us,” Stephanie said.

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Browns love vintage clothes not only because they’re eco-friendly, but also because older clothes tend to be higher quality than new clothes sold in stores today.

“We’ve found that our vintage jeans, they fit better and last longer than newer types of jeans that are blended with synthetic fabrics to make them stretchy,” Olivia said. “They don’t last as long, and they have holes in them, and they just aren’t as good.”

In addition to jeans, the store offers a wide variety of clothing types, from coats to sweaters, dresses and accessories. Their merchandise dates from the 1940s through the early 2000s. The Funky Pumpkin also has a wide selection of vintage t-shirts, including a 1970s Pink Floyd concert T that takes up prime display space.

The store also offers vintage and new jewelry, hats and crystals. Most things are priced under $50, but sometimes a very special piece is priced over $100.

Stephanie Brown, owner of Funky Pumpkin, designed the logo for The Funky Pumpkin in downtown Morton.

Olivia has been the main shopkeeper since the store opened in June. She has been involved in all aspects of the business, from designing the store’s logo and labels, to setting up displays and even tracking down the writer of an NSF check – one of first customers to enter the store after it opened.

“I was so proud of how she handled it, and it was only our second day open. It was like eight hundred dollars worth of stuff,” Stephanie said. “So we learned a lot right away – now we don’t take personal checks anymore.”

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The business has been well received in Morton, Stephanie said.

“It’s fun to create something and have other people like it too,” she said. “It’s really fun for me because I like being creative, and Olivia likes being creative, and then people love that too – it’s like, ‘Oh, that’s fun.'”

Leslie Renken can be reached at (309) 370-5087 or [email protected] Follow her on Facebook.com/leslie.renken.

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