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Exploring Life & Business with Beth Kuhar-Miller of One Sweet Thread

Today we’d like to introduce you to Beth Kuhar-Miller. 

Hi Beth, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstories.
I started One Sweet Thread as a side hustle in 2015. I have always loved vintage clothes and old things. I started wearing my parents’ clothes (’60s and ’70s pieces) in junior high in the ’80s to pad my wardrobe, and really the obsession grew from there. I would thrift vintage clothes and mix them in with modern clothing to get a quirky, unique look. So, picking this as a career seemed really fitting to me! I paused my business in 2019 for personal reasons but decided last year to quit the job I had in medical aesthetics and make this my main focus, doing what I love full time and slowly building my business. Right now, my boutique is an online store, but I have other goals I want to achieve. My dream is to restore a vintage trailer or RV and have a mobile store to take around the state to flea markets and other events. I also would love to mentor other young adults who also dream of owning a small business and give back to my community in some small way. 

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey has been a fairly smooth road?
Has it been easy?! Absolutely not (I say this with a smile and a chuckle)! The first year I started my business, I really had NO IDEA what I was doing. I thought I would take pictures of some vintage dresses I owned that I wasn’t wearing anymore, throw them up on Etsy, and make a lot of money selling them. This was the farthest thing from reality. I soon learned that I not only am the proprietor, I alone am also the marketing department (with very little budget!), customer service, the tech department, and most importantly, curator. I also clean and mend most items. I learned to wear many hats and quickly. Each job or task is just so different that it keeps me on my toes for sure. 

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your business?
One Sweet Thread is a women’s clothing boutique that sells vintage clothing and accessories from the 1900s to Y2K. I specialize in vintage plus-size clothing (which can be difficult to find), rare prints, some vintage luxury labels, and quirky fun accessories. I think what sets me apart from other shops is that if a client is looking for something specific or special, I offer personal shopping services. That definitely that makes the customer’s experience more tailored, and whether or not I can find that Holy Grail for them, in the end, I have cultivated a relationship with that person which is important to me. Over the years, I have developed relationships with a lot of my customers, and that is something I am very proud of. Without them, my business wouldn’t thrive. I also am very proud of being able to find and curate beautiful things for people to love and wear. These items that were once cast aside are now getting a second life. That’s really special. 

Can you tell us more about what you were like growing up?
Growing up, I was a quirky kid who wore silver Christmas garland as a feather boa and fashioned sheer curtain panels as a dress. Even at the tender age of six, I was exhibiting signs of my destiny! I always felt like I was very different, and I now understand and embrace how different I really was. I always loved art and fashion. Fashion is an expression of art, and when I was twelve, I would ride my bike up to Perry’s Park news across town to buy Vogue, Elle, and Glamour. I would cut out any of the looks in the magazines I loved, and I made over time a huge collage on the walls of my room. It literally looked like wallpaper! None of my other friends were doing this; most of them had New Kids on the Block posters in their rooms. I would get yelled at a lot in class for not paying attention because I was often bored and dreaming of doing something more exciting. I probably should have went to a special arts school because I was always highly creative, but back in the ’80s and ’90s in the small town where I grew up that was pretty much unheard of, and my family didn’t have a lot of money anyways. 

Since my parents didn’t have a lot of money, I had to get highly creative with the clothes I had. I would mix my mom and dad’s ’60s and ’70s clothes I found in their cedar chest with my own clothes. It really is a small miracle that I didn’t get bullied for wearing my dad’s bell bottoms and paisley belt with an Esprit sweater! Instead, I received compliments. 

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Image Credits

Beth Kuhar-Miller
Kevin Miller

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