Quirks Consignment Store is holding its grand opening Wednesday.
Located next to US Bank in the Student Center, Quirks is part of the Missouri Student Union Entrepreneurial Program and will sell student-made items such as dorm accessories, art and small furniture. Quirks will also have shelf space for its items in The Mizzou Store.
The store is going to offer a broad range of products, CEO Zach Beattie said.
“We had a pretty big breadth of items when we started, from student-made mugs to student-made music,” Beattie said. “As long as it’s made by the person, we can find a place for it.”
The masterminds behind Quirks are seniors Beattie, Natalie Cheng, Kate Gallagher and Devin Kelsey. The idea of a student-stocked and run store on campus just seemed like common sense, Kelsey said.
“We were just talking about it, and we realized that there was nothing like it on campus,” Kelsey said. “We thought it was weird. We had a lot of friends that would make stuff and none of them had a place to sell it, and there was really a need for that.”
Quirks did not appear out of thin air. The store first started as a business pitch to the Entrepreneurial Program. According to its page on the Student Unions website, the program looks to nurture creativity among students and allow them a high-traffic venue in the Student Center to fulfill their entrepreneurial endeavors.
“We applied for the spot with the Entrepreneurial Program, which is a thing that the Student Unions run,” Kelsey said. “We had to give a written proposal, and then do an hour-long spoken proposal. We were the team that was chosen, and we got to have a store there, and since then, we’ve been working to make it a reality.”
Quirks has already received more than 40 consignor applications, though it will continue to accept new consignors throughout the year. Any student, faculty member or MU alumnus can sign up to have his/her creations sold in the space.
Consignors have the opportunity to make money through the business, Kelsey said.
“The way it works is the four of us are equal, with an equal share of the profit,” Kelsey said. “As the consignors go, they can put stuff in there, and they get to keep 66 percent and we keep 33 percent. It is significantly better than most consignment stores. Most of those are usually more 50-50, and so we wanted to lean the other way, 66-33. We wanted to make it a better deal because these are college students and they need a little extra money.”
Kelsey said it is not all about money. The creators of Quirks want the store to be an outlet of student creativity, even for those who do not believe they are creative.
Despite the store’s short lease time and spring graduation plans of all four Quirks founders, they hope Quirks will become a permanent part of the MU community.
“I really want to expand that creative focus on campus, that people realize that they can make things that other people can appreciate,” Kelsey said. “We also want to promote student art on campus and make that a little more stable even after we’re gone. We hope it inspires something like this to stay around even after we graduate. That’s a lofty goal, but we think if we do this right, it could stay around.”
Quirks also runs an unpaid internship program for students. Beattie said they are interested in interns for social media, space design and internal operations.
“It’s an unpaid internship that will last throughout the semester, and we told them that they can stay on if they wanted to,” Beattie said. “Everyone that is doing an internship is doing something that they care about or that they want to get into someday, so the people who are working with us are passionate students that wanted to help out.”
Sophomore Christine Jackson, the space design intern and a consignor, got involved in Quirks through Facebook. So far she has made several items for the store’s opening, including chalkboards, chalkboard pencil jars and silhouette paintings.
Jackson said she believes in the store’s purpose.
“I think and hope it will do really well,” Jackson said in an email. “It’s a great spot next to the bank, and it’s a fantastic showcase for Mizzou’s artists and crafty individuals. Hopefully people will appreciate their work and make this a success.”