The Dog Show, Anna Dewey Greer and Tina Stormberg's trippy, girly store in L.A's Echo Park — which in the last year has been featured in L.A. Weekly, Nylon, Vice, by us, and elsewhere — is like an even awesomer version of cotton candy laced with mescaline, if that's possible. The girls have been best friends since almost the womb, sell repurposed vintage sportswear, make their own clothes and magic potions and other awesome shit. And there's a 3D unicorn head above the front door. It's perfect, basically.
They even give good advice:
I have been friends with Tina and Anna since college, so I asked them what it's like to run a business, what to do in L.A., and just shot the shit.
What did you guys do for undergrad?
Anna majored in Fibers at the Savannah College of Art & Design, and Tina majored in Painting and Sculpture at the Kansas City Art Institute.
You’ve been best friends for life, TELL ME ABOUT THAT.
It's the best. You know the 10,000 hours concept? How that's how long it takes to master something or whatever? We think we've gotten to that point with friendship, and it's cool. It's nice to be that in-tune with someone else because you never have to think you're crazy.
Did you always want to open a store? Did you see that in your future?
We've both always thought that would be FUN. But I don't think it was a serious thought until the idea for Dogshow came up- about 3 years ago.
You guys went to art school, right? Was it a hard transition to the business world?
Sort of. All the forms and permits and fees seem so backwards and stupid. But I think art school did teach us to take our passions seriously, which might be the most important part of Dogshow business. And deep down we are both entrepreneurs at heart.
How did you save up to open the store?
We got second jobs bartending TOGETHER! It was a really funny dream come true. We even finagled it so we only worked together, never separately (often wearing matching outfits :)). We lived off the money from our 1st jobs and saved everything we made bartending for a year.
Are you feminists?
Are you turning a profit? How do you do that? Do you keep track of finance things?
We kind of just got to a stable breaking even point, but we're hoping to turn a profit soon. We do some fabrication/costuming type work on the side, which has helped us get through the first year and a 1/2. It's not easy! It was an honest to god miracle at least half of the times we paid rent last year. MIRACLES ARE REAL. We do keep track of our finances but we aren't very good at it- our H&R Block lady thinks we're a mess.
The store is unapologetically girly, which is fantastic – is that a thing you guys did on purpose? Do you want this to be a safe haven for girls?
Definitely. We are both really interested in women, and Tina has always had a soft spot for teenage girls. Why not? And it's just what we wanted to do, cover everything in pink and purple and glitter and gems- it makes us really happy and it is very freeing. We'd like to think our 9 year old selves would say "fuck yeah" if they could see us now.
Do you have any advice for other people who want to open a store where they just do their own shit?
Do it!! Make sure you are extremely passionate about whatever your own shit is, and get a buddy! It helps to have a lawyer friend too! DIVIDE AND CONQUER — figure out what you're each good at and what you need to outsource. Listen to your gut always and not strangers who try to tell you how to run your business!
And any recommendations for where to go in L.A. for the Youngs/people who have just moved there? I have a lot of friends who just moved out there but mostly just get drunk in their houses.
Dodger games, diners, Slauson Super Mall, sunbathe in January, $3 Pasadena movie theater, bask in urban nature, try to get invited to pool parties.
What do you see yourselves doing in the future?
We would really love Dogshow to continue to thrive and exist and expand! We have some other passion projects we'll probably pursue, some Dogshow related, some not. We'll definitely be living on some shared land in Nebraska one day, raising kids and dogs! What else could you ask for in life?