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Let's Celebrate Strong Women in KC!


Article by Mindy Hargesheimer

Photography by Mindy Hargesheimer

The world continues to make GREAT strides in celebrating females and their many, profound achievements, and recognizing the impact women from every culture, field, and background are accomplishing in breaking down barriers, making bold statements, and improving people’s livelihoods!

I want to recognize 13 Kansas City female-founded businesses and their owners who’ve personally impacted me via their inspirational success stories and their strength in taking risks with their independent, entrepreneurial minds! From fashion to photography, food and beyond, these women and their teams have played an integral part in this city, contributing to Kansas City’s local maker pride and creation of wow worthy and joyful services, events, and creations!  #BOSSBABES unite!

1. MADI Apparel

@madi_apparel: MADI Apparel is a women’s undergarment brand with the dedication to Make a Difference domestically and globally. MADI is founded upon the principles of American manufacturing, self-sustaining fabrics/packaging and socially conscious global impact through underwear donations. Madi Apparel believes in our world's women - we aim to impact the lives of these women, one undie at a time.

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2. Give & Partake

@giveandpartake: Give & Partake was created as a means to give back to our community. Founder, Ashley Judy’s goal is to provide you with not only these delicious entrees, but an opportunity to discover and enjoy local restaurants. It is important to Give & Partake to provide local restaurants the opportunity to reach a unique customer base while also giving back to our community.

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3. Abby Flores

@ladybyekc, @cocobrookside & @shopkatekc: Owner Abby Flores’ mission with her trio of stores is to provide fashion for all at affordable price points, stock sizes for all body types (size XXS to XXL), and excellent customer service, which she says is given. Abby get her master’s degree in art history at KU studying the history of fashion and finds consumer behavior fascinating. “It is this big thing in the world: dress the way you want to project yourself. When you dress for yourself and your confidence and what you’re looking for people also perceive you that way. It’s always a part of that interaction. So it’s especially fun for me when people who love fashion or are seeking a new style come into the store. It’s fun to help people find their style and something that helps them feel good and that compliments their wardrobe and lifestyle. My staff is good at that too.” 

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4. Sierra Winter

@sierrawinterjewlery: Inspired by global motifs and the elegance of the Kansas prairie, Sierra Winter is an unexpectedly eclectic collection of timeless and transcendent jewelry. Each piece is intricately designed by Sierra and handcrafted from high quality sterling silver, 14k gold, turquoise, diamonds, and other natural stones. When you wear Sierra Winter Jewelry, you enter into the story it tells; a story of golden sunsets, a warm prairie breeze, and traditions re-imagined in a modern light.

5. Cottontale KC

@cottontale_talekc: Kiffany and her family love dancing, pizza, playing outside and trying new flavors of cotton candy! She loves the Midwest and is proud to call Kansas City home! You've never had cotton candy like her creations before! From maple bacon, pink lemonade, cookie dough, pina colada and holiday favorites like eggnog, gingerbread and candy cane, there's a cotton candy flavor for every occasion!

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6. Radiant Skin & Beauty

@radiantskinandbeauty: Radiant skin is Founder, Megan’s, philosophy. She’s on a mission to find it…together. Through thoughtful consultations and real goal setting, Megan and her skilled staff can help you achieve restored youthful radiance. Let her guide you on your journey to beautiful and radiant skin.

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7. Kansas City Box

@kansascitybox: Katie Thompson’s business is a full-service gifting studio featuring local makers and high-quality products primarily sourced from the Midwest. She specializes in corporate, custom, and bridal gift suites. Kansas City Box is dedicated to highlighting the small businesses featured in her gifts - for this reason every gift comes with an informational insert. Learn about local makers, discover their website and social links all in one location. Gift giving should be an enjoyable way to celebrate clients, employees, and those who matter most in our lives. You select the gift and Katie takes care of the rest.

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8. Kimberly Stern

@kimdishes: Kimberly Stern is an award-winning storyteller who brings more than 30 years of writing, editorial and public relations expertise to Kansas City by way of her food, travel and lifestyle writing career. She built a blue-chip public relations client list in the areas of food and hospitality, healthcare, upscale home building and personal care products. Kimberly is acclaimed Kansas City Chef Jasper Mirabile’s co-host on and executive producer of his weekly radio show, “LIVE! From Jasper’s Kitchen,” where the duo interviews local, regional and national chefs, restaurateurs, food artisan, television personalities and more.

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9. Teisha Marie Barber

@kcfwpres: In June 2011, a vision for ‘Models on a Mission: Benefit Fashion Show’ for Joplin, MO was brought to life by Teisha Marie Barber; raising over $5,000 for the victims of the Joplin, MO tornado. For this event, Teisha and her counterpart, Phil Willoughby realized a mutual passion and need to fill a fashion void in Kansas City. Her experience and training gave her the necessary edge to bring Kansas City Fashion Week front and center as one of Kansas City’s paramount events. Embracing the challenges of President, Teisha Barber oversees and orchestrates all production and design of all KCFW shows and events through two seasons each year. 

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10. Anna Petrow

@annapetrow: Anna Petrow is a culinary, travel and lifestyle photographer based in the Midwest, following her lens coast to coast and beyond. Anna’s wide-ranging clientele includes James Beard award winning restaurants, multinational corporations and international newspapers and magazines. Her work has been published in the New York Times, Food & Wine, Fathom, Jetsetter and beyond– including her newly launched travel guides. Her images can also be found (and purchased) at Offset.

11. Danielle Lehman

@openbelly: Danielle Lehman’s vision is to break everyone all out of our comfort zones while exploring new foods. To share the stories of immigrant chefs in our community. To encourage us all to get to know our neighbors. To use food as a way to unite our community. To understand the world from other perspectives than our own. Danielle launched in Kansas City and has since expanded into The Big Apple, and her attention to detail with our local restauranteurs with a gift for food has expanded our horizons and shown great appreciation for these hardworking chefs. 

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12. LM Connect

@lmconnectkc: Since 2014, LM Connect has helped businesses in the Kansas City area develop and elevate their brand. From social media marketing to event planning, Laurie Morrissey’s team uses a one-of-a-kind approach for each client in order to target the right people with the right message. They are a one-stop-shop for all things marketing, advertising and public relations, working WITH clients from beginning to end - from creating brands to seeking out the “right” media outlets to growing the business. 

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13. Amina Marie Hood

@aminahood: Amina Marie Hood is a milliner based out of Kansas City, Missouri. Amina Hood has been recognized for her custom designs, sculptural style, and attention to detail. Her designs have been featured in magazines, museum exhibits and runway shows worldwide. Amina was a finalist in the world-renowned International James Lock & Co. Millinery competition that took place in London. Most recently her work was on exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

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