Jun 20, 2023 • Annie Cao
Pride month is here, and as always, we stand in support of the LGBTQ+ community. We’ve gathered 5 small LGBTQ-owned businesses that are worth checking out.
In 2015, Danny Taing came back from a trip to Japan with his favorite snacks. After sharing them with family and friends, he quickly realized that the local businesses he purchased the snacks from weren’t available in the US. This led Taing to create his own company where he partners with small family-owned businesses across Japan and creates curated subscription boxes.
In each subscription box, you’ll find authentic Japanese snacks, candies, a tea, and magazine related to a specific cultural theme. Over the years, they’ve also expanded into a boutique that allows you to shop snack collections and gift boxes.
Allison and Jamie Nadeau started off small by making custom stationery for friends and family. After moving to South Carolina and taking a printmaking class, they discovered their love for letterpress printing and launched INK MEETS PAPER, a greeting card line, in 2010. Since then, they’ve grown into a brand that not only makes greeting cards by hand, but also sells stationery and other paper goods.
In 2013, Mackenzie Farquer opened Lockwood, a brick-and-mortar retail store, in Astoria, Queens. Lockwood sells thoughtfully-sourced decor, stationery, clothing, gifts, and lifestyle products. Her hope for the store is to be able to walk in and find a unique gift from local artisans and support up-and-coming brands. Now, Lockwood has 6 physical locations, as well an online store.
A comics writer and LGBT comics activist, Charles Christensen founded Northwest Press in 2010. Northwest Press is a book publisher that focuses on publishing LGBTQ comic collections and graphic novels that support and uplift the community.
Named after the area of the world that grows coffee beans, Helen Russell and Brooke McDonnell started Equator Coffees in a garage. After growing and expanding their business over the last 28 years, Equator now has 9 cafes in California and an online store selling their coffee blends and brewing equipment.
They have their own coffee farm in Volcan, Panama and become Fair Trade Certified in 1999. In 2011, Equator Coffees became B Corp Certified, and in 2016, they became the first LGBTQ-owned business to receive the National Small Business of the Year award. Most recently, Equator also became SHEOwns Certified in 2023, meaning they meet SHEMark’s standards for gender equality in the workplace.
Cover image via Unsplash
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