The day before his grandmother died, Adrian “Bub” Love says she gave him the inspiration for the name of his business.
“Baby, I’m going to be in cloud nine, and you’re going to be down here dealing with this mess,” she said of the general state of the world.
Love, who also got his nickname from his grandmother, now has a business called Cloud 9 Industries to showcase local artists and business people.
“That’s the whole business of Cloud 9, just supporting our community,” says Love, 28. “We have to build our own community.”
With $200, Love started Cloud 9 three years ago at Ninth and Washington as a smoke shop and “kind of a neighborhood store” with bread, snacks and candy.
In April, he moved it to 824 W. 13th St. across and just down from Riverside Cafe.
Now, he’s creating a new concept for Cloud 9, which he says he wants to be an artistic, eclectic store.
“Each room in the building will be a different boutique,” Love says. “I took the concept from living in LA.”
Love says small business owners can use the shop to sell their products.
Initially, that means art, clothing, and hand-blown glass pipes. There’s a vape shop within Cloud 9 that so far is the biggest component of the business.
Love also is selling candles his mother, Shirley Love, made.
There will be a separate boutique called Sassy to sell hair-related products along with some skincare lines.
Love also is working to open Bubby’s By Cloud 9, which will sell smoothies, pizzas and sub sandwiches out of a window at the business.
“We’ve been doing it little by little,” Love says of opening each boutique. “We’ll open in phases.”
Sassy and Bubby’s aren’t open yet.
Love is still getting licensed for everything he wants to do, and he says it’s been a crash course in dealing with city and state regulations.
“I’m checking everything off slowly but surely.”
He says he wonders at all the regulations, though, such as what sign he can hang where.
“It discourages small business owners. It makes it seem near impossible.”
Love says he moved to Riverside because his grandparents lived in the neighborhood for half a century, and he spent a lot of time there.
It’s northeast Wichita that he says he wants to support with his business, though.
“We do a lot of community activism,” he says. “We need more positive role models in our neighborhood.”
For instance, he says he’s distributed pumpkins to a lot of local children.
“It just blew my mind that a lot of kids in northeast Wichita had never carved a pumpkin.”
Love, who also manages local musicians, says he’s building a music studio at his former Cloud 9 space for people in the neighborhood to use at an affordable rate.
“I think my grandma would be really proud,” he says. “I really dedicate my life to keeping her proud of me.”