Stamp Yo Face! owners Kevin Wildt and Hannah Scott are opening another new business, and it has a name that’s just as interesting as their first one.
Vortex Souvenir will be a stationery and gift shop with a particular focus on art and design.
The 1,200-square-foot store is opening in late October at 1640 E. Second St. near Hydraulic in part of a building that Leon Moeder and his son, Daniel, just renovated.
“The space popped up, and we jumped on it,” Scott says.
Partly inspired by their travels elsewhere, Wildt and Scott have been thinking about a store for some time.
“In a lot of bigger cities, you really see a lot of awesome and unique shops,” Wildt says. “We kind of wanted to bring that feel here.”
He says there are a lot of great shops in Wichita already, but he and Scott are putting their own slant on greeting cards, books, art, screen prints, ceramics and paper goods with designs from local and international artists.
“We feel that there’s a niche we can fill,” Scott says. “Ultimately we want it to be creatively inspiring.”
Through their stamp company, they’ve traveled a lot to art and craft fairs and made contact with artists. They’ve found others online, and they want to introduce them to Wichita, which they say has a way of being a vortex.
“It’s a way for us to introduce that pull to artists who are outside of Wichita,” Wildt says. “This is a way to kind of put Wichita on their map.”
He says, “Maybe that leads to them visiting town (and) having an art show here. Who knows?”
Scott, who has done murals for Lululemon Athletica, will do murals throughout Vortex Souvenir as well.
“She’ll be doing murals inside the whole space to really make it something different,” Wildt says.
Scott also will be able to do her Stamp Yo Face! designs while in the store. Wildt will continue stamp production from his house.
He says the new business works well with their existing one.
Wildt also plans to do We Are Wichita, his personal project that highlights Wichita’s creative community, from the shop as well. And he and Scott want to have Final Friday events in the store.
“We want to bring something that’s kind of a destination … and kind of interactive, too,” Scott says.
The store name was inspired by Scott’s late grandfather, Lee Streiff, who was involved in the Beat Generation movement in Wichita and wrote “The Vortex Souvenir Book.”
She also once published a zine that played off the name, and she says it came up again as “we were kicking around a name for a shop.”
They found themselves gravitating to the name.
“It really kind of defined what we’re trying to do,” Scott says.
She says Wichita “has this pull that we feel is undeniable as the years go by.”
Wildt says he hopes Vortex Souvenir will be a place for Wichita residents to bring visitors and “almost make the space more of a souvenir as well.”