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Trunk Nouveau | Squadron

Photo credit: From the Hip

Trunk Nouveau /t^nk/ ‘nju:’veo/ noun: A curated monthly showing and sale from an independent maker who offers handcrafted wares. Trunk Nouveau in Aurora started with a remarkable dream: a busy aviation studio, industrial in nature, doused in the smell of engine oil and creativity. In the back is a room with steam trunks and suitcases filled with forgotten treasures–the kind that people hold on to, handcrafted and meaningful.

A trunk showroom at Aurora’s Stanley Marketplace is packed full of love and local, a curious place to discover and explore. Suitcases, filled with jewelry, cards, charms, gemstones, wooden toys, and other unique gifts, are on display from talented local and regional artists.

Young at Heart. Although their businesses Pandora on the Hill and Soul Haus have been in operation for over 20 years in Denver, Trunk Nouveau is young, celebrating its third year. Squadron Co is celebrating its first anniversary at Stanley Marketplace. Who knew that a business in the middle of a field with no major intersections could succeed in the local economy, along with 50 other businesses. In fact, Trunk Nouveau exceeds sales over their businesses in Denver. Just before the holidays last year, when a second space became available at Stanley, owner Chris Bacorn jumped on it. Squadron Co became their men’s gift and clothing boutique.

The Aurora-South Metro SBDC. Owner Stephanie Shearer recalls, “Before Trunk even had a name, we met with Aurora-South Metro SBDC to review our finances. We wanted to be liquid enough to open this new venture in a location with zero financial history. The SBDC helped us trim and tuck, with reserves in place for growth.”

The SBDC gave advice on traffic patterns and location quirks. They suggested a rolling suitcase feature filled with products geared toward men. “It’s that brainchild of Aurora-South Metro SBDC that proved to us that we needed a men’s shop.” In the Fall of 2018, Squadron Co was born and now has the fastest growth pattern of all four shops.

Growing. Trunk Nouveau started with the owners plus two staff on a bootstrapped budget. Today, the two businesses employ seven full-time, three part-time and several seasonal positions. Since opening, sales have increased 12%, which nearly triples the national retail growth of 4.6% for the same period. As a result, gross profits increased 11.5%, and net worth is growing.

Community. Stephanie and Chris have community heart in hand demonstrated by their donations to local nonprofit organizations. They are an environmentally aware ‘green’ business as evidenced by being a Certified Green Business. Both proud children of Veterans, Squadron Co is a tribute to their fathers, grandfathers and Chris’s grandmother, who served our country. They proudly hire veterans at Squadron and offer military discounts.

Trunk Nouveau and Squadron Co have one mission: to do business honestly and ethically, while serving the community. “As we say in our ‘Stanifesto’, we’re here for good.”

Vintage Theatre Productions

Starting out 15 years ago in a basement as a touring theatre group for small audiences, Vintage Theatre has grown from that “tiny” beginning to currently reaching over 20,000 patrons each production season. “It has been amazing to see the growth,” beams Cr aig Bond, Founder. Since moving to Aurora in 2012 into an existing black box theater, Vintage immediately added a second more intimate theatre to augment the season’s offerings. Creating a greater draw

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Colorado Safety Supply

Starting out as a dream in 2012, Valerie Boyd developed her knowledge and contacts within the safety equipment industry to move forward with confidence in 2014. Valerie started to make the dream a reality. Coming from a family working in the structural steel industry, Valerie’s top priority is to keep families safe by keeping workers safe. Colorado Safety Supply does just that, providing safety training and equipment for construction job sites. Located in Aurora, Colorado

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Grandma’s Rockin’ Rolls

It was Laura Neilson’s grandmother who spent hours teaching her children and grandchildren how to bake – while sharing life lessons and family stories. Grandma and her sister-in-law sold cinnamon rolls ‘in town’ to help supplement the farming income. Can you image the commute on horseback during the depression in a Minnesota winter?! Laura had been making Grandma’s rolls and giving them as gifts and holiday treats for over 30 years. But as Laura’s career

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Yumbana, LLC

To be declared a U.S.A. Taste Champion by the American Masters of Taste national judging panel, especially when the category is “Gluten Free” baked goods, is quite an accomplishment. Yumbana was selected as a winning product line in 2017 and, since its beginning in 2011, has been committed to making products that don’t require self-discipline to eat and enjoy. ‘Yum’ is in the name and comes from the owner Christopher Lehn’s first creation, a YUMmy

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Petersen Custom Glass

After 15 years in the glass industry, Kris and Valerie Petersen opened Petersen Custom Glass, LLC in 2014. Kris has extensive experience designing and installing custom glass products. His specific areas of expertise include high-end frameless shower enclosures, ADA accessible showers and other custom glass projects. With his leadership skills gained from the military and her executive skills, Petersen Custom Glass has become a successful local business in Parker, CO, serving a 25-mile radius in

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Cranelli’s Italian Restaurant

In the restaurant world a successful business often begins with family. When Cranelli’s Italian Restaurant, a new hotspot in Lone Tree, opened, the whole family pitched in to help owners Jim and Lasinda Crane make their dreams come true. Hours after the ink was dry on the restaurant lease, the couple began updating the décor and kitchen with the help of friends and family. Lasinda’s father David, a retired electrician, helped build a bar and

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