We had the good fortune of connecting with Timmi Blackshear and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Timmi, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
I graduated with a degree in Art History, but also played a couple of years as a collegiate volleyball player. I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do if I’m being honest, I just knew I had to pay my bills soon. It seemed like a natural progression to go into teaching and coaching. I feel like I blinked and ten years had gone by. I was blessed to have an incredible successful career as a high school coach, but hit burn out year ten. I was always trying to fulfill the creative side of me in other ways, but I think the fact that was lacking in my every day career was always something that I felt. This past school year brought on some unique challenges, and I left in March of 2022. Fortunately I grew up with an incredibly talented and creative mother and a business-owning father. It was in the couple of weeks after my departure from public education that I was able to process, evaluate, and really consider what my dream job would look like. I evaluated my strengths and love of home organization, sourcing unique and fun home decor, and design. I wanted to merge these passions, which is what led to the creation of The Curated Fort. I feel like the organization, administrative, and self-discipline side of teaching and coaching helped me tremendously be ready to jump in and start my own business. I applied for my LLC, and have been in operation since April of 2022 with my home organization services and celebrated the retail space opening on 2410 Montgomery St. in Fort Worth, Texas on Friday, June 3. I love the ability to meet new people through the hunt of great pieces, the creativity of home and retail staging, as well as the satisfaction of making people’s lives more beautiful and simple through my home organization services.
What should our readers know about your business?
The Curated Fort (TCF) focuses on three pieces of service: organization, decor, and sourcing. TCF offers a full range of home and business organization services, as well as a unique retail experience of one-of-a-kind vintage and antique home decor. Whether home owners are looking to redesign their space or on the hunt for the perfect vintage rug, piece of art, or “they’re not even quite sure what”, TCF does that too. As the owner, I pride myself on being able to help you make your home perfectly curated and perfectly you.
I believe what sets TCF apart from other home organization services is my eye for aesthetically pleasing design. I operate under the firm belief that organization can both be pretty and functional. I focus on providing organization systems that allow owners to stay organized while also providing unique finishing touches which sets TCF apart from other home and business organization services. On the decor and sourcing side of the business, I feel like my ability to source objects that are unique, start conversations, and aren’t going to be seen or used in the same way anywhere else sets us apart from other vintage and decor retailers. I offer a wide range of items that creates an eclectic feel where everyone can find something they love regardless of style. I encourage clients to fill their home with items that either remind them of those they love or memories they loved, so they can create a space that tells a story and most importantly one that tells their story.
I am still in the “building” phase of my business, but I feel like operating my business honestly and professionally has helped me keep clients, while my friend and support system has really stepped up and supported me in this in every way. Starting a business is not easy, and every day brings on a new set of challenges or stressors. Fortunately, my prior experience as an educator and coach prepared me to be hard working, work long hours, be self disciplined, multi-task, and ultimately serve and love those I work for. I remind myself daily I don’t have to have it all figured out, just do the next right thing. Grace, patience, and forgiveness with yourself are critical in the beginning stages because you will make mistakes.
I would love for people to know The Curated Fort is a business built on second chances, which maybe that’s why I’m drawn to vintage and antique pieces. I love the idea of giving them a second chance at making someone’s home more “them”. I love the opportunity of making others’ homes more simple through the organization services, and feel extremely privileged when someone trusts me enough into their “mess”. I feel as a society we really struggle with authenticity and transparency but just like with home organizing, it can only be fixed when we allow someone into the mess. To help others live a less chaotic life, experience a safe place of reprieve, while creating a space to invite others into to celebrate the important, the mundane, and even the hard is something I feel is a huge honor. All that to say, we’re more than a service for your home. We want to be a business built on honest and genuine relationships so you can focus on the important things.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I’m going to say we would of course stop for a complimentary glass of wine or champagne at The Curated Fort retail space and let them shop and experience this retail experience for themself. I love a great dinner at Wishbone and Flynt (you must have the grilled octopus), and listen to live music on Friday nights at The Magnolia Wine Bar. Hotel Dryce also has a great vibe in their bar for great conversation and a laid back feel. Coffee at Arcadia, Black Coffee, or Cherry Coffee are all great options. One night, you definitely have to make it out to the Stockyards for live music, dancing, and a great dinner at Provender Hall. For great conversation Side Saddle Saloon is a great spot, but for a fun time I always start at Basement Bar followed by The White Elephant. Live music is always flowing. I love a good day on the patios on Magnolia with my Great Dane, or a margarita at Esperanza’s with friends. If the heat is too much, The Modern Museum of Art and Kimbell are great museums. Fort Worth is fortunate to have lots of great art. I wish I could put into words how much I love Fort Worth or describe exactly why I love it so much. I just know at the heart of it, it’s full of goodness, good people and good times.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I would love to honor three people in my life that I feel have had a profound impact on me and made it possible to dream, create, and open The Curated Fort. I was fortunate to be able to watch my dad run and lead his own business my entire life. He truly is one of the smartest men I have ever known, but what I have always admired most is how he led with integrity and ran his business and loved his employees and family in a way that is rare. Next, I would love to talk about my mom. I can’t remember there ever being a time in my life I wasn’t watching her create something beautiful. Not only is she able to dream great things but also has the skill to execute it all…she is my hero, not just for her gift of creativity but how she uses it to serve and love others as well as God. She is also great at prayer apparently as there is no other explanation of God’s grace and mercy on my life, (again this business is built on second chances and would love to talk more about that another time). I’m incredibly grateful to be able to call my parents mine. Lastly, I would like to thank my husband, Mason Heimer. I am eternally grateful that he loves this dreamer and lets me do just that. His support, belief in me, and love helped make this leap possible.