The ink keeps flowingPublished 2:00pm Sunday, October 20, 2013
The ink had run off the page, or so to speak, for Chad and Maja Iverson of Rose Creek.
Chad, a tattoo artist who bounced around Austin and now runs Ivy’s Ink out of his home, has begun another chapter with Maja, his wife. The couple opened Ivy’s Ink clothing store in Oak Park Mall last month. It’s an expansion of another one of their passions, biker-style apparel and designs.
“We expanded pretty much times 10,” Chad said.
Yet the new venture has been another step forward in their personal lives, especially for Maja. She’s returning to work — and a more normal lifestyle — after recovering from a head injury when she was struck by a stray .22-caliber bullet more than a year ago. She spent nearly two months in the hospital, lost some of her motor skills, and Chad cared for her after she was released. Late last month, the new clothing store opened its doors, and Maja is doing much better. It was time to take the next step in business — and life.
“The big kick in the pants was to get Maja out of the house and something to do,” Chad said.
For Maja, it’s refreshing in more than one way.
“It’s been going good for me,” she said about being back to work, and especially seeing people from around the area. “I love it.”
On a business level, it’s a taste of something new for Austin: new styles, new apparel.
“It’s just nice bringing something to Austin that we don’t have,” Maja said.
The Iversons have already sold clothing on the side, a practice that accompanied their tattoo and piercing business. However, Chad wondered whether people simply checking out clothing would feel too pressured into getting a tattoo.
He wondered if the two should be separate.
“We’ve kind of always wanted to do it, even when we had it in our tattoo shop before,” Chad said. “It went well.”
The Iversons hope the store will do more than just bring a new element to area retail, as well. They hope it will reinvigorate the mall — make it more of a hangout and destination point like it used to be.
“We would like to see the mall get back to the way it was,” Maja said. “When we were young, this is where we would come and hang out.”
Thus far, the new Austin business has been going OK, the Iversons said. They know new businesses in Austin don’t always rocket out of the gate. Regardless, they needed more space if they were going to expand.
“We just never had ample amounts of room for what we wanted to do,” Chad said.
Now, among their own shirt designs, the Iversons carry several big and small name brands of apparel, and more than just shirts.
“It’s kind of a one-stop shop,” Chad said. “It’s T-shirts, jackets, sweatshirts, socks, cologne, jewelry, belts, stickers, wallets … everything minus shoes and underwear.”
Gift cards are also available.
To start, Ivy’s Ink in Oak Park Mall will be open from noon to 5 p.m. Thursdays through Saturdays. Chad said when the snow flies, he may add Sundays to the schedule, as well.