The Gypsy Shack

6th and Detroit X Elison Rd

The Gypsy Shack
6th and Detroit X Elison Rd

Check out our interview with shop owner and lady boss:

Michelle Qazi


Why did you open yours doors as 6th and Detroit? 

Michelle: 6th And Detroit are the cross streets of my first apartment in Los Angeles.  Being fresh out of college and a small budget to work with, I scoured flea markets, estate sales and thrift stores to furnish my apartment.   I quickly found out I had a passion for vintage décor and furnishings.  I started my Etsy shop, 6th and Detroit, in April of 2015 and quickly grew a following.  When it became time to open a brick and mortar, I didn’t want to change the name as it had great meaning and sentimental value.  

Starting out - did you ever think 6th and Detroit would become what it is now? 

Michelle: When I opened up the Etsy shop, I was a stay at home mom of two boys looking for a creative outlet.  I had accumulated such a vast collection, I wanted to share it with everyone.   As a vintage shopper, I loved the experience and the search to find items that made my heart race. I would be so bummed when I would fall in love with an item only to find out that I couldn’t afford it.  So my shop is a culmination of that, unique items I love at an attainable price. As soon as I opened the brick and mortar, it felt right. I dig, thrift and carefully curate so my shoppers don’t have to.  I realized shoppers were inspired with my  vignettes and can picture the item perfectly at their home.    Being able to express what I’m passionate about everyday is a dream come true for me.

Where do you pull your inspiration from?? 

Michelle: Most of my inspiration comes from my experiences.  With two boys, we are very much an outdoor type of family who love to travel, camp, surf, bike, snowboard and swim.  I am drawn to all things with texture and have to do with nature.  That’s why I love 70’s decor so much.  But at the same time I am a huge mid-century modern fan.  I have a tendency to bring both of those worlds together and mix it up.  I am all about textures and prints, old and new.   It also depends on what my mood is.  One day I can feel daring and mix 5-6 different prints, and at other times I feel safe and keep it minimal.     

How long have you been a lady boss? 

Michelle: I’ve had management positions in retail when I was in college, but I definitely wouldn’t call myself a ‘lady boss’ back then.  When I first opened 6th And Detroit’s doors in April 2016, it was just myself and I thought that was enough.  I was foolish to think I could do this by myself!  The more I wanted to do with the shop, the more help I quickly needed.  Rentals, collaborations, workshops and interior design came into the picture and 6th And Detroit was starting to become an actual brand, not just a shop.  My team makes this all possible and I’m grateful for them every single day.  

What are some of the obstacles you've faced with running your own business but also being a creative? 

Michelle: The learning as I go approach is definitely an obstacle.  Every single day is a new challenge to take on.  It’s only been a year and I’ve made plenty of mistakes, but all I can do is take them as learning experiences.  I do tend to focus more on the creative aspect than the business, but I’ve learned to balance the two. .  My husband has been my biggest supporter and has helped me face challenges head on.   I am realizing doing both the creative and business take quite a balancing act, but I apply my strength toward keeping things in tact and running smoothly.

What advice do you have for young entrepreneurs or fellow lady bosses? 

Michelle: My advice to young entrepreneurs out there is to just try and not give up.  I was so afraid of failure for so long it held me back.  Failure is what shapes us and provides some great life lessons..   Each experience has  taught me to know what I want and what I wasn’t meant to be doing.  Without the mistakes I’ve made, I wouldn’t be where I am today.  So it’s ok to fall, just get right back up.  And my last advice to fellow lady bosses is to respect those you meet as you never know where they end up.  

What do you have planned for 2017 so far? 

Michelle: There are so many exciting things happening this year!  I’ve launched my rentals department where you can rent special hard-to-find items for photos shoots or events.  I hosted our first workshop where they got to build their own garden box to grow an edible garden.  I plan to host more unique home related workshops in the store every month.  I’m starting to travel more for inspiration and blog content - which I hope to be more active on this year.  I’m currently planning our one-year anniversary party and partnering with my fellow East Village shops.   My most exciting project thus far is  designing Jen’s Pirate Booty retail store in Joshua Tree opening this Spring!  

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Wanna visit 6th and Detroit or shop their IG?

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