- Associated Press - Monday, August 25, 2014

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - In March, three businesses shared one space at 7 N. Lee Ave. in the historic Film Row district. The venture, called The Hub, allowed The Plant Shoppe, The Okay See, and Bent on Creativity to test the area’s retail waters.

The shops found that the area is beneficial to their businesses, and now the three stores will become two places. The Plant Shoppe offers succulents and other Oklahoma-weather-friendly plants, available in clay pots or vintage containers. The Okay See sells T-shirts that are designed and printed in-house as well as other accessories. Bent on Creativity is a handcrafted furniture company, The Journal Record reported (http://bit.ly/1rU2coH ).

The Okay See is staying at 7 N. Lee Ave. and is now The Okay See Clothing and Community. The Plant Shoppe and Bent will move to 705 W. Sheridan Ave. under The Plant Shoppe name.

The Okay See co-owner Blake Behrens said he and his partners, Kyle Simmons and Eric Lyons, are excited about the changes. The shop started in Behrens’ garage, selling shirts at DNA Galleries and Blue Seven. It now occupies the former Hub’s entire 2,200 square feet.

“You want to outgrow your space as quickly as possible,” Behrens said.

The additional space will allow the company to add more products. At The Hub, it occupied about 150 square feet with a few T-shirt racks on the wall.

“Now we’ll be able to increase our shirt line as well as play up some of the local makers,” he said.

The shop’s merchandise includes such items as leather iPhone cases from Jose Hernandez. In addition, local artists are featured, with wooden cutouts of Oklahoma from Josh DeLozier and stained-glass work from James King. Behrens said he and his partners are talking to a couple of other artists, as well. An English bulldog named Biggie Smalls and a mixed-breed dog named Guster Von Griswold round out the shop’s crew.

“Our goal is to get cool people with cool products in here,” he said. “We want guys that are making things on site. It’s going to be more of a community-type store.”

The Plant Shoppe owner Jen Semmler is still moving into her new 3,000-square-foot space at 705 W. Sheridan Ave. Along with her boyfriend and business partner, Chad Grubbs, she opened the shop Aug. 15 during Film Row’s monthly Premiere event.

Grubbs owns Bent on Creativity. Semmler said he will be making some of her containers.

“I’m excited about (the new shop),” she said. “We are getting the opportunity to dress the shop the way we always envisioned.”

The new space will make room for new products, including the company’s own soil line.

“We’re going to have double the product,” she said. “We’re getting ready to go on a buying trip on Monday, so we’re bringing back landscape-quality plants. We’ll be able to have a grow house. We’ll have more room to do workshops and do-it-yourself type stuff.”

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