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Boutique owner Whitney Schaefer talks about work, life and how she strikes a balance between the two.

Whitney Schaefer doesn’t shy away from risk, or hard work. About three years ago, she and her husband, Wolfgang, purchased a long-abandoned building in Brewers Hill, intent on fixing it up and turning it into a live-work space, with a lifestyle boutique and restaurant on the ground floor, a loft-like home on the second.

When they purchased the building, it was dilapidated and full of trash (literally). Today, it’s open and airy, with exposed brick and beams throughout. And the boutique Whitney dreamed of opening, Orange and Blue Co., celebrated its one-year anniversary last month.

Keep an eye on the space next to Orange and Blue Co. Wolfgang is slated to open a breakfast and lunch restaurant, Uncle Wolfie’s, this fall.

What inspires Whitney’s personal sense of style:

“I like midcentury modern as much as the rest of us,” she says, pulling her 2-year-old son, Mack, into her lap. But she prefers the colors and patterns of the late 1800s. Jewel tones, gold detailing and ornate rugs appear throughout her home and shop.

How she juggles work and family:

“I’m still figuring out what it looks like to be a mom and a business owner,” she says, adding that it helps that she and her husband can work out of their home together. “It makes being busy easier, because we still see each other.”

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Who she stocks in her shop:

“I work with women as much as possible. I like to support women makers, and especially mom makers. As a mom myself, I love being able to give them a platform.”

Which product she’s most excited about:

“We’ve got these beetle rings made with real beetles that have been filled with resin and worked into brass. They’re not painted, but they look like they are.” The rings, made by a French designer living and working in New York City, cost $165.


More Photos of Orange & Blue Co.

 

 


“Style Quotient” appears in the July 2018 issue of Milwaukee Magazine.

Find it on newsstands beginning July 2nd, or buy a copy at milwaukeemag.com/shop.

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