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47 Women-Owned Businesses in Downtown Akron

Categories Shop Local Food & Drink Arts & Entertainment

Did you know there are nearly 50 women-owned businesses in downtown Akron? Downtown Akron is teeming with businesses run by women who are smart, creative, innovative, intensely good at what they do, and who are making history every day. Read on to discover them.

Can you think of a business missing from this list? Email to let us know.

Food & Drink

Photo: Sweet Mary's Bakery

1. Sweet Mary's Bakery

Sweet Mary’s is a micro-bakery serving bagels, croissants, cookies, quiche, cakes, espresso beverages, and more. Owned by Akron native Mary Hospodarsky, the shop often has special holiday baked goods available for presale online and is proud to bake in small batches using techniques that produce high-quality baked goods every time. They also make an effort to use local ingredients when possible, such as honey from the Akron Honey Company, hot sauce from Not Yo’ Daddy’s Hot Sauce, eggs from Brunty Farms, and coffee from Akron Coffee Roasters.

2. The Tea Lady

Renea Woods-Baylor is The Tea Lady. She offers morning tea, afternoon tea, brunches, and more in her elegant and inviting tearoom. Dine on delicious tea sandwiches, pastries, and of course, infused hot tea. Book a teatime and spend quality time with friends, family, or little ones. You can also purchase tea and tea accessories online.

3. Jilly's Music Room

Jilly’s Music Room, owned by Jill Bacon Madden, is a live music venue in the Northside District offering entertainment no less than four nights a week. Jilly’s features original local, regional, and national bands in a variety of genres, as well as stand-up comedians and other entertainers. The venue also boasts a full-service kitchen that specializes in eclectic, gluten-free, small-plate dishes. Check their website for information on upcoming events and ticket information.

4. Boiling House

You don’t have to go far for fresh seafood and sushi. Visit the Boiling House Seafood Restaurant, owned by Tiffany Chen, for everything from Japanese squid salad to fried shrimp sandwiches to specialty sushi rolls. Boiling House is most known for their namesake seafood boil, a Cajun-style meal featuring the seafood of your choice, corn, and potatoes boiled in a delicious, flavorful broth. Order carry-out online or make a reservation to dine in.

5. Chef Gina's Bakeshop

Gina Giampietro is the pastry chef behind Chef Gina’s Bakeshop. She creates stunning and delicious cakes, macarons, and pastries. Her confections are perfect for weddings, parties, anniversaries, and corporate events. Visit her website to see a gallery of her baked goods, and to find more information about ordering some of these sweet treats for yourself. You can also find her goodies inside Northside Marketplace.

6. Essential Dipped Delights

Essential Dipped Delights is a gourmet dessert company owned by Takila Nuss that specializes in unique desserts that are perfect for gifts, special occasions, corporate events, or your everyday sweet tooth fix. They serve marshmallow pops, banana pudding cheesecake bowls, chocolate-covered strawberries, and so much more. Visit Essential Dipped Delights in Northside Marketplace or online to get a quote for your event.

7. Julia Belle's Seasonings

Inspired by her mother’s recipes, Tanya Green founded Julia Belle’s Seasonings with the mission of sharing the rich, vibrant traditions of southern cooking. Made from 100% natural, hand-blended ingredients, her seasonings, rubs, and rice and bread mixes have just the right amount of heat. Shop seasonings and discover new ways to spice up your favorite dishes on Julia Belle’s website. You can also find Julia Belle’s Seasonings at Northside Marketplace.

8. The Peanut Shoppe

The Peanut Shoppe is located on Main Street and has been open since the 1930s. Owned by Marge Klein, at any given time the Peanut Shoppe sells 30-40 different candies, nuts, chocolates, and more. Want to send a gift box? They will also ship your selections anywhere in the U.S.A.

9. The Plannerz Place Eatery

The Plannerz Place was established as a home catering business just months before the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic and is now open for dining inside Northside Marketplace. Owned and operated by Tonya Essick and her daughters Carolyn and WyTerria, The Plannerz Place Eatery offers an incredible rotating menu of southern style soul food.

10. Chameleon Café

Chameleon Cafe is an eclectic coffee shop offering gourmet coffee, homemade soups, and artisan wraps and sandwiches. Their lunch fare is delightfully unique and sure to satisfy, and if you dine in, their colorful atmosphere is sure to spark joy. Order online, or stop into their shop on Main Street to try their food and drinks yourself.

11. Daisy Pops

Daisy Pops, a cake pop bakery with its main operation in Kent, has goodies for sale inside Northside Marketplace. Owned and operated by Amy Mucha, there are dozens of cake pop flavors to choose from, all taste-tested by her young daughter and company namesake, Daisy.

12. Ernie's Catering

Ernie's Catering, owned by Hertistine Price, has a range of offerings--from some of the best barbecue around to sandwiches, salads, fruit plates, and burgers. As the name implies, they offer catering for lunches and special events, in addition to having grab-and-go lunches available for anyone to enjoy. Visit Ernie's at 50 S. Main St., and check out their menu online.

13. Oh My Sweetness Cake Creations

If you like cake, listen up: Stephanie White of Oh My Sweetness Cake Creations bakes and decorates some seriously beautiful, tasty custom cakes and treats. Whether you’re having an intimate gathering or large party, she’s got you covered. She also sells unique specialty sprinkle mixes online and inside Northside Marketplace, so you can create your own unique confections.

Health & Beauty

Photo: Shane Wynn

14. Mint Hair Collective

Mint Hair Collective is a salon specializing in blonding, balayage, lived-in color, and hair extension services. The six stylists, under the leadership of Helaina Catherine, are passionate about exercising their creativity and providing authentic conversation to leave clients feeling in mint condition by the time their appointment is over. Check out their website for more information on the services offered and to schedule an appointment.

15. Tammy O's Salon and Spa

Tammy O’s Salon and Spa is located in the Akron Centre Plaza and offers services from lash enhancement and haircuts to massages, facial treatments, manicures, pedicures, and waxing. Call (330) 253-2300 to book an appointment.

16. Hair Geek Studio

Owned and operated by Sapreea English, Hair Geek Studio offers numerous beauty and hair services including haircuts, silk presses, coloring, braiding, loc retwists, lace frontal sew-in weaves, and more. Visit the Hair Geek Studio’s Facebook page for information on booking an appointment.

17. My Eco Shop

My Eco Shop, owned by Maggie Spangler, is Akron’s first refillery for reusable, sustainable, and natural products for you and your home. Live an eco-friendlier lifestyle in a way that’s easy and local. Visit their website to shop online, and stop into Northside Marketplace to shop in person.

18. Let's Heal Massage Therapy

Relax and unwind with a massage from licensed massage therapist Sonya Lee at Let’s Heal Massage Therapy. Lee offers multiple types of massages, including relaxation, aroma touch, deep tissue, and hot stone massages. Visit Let’s Heal Massage Therapy on Facebook to learn more about Sonya’s services and to read reviews from happy customers.

19. India Ink Tattoo Company

Located inside Northside Marketplace, India Ink Tattoo Company is the only Black- and female-owned tattoo shop in Akron. They specialize in black and gray designs, as well as realistic color designs. Their website offers easy booking and price transparency, and they even offer gift cards. Check them out online or in person at Northside Marketplace.

20. Christin's Essential Beauty

Christin’s Essential Beauty is your new go-to for all-natural hair and skincare products. Christin’s products, which run the gamut from shampoo and conditioner bars to stretch mark cream, beard balm, and natural deodorant, are made with therapeutic grade essential oils. Find Christin’s Essential Beauty inside Northside Marketplace, or visit her online Etsy shop.

21. Stephanie's Remedies

Stephanie’s Remedies, located inside Northside Marketplace and owned by Stephanie Schommer, is a shop selling all natural herbal remedies that are crafted with organic, vegan ingredients. Peruse their tea blends, tinctures, and bath products online or at Northside Marketplace.

22. Summer Ready Fitness

Summer Ready Fitness is a gym located at 540 S. Main St. that offers a variety of workout classes and personal training services. Learn more about their classes on their Facebook and Instagram pages.

Arts & Culture

Photo: DAP Staff

23. P31 Art & Design

P31 Art & Design is a Christian art and design company run by a mother-daughter duo whose goal is to bring more awareness to the Black art community and create paintings, purses, stationery, greeting cards, and more that are completely hand painted and fully customizable. They use organic substances and natural materials in their art. Their studio is located inside Summit Artspace.

24. Totally Tangled Creations

April Couch is the artist behind Totally Tangled Creations, which boasts intricately beautiful Zentangle-inspired pieces. Couch draws unique patterns onto wood and paper items in a way that simply can’t be duplicated. Visit Summit Artspace to view and purchase her artwork.

25. Zeber-Martell Clay Studio & Gallery

Zeber-Martell is a clay studio and gallery located in the Northside District of downtown Akron. They create one-of-a-kind home decor, garden sculptures, holiday decor, lamps, jewelry, and more. Owner Claudia Zeber-Martell, who started as a painter, focuses on decorating the surfaces of her husband and co-owner’s ceramic art in a way that enriches the environment and creates harmony. Visit their website or stop by in person to peruse and shop their collection.

26. Chris Klassen Art

Chris Klassen creates bright impressionistic landscape and abstract paintings, as well as mixed media works of art. She also creates artisan jewelry, greeting cards, and gifts. Find her vibrant works at Northside Marketplace.

27. Street Craftery

Street Craftery, owned by Da’Shika Street, is a creative destination for DIY projects, splatter painting, and more. Located on South Main Street, they offer craft projects for people of all ages and even welcome private celebrations and corporate events. One particularly fun highlight of Street Craftery is the area in their shop known as Splatter Alley--a place where anyone can don protective gear and go to town with splatter paint on a canvas. Learn more about Street Craftery on their website.

28. Amal's Laser Crafting

Amal’s Laser Crafting specializes in engraving and laser cutting services. Founded and opened by Amal, the company creates personalized gifts and customized products of beautiful design. Find Amal’s Laser Crafting items for sale inside Northside Marketplace.

29. Jennifer L Worden Arts

Jennifer Worden finds art in the unexpected, melting, fusing, and reshaping post-consumer glassware and using other upcycled materials to craft beautiful pieces of art and encourage sustainability. Her studio is located inside Summit Artspace.

30. Art x Love

Art x Love is a creative agency with a studio located at 31 S. Main St. Owner Alysse Love and her co-founder, Mac, believe in the health of art and the power of creative courage to lead change. They’ve done dozens of works across the city and even in different parts of the country. Learn more about Art x Love online.

31. Leasurely Crafts

Leasurely Crafts is proudly a Black women-owned business that creates and sells unique, personalized, exceptional handcrafted items that inspire a sense of belonging in the community. They are located inside Northside Marketplace and boast merchandise such as t-shirts, cups, stickers, and more.

Apparel & Home Goods

Photo: Shane Wynn

32. Bizzy Beads Boutique

Bizzy Beads Boutique started as a hobby when owner Kimberly Camp couldn’t find the right jewelry to match an outfit she was wearing and decided to make something herself. Now, she works with beads, wood, and polymer clay to make earrings and bracelets that look elegant, colorful, and even downright delicious. Seriously–she creates earrings that look like donuts, ice cream cones, tacos, hotdogs, s’mores, and more. Visit her website to shop online, or stop by Northside Marketplace to shop in person.

33. Northside Cellar

Northside Cellar is a spunky boutique that carries new and consignment women’s clothing, accessories, home goods, local artwork, and furniture. Shop a unique inventory of hand-selected items that you can’t find just anywhere. No matter your personal style, Northside Cellar has something for everyone and every budget. Visit their website to shop online, follow them on Facebook for daily updates when new cool apparel comes in, or stop in to shop in person.

34. Studio Syven

Owned by Randi Mull, Studio Syven specializes in jewelry made from lightweight polymer clay. Mull uses bold colors, shapes, and textures to create pieces that are truly one of a kind. Stop by her booth inside Northside Marketplace to see and purchase these statement pieces for yourself.

35. Embrace Earthleta

Embrace Earthleta is an apparel company owned by Tricia Archer that uses sustainable, recycled materials to design and make clothing from scratch. They prioritize having a positive impact on the environment and helping people of all shapes, sizes, and backgrounds embrace a healthy, positive lifestyle. They donate a portion of their yearly profits to nonprofits whose mission is to improve the planet. Shop their website, or stop into Northside Marketplace to shop in person.

36. The District Boutique

The District Boutique specializes in unique women’s clothing, accessories, and jewelry. Their main store is located in Green, but they have a sampling of items available for sale inside Northside Marketplace. Their shop has been voted Best Women’s Boutique in the area, so it’s definitely worth a visit.

Gifts & Children's Items

Photo: Northside Marketplace

37. Banned Books Box

Subscription boxes are nothing new, but Banned Books Box, owned by Ariel Hakim, offers a unique twist by sending subscribers packages of one or two banned books published within the last decade, as well as a few handpicked bookish accessories. Books span genres from contemporary novels to historical fiction, urban fantasy, memoirs, graphic novels, and more. Check out Hakim’s selection of books and accessories inside Northside Marketplace, and purchase a subscription on her website.

38. 224 Creations

224 Creations, owned by Jenni Morrison, is located inside Northside Marketplace and sells a variety of handmade items such as cards, drinkware, badge/passport holders, baby items, embroidered towels, and notebooks designed with an irreverent sense of humor or pop culture connection. Shop their website or stop by Northside Marketplace to peruse in person.

39. Smile Inside

Smile Inside, owned by Vanessa Lee Abraham, advocates for the well-being of youth. Abraham is the author of Smile Inside: Experiential Activities for Self-Awareness Ages 12-13, a handbook of personal development activities for teenagers to live an aware and responsible life. Learn more on her website.

40. JKindDesign

Slow fashion and soul are the concepts behind Jen Kindbom’s wallets, pouches, key fobs, and more at JKindDesign. She uses organic cotton fabric—much of which includes hand-drawn prints—and other reclaimed vintage fabrics in her bright, poppy creations. Check them out yourself inside Northside Marketplace.

41. Black Culture Candles

Black Culture Candles, located inside Northside Marketplace, celebrates joy, culture, and connection through curated scents inspired by memories and experiences. Candles are poured into etched glass containers and feature wood wicks, to create a perfectly cozy, warm atmosphere.

42. Keerie Layne Creative

Keerie Flegal, the mind behind Keerie Layne Creative, sells handmade gifts and décor like drinkware, sweaters, and decorative canvases, perfect for any occasion. Keerie’s goods are available at Northside Marketplace and are sure to make you (and your gift recipients) smile.

43. Glam Scents

Ebony Jones, owner of Glam Scents, is a purveyor of homemade candles and wax melts, as well as other aromatic essentials. Glam Scents products are available both online and inside Northside Marketplace.

Professional Services

Photo: Heidi Rolf

44. Capital Talent Development Group

Capital Talent Development Group's mission is to help those who have been historically underserved and underrepresented advance in the labor market. Owner Alanna Nichols does this through services centered on workforce development and social capital building. Call 330-400-4036 to learn more.

45. Families First Health Services

Families First Health Services, is made of a team of highly respected mental health professionals. They boast one of the leading practices in Ohio with their high-quality, focused services to both individuals and families, whether in the form of outpatient therapy, community support, psychological testing, behavioral health, or school-based services. Learn more about the services they offer, and take the first step in getting the help you need, on their website.

46. Tracy D. Lanier: Primerica Financial Services

Primerica offers financial services to help families protect their income with term life insurance and save for the future with strategic investments. Tracy D. Lanier is the senior regional leader in Akron and has been with the company since 1999. Call her office at 234-571-0697, or learn more online.

47. Smaltz Insurance

Suzanne Smaltz is a HealthMarkets agent in Northeast Ohio. She works to provide people with affordable healthcare, as well as supplemental, disability, and life insurance. She also works with clients to help them meet their retirement goals. Learn more about Smaltz Insurance online.

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