Small Business Spotlight: MW Neighborhoods

I love all things Upstate NY. Why? Because I’m a proud New Yorker and Upstate is where my roots are! This next small business owner created his own designs based around Upstate New York and popular regions in the Capital Region and applied them to posters, apparel, drink ware, etc. Originally you could only find MW Neighborhood posters at popular Albany festivals and now the business has it’s own Etsy shop and you can find their products in various boutique shops within the Capital Region. So, let’s learn more about MW Neighborhoods and the awesome business owner behind the brand.

Business Name: MW Neighborhoods
Owner: Aaron Wilson
Established Year: 2013
Location: Albany, NY

: @mwneighborhoods

Tell us about your business and the story behind its creation!
I wanted a poster of Albany’s Neighborhoods, but couldn’t find one, so I made it! When you screenprint though, it makes sense to make a bunch, so I had several posters leftover. My friend Dan suggested I sell the rest from my stoop on Lark Street during Art on Lark and they all sold out quickly.  We’ve been making and selling posters, shirts, barware, and camping mugs ever since.

What products and services do you offer? What makes them unique?
People enjoy and are proud to live in the Capital Region and Upstate even though most people think of New York City when they hear New York. I think that’s why these products resonate with people, there’s finally something out there that represents and celebrates the “other” New York.

What do you love most about running your own business and being a business owner?
It’s on my terms, which is refreshing when so little of life is. Plus I get a chance to be creative and have fun.

What has been one of the most memorable experiences or opportunities that you’ve experienced since opening your business?
I’ve seen the posters everywhere, in businesses, doctor’s offices, house listings, at apartment complexes, etc. It’s exciting to see them in the wild or to have someone tell me they saw someone wearing my Upstate shirt in Austin, TX. People dig the products and I love being able to make art and clothing that people enjoy.

What advice would you give to aspiring business owners?
I’d suggest starting by making something, or doing something, for yourself. Then, people will notice and ask where you got it and where they can get it, and just like that, you have a business. 

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