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Small Business Spotlight: Hello Ink Gear & Mercantile

Group of people cutting ribbon
Group of people cutting ribbon

Location:     

220 E Main St, Eagle Lake, TX 77434

Hours:
  • Tuesday – Friday: 9:30 A.M. – 5:30 P.M.
  • Saturday: 10 A.M. – 2 P.M.
  • Sunday – Monday: Closed
Contact them:

Phone: (979) 234-4018

Website: helloinkgear.com

Who is Hello Ink Gear & Mercantile?

Hello Ink Gear & Mercantile is a custom apparel and printing service based in southeast Texas. They print and produce custom shirts, trinkets, home decor items, and their own novelty collections that sell online or in person at their only location. 

The company was founded in March of 2021 as a printing and transfer service exclusively. After almost two years of carrying out online orders, they moved into a brick-and-mortar storefront and started selling their own custom apparel and merchandise in June of 2023.

Landing this store location allowed the company to diversify its product line. They now have custom kitchen supplies as well as popcorn, coffee mugs, candles, and other novelty items.

Nevertheless, printing and selling custom shirts is the company’s bread and butter. They can accommodate large bundle orders for a commercial business or smaller ones that need that personal touch. Now featuring some of the top brands such as Nike, Dickies, and The North Face, Hello Ink Gear can personalize precisely the look and scale that you may need.

shirts hanging up
 
What makes them unique?

Most printing services in the industry use the standard screen printing method. It’s excellent for producing shirts or branded merchandise in bulk, usually for large companies or events. 

Hello Ink Gear is the same in this regard, as they use this process to accommodate large orders, but where they stand out is the use of DTF printing or Direct to Film.

This method requires a multi-step process and a printer that demands daily maintenance. It’s a hassle to keep up with, but provides advantages to their customers that most places can’t match, including:  

  • Limitless color options
  • No minimum order size
  • Lower prices

By utilizing this approach, they can effectively fulfill any request that comes their way.

 
Untitled design
 
What is their story?

Hello Ink Gear is owned and operated by Laura Younger. Its home is in Eagle Lake, Texas, a small town of roughly 3800 people near Houston. 

This town has become the lifeblood of their business. They are proud members of the Eagle Lake Chamber of Commerce and supply gear for the locals and several other nearby businesses, including a dentist’s office and a flooring company.

What Mrs. Younger and her staff have found is a generous and supportive community excited to welcome them to town. It has made sharing their work with them highly satisfying.

“The town here has been very supportive of us,” she said. “We have gotten to know the townspeople here, and that’s what I would probably say has been the most rewarding. Getting to know the people around us.”

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