February 02, 2023

By: Simone Grant

Contributing Writer


The month of February is dedicated to Black History Month where we honor and pay tribute to those who have made positive contributions to Black history.

Historical figures such as Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Rosa Parks, Maya Angelou, James Baldwin, and many more are often highlighted during this month.

While we pay tribute to those who have fought for Black rights and equality, Black History Month is also devoted to acknowledging Black men and women who are currently impacting society in a positive way.

Kristel Jones, Kendra Settle, and Nicole “Cole” Mitchell are three Black female entrepreneurs from California who are building a foundation that will last a lifetime.

Located inside the Westfield Culver City mall, Uplift Us Marketplace is a Black-owned retail store that sells 100% Black-owned products.

Uplift Us was founded by sisters, Kendra Settle and Kristel Jones, who have been moved by the resilience and adhesiveness of black communities across the nation.


The mission is to celebrate Black culture by offering products created by Black entrepreneurs. They noticed how difficult it was to find products created by Black businessmen and women and wanted to offer a space that celebrated the creativity of the Black culture. 

The goal is to help build small businesses by not only increasing sales, but also creating a space to promote their brands and get their name out there.

When thinking of a name for their store, the word “Uplift” kept coming to mind. This correlated with their goal – to Uplift the community and Black businesses.

“Then the Us came because that is just the Black communities universally understood word of knowing that we are talking about Black people,” Kristel explained.

“And of course, marketplace is representative of the collective of businesses and brands.”

The store offers an array of products including clothes, jewelry and accessories, skates, books, games, pet merchandise, hair care, and much more.

Uplift Us Marketplace is located at: 6000 Sepulveda Blvd, Culver City CA 90230 on the 2nd floor next to Macy’s.


For more information, visit: https://upliftusmarketplace.com/ or on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/upliftusmarketplace/ and Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/upliftusmarketplace

Urbane Luggage, founded by Nicole “Cole” Mitchell, is the first Black-owned hemp luggage and apparel manufacturing brand in the United States. In 2014, Cole visited Amsterdam where she learned how hemp has the power to replenish our damaged ecosystems throughout its lifecycle.

Cole knew that this information was not taught in our school systems, and was inspired to teach people the benefits of hemp and how to become sustainable travelers. According to Urbane Luggage, the mission is to provide buyers with exclusive products that can help travelers reduce their “carbon footprint by investing in products that benefit the Earth and us.”

These products are the only custom-designed hemp products made in America. Cole’s desire is to reduce the fashion industry’s carbon footprint and leave the next generations with a healthier planet.

Urbane Luggage products are made in the United States and exclusively custom-made to order. Products include face masks, totes, weekender bags, and more. Aside from Urbane Luggage, Cole is also founder of Urbaneprivatelabel.com, a hemp apparel and manufacturing company.

For more information on Urbane Luggage, visit: https://www.urbaneluggage.com/ or on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/urbaneluggage/

Category: News