A stay-at-home mother has finally followed her grandfather’s advice by opening a new business on Main Street. 

Jennifer Markwell, owner of Koper’s Boutique, had a life-long dream of owning her own business. After spending the last twenty years raising a family, she has decided that it was time to pursue her dream once again. 

“It was kind of hard after having four kids to just sit at the house,” said Markwell, a Rowan County native. “You can only clean the house so much. I like to get out and get involved. And I enjoy doing this and helping people.” 

Koper’s Boutique, located at 170 East Main Street, celebrated its grand opening two weeks ago but they’ve been doing soft opening for the past eight months. 

Her interest in owning a business stemmed from her family members, who all participated in some form of sales. She said her biggest influence was her grandfather, who sparked her love for fashion.

“He always dressed up,” said Markwell, who received her associates in business from Morehead State. “Even when he went out to the farm, he would wear a suit coat. He would always say “I don’t care if I'm going to the farm.’”

She said he motivated her to enter the fashion industry, chase her dreams and stay true to herself. 

“He always told me to never be afraid to do anything,” said Markwell. “I was always kind of quiet and never put myself out there. He used to get mad about me not being confident. I’m still getting used to helping customers and being in the store is kind of helping me to get out of my shell.”

Markwell decided to honor her family through the name of her business, which derived from her great grandparents, who came to the United States from a small seaport town in Slovenia called Kopers. The store has many references to Slovenia and her family. 

She encouraged others who are holding back from their dreams to follow-through with them.

“Just never be afraid to follow your dreams and be yourself,” said Markwell. “Life is too short to watch it pass by, and other people are out there doing it so why not take a chance.”