Silver monogrammed pitcher from Goodwill $4.99 with phlox and lilacs from my garden.
Wow. This past week, I have been so busy. The kind of busy, that as tired as you are, you can't even fall asleep because your mind is racing over the list of 300 things left undone on your to-do list, kind of busy. For all of you that have a shop or a booth you know what I mean, because that is what I now am, officially a shop owner!
This is something that I have wanted to do for several years. Having a strong business background, I knew it would take more than finding treasures and setting them up in oh-so-lovely vignettes. It would be a commitment of time, energy and resources. In the past, in anything I did, I always put family first. So while Elizabeth was in school with all her recitals, concerts and other activities, it just wasn't the time. Of course, after she graduated, I still made up excuses.
I have always had the talent of finding my treasures, literally for pennies, being knowledgeable about their true value, and reselling them for a substantial profit on e-bay or through my lawnsales. In fact, my lawnsales were legendary. Being located in the center of town, I never had to advertise in the paper. My distinct red signs put up the Friday before the sale at the two main intersections in town, always guaranteed a good turnout. I could count on my "regulars" waiting in my driveway at 6:00 a.m. and would be disappointed if I hadn't made at least $200 by 7:00 a.m.
My sales would have the usual housewares or toys along with some rescued furniture (which I found curbside or real cheap and fixed up). I live in a college town and there are always students looking to furnish their apartments. But it was my McCoy, Weller, Hull, & Roseville pottery, my vintage linens, silver and especially my quirky/unusual vintage finds that fueled the sale. Priced to sell but not just give away, I understood that the folks buying the big ticket items would be re-selling them and that everyone along this consumer chain had to make a profit.
This past Saturday, I held my lawnsale to coincide with the rummage sale being held by my neighbor, the church. Since they had heavily advertised, I was expecting even more customers. It wasn't my usual sale. No McCoy, Weller or anything else that distinguished my sale from the others. Those items have been set aside for my shop. I only netted $200, but not bad considering what I was selling. Typically, I end a sale day between $700 to $900. More important than making money for the day was being able to meet potential store customers and getting out the word that there is a new shop in town. I collected a list of e-mail addresses to be notified for the shop's grand opening. Even better, I made several contacts with women looking to do consignments.
Right now the space is being renovated so I am looking at the end of June to open. It is located at 8 School Street, Second Floor, Gorham, Maine. The name of the shop is "2nd fl Thriftiques" and will feature vintage fashions, furniture, housewares and art as well as repurposed treasures made from vintage pieces with a new twist.
I didn't receive my business cards in time to pass out on Saturday, so I quickly made some up using mailing labels and vintage playing cards. Talk about "repurposed treasures". The cards were a huge hit.
On the front side it reads:
2nd fl Thriftiques Shop
Fabulous Vintage Finds & Repurposed Treasures
The back reads:
8 School St. 2nd fl, Gorham, Maine
I have created a blog for the shop and will be posting shop business at that site, when new inventory arrives, etc., with lots of photos. I will be setting up a paypal account if anyone is interested in purchasing items from the shop. However, until the grand opening and commencement of my new blog, I will be posting a few blurbs about the process of getting the shop ready here at A Conversation at Goodwill. I would love any comments, advice, and helpful suggestions, from all of you that already have a shop or booth. Your help would be so appreciated.
Any new adventure is as intimidating as it is exciting. When people ask why now, why this point in time of opening up a shop, I simply respond with this ......... I turn 50 in August and know that I will have to work for at least another 17 years. It might as well be something that I truly enjoy doing. Good or bad, I will never regret opening the shop; however, I would regret not at least trying. "It is never too late to be what you might have become" Please wish me luck.
Got it at Goodwill