Have you ever taken a “leap of faith?“ Recently my husband and I had toyed with the idea of opening up our own shop. I had been gathering fixtures and even went so far as to share a space with another gal in her shop.
My husband looked at me very seriously one evening and asked, “Why don’t you just open up a shop of your own?” I threw my head back and laughed. I used the excuse that it would be too much work, too expensive, etc. I came up with a million excuses, which he shot down, one by one.
I had been looking for buildings in and around the small southern town I live, with the intention of opening a small ladies consignment shop for quite sometime. I have been selling vintage jewelry online for many years and had recently begun to include vintage clothing.
In one of our meetings with a local realtor, she expressed that owning and running my own shop was a “dream”. Again, I laughed. At my advanced age I have had to let go of many, many dreams.
I am not afraid of a little hard work, and certainly have a lot of experience on the selling floor. I had actually begun my journey into the exciting world of retail in 1968. I lived across the street from an actual five-and-dime store. For you “young-uns” Yes, there were really item for sale at that price.
When I got out of high school I got a job offer for the very first job I applied for at JL Hudson’s at Northland shopping center. Thus began my illustrious career in retailing. I have since worked for JC Penneys, Sears, Kmart, AAFES, and many other companies. In fact, I have served the public for over 30 years.
Soon we found a building, which was actually located in the same shopping center as another consignment shop. We discussed the location and decided that JC Penney and Sears often locate in a center where each is a pull for the other. I did not seem an issue in the beginning. It became a bit sticky later on.
My hubby spent his weekends working tirelessly on fixtures and displays. He built fitting room out of cedar wood, in keeping with our cedar “theme.”
The day before we opened, I looked around the little shop and realized, this was my dream. I also realized that the very act of actually opening up the doors of my own shop, meant I was a huge success. Every other moment after would only be gravy. As I stood there with tears in my eyes, I felt a very different kind of security. We had built a business, but much more. We had built a dream.
We have come a very long way from the first day we started to where we are today, but it is definitely full circle. We have created a comfortable, and pleasant place to shop and my customers are very pleased to have me in the town.