For a long time, I’ve toyed with the idea of owning a shop. For some reason, I had it stuck in my head that it would be when I “retired” so that I could have a hobby. That changed one day when I woke up to a message from a sweet friend of mine. She basically asked me if I knew what I wanted to do with the rest of my life, because she knew of an opportunity.
Well, the opportunity didn’t pan out, but it got me thinking. What if? What if I opened my own place? What if I did it now, before retirement? Could I make it work? Would I even like it?
I had so many things to consider! The first and most important thing that came to mind was my children. I have three kids and they are accustomed to me being available for them pretty much at all times. As their sole parent, I make it a point to be at EVERYthing. Every sporting event, every conference, every music event, every award ceremony, EVERY thing that they involved themselves in…I’m there. AND, my then current job, was flexible and allowed me to be that parent. I was even able to arrange being home in the mornings before they go to school and again in the afternoons to great them. I also thought about being able to financially support the kids and their activities. It is all up to me, could I swing it? I had a good set up and I knew it. Was I crazy for thinking about giving that up?
I didn’t know what to do, but I couldn’t let go of the idea. It nagged at me. So I nagged at other people. I talked to my parents, friends and people who are already in the business. I spent my nights researching and running numbers. And the idea still plagued me.
So I delved a little further and started looking for a location. I wrote a business plan. I started a mood board a mile long with likes and dislikes. I nagged friends again on their thoughts. I consulted an attorney and an accountant. The idea just wouldn’t go away.
Before I knew it, I was heading to North Carolina to experience Market at High Point. My same sweet friend had graciously offered to show me the ropes. I was a deer in head lights, but I was hooked. I came home from that trip and knew its what I wanted to do. So, I did what I know best and researched how to get started. It wasn’t long before I found myself with written agreements, contracts and approved filings. I trekked all over the immediate area and found a location. I interviewed and decided on a marketing firm to help me establish the brand. Deposits were made. Stuff got real…really fast.
What an emotional rollercoaster! One day I was all about how amazing everything is going to be and I’m WonderWoman and can make it all happen. The next day I felt like I was going to vomit and had no clue how I was going to get everything done. Talk about driving yourself insane.
Fast forward and I have keys in hand. Vendors are being lined up and programs are being developed. I’m working with some great national wholesalers as well as some amazing local talent! I’m so fortunate to have met people who want to collaborate and create something special for the store. These people see my vision and they believe in it as much as I do. We are working together to bring new ideas and concepts to the local market. THAT is something unique and I know cannot be found just anywhere.
At the end of day, my hope is for people to see the shop for more than just brick and mortar. It’s a place where an idea became a possibility that became a reality. A place where creativity is celebrated and credit is given where it is due. Peachtree Street is a place where not only can you find great pieces for your home or gifts for your friends, but also where community meets business and the two work together, resulting in a network of support and promise.