Okay, let me be honest...it hasn't been all fun and no work! Having the shop has certainly had its challenges.
First of all, I never thought shopping would be so difficult, especially for the one whose husband calls her the "professional shopper!" My first buying trip to Atlanta was actually STRESSFUL (as have trips since then!) It's difficult to know who will buy what. You know who you hope your ideal customer will be, what they will want, and what they will spend. But what I have found is many times there is no rhyme or reason to what people buy and why they buy it. Yes, marketing and merchandising are very important, but when it comes right down to it, the items that I think will fly out the door SIT there and the items that I don't feel as confident about find their way right into a bag and right out the door! What does seem to stay the same is the median price point. I have slowly learned and will continue to learn that keeping items in a certain price point maintains sales. That doesn't mean that I don't sell higher-priced items, because I do. It just means that I have to remember my demographic and sell things that meet it.
It has been interesting to find out that shopping for my interior design clients is SO much simpler than buying for my shop customers. You see, when I reach the point of going out to purchase items for my interior design clients, I have gotten to the point of knowing them, their tastes and their budgets. This begins to happen over time with those that visit the shop, but it takes time, conversations and sometimes a good sale. It's trial and error. Sometimes you get it right and sometimes you don't. Those good sales help you part with those items that you don't get right!
If you haven't had the chance to make it to the shop, I hope you to see you soon! I am closed Mondays and Saturdays, but open Tuesday through Friday 10am to 4pm. At times I schedule design consultations in order to meet my client's needs. You may want to give me a buzz before dropping by: 704.908.3740.