me, Mavis

I knit. I garden. I co-manage an eclectic shop. I sometimes work in real estate. I sometimes swing a hammer. I always volunteer in my community. I live in an old house with my nice family of one husband and three beastly cats. I have great friends. These are the things that matter to me, Mavis.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Coming Up for Air

Hey out there in Blogland! Is anyone still reading? I was finally brought back to my senses (and my blog) with a phone message from my dear friend, GG, asking what was I up to since she couldn't find out from the blog. Ouch! This is from someone who only grudgingly acknowledges the blogosphere.

Thanks so much to all of you (especially my Vegan Knitter Sistahs) who have left me comments over the past month while I was away (but not gone) on a business-imposed hiatus. I have been able to keep a loose check on you guys from time to time, but doing my own posting just couldn't happen.

But things have started to even out ...

So here's what happened:

In early June, a property owner couple in our little MerryLand town approached us with an opportunity. They own a glorious old building that has housed antiques shops for 30 years or so and the most recent managers had suddenly and with little notice, decided to clear out. The owners also knew that we (more particularly, The DH) had an unsatisfied yearning to be a shopkeeper.

At first we said !Yes!

Then we thought of all the work ... and what would we stock? ... and how would we continue our current businesses until we get under way? ... and what if we failed and disappointed this wonderful couple who are also our dear friends?

So we said "no."

And then we started getting incredible emotional support and promises of cool stuff from our Artsy Friends. So that meant that we'd have a start on what to stock.

And we started getting excited about "playing store" so that kind of made us pooh-pooh all the worry about the amount of work to be done.

And then our dear friends, the property owners, told us again how much they wanted us to try it, and how they were sure we could make a great shop, and so forth.

So again, we says "yes!"

And then it was July 1 and we took access to the building. After 18 days of very long hours, missed meals, 29 gallons of paint inside (which we applied), over 100 gallons of paint outside (which we supervised), a few gentle arguments, more than a few headaches, etc., we officially opened our doors on Wednesday, July 19 at 11 a.m.

Here's our porch entry from the front sidewalk:

We manage the left half of a great big old building (our half: circa 1914). We also have a back entry, soon opening into a cute little coffee shop which will be owned and managed by our back-yard neighbors and pals, James and Gretchen.

We have filled 3 rooms with our stuff and consignment stuff from our artists:

Downstairs in the front ("living") room where I can look at it constantly, we have John's wonderful Raku pottery:

In the "dining room", the architectural salvage area has a wide range of stuff, from 8-foot tall full columns and tin ceiling panels:

... to ornamental doorknobs, hinges, corbels, and more:

Upstairs, the "Chimney Room" is a tucked-away, cozy space that houses a variety of things, including Harold's funky kinetic sculptures:

... and Mitzi's handpainted silk scarves, pillows, and greeting cards.

Two antiques dealers rent space upstairs, as do importers of Polish Pottery. Joanie's little "sewing room" is my favorite of the renters:

We also have original watercolors, graphite drawings, and photography (some of it computer-manipulated), and a line of gourmet jellies, jams, mustards, dressings, etc. from a local maker.

Still to come: a line of soaps and lotions (which I have almost decided on). We're happy to accept ideas on unique items, whether local to MerryLand or not. Keep it in mind!

So, this has been a big change of pace for me and the DH, but we are diggin it so far.

But, I haven't knit in weeks.

and I miss my blog too.


  • At 3:58 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Thanks fo the update! I was starting to panic - The place looks fantastic. GG

  • At 9:42 PM, Blogger DesirĂ©e said…

    Sounds like a lot of work, yet a lot of fun. Best of luck with all that. =)

    Oh.. the yarn I get wasn't Wild, which I think is what you used in the kitty beds...? It's something by Bernat. =)

  • At 4:29 PM, Blogger Vegan Knitting said…

    We've missed you, too!

    Congratulations on getting your store set up! It's sounds like a really nice place - a crafty mini-mall of sorts but actually pleasant!

    I have also done very little knitting of late, at least within the last few weeks. Once I finished the "secret present for pregnant vegan knit blogger #2", I didn't have anything in the works and didn't have time to pick something.

    Now I'm working on the Broadripple sock, which is nice and small.

    It's great to have you back! Maybe you'll need to spend a bit of time testing out the cafe by knitting there while trying the drinks!


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Green is made for Irish Lasses!
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