One major project for us has been some changes in our booths in the antique malls. We took a hard look at what we were doing when I prepared our income taxes and we saw some ways we could make our business more profitable and less work at the same time. There were some hard decisions but in the end I think they were the right ones.
First, we decided that after a year, we needed to say goodbye to the Spencer booth. I have loved being in that mall. The people are so welcoming and friendly, and the mall manager really worked hard to sell our things. We made some good friends there, so closing up the booth was not an easy thing to do. While it was profitable overall, we had to consider the time and effort of taking care of it. Our other booths are all located in the same general area, while this one meant a special trip. We are almost finished moving our things out, and should finish up tomorrow or Thursday.
Second, we added more space at Marietta. We were so cramped there so when the space beside us opened up we jumped on it. We gave up one of our smaller booths in exchange, and we're thrilled with the way the new space is working for us. Marietta has consistently good traffic and we see a continued growth in our sales there. So this month we've been moving things around at Marietta too and getting our new space set up.
Third, we let one space at Ravenswood go. I looked hard at what we had there and realized I needed to be smarter about what I had in stock. We do very well at Ravenswood and could have kept our space just as it was but as we looked at it we realized we weren't making the best use of the place. Some things had been there since I opened the first booth, and I just left them alone since we had plenty of space. But the vendor beside us really wanted to expand and I think we can sell as much if we use the space we have more wisely. So we cleared out one booth and while I packed I separated out stuff to go to the auction and just get rid of. The end result is a more organized, leaner booth and sales haven't seem to be affected. I'll have to get used to the smaller space though! It was so luxurious to just spread out but I think we'll do as well and pay less rent, and I think the mall just might do better too because our neighbor vendor will be bringing in lots of new merchandise.
We expected to be opening a booth in a new location in Parkersburg this month but that plan is on hold as that mall is not quite ready for us. It's just as well because with all these other changes we have been overwhelmed with work. And at home, well, Lordy, we are covered up in boxes, totes, furniture, etc that we thought we would be just moving right into the new space! What that has forced us to do is to organize our inventory better and that's our project for the next few weeks. It's time to realize that this really is a business and we need to treat it as such.
One end result will be, finally, a dedicated work area for me to paint and for Larry to do furniture repairs. Remember that log room we were adding on, intending to make it a guest room? Well, it's going to be an awesome workroom. Plenty of light, a porch, and we will still put in the bathroom as intended. I'm excited about getting this done and moving all my paints and projects out of the bathroom, living room, kitchen and the first log room.
|At least these three are done!|
|...unlike this one, which is taking up the entire kitchen right now.|
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