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Sunday, September 6, 2009

What's a girl to do?

Installment #22 here of "Who, ME, a shop owner? Sheeyeah, right..."

If you're a new reader, kindly allow me to bring you up to speed.
This blog was created to document and share
the birth of a dream, namely, my dream of owning my own shop.
It surely won't be a full-blown affair from the get-go...rather,
I'm looking at renting a space in an antique mall to start out,
and I'm down to the final two contenders.
At this point, I'd like to defer to all of YOU who have actual experience at this sort of thing, because I'm a bit stymied right now.

Contender #1: 10 x 10 space in a large, multi-vendor, two-story shop. Rent is $89 month, must sign a three month lease, and 10% commission to the owner. I would not be required to work at all. I'd pretty much have complete autonomy to do what I want with my space, which is a big draw for me. I want to be able to express myself creatively and artistically within my booth, and this space will allow me to do just that. It gets a pretty good amount of foot traffic, too.

Contender #2: No clearly defined space, per se. I would bring my things in, be allowed to set them up, but they mentioned that they like to move things around to keep things fresh. No rent whatsoever, but owner gets 20% of sales. You are required to work one weekend a month, as you will rotate this out with the other vendors. Right now, there are three other vendors. Six month lease. Not as much traffic. The owners are the nicest people I think I've ever met, but I'm really not digging the fact that I wouldn't have a spot that's just mine. Yeah, I'm an only child, how'd ya guess?  ;-)

Me in all my spoiled rotten only child glory...

I'm also on a waiting list at a couple of other spots,
and there are a few other malls that have expressed interest in having me,
so I'm not limited to the two I've shared with you here.

At this point, it almost feels like a no brainer~go with Contender #1.
But am I missing something here???
Is there something just glaringly obvious, a red flag,
a Whoa Nelly, a Danger Will Robinson thang I'm just not seeing in either of these choices???

Can ya help a sista out here?

This post was edited to remove
any photos not taken by myself, Anne Lorys.


gail@myrepurposedlife said...

Anne... I would say #1, however you didn't mention, are they both 7 days a week? It sort of sounds like #2 might only be weekends?
Locally, we have peddler's malls. Lots of variety of stuff. 8x10 for 120. 2% commission, not really sure about the lease situation. Most spaces are always full. I'm assuming you have a lot of stuff in inventory?
My friend Cathy and I are going to a show in October, it's the only one we do.
Good luck with your decision. I hope some more people chime in with great advice!
ps hope you're having a good/safe weekend!

Anonymous said...

Hello Annie:
I do recommend strongly to get your feet wet. I kind of like option #1. About your want of expresing yourself via your booth space I don't think allowing a third party to use and display your items as they pleased around the store will work for you. It's not a single child thing or controlling issues, I myself love having the choice of merchandising however I want, plus once you get more inventory it will be easier to keep track of everything, also once the costumers get to know your stuff they will be able to find you. You just may become their best seller and that will give you the push to venture into bigger and more spaces. The terms on your #1 choice seem to be perfect for somebody trying to get into the business, actually rents are much higher around where I live. You want to be in a shop that is well establish, with excellent and friendly costumer service. Have you ever shop with them before? How would you rate the shop? Remember, location, costumer service, quality of vendors and traffic. Get into a shop known for the great stuff they carry. Once you become well known you will become the one to follow, no matter where you go they will come. A three month lease is not too long by any means, sometimes it takes longer to stick. It took me 3 years as a dealer in a mall and 11 years as a shop owner. NO FEAR, blessings, Marta.

Sue McPeak said...

10x10 is a nice space for starting out especially if you have hanging air space or walls. A couple of ? to consider...How far is it from home and how different or similar is my stuff and prices compared to the other vendors. Rent? I Sis pays $100 for 10x10 in NewBraunfels..location, location, location. Hang in'll know when it's right...Sue

time worn interiors said...

Choose the one with the most traffic! Doesn't matter how good your booth is if no one see's it!

Anne Lorys said...

Hi Gail...both are open 7 days a week. I'm building my inventory at lightning speed, so it would appear that I'm almost ready, appear being the operative word. ;-)
Have a fantastic week!

Anne Lorys said...

Marta, you are so right. Again. You're making a habit of this! I do SO appreciate your logical, practical advice. It is a good mall, one of the best in the area. No-brainer, I guess. Hopefully I haven't dilly-dallied around so long now that I have to wait for another space to open up!

Unknown said...

I'm just so happy to have found your blog - great name! I wish you the best of luck and lots of sales.

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