Shopkeeper’s Journal volume I

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I don’t know that this will be like the behind the scenes of other people’s businesses, but for me, I’m going to start giving you some of the behind the scenes from a fairly personal perspective. My perspective. This remains to be seen if this is really a good idea, but as with a lot of things in life, we try something and analyze our mistakes and then from there get better. My first behind the scenes snapshot back in December/January had some rather dramatic repercussions. Sigh…. Oh the drama! Sometimes my inner drama queen really likes to play up the drama. Having been a shopowner for several months now, I’m here to say that the drama queen has definitely been humbled. He he.

“You’re sewing again.” A friend brought this up to me earlier this week. It’s true. I’m sewing again and hopefully this gives you an idea of how things have been for the past several months (busy, in a word). Maybe I should state for the record that I’m inspired again. This translates into sewing things that work again. I have sewn a few things over the past few months, but to say that they really worked….meh. The Yona Coat was probably the first thing in a long time that I’ve sewn that I felt really really good about. Before we start getting too serious and melancholy, let’s just say that awesome stuff is on the horizon. That feels good enough to be inspired by and good enough to sew for. Ha ha! Yay!

My quaint little brick and mortar has changed rather dramatically over the past several months too. For the most part I’m working full-time in the shop. This is good. This is very good. One thing that was getting to be more and more obnoxious was trying to juggle schedules for individuals who wanted to work in the store with things I needed to get done while I was at the store. So it was much easier for now to work full time in the store and voila! Things about the shop and for the shop started getting accomplished at a much faster pace. And its been very good for me because I really needed to sense the heartbeat of my store on a much more intimate level. Running around like a chicken with my head cut off wasn’t allowing me to do that.

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Autumn has officially arrived at A Fashionable Stitch and it was time to change up the decor. Pulling out old fall outfits and putting them up in the store to inspire actually ended up inspiring me. Oh how I love Fall! Its such a magical time of year! Decorating your own shop – on a very very tight budget, oh wait! there is no budget! – is really really fun. I’m always up for a challenge like this and so its been fun to start revamping the store for fall. I’ve also had to get creative for things that I’ve really wanted and don’t have the funds for. I’ve wanted fabric signage for such a long time. And then boom! One day it hit me like a ton of bricks that hey, get some paper, fabric and a fabric bolt and there you go. Instant signs! Yay!

Among many other things this year, I had to become an instant gardener for the flower garden in the front of the store. I have to say people, though I like gardening, I am so over taking care of this! Ugh! In fact, I’m just about to go out and weed and water today (not that this has helped my poor dead zinnias). Much rather be taking care of something inside the store.

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Speaking of. This is a fabric hoarder’s dream….. Shipments of fresh fabric just arrived!

Best Weekend Wishes!
Sunni

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14 thoughts on “Shopkeeper’s Journal volume I

  1. This is so much fun to read!

    If we had an indie fabric store nearby (and we don’t), I would want a gift certificate for Christmas. If one were available, I would make sure DH knew about it (it would make his life easier too). Maybe I’m nuts, but I think this is something any woman who sews would enjoy receiving.

    I’m sure it’s already on your list for the next holiday season but I thought I’d mention it after peeking at your last “behind the scenes” post.

    Your store looks like fun! I wish our travels took us to your neck of the woods because I’d love to visit!

  2. I can already tell that I love this new series of posts ! I love reading behind the scene posts, they are very instructive and they make you see the not-so-shiny side of things as well. I am already looking forward to the next posts !

  3. Why not fabric flowers for the store garden? They don’t need to be watered, you can change them for the seasons whenever you like, and they don’t have to be realistic copies of the real thing. Just a passing thought, to give you yet one more task in your busy life, lol.

  4. I love that you’re sewing again! Your coat is beautiful. It’s important to enjoy some personal sewing among all the shop work. I also find it hard to fit in sewing for pleasure, but feel good when I do!
    I enjoyed your first behind the scenes post earlier this year as well as this one. Probably because I’m just curious as a business owner myself! 🙂 And I like hearing about a totally different type of business and how it works, the ups and downs, the things you have to consider that don’t occur to me like decorating for the holidays. Best of luck with everything!

  5. Hi Sunni, I will certainly be following these posts with great interest! I am pretty sure I commented on your last post, my business partner and I started our own fabric shop (on the other side of the world to you) 18 months ago. It’s just us, no staff, but we keep our hours manageable (W-F 10-4 & sat 12-4) and for the most part customers are very understanding of that. I’m glad you’re enjoying being in the shop – we do it out of necessity but also because we love it and want to be there to experience it all and be in touch with what our customers need. We also have a little flower garden in front but luckily it’s teeny and we planted it low-maintenance with geraniums and some hardy grasses. We still don’t know if the shop is going to be a viable financial thing in the long term but we’re encouraged enough (and having enough fun) to keep on keeping on. And hey – fabric!! Wishing you well 🙂

  6. I’m glad to hear that you’re feeling inspired to sew. Isn’t that the best feeling. I hope you know that you’re inspiring many people with your sewing shop, me included.

  7. Great to hear things are settling down and that you’re sewing again, Sunni – yay! I love reading these kinds of posts (go small business ladies, woop!). xx

  8. Great work, Sunni! The shop looks great and I love the fabric bolt sign idea. It’s the little things like that that adds lots of character. And I always thought it’d be fun to have a store so I could put up holiday displays.

  9. I just listened to your podcast with Corrine yesterday and loved it! Glad to hear that you are inspired to sew again and love the signs you made for the store. So cute and perfect!

  10. I’m glad you are again doubt a behind the scenes post!
    Your shop is adorable! I would love to be able to go in person!
    Lack of time is a problem even for us mere mortals, you know?! I have been trying to figure it out, too. But it seems you are doing great!
    Besides poor zinnias.
    All the best!

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