Monday, April 15, 2013

Monday Musebles/Better Block Wrapup


I don't think anything could have prepared me for what happened in the 11 magical hours of the Better Block. The crowds began to funnel into the shop at 4:45 on Friday night and didn't stop until after 9 o'clock. John and I met so many lovely people, got loads of compliments on our pop-up shop layout and decor and made some money in the process!

 Every person that came in the shop loved our atmosphere and the overall point of the the Better Block. We had a few people ask if this would be a weekly or monthly fest, and while we wished it would be, we had to explain that wasn't the case just yet. John had one property owner approach him about moving our pop-up (as is) to his retail location in Oceanview. The offer was kind, but the $1,600/month rent option really isn't up our alley. I was offered to set up our pop-up shop in some other places along the proposed Arts & Design District for a weekend a month and that seems a little more feasible at the moment.

Ideally, the Better Block wants the building owners to do some repair work and get more permanent retail, restaurants, etc. into the spots even if they aren't 100% of what they could be. Just make the immediate repairs and get some positive attention to the area. Mary Jo, who was the co-pop-up partner of Mary Cup of Jo was asked by one of the district's current business owners what it would take...$20,000? She said sure, that'll buy a kitchen. Obviously nothing happens over night, but if ideas are planted, hopefully they'll eventually sprout.

I feel like Saturday was more of the shopping day. Families came out in the masses, we were making sales left and right, people were giving the shop so much love John and I were beaming. I hate to sound conceited, but our shop was pretty amazing. John and Patricia's items meshed so well with mine, it just seemed like a real cohesive store.

We were luckily enough to not have to tare everything down on Saturday and were (kinda) given permission to stay a few days. We're waiting to hear what "a few days" actually turns into, but in the mean time, our pretty storefront stays as is and we're getting some free advertisement! I am still feeling exhausted from the whirlwind of the weekend. I have a stack of business cards, emails, notes and scribbles I need to respond to, a website and wedding invitations to finish up, and God, do I need to get to a gym! However, there's not one ounce of me that would have changed a thing.

Favorite quote of the weekend "It looks like my grandma's house in here."
Along with "This shop is the place to be!"
And "So you'll be here every weekend, right?"
From the cutest little old lady "I have so much of this stuff around my house...would you want some if I could gather it up?"

Many thanks to: Susie Sanderson, Cali Carpenter, Chris Holder, Melissa Taylor, Mike Mars, Ryan O'Grady, Allison Wermers, Bob and Kristy Pursell, Ari Durrell, Terri Boone, Tina, Barkley Brown, Pam Morrow,  Barney Mars & Deb Janezeck for use of their driveway and paint supplies, Victoria Farr for the beautiful lights, Michelle Odom for the pillows, Norfolk Printing for the awesome job on the maps, Andrew Howard from the Better Block, Ron Williams and Lori Crouch from the City of Norfolk and my awesome pop-up partners John and Patricia Wharton.

Also, to Jesse Scaccia & Hannah Serrano for being such an inspiration in Norfolk.