So, pretty much anytime I stop blogging it’s because Something Big Happened. In this case, not only did we move again (only about 5 minutes away and to a much better house), but we also opened up a furniture/housewares store.
I know, no big deal right?
When we moved down here in November we had a real hard time finding furniture, housewares, pretty much anything to outfit our house. At least not that cost us a ton of money. Steven and I started building our own furniture and some furniture for a few select clients of Steven’s. But word got out quick (I mean, we did advertise this, so it’s not that surprising), and soon Steven was making far more furniture than he was repairing homes and my living room looked like a woodshop. Not really my thing, you know?
We had already talked about “One Day” maybe opening up a store, though we were thinking in different terms (a general store maybe) but with more and more orders coming in and the need for a work shop becoming more pressing we thought, well why not just do it all now? We still had a healthy amount of savings and would even if we opened, and Steven had the flexibility to jump headfirst into it. There really wasn’t ever going to be a better time. The universe seemed to agree and a large store front with a perfect workshop area in the back was available, right in town. The only issue with the whole building was that there was a window where a door needed to be for it to work for us, but fortunately the owner also owns the hardware store and we worked out a deal where he cut and installed a door for us. The rent is fair (especially considering we have a workshop attached to the store) and there’s plenty of space for us to show case everything. So, we took a leap of faith and signed a three year lease. Given that we’ve only ever lived in one city for more than three years (since becoming adults) this was a huge commitment for us, but we’re still happy with that decision and with our new home.
We named the store Woodstock (a play on wood furniture, which is our stock. Also, we thought the name would go over well here. The island has that kind of vibe). We spent a month and a half painting, building, ordering gazillions of things from sellers on Etsy and planning (and yes that’s a ridiculously short amount of time to go from inception to opening our doors and we lucked out that we have so many good friends already on the island and the resources to make it happen).
Our schtick is “hand made”. Most of the things on the island are mass produced. People order what they can get, or bring it over from the main island and as a result there’s very little that’s hand crafted. There are some amazing artists and creative folks on the island, so it’s a little unfortunate that so much for the house and home is mass produced. But that gave us a great opportunity to do something different and since we’re pseudo-hipsters and we love the whole “artisan” thing, it just made sense to try to source everything from small producers around the globe.
On March 1 we opened our doors, and while I’m not one to get all mushy about things, the response thus far has been kind of overwhelming. We’ve only been open for less than three weeks and we already have to hire someone just so Steven (and I, when I’m able, since I still work full-time) can actually build all of the orders we’re getting. People come in to tell us how beautiful things are and we get stopped by people telling us how happy they are that we opened. The community has really rallied behind us and bolstered us up and it’s so beyond amazing that it’s really hard for me to put into words.
The actual opening was a whirlwind. I had a major work deadline that I didn’t know about when we picked the opening date and of course we both got sick, but it was fun, I was able to dress up and decorate and make food and host and it was just great. People hung out until well past when our grand opening was over and all-in-all we had almost 80 people show up, which was a great turnout considering we forgot to do any real advertising. The opening deserves it’s whole own post, but considering we forgot to take pictures and were almost delirious by the end of it, suffice to say it was awesome. Here are the pictures we managed to get:
(Please note: we were so sick by the time the last picture was taken and we totally forgot to get any actually good photos of us. We’re so good at things)
In the meantime, if you’re ever in Vieques, Puerto Rico please stop by!