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When Feathers are Flying Everywhere Around You, Get a Paperweight

Opening my TomandChickpea shop has been a whirlwind of emotion, labor, a test of my organizational skills and ability to balance everything around me. This will not change going forward, but my ability to operate all of these things more smoothly will.

One big thing to my advantage is I have no fear in asking for nor accepting assistance. Although my shop hours are currently limited to three days a week, I am most certainly working every day in one way or another. This past week I laid a lot of ground work to grow my business.

I met two very lovely women from the town hall who have offered me lots of ideas of how to network with other local businesses as well as draw in more of the local audience via social media and collaborative work with other shops in town.

I am working on ways to more consistently label my work with my logo to get my name out there- in the form of a mark (either an inked stamp or sticker I haven't decided) to put on the back of my handpainted furniture and stickers for the bags I send customers home with on the smaller items.

I have joined the Chamber of Commerce to learn more small business strategies and I am sure they will teach me many things I need to know and haven't thought to ask about.

I have a meeting with a newspaper reporter to get a write up in a local paper.

I have friends sending me curbside alerts when they see furniture available - I have people reaching out to me when they are moving or re decorating and have pieces they would like to offer to me.

I met with two lovely clients and have two pieces I will be doing custom designs on.

That is a service I'd like to remind that I offer- not only are the finished pieces in the shop available, but I can also show my unfinished pieces that have the option to be designed specifically to one's tastes, or work on pieces customers already own but would like to change the look of. Oh and I also do canvas work- primarily abstract- landscapes, people and wildlife alike.

A last note, on my third day open I had one customer and one sale. I call that a 100% sales rate! I am pretty excited about all of it :) It is just the beginning.....

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