Well, my big milestone has come and gone. On September 3rd, I celebrated Wit & Whimzy’s first anniversary. Yep, it was just over a year ago that I opened my doors and anxiously awaited that first customer. That little action was the climax of months of planning, long hours, sleepless nights and many moments of self doubt. After years of dreaming about owning my own shop, it finally became a reality but it seemed so unreal. My first sale was a greeting card, then a temporary tattoo, and I was officially open for business.
I would call my first weekend a success, especially since most of the visitors were foot traffic and few people even knew I existed. Sure, I had some people following my Facebook and Instagram pages, but there had been no ribbon cutting or newspaper announcement.
Looking back, I can’t believe I opened with such limited inventory—I was either brave or very naïve! Since then I’ve probably doubled the number of items I carry and the store has been re-styled many times to accommodate the expanding inventory. It’s been a learning process, especially when it comes to that inventory. I’ve hit some home runs and had items fly off the shelves, but I’ve also struck out and had items languish until they were sold at a loss.
The year has been a good one, with many customers becoming regulars and some becoming friends. The business community welcomed me with support and friendly advice and many of my former colleagues and friends from Marietta College periodically stop in to say hello. I love it when people feel comfortable enough to chat or share a story—and my favorite sound is the laughter I hear from someone reading a greeting card or discovering a funny item.
So let me take this opportunity to say thank you… thank you to my amazing artisans and vendors who create the unique products you find in the shop. Thank you especially to the vendors who took a leap of faith before I even opened my doors, believing in my vision and trusting me with theiritems before I had proven myself. Thank you to the seasoned merchants who have shown support and kindness to a newbie, even Rob Schafer for blowing snow and leaves from the front of my store.
And thank you to every one of you that follow Wit & Whimzy on Facebook or Instagram, who like my posts or share my photos. Thank you for every purchase and every visit even if you didn’t purchase---it all means the world to me. I still have to remind myself sometimes that I’m a business owner, a real honest-to-goodness captain of my own ship. It’s exhausting, stressful and every day holds a new challenge. But it is a dream turned reality, and I hope it’s a dream that lasts for many years to come.