Our new store~a reflective post

April 2012
 I wasn't planning on this kind of a post today~but as I started to write
about our new store it had me reflecting on how we got to that point.
Its a "we" now, but before it was just the "me"...and when it was the "me" 
I went to take in a full day Chalk Paint convention in Boston.  I knew Annie Sloan
would be there, I just didn't know she was going to sweep me off my feet and turn my life
upside down after we spent the day together. 
 And not only did we spend the day together (well we were both in the Sheraton and she was teaching and I was in the audience)~I was lucky to be asked to come to dinner afterwards to a private affair held for the stockists and Annie and her husband as well as the CEO of Annie Sloan Unfolded, the company that brought Annie's paint to America.  And as it usually happens, being the lucky sort, I had put my plate down at this long country table only to find Annie nudging past me to sit right next to me! We sat elbow to elbow during dinner and it was decided before that meal that I would come on board if they would have me. And have me they would!! It was one of those kind of days~all the planets align perfectly catching you off guard in your unsuspecting mode~you ever have one? They are very rare.  Kind of like the day you meet the person you know you will marry...or the day your child is born and you see their little scrunched up face for the very first time.  Yes, it was a big moment...one of those life changing moments, and I cannot say why or how it happened, but it all made sense that this is what I must do~join in this group of stockists and open my very own store selling Annie's fantastic paint. And little did I know we would meet again and have such a great connection and a chance to expand on it from our first meeting this past April.  I think she is the tops! So in a very quick 48 hours time after I first met Annie I  hunted down
 this spot for my soon to be store, not far from my home. 
 So excited! I was thrilled~I could just imagine it all prettied up! 
I drew a sketch of how I imagined it could be~

 And in a few days we got to work ripping out old commercial carpeting 
and painting the floors and walls and hunting for furniture to put in our new shop. 
 It was a whirlwind and a lot of work, but it didn't feel 
like work because it was so exciting~! 
 Colin was out of school for summer break and he helped me 
paint the inside and the outside. Henrietta was used to create 
a noticeable and whimsical change to the facade. 
 Then we thought if we used some Duck Egg on the screen door
 it would tie in the copper bays above the shop.
 And so in a flash we were open for business selling Annie Sloan's magical paint.
We hung up a pretty sign and got some window graphics 
and suddenly it had become my dream shop. 
 Before I knew it we were poised to open a store in Boston. 
Justin expressed interest in joining my new business venture. 
Now we were officially a "we".
We found a store that was affordable although tiny~
it was in a hip neighborhood in the South End of Boston
 and we thought it could be just the ticket.  With Colin Justin and me 
working our butts off we pulled it all together. 
Justin painted his front shop doors in Florence 
to announce his arrival on the scene~
bringing Annie's paint to a major market! 
How exciting this was for us all!
We worked really hard and had the shop open for business 
in just two weeks!! It was a beehive of activity 
and now we see that this location may be more seasonal based 
around the later spring through early fall months, but we 
love it and our customers seem to love us being there. 
But in just this short year we are learning or trying to learn~what works best,
 and what we think we should do to make our little family business
 grow and prosper.  Colin has joined our business full time too~
so with that we are poised to take on a new location, opening mid July! 
 We will turn our first shop into a warehouse location where we fix up furniture, 
paint custom jobs and take care of all of our shipping needs. 
 No longer will this shop be a retail location for paint~
that will happen at our new shop in Reading, Massachusetts at 150 Main Street! 
And boy do we have big plans for that location!! 
We want to give our customers the best experience possible 
when they walk through our doors.  So stay tuned and we 
will share bits and pieces as we move forward. I won't have 
the keys until July 1, so it will be another record breaking pace 
to get the shop up and open for business in two weeks time. 
We will be up on ladders (like Colin was doing here just a year ago)
  painting the walls and floors and setting up 
some beautiful displays for our customers. 
 In the meantime we will be teaching our sell out workshops on Sundays.
  During the week open for business meeting our customers
 from 10-5 Monday through Friday and 11-4 on Saturday at the Malden shop. 
We have tons of painted samples in all different combinations 
for you to touch and feel and get inspired by. 
We have the answers to your Chalk Paint and Wax questions 
as we are constantly painting and waxing and using this 
paint in the most interesting ways~on fabric, upholstery,
 chandeliers, shoes and of course furniture. 
We are here painting andwaxing and  gilding and doing our thing! 
Like this mirror that used to be gold and  now
 is stunning in Graphite with Silver Gilder Paste.
You may catch us taking stately pieces up a notch~
Like this handsome yet delicate three quarter height
 china cabinet that we are working on as we speak!
It's getting an interior paint job too.
Colin finished this Cobblestone dresser last week and we
 love the custom mixed color in Paris and Graphite.
Boston's Maison Decor is open on Friday through Sunday
 from 11-5 when many shoppers
combine visits to Maison Decor and the
 local SOWA vintage market right next door.
Its heavier on the "mantiques" but many women and men
 love the vibe of our urban rustic shop.
so that is the wrap up from Maison Decor~we hope to
convince you to come check us out one of these days~
be it in Malden, Boston or soon to be Reading~
we will be excited to see you!

And this one year later I want to say thanks to Annie~
for all of the inspiration and natural leadership you have shared with me,
 for the beauty and artistry you create and of course your friendship. 
Oh... yeah...and thanks for that magical paint.


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