Thursday, March 22, 2012

getting started

i think the question that gets asked the most is how did i get started? well, i'll tell you: i had the dream, the dream of having my own shop, being my own boss.  that's the driving force.  if  you hadn't been dreaming of it for a long time then the days that really suck will get you down and make you want to give up.  but, there are also practical steps to it.
1. find a space
this can be kind of daunting.  you want a great location, but not one that's gonna be so expensive that it becomes impossible to make a profit.  i'd look into up and coming areas and maybe even a space that needs some work.
one day i started talking about opening a shop with my friend christina.  turns out that she dreamed of owning a gallery featuring local artists.  about a month after we talked, she called me about a building in our historic downtown that was being renovated and would i be interested in renting a store front.  heck yeah!!!!!  so we worked it out to share a space.  that way, it wasn't a full time job for either of us (she's a realtor and i was previously a stay at home mom).  so the renovations began and i had about a year to plan.
2. gather inventory
i didn't want to take out a loan or ask for money to get me started so i began to gather inventory very slowly, storing it all in my house.  when the time came for the grand opening and i started moving all my stuff in, i didn't have enough!!  so remember to get more than you think you'll need.  
3. business plan (or not)
i'm not a big planner.  it just sucks the fun out of life.  so i really didn't come up with a business plan, as such.  once i found out my monthly rent, i was able to kind of come up with a budget for what i could put into my business to start with.  i'm one blessed lady for having a husband who was willing to give me the money to get amandromeda up and running.  i opened up a business checking account with enough to get me through my first years rent and extra to cover my start up costs, like display pieces and store signs, etc.  i would most definitely encourage you to save enough to get you through the first year.  you may or may not make ANY money in the beginning, and frankly any income needs to go right back into the business.  it's nice then to not worry about how you'll pay your bills.

so those are just a few things about getting started with your own shop.  i'll have much more to say in the coming weeks.  please keep your questions coming!  i want to answer all of them :)

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