Perch Travelling Boutique has been in business for 4 weeks now. I admit I had some pretty high expectations with regards to the public’s hearty embrace of my new business venture: I pictured my shop on the front page of all the papers, television reporters calling me for on site interviews, a general buzz about town about the tiny mobile shop with the great atmosphere and incredible treasures... and a steady stream of customers buying up all my stuff.
That isn’t exactly how things have gone. Sure, I’ve sold some great vintage clothes and jewelry to a few happy customers, and I’ve received some incredibly positive comments from the wonderful people who stop and take a look at the shop. But, in the wise (cracking) words of my dad, “don’t quit your day job.” I spend a lot of my time at the shop people watching. There happens to be a liquor store about 100 feet from my door, so I watch the college boys come by empty handed, and leave with their cases of beer. I wait for the logging truck that picks up a load from the mill down the street every Friday. On Saturdays the roller derby girls have practice at the Sunplex, and they come by and chat when it’s over (they have been great supporters of the shop).
There have been many ‘shoulda woulda coulda’ moments since this whole idea developed into the shop that it is today. For instance, if I really had wanted all those newspaper reporters clamoring to be the first to interview me, maybe I should have contacted them and let them know about my shop (as a business owning newbie, I assumed they would come to me). If I had managed my time a little better, I could have designed and displayed more signs on every side of the shop so that it was clear just what this little faux brick trailer is all about. And if I had investigated the possibility of having live entertainment at the Sunplex, I would have asked our friend, an Elvis impersonator, to perform at Perch’s grand opening. Maybe I should be a consultant to other naive, starry eyed, would- be business owners, and remind them of a few key points that should, could and would help their businesses make an impact from day one.
|Picture Perch Travelling Boutique right in front of the Sunplex sign|
For now, I am very happy to set up shop on my space in front of the Sunplex. I feel a huge sense of accomplishment just getting the boutique open and staged for a day of unlimited possibilities. For the record, there is no better deal in Kelowna for vendors looking for affordable, accessible space than the Kelowna Downtown Sunday Market, located at the Sunplex . I am so grateful to Jordan (the Sunplex manager) for allowing me to open Perch on Fridays and Saturdays, as well as Sundays, in order to establish the boutique as a permanent part of the weekend scene in downtown Kelowna. But, as the saying goes, “it takes money to make money,” and I may have to shell out the big bucks next season to be set up right in the middle of the action in Kelowna’s downtown core. I really do appreciate the comment from fans of the shop that, “it (Perch) will catch on.” In my entrepreneur heart of hearts, I believe it will. The question is: when?