Three weeks ago, we opened in our brand new location in the Prairie Village Shops. We almost tripled our size, we built out the space, touching every. single. surface. in the place, and did I mentioned myself and our staff of women moved all of our SOLID WOOD furniture ourselves from our old location? So thank you’s are in order! In a major way!
First, do you know what a commercial real estate broker does? I will admit my naiveté and share that I really did not. But a friend recommended Tiffany Ruzicka of Open Area to me when we were starting to negotiate the lease on this Prairie Village space, and she was INVALUABLE to me. I used all caps to yell that to you because she was really that good. She’s one of the smartest women I know (and she’s younger than me :). Lease negotiations can be long and tiring and if it weren’t for Tiffany’s patience and problem solving I truthfully might not be here today. So if you’re looking for a commercial space, run and call her as fast as you can.
My second and HUGE thanks goes out to my staff: Terrin Coleman, Bailey Goodman, Jessica Cain, Alice Collins, Crystal O’Dea, and Kristen Patti. We’ve been prepping and planning for this move quietly since early 2018. They kept our secrets :), they worked extra hours, they held down the fort (heck, they ran the whole fort a lot of days), they hit the ground running, they lifted REALLY, REALLY heavy stuff when their boss probably/definitely should have hired movers, they brought creativity and enthusiasm even when we were really tired and they laughed and smiled and encouraged me when this endeavor seemed scary. When you have a small business, you get to know your staff pretty well. The only way this works is if you like them, and I’m lucky to like them all a whole lot.
Janette Yost, who was my friend before Golden & Pine (and still is!), also works with us one day a week, but sometimes a lot more than that too. She does our marketing, which for us means a lot of creative partnerships, events, photo shoots and pitches, events, media outreach, and more events, among other things. She is singlehandedly planning our next big deal event and she’s killing it every step of the way, all within weeks of coordinating a smashing opening party for us. Some days Janette’s enthusiasm for G&P may just outweigh my own and she’s a reminder and encouragement to stick to our mission even on days when that can be hard to do.
Remember, how I said we touched everything in our space to make it new? The fantastic guys doing the work were from 3Square Contracting. I have known the owner Mark Spears for maybe 15 years, without ever really knowing what he did for his day job. When a friend recommended I have him bid our project, after my initial bids came in significantly over budget, I reached out. You guys, if there were an ideal contractor situation, this was it. I sent him 2,000+ inspiration pictures and he never laughed or cringed (at least in front of me!) when he was bidding bamboo fencing as a ceiling option (we went a different route there) or other crazy ideas. Mark is creative and scrappy and was not only willing to work within our budget, but excelled at coming up with in-budget ways to make our dreams come alive. We have branded wood push bars on our front doors, an ipe wood planked garden sink wall and limestone counters (from Rocktops, full post coming on them soon!) all that Mark dreamed up for us. Ben Scott, who recently started with Mark, did a ton of the day to day building at the shop and is so super talented and kind that we’re jokingly (or not jokingly maybe?) trying to steal him right away from 3Square. 🙂
On a personal note, running a business with 2 little boys under the age 5 is no small feat. I could never in one million years do this if my parents, my sister, my mother-in-law and my sister-in-laws did not actively help us raise our boys on weekly if not daily basis. I’m lucky to have such a supportive family and so appreciative of their willingness to co-parent with us because let’s be honest, that is really what it takes for me to spend the time I do at Golden & Pine. The same goes for my husband, Danny, who 5 years ago said he would support me in making this retail/design dream of mine happen, but everyday, through his actions and decisions, has to recommit to that support with things like picking up my slack with our boys, by taking home ailing shop plants to his “plant hospital,” and by drilling 1500 holes in our new cash wrap fronts!
And last, I’m so thankful to YOU, our customers. Somewhere between opening 2.5 years ago and now, a lot of you have switched from just customers to people I hug when you walk in. I love getting to know you and it’s a honor that you have responded well to what we’ve put together here. So THANK YOU, THANK YOU to all who made this happen. I’m super grateful!