2018 was a year of movin' and shakin'. A new career in media for my husband. My biggest wedding season and year in business ever. The death of our beloved, pain in the ass kitty, Mr. Bingley. A joyful month with my sister, brother in law, and little niece and nephew visiting from overseas (especially for certain party members to dress up as adorable monsters and hit the town for Trick Or Treat.) Accidentally adopting new kitten on the block, Elie Diesel.
And that time I moved business locations.
Yeah, about that.
First, I would like commend all of you for the polite and diplomatic ways you found to say "what the hell is going on around here??"
Here's the story! Safari Cake Boutique is making some changes for the new year, so it was time for me to make way for the cake. My original plan was to work from home, as the majority of what I do is phone/online orders and weddings.
And I'm just not a retail girl at heart.
Maybe I read too many arty farty novels as a teenager, or did a little too much daydreaming of 90s bohemian life, but I have always been a studio person.
I always wanted a neutral space full of light and half-done projects, beloved old tools, weird finds, books, and materials. Customers and friends could walk into the middle of the creative work-in-progress mess- at least the coffee pot's on. And there's a chair somewhere under that pile of leaves.
You know. Like what you'd find in the front office of an auto detailing shop! Naturally, haha
While drawing up my work-from-home plans, I asked my friend Cory, owner of Details Auto (and unofficial mayor of Kingston), if I could have my wholesalers deliver to his place. A lot of companies won't deliver to residential addresses. And believe it or not, a lot of neighbours don't appreciate trucks beeping as they back up at 4 am.
Cory said 'let me think about it'. (It was such a weird thing to ask! 'Hey, do you mind if I give some people you've never met keys to your business? They'll let themselves in at weird times and leave boxes full of weird stuff there. thanks!') Then a couple days later Cory said 'why don't you sublet a space from me?'
And that, Dear Reader, is how I ended up with a potential new location at 698 McKay St. with just a few days left on the clock for 2018. And didn't make any announcements about it. My perfect timing for tons of business correspondence over Christmas Holidays meant delays in management company-building owner- insurance people communication. I didn't want to shout it from the rooftops and order new business cards and then look like a giant b hole if the building owners or my insurance co. said it wasn't happening.
Luckily, it happened!
Ask me about the adventures of properly measuring your coolers to fit through the door of your Uhaul box trailer. Or the legend of Shawn, who will kindly bash the shop door frame off for you when you're a quarter inch away from 'no cooler shall enter this doorway, either'. How your husband, and friends who rent and run the shop upstairs will unload your Uhaul box trailer in the middle of the winter night. (Thank you Clay & Pat at Adventure Galley Finds, Spencer at my house, and Shawn and Cory at Details!!)
Ask some very patient couples and parents of the bride and groom about coming in to consult amid piles of boxes, and the above-mentioned hammering. Ask the family who needed funeral flowers for a beloved patriarch about choosing tributes and colours in a space with more piles of boxes, and only half a floor installed.
Thank you everyone for your patience, and for still trusting me with creations for your important events, while I got it all together.
What does the new spot mean for you? Well, I'll need more notice to order your bakery goods, now that it's a little more involved than hollering across a counter. :D And I'll be able to offer some different treats and gifts now that I won't be endangering any peanut or nut allergy folks with those items on the ingredient list.
I've got a handy credit& debit-pin pad that pairs with a smartphone for purchases (Smell ya later, big bank credit card processor!!) and all of my usual flower offerings.
I have to reconfigure business hours to work with the rhythm of the new neighbourhood, and iron out the last few decor and shelving kinks. I'm thinking of phasing out Saturday deliveries, except for events, and switching my work week to Monday-Friday, since half my Saturdays are spent delivering and setting up weddings. I can't count the number of non-wedding-people I had to say 'no' to last year for logistical reasons on a Saturday... it doesn't really make sense to say I'm open if I'm usually not.....
Let me know what you think- about hours, or anything else to make your experience here better- by phone, internet or by showing up and talking.
Drop by any time- the coffee machine is up and running. And I think there is a chair somewhere under that pile of leaves. Can't wait to see you all- Happy new year!