07 Jan '18
17 Jul '17
It's a question I hear often. People walk in the shop and their eyes get big as they try to take it all in. If you haven't been in the store in person, you'd probably never guess that I have all of this neat stuff inside a store that's less than 800 square feet. I'm complimented often that the store never feels crammed or cluttered - which is a daily challenge! lol When I find a new line I have to take a good hard look around and figure out just where it will fit, and if it's not REALLY special, it doesn't deserve the space.
That said, where do I find my products? Two places - everywhere and anywhere. I know, that sounds silly, but it's true! I find products in catalogs, in industry magazines, online, by recommendation from reps, friends and customers, from other store owners, my eyes are constantly open for neat things, and I have a whole folder of possibilities.
Now, I have a pretty broad range of products - so broad that some people don't understand how they fit together. What I explain is that I go for cool, quirky, unique, and really neat stuff. I know, that seems like it doesn't narrow things down much, and that's true, too. lol
When I bought the store it was an art gallery, with a few collectable lines - namely Harmony Kingdom, the only line from back then that I still carry - and some art books and cards. The art gallery part went away with the artist who used to own the store. The collectable lines expanded some into fairies and other neat figurines, the art books morphed into art books for kids, then funny books for kids, and funny books for adults. The cards expanded and added bookmarks, magnets and puzzles. One of the collectable line companies led me into fantastically funny mugs. I've always been a huge fan of crystals and sparkles, so it was an easy transition to add chimes, crystals, glass and spinners. Pretty Tools were fun and functional, and when the same company started making Rug Coasters and then Aluminum Armor Wallets, I immediately ordered. Then I started finding more lines that I just loved. At first it maybe didn't seem to make sense when I started adding the more FUNctional products. But, well, I had to sell Poo~Pourri. It just amused me too much not to. (And it really works, too!) That somehow led to Charles Viancin - the awesome silicone lids that I honestly started carrying because I really wanted to try them. *snicker* Hey, it seemed to work, my customers love them just as much! In the last year or so I've added Manicure Sets, Emery Boards, Matches, Napkins, Finger Puppets and Soap, all very functional (yes, even the finger puppets!) but more importantly they're fun and funny. I have people in here every day giggling at the great products. Most recently I discovered the Freaker Drink Koozies and my customers immediately fell in love - as did I. So, is there a theme to what I sell? Well, like I said, I think the theme is "really neat stuff."
Again I go back to the space issue. If I see a new product that I like, first I have to love it. Second, I have to KNOW my customers are going to love it. Third, it has to fit in to my store "theme" - see above. And fourth, I have to have a place to put it! Sometimes I dream about a bigger space, but this has been our home for 20 years. It's cozy, it's comfy and I know every inch of the space. It also makes me be verrrry picky with my products, and that's not necessarily a bad thing. ;)
19 Jun '17
Surprise! It's me again, Momager. I don't want you to get bored with me, so i'm purposely keeping my posts few and a while in between. ;-) (Jules: that's her story and she seems to be sticking to it... ) It seems like every time i come in, there's new stuff! Or maybe, it's my memory and it only seems like new stuff. (A little of both, actually.) That works for me. It's like forgetting that you've already met or know someone and meeting them all over again. I love having new people in my life! But i digress. (Frequently. ;) ) There really is new..... old stuff in the store. You may have heard that we've had a big influx of new/old visitors.... the Roly Polys! Right, like old friends re-entering your life. If you know these little guys, then you know how cool they are, and if you don't, well, come on in or visit the website and see for yourself. And if i'm here when you come in, introduce yourself (again?) I promise to be just as nice whether i know you or not! Cause i'm just that kind of person - i get it from Jules!! :-) And you can, too.... get neat stuff from Jules, that is... Say goodbye, Jill..... Goodbye, Jill! (Bye, mom!)
29 May '17
A long time ago,
in a galaxy far far away ...
(Okay, actually, it was right here, and 20 years ago to be exact, but that's not nearly as interesting of a lead in) ... I started working in this cool little shop.
My favorite line was the neatest collection of collectables, called Harmony Kingdom.
Created in England, these intricately carved animals, flowers and figures are not JUST amazing works of art, they also have some special hidden way of opening that makes them boxes!
Look inside to see a hidden surprise - another animal, dinner, something sweet or funny. Inside the flowers you'll find Lord Byron, the gentleman ladybug, and all of his adventures!
20 Years later, I'm still fascinated every time a new piece is introduced. The two latest - Caterwauling Capers & Moving House - are absolutely fantastic:
Have you explored the Harmony Kingdom?
See me ramble about how much I love Harmony Kingdom and show off some of my favorite pieces in this facebook live video:
14 Apr '17
There were some pretty amazing women kicking butt in 1997.
Buffy started Slaying on TV. Kate Winslet's heart was going on at the box office. Madeline Albright became the first female Secretary of State in United States history. (Wow!)
And, in Berkeley Springs, West Virginia, Jules Enchanting Gifts opened on October 13, 1997.
It's hard to believe that this year we'll celebrate our 20th Anniversary!
So, this is your six month warning, we're planning one HECK of a party. Save the Date - Saturday, October 14th, 2017! Games, giveaways, sales, specials, food, drink, we're going to have it all...
I also have some REALLY cool news that I can't share with you guys quite yet, but I can't wait until I can tell everyone, it's so exciting!! Definitely time for a new step in the Jules brand ...