I’m often asked, how did you get started? For that, I have to look to my mother. When I was in high school, I remember her buying rugs for friends or pieces of furniture. She was a school guidance counselor but enjoyed selling things for a little extra money on the side. I would tell her that we should have an antique shop together. She would laugh and say that what she did was for fun. She didn’t want to muddle our relationship or turn her joy into a chore. So I grew up, went to college, and forgot about becoming an entrepreneur.
I’ve had many jobs through the years and most of them in retail. I worked as a picture framer for much of that time. I loved seeing the artwork and unique pieces people would bring in to frame. The one-on-one with customers was both challenging and rewarding. Working in a small business was appealing with the flexibility of hours, a small amount of employees, the personal responsibility, and, of course, being your own boss. And years later after another disappointing profession, I went to my folks and said, hey – how about us trying that shop thing? Surprising, they agreed.
The caveat was that I had to do all the hard work and they would get to have fun. I wrote a business plan, got my finances in order and things began to take shape. We found a cute location, deconstructed and reconstructed, and opened Arteology on November 19, 2014. As for the name, I simply dreamed it. I wanted the shop to have a unique, artsy feel with a sense of purpose. Thus my motto, “Design for the art of living.” The idea was that your home is your masterpiece and the pieces within it are like paint on a canvas. I remember one of the first pieces I sold was a water fountain with two rusty-looking crows. The water randomly flowed out of their beaks and it was musical as well as whimsical. It was purchased by someone who adored crows.
While selling and making money is certainly nice, I really enjoy the procurement of our shop pieces. Learning about our customers helps us make decisions on whether to buy certain candle scents, types of artwork, or even specific colors of an object. We initially did not have baby gifts in the shop. It was through the suggestion of customers that we added them as well as many other things. I genuinely do my best to fulfill any requests we receive in order to keep our customers coming back and to establish the rapport we have developed with so many.
We are constantly changing and growing and learning and want you to feel relaxed and comfortable. Try a sample of toffee. Ask questions. Let me help you find what you need. Stay in touch through social media. We have different events throughout the year and would love for you to be involved. So come in and look around. You may not buy anything this time but I promise you’ll be back. Until next time, have a great day!