AKA 2019 You’re the worst!
Unfortunately I don’t think Greg Kinnear will be writing an article about us, ala “You’ve Got Mail” and it’s no secret this has been a trying (read: terrible) year for us all personally. If you read my last long blog post you know we’ve been trying everything we can think of to save our little shop. But now we can no longer avoid reality and it’s soon time to turn off the lights for one last time, as THE SHOP IS CLOSING.
We aren’t sure on timing, we’d love to be done by the New Year but it all depends on how quickly we can sell the merchandise. See more below, but it all needs to go, like enough to buy an Akron house (hopefully mine is safe) but the hole is deep, so come stock up and up and up. Everything is 50% OFF*, we won’t go lower so please don’t wait. (This discount will apply automatically in-store. If you plan to shop online, use discount CLOSING50 act checkout)
To all of our customers/friends
I’m actually speechless I think. Give me a minute. You are now family to me. I’m so glad that we made it to five years so I had a chance to trumpet so many of you, but there are so many more. Those of you that may have only crossed our threshold once or those that only follow us on IG, you are all part of the reason that we’ve been able to make it this far, thank you each and every one. I can’t tell you the number of people that come in saying “I can’t believe you’re here, do people even write anymore?!” The answer is yes. I’m so very proud that we have grown every year, and the age of our customers is younger and younger. Kids want to write, create, dream, just like the rest of us! It crushes me to think that I won’t get to hear about your latest dance recitals or first dates or 50th reunions on a daily basis. I really can’t even fathom it, but I have to. Please stay in touch. Write me letters, I will write back: Liz Scott – 2600 Yellow Creek Road – Akron, Ohio 44333. We can catch up over wine or juice boxes, too! Thank you for letting me live out my dream in much more vivid colors then I ever thought was possible. Because of you, we existed.
To my family
Oh. shit. this is so hard. Each of you has contributed in different ways to making this little shop a reality. Dave‘s handiwork; Beth worked the register at the beginning; Rosie was my constant cheerleader on social; Michelle walked many a NYC show with me, showing me the ropes; and then there was Jim who ran countless errands and so much more. Tears flowing…Blair. You are my everything. You never doubted that I could do this and helped whenever asked, sometimes with a little side eye, and held me as we had to make these painful decisions, and I took so much away from us financially and emotionally, but you were always there and I’m so looking forward to giving my all to us, again. Mom. Words of gratitude aren’t enough. I know none of this has been easy, you poured yourself into this too, and as we said last night, the biggest benefit of the shop has been that our relationship is whole and happy again, thank you a million times over. I hope through this you learned more of your value and confidence and beauty, too, you’re incredible! And to the rest of my family and friends, thank you for always being there.
To my staff
Amber, you’ve come to my rescue countless times, assembling through the night amidst your brood of munchkins. Your creativity shines in so many ways it’s a joy to always see your latest creation. Stephanie and kids, you little rays of sunshine have kept our customers well wrapped and Stephanie, your selfless manner to step in when we didn’t know what we needed will never be forgotten, thank you. Audrey, you’re simply amazing. We loved you as a customer and are now even more in awe of you as a co-worker. Your amazing self motivation and drive is unparalleled and can’t wait to see what you do for the world next. Lauren, our Lauren…we are infinitely glad that you’re part of our family, and while this year is definitely one to be washed away, to see your strength and smile through it all is nothing short of admirable. We have seen you grow as an employee, friend, sister, girl friend and most heart wrenchingly as a daughter. You are everything good in this world, and I can’t believe I won’t be laughing about poop with you every day.
And a very sincere thanks to everyone else that has worked with us through the years, you are all lovely.
To my fellow local shopkeepers
My tribe. I definitely wouldn’t have made it without each of you. I had no idea what I was getting into when this crazy whirlwind of 5 years started. Some of you have been at it far longer, you’re amazing! Some are newer, you’re amazing, too! No one will ever know what it’s like to do what we do, and give all of yourselves to your stores, but I hope that you succeed as long as you want to, and I’m always here to fill in for a sick employee. Thank you for being my sounding boards and friends.
To the greater paper world
I’ve often relived my first visit to the National Stationery Show roughly 8 years ago, and the awe of walking into the Javits sales floors thinking “I’ve found my people!” At that point I knew nothing about this world of well designed paper magic, but couldn’t wait to dive in. Getting to build relationships with each of you makers, other shop owners, bloggers, magazine editors, trade show directors is something I wouldn’t have fathomed 5 years ago, but I’m endlessly grateful for this experience and for each and everyone of you. We are there for one another and I hope that never changes. I have no idea where my path is going but my heart will forever be made of paper.
HOW CAN YOU HELP:
- COME SHOP! Seriously we need to sell everything to avoid bankruptcy, no joke! (It’s not as easy as Michael Scott made it seem in The Office). Everything in the store is 50% OFF effective immediately. We have no plans to go lower than that so please come and stock up as you know most of what’s here you can’t find anywhere else for hundred of miles. AND PLEASE TELL A FRIEND!!!!!
- BRING TISSUES! This is hard, really, really hard.
- HELP ME FIND A JOB. See below regarding weddings, but in the meantime, I’m looking for a job for the first time since I was 19 (that’s 20 years ago for the record). I’m truly open to anything, even “boring desk jobs,” by now I’ve accrued a magic bag full of skills and while I have my design degree I’m open to the world, and perhaps any location, too! It doesn’t have to be full time. I still love weddings so could pair the invitation design with a part time something to survive.
- FIND A RENTER. We have the downstairs space until the end of Aug/September 2020, but my goal is to be cleared out by the end of January, but will have to keep paying (hence me needing a jobby job) through the end of the lease if it doesn’t get rented. We have the upstairs space until July of 2021 but can use that as an office as that rent is easier to swallow. Though if the downstairs person wants both spaces, totally open to that.
- Would you have done anything differently? As a whole no, because in the end I had perfected each process and decor and space and everything. In the beginning, YES! I would have had an accountant from day one, I would have made a business plan. I should have scouted out locations more and not fallen in love with our charming little hamlet.
- Will you still be designing wedding invitations? Yes! Any of my current brides will have uninterrupted service and we are still taking new couples. The plan for the time being is after closing the shop to continue on the design side of the business in the upstairs space, paired with something else to keep me busy and the bank away.
- Does that mean I can still order custom baby shower invitations and personalized stationery? Yes and No. The plan for now is that you can make an appointment to come and order invitations. We will no longer be doing personalized items like notepads. And so while all of the goods in the shop are now 50% off if you want to do any custom orders they will remain at their regular prices.
- What about Akron Candle Company? That company has been and remains Blair’s baby. Now I will probably be even more involved. You can still order from akroncandlecompany.com. I will still be managing the wholesale distribution as well, so no interruptions in service
- Why now? Plain and simple we are out of money. We have poured everything we have and more into this shop and while we’ve seen growth, as I said it’s just not enough to make it through the first months of the year and then we inevitably max out a card to purchase for Christmas, and when your November is down a third of what it has consistently been, it’s time. And if I’m being really honest, it should have happened years ago, but I always felt like there was more to do, more to try, and I nearly worked myself to death trying.
- What will I miss the most? I have to admit this one is a tie. Obviously I’m going to miss all of you, you are now all considered family to me, customers, fellow shopkeepers, makers and more, reread above if you don’t believe me; but the second part of it that chokes me up every time I try to spit it out is the design. That really encompasses a lot, I know. Not only is in the creation of hopefully beautiful invitations to celebrate life’s greatest moments but also in the sad moments like thank you cards following funerals and the hugs that go with them; but too, it’s the seemingly every day objects that we scour the world for (albeit mostly while I’m in NYC). Finding these special little notebooks and pens is a rush I’m not sure will ever be topped.
I’ve often described my life as a roller coaster, there’s not a lot of middle ground. My mom swears this year of being mainly at the bottom is slowly creeping up…hope is all I have now. Hope that you will turnout one last time so that I don’t have to go to an attorney, hope that my staff finds happy places to land, hope that I haven’t pushed people away too much in my business consumption, hope that I will figure out what the hell to do with my life, hope that we can pay all of our bills at home and hope that my little shop won’t be forgotten.
Thank you, one and all.
All of my love,
**Final Discount, no other discounts or promotions apply – no returns/exchanges. Only applies to merchandise in the shop, not custom/personalized orders. All sales FINAL.