Monday, 8 February 2016

I Only Cried One Day: My Relocation Journey & New Store Opening

Many of you are familiar with my "ReChic" journey, and how many twists and turns this  business has thrown me since starting in 2013; I am so thankful that you did not turn your backs when I have had to make multiple adjustments and changes along the way, and that you have encouraged me to do what it is that I need to do, to make things work. 

For those of you that are more recent followers (welcome!), let me give you a (somewhat) quick and dirty rundown of the progression - I started ReChic in my basement in Welland, Ontario in fall of 2013. After going through a debilitating depression, painting and decorating our new home was an excellent form of therapy for me (and for someone with a degree in Recreation Therapy, I thought it important to practice what I had preached!). 

I had fairly quickly outgrew my basement, and was getting more and more requests for custom orders (wow!); in spring of 2014 I had rented out a space in an old factory in Welland, and used that rough space as my workshop for a few months, before opening my first official location on Niagara Street, in July 2014. 
Well, things grew again, and with the addition of a business partner, we thought we would make the leap to a larger store in the area, and moved in December 2014 to a 1400 square foot store space on Broadway Ave in Welland. 

Fast forward about a year, and many furniture pieces and custom orders later, and ReChic was doing very well! I felt so blessed! 

In the summer of 2015, my husband started to get really close to getting offered a new job, and the possibility of relocation started becoming a reality. I knew this job would be a game-changer for him, and that I would follow him wherever we needed to go (could be anywhere in Ontario, we wouldn't find out until he received an offer). 

Well, he indeed was offered the job (which I knew he would be, he's a smart guy ;)), and in August he started working and commuting to Cambridge, which was 1.5 hours from our home in Welland. We knew after the first week that this would not be a viable solution for the long term, and that we were going to have to sell. 

In and about the same time, there were some difficulties between my current partner and I, and literally overnight ReChic went back to 1, from 2. 

Although we had had a good run, this was a big blessing in disguise, as it allowed me to make the decisions I needed to make for my family, and to dive head first into our relocation without guilt or worry for her.

So yes, although there wasn't much overt discussion on the topic, ReChic has been back to little old me for the past 6 months, and I'm pretty darn proud that many of you haven't even noticed the change in work load or postings that have been produced :) 
I have been so very fortunate to have had some great helpers come in and assist when the previous partnership had dissolved so suddenly, and I really couldn't have done it without you (you know who you are!). 

SO, with my husband starting a new job, and me now back to fully manning the ReChic ship, things were a little stressful to say the least! Heck, why don't we add selling our house and moving to that list?! 

So we did!

A few months of selling, looking, and finally buying, we moved to Shakespeare, Ontario on November 20th, 2015. 
I had closed out my lease on the previous store, and moved having NO idea what was going to become of ReChic, but just holding on to the hope that my followers wouldn't up and leave me before I had the chance to re-gain my footing in this new and strange location.

About a week after our move, sitting in my new home, alone, with my husband at work and my daughter at her new school....and me without anything viable for work space, I finally felt the weight of the stress pour down on me and I could do nothing but cry. 

So cry I did, for about an hour. 
I cried out of fear for the future, out of loneliness from moving 2 hours away from the only region I've ever called home, and out of self-pity. 

I cried because I was scared that maybe this would be the thing that would invite the depression back in. 

I decided I would only give myself ONE day to feel sorry for myself. 
Then I would move on and move forward. 

Having got the good cry out of my system, I got back out there and re-focused on finding a new location to work, one that would be a positive step in the right direction. 
But just to throw another wrench in the plan, I had sold everything off before I moved, and I was trying to start up a new store on a ZERO budget. And I mean zero. 
We had moved and I used all my income to fund what we needed for that, not to mention Christmas was a month after! So I was truly facing an uphill battle. 

I was thankfully able to do enough work from home that I was able to store away a bit of money, and found the cutest little shoppe in New Dundee, Ontario, about 20 minutes from my new home. 
And the best part? I was within my goal for my monthly rent budget! Woohoo!!

I got the keys on January 1st and spent the first 2 weeks doing a lot of sitting in the space and trying to figure out how on earth I could fill it, with zero money to do so. I needed to generate my own income, to purchase supplies, but how do you do that with nothing to start off with? 
Well, I decided that taking a large piece I already owned (from my own home) would be a good start and would free up some cash flow in order to get going, so that's what I did!

And a month later, on February 6th, I officially opened ReChic Studio & Design at 1148 Queen Street, in New Dundee. 

I have managed to gather a wonderful group of artisans that are vendors in the store, and this has helped me create the look I wanted, without having to make absolutely everything myself (I'm only one woman, after all!), and this has been such a godsend. 

So many times over the last few years, I've stopped to think "how on earth have I made it here?!?", and this is one of those times. I quite honestly have zero clue how I have made it through an increased workload, selling a house, buying a new one 2 hours away, and opening a new store with a few boxes of paint supplies... and a prayer! 
All I can say is that I am grateful. 

One of the biggest reasons I am here today, is because of all of you. My followers and online "family" have encouraged me beyond what I could have mustered from within myself. You have lifted me up on the days that I thought this weight would be too much to bear, and for that I thank you. Thank you for following along, no matter what crazy things happen in my life. 

Here's to hoping that ReChic has a long run in New Dundee and that no big surprises lay on the horizon (I need a break!) :) Thank you to everyone who joined me to celebrate the opening, and I look forward to welcoming many more of you into the store as the weeks and months go by.

For those wishing to come say "hi", my hours for shopping are as follows:

Wednesday 10 am to 6 pm
Thursday 10 am to 4 pm
Friday 10 am to 4 pm
Saturday 10 am to 2 pm
Tuesday by appt

Thanks again!!