It was April 9, 2016, when we stumbled across Two Bears and a Monkey's Junk Resale Shop beside our landlord's office. Luckily our property manager, Kellie, texted us to come by and see all of their awesome things. I stopped by that afternoon and stayed for hours chatting and looking through all of their awesome finds. The next day Gabe joined me, and we went back and looked around some more and decided on what we wanted. Little did we know, we'd walk out of there with our very own store (not literally). Dowanna took us back to the warehouse to show us these awesome shutters in this spooky dark room they were using for storage. We joked about renting it from them, but never thought it would be possible for us so early on. Dowanna was determined to get us in there (we were too), but had to talk to her husband first, since he actually owned the building.
A week later we get a call from Mike telling us he talked to Dowanna and wanted to know if we were actually serious about taking this on. We went back and forth and finally decided -- YES!
Fast forward to May - we get the keys and an empty room. Our minds were racing for weeks as to what we would do in the space. We definitely had to come up with cost-effective alternatives, but it really challenged us to make the best out of what we could handle at the time. Renovations started in June and went on for weeks.
After lots of sweaty days and long nights , we were able to get our "fixer upper" looking slightly used! None of this would have been possible without the help of Christine & Jerry Rudd from Farmhouse Function. They took on the built-in cabinets, concrete counters, and shiplap wall while we worked on the floors, painted (which seemed to take FOREVER), and stocked up on inventory. It was quite the month, but we managed to make it out alive.
We also couldn't have done it without the help of our generous friends and family. We did a t-shirt drive to help raise money for the renovations, and it was such a humbling experience. Our friend Tammye from Sophisticated Whimsy met us the night before of the VIP Sneak Peek Opening, and we worked through the night. The next day, our parents and our friend Lou joined us to finish getting the floor set, and we somehow managed to have everything in place when the doors opened at 6pm! It was only fitting that Dowanna, the person who insisted we rent the space, was there for the VIP Sneak Peak Opening with a platter of cupcakes! Our VIP Showing went off with great feedback, and we opened the doors for the public the following evening!
It has been about four months since we've opened the doors and it has been such an incredible experience. We've learned so much and still have tons to learn. It's just the two of us (with the help of Tammye who watches the store when we can't) running things at the moment, so things can get pretty hectic. However, it has really strengthened our relationship and taught us that hard work really does pay off.
Gabe & Robby