Thursday, July 29, 2010

we're in...

...remember last week when we were locked out of our new store. i called a locksmith i found in the yellowpages who guaranteed to have you in with an hour, instead of our regular trusted company we had used in the past. big mistake. lesson learned.

today jim arrived from bass security systems. he got right to work.

i had a complete feeling of confidence the minute he introduced himself and offered to shake my hand.

within minutes he was in, no further damage to the door. and believe it or not, he found a violation the fire captain missed on his first call. to get out of our store you needed a key. now we have a twist lever. see, everything happens for good reason. thanks jim. whew, one more thing to check off my to do list.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

our first display

after months and months of planning, we put up our first display. it is beginning to feel...real. so real. yet there are daylight hours that i still feel as though i'm dreaming.

it's lumiere de noel by kaari meng of french general for moda. i have a sample for the wall, if only i could find it. i'm sure it will surface once we unpack everything. i must admit, 18th century is not typically my style, but there is something about every french general collection that appeals to me. i believe it is the soft faded red that holds my intrigue. this is just the first of french general that will eventually be in our shop.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

the shelving

while we have been completing the remodel and preparation work in cleveland, my father has been very busy working at his home in canton, about one hour south of us. he has been cutting, prepping and painting the wood to make our shelves.

he has been waiting for our call to say it's time. the plan was to load them up on friday. then the weather forecast predicted temperatures in the high 90's, so we decided to make the trip late thursday evening after the sun went down. my oldest son drove one car, and i followed in the van.

it took both of our vehicles and a return trip with one car on friday evening, to get all the wood to cleveland. as i drove through a torrential downpour and 60 mile an hour winds last night, i was thankful to have the extra weight in the car.

this morning we loaded the bases into the store. i originally gave my measurements based on the floor plan i sketched on grid paper.

the real test is seeing them in the actual space. so far so good.

when i had my first walk through of the store in the spring, there were wedding dresses covering each wall. it was somewhat difficult to get a true picture of the space. yet i immediately knew i did not want shelves permanently fixed to the walls. i wanted to be able to move displays around.

that's when i enlisted the help of my father. by trade, he is not a carpenter. he spent his entire career in the grocery business. but he loves to build things. and he has a keen mental aptitude for figuring things out like measurements. he was just the man for the job.

so i ordered up (2) 3 rows x 48", (2) 3 rows x 36", (2) 2 rows x 36" and (1) 2 rows x 48" they all seem to fit in the designated spots just perfectly.

now that the wood is in cleveland, the final steps will take place on site. there is still lots of sanding, assembly and painting to do. i had originally thought we might do it out in the parking lot, yet with the heat we realized it might be best to move the process into the basement. fortunately, my husband leases the basement space for record storage. just last week the oldest son cleaned out 195 bankers boxes for shredding, so there is plenty of space to work.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

thanks stanley

we are getting down to the final details.

the stanley steemer truck was here today. we've known the owner of the cleveland franchise for years. he was our sons cub scout leader. terry is just an extra fun guy. first person i know to throw twinkies in a deep fryer. in fact, he threw everything in the deep fryer. made for some memorable camping trips. back to the task on hand. he always has the best crews working for him. very polite, hard working guys.

there really is nothing like professionally cleaned carpet. makes me feel so much better knowing there will be fabulous fabric sitting on this floor.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

locked out

did you read yesterday's post? i knew better than to officially declare where we were schedule wise. sure enough. i stayed at the store late in the evening to prepare for the carpet cleaning. when i went to lock the door, i felt something odd. like a part falling. then the key would not turn. so i just left it there overnight. the store door is inside a foyer door, so no one could get to it.

bright and early i call a locksmith. guaranteed to get you in when you have been locked out, the ad says. he arrives within the hour and works on the key for a few minutes. and then guess what happened next...

need a clearer view...yep the key broke off. now what? not to worry.

there is a back door to our store space. the only problem...i don't have a key. the landlord never used it and so she could not find a key to give us. so mr. locksmith gets out his break in, i mean tool kit. he has all kinds of neat little contraptions. things i've only seen in james bond movies. only none of them work. finally he says, this is a good lock. if only i were on the other side of it, that would make me feel better. so.....

he simply drilled a hole into the door lock...we're in...that will be $110.00 please. next time, i'll just drill it out myself. well, hopefully there won't be a next time.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

dhaea fo chsluede

i don't dare say it, for fear of jinxing our luck, yet we are a_ _ _d of s _ h _d _ _e and slightly under budget.

here is a quick walk through.

the entry way. three small steps up with a charming railing. unfortunately, this prevents us from being completely barrier free. however the front vestibule is wheelchair accessible and we will be happy to bring fabric out to the customer for viewing.

the front room with a few recent moda deliveries.

looking back from the front.

a closer view of our new checkout/cutting counter. behind it is the area to be sarah's sewcial lounge.

the training/stitching room.

the clearance corner.

the backside of the cutting counter.

from the back looking forward.

three steps from the original staircase in the house.

Monday, July 19, 2010

a teeny tiny kitchen

i am just so tickled that we have this sweet kitchen. fortunately we have another eating area for employees to utilize, so our store kitchen is really going to be for display purposes only. so for that reason, it needed a little updating.

here is the before shot.

and here it is all finished. i think it is fast becoming my favorite room of the store. i just have to share it's teeny tiny features...

teeny tiny track lights...

a teeny tiny refrigerator...

a teeny tiny sink...and of course there is the teeny, tiny fan. you can click here if you missed reading about her. now i'm off to find some teeny tiny bowls, teeny tiny mason jars and maybe even a teeny tiny muffin tin to display our notions.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

black and blue

in the hot heat of the afternoon sun, our dear landlord was out working in the parking lot to make it beautiful too for our grand opening.

first he painted the blue and then he spread the black...

and finished off the back with bright new yellow lines. next sunday he will return to complete the front. thank you libby!!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

let there be light...

have you ever fallen in love with a light fixture? i can't say i have either. until now. as i was walking the aisles at lowe's one afternoon, i spotted this little gem. and i was smitten.

i did not have a plan to install a ceiling fan in the kitchen. yet this adorable little fixture was just calling out to me. so when the electrician was completing the fire code violations, i asked him if the brackets could hold a fan. he took the old light down and said the electrical box and supports were actually better than most new homes today. he came this morning to install it.

this photo will give you a better perspective. it is the cutest little thing. i'm not the only one who thinks so. the electrician and i stood admiring it for a good five minutes. we were oohing and ahhing as though it were a newborn baby girl with big blue eyes and dark ringlets of curls.

i was in the area this evening, so i stopped in to take one more glance. to see how she glowed in the dark...

and then i gave her little blades a spin. they are all of about eight inches long. the entire fan is only 30" wide. you will have to come into the shop to see for yourself. i'm telling you, she is just that adorable.

my other lucky find was this hallway light. i searched several places before finding this sweet gem at home depot. it just looked like a quilt store to me.

nice intricate flowers and vines etched into the glass. i bought one. then i decided i needed more. it seems others like them too. i now know where every home depot in cuyahoga county is located. well worth the travels though. they just look like they belong here.
it's a wrap for the lighting installs. i'm so very thankful to have this great crew willing to work on weekends to help me meet my deadline. thanks paul, you're a shining star.

Friday, July 16, 2010

fire code violations

it just so happened that captain carroll from the lyndhurst fire department stopped by our building on june 29th. he comes around every year or so. nice guy. but then you already know i have this thing for firemen. anywho, the first problem is easy to fix.

see that hang tag. this fire extinguisher was last inspected in 2008...

despite the fact the arrow is pointing to full, it needs to be examined by a certified inspector every two years.

the next few issues are a bit more labor intensive. they need to be done by a licensed electrician. i'm so glad that captain carroll arrived the week before the work crew did. i'm thinking maybe my grandfather, the fire chief up in heaven, had something to do with the perfect timing.
i forgot to take pictures of this before, but there were many large exposed wires just hanging out of the wall. they were hiding behind the wedding dresses before, so it did not get caught on previous inspections. the thought of that is somewhat frightening. satins and tulle melt quickly. i'm just thankful nothing ever happened. i sure would not want my fabric around open hot wires. now that the junction box is on, it can be painted to match the walls.
the second violation was near the back stairwell. there must be a lighted exit sign in case of power failure. it looks good during the day...

...but the real test is in the dark. so i went over late last night. sure enough, beautiful glowing amber. we are all ready for our re-inspection. not to mention, much safer.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

celebrate each and every day...

i received an email today that i would very much like to respond to. it made me realize that we are encountering a whole new set of friends with our fabric store that do not know the medical history of our sarah. the writer read my post about the paramedic who is helping to paint and my soft heart for the men in blue. then she went over to sarah's blog where sarah talked about the paramedics working on her in the middle of the street after she stopped breathing in my car.

the writer was so touched and wondered if this was an ongoing medical issue for sarah and what will i do if she were to stop breathing and the ambulance not arrive in time. specifically with the store. what would i do after we put all this time into it.

excellent question and i do so appreciate the concern for our situation. in quick summary, sarah had open heart surgery when she was six months old. this is not uncommon for babies born with down syndrome. unlike most surgeries though, she had many complications and stayed in the hospital for a few months. she came home once and her airway collapsed. my heavenly father gave me the strength to make sure that sarah did survive that ordeal. for several years after, she continued to have significant health issues and there were times that the doctors did not believe her little body would recover.

from this we learned to take one day at a time. to appreciate each amazing hour. to record as many memories as possible. we have accepted our place in a higher plan. with our hard work, we believe we will be guided and directed where we are meant to be. i do not know what tomorrow holds, so today i celebrate the opportunities before me with this beautiful daughter that i have been given the privilege to share my life.

it will always be our quilt store and i know she will always be standing beside me. my son asked me tonight if i like the new paint color. he hoped so because he thinks i may have this store for twenty years. that would make me seventy and sarah forty one. i like that plan. yet i know there may be another plan. one that i don't yet see. one that is being meticulously laid out, often through his mysterious ways. one thing i know for sure. i will be given the strength i need to continue the journey that was meant for me.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

the carpenter has arrived

related to the painter, is an excellent carpenter. he has done work for us before. always accurate, quite precise in-fact. i suggested today he would make a good quilter.

i was not quite sure where to put the checkout counter. initially, i wasn't even sure i was going to have one. then once i walked into the space after all the wedding dresses had been removed, i had a vision.

i love this picture. saw horses amongst the daisies. has a country feel about it. yet if you look closely, the bus stop on a major four lane road is in the background. that's the exact feeling i wish to convey in this store. where suburban meets urban.

i decided to make a check out and cutting table in one. right next to the "sew"cial lounge. we're going to build in a 10" overhang. that way the counter can double as a serving bar. i've found just the perfect stools we'll use.

on goes the plywood backing to make a stable surface for the beadboard to be applied. i think that will be a great touch for the ambiance we need.

the level is never far. part of his precision, i suppose. he delights in showing his work, just not his face:)