23 December 2008

End of the Year Postcard

Where has December gone?

Here is a sampling of the communiqué I recently sent out to our customer e-mail list:

As the days tick down 'til our Holiday and New Year's celebrations, we at THE BLISSFUL want to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of our customers who have supported this dream for the past three years. 2008 has been a landmark year for this shop that began as Proprietor Abby Kerr's dream of a luxe, eclectic, slightly funky venue overflowing with quality, Euro-styled goods. What a year it's been. In February, THE BLISSFUL launched online commerce at its website, garnering an ever-growing base of shoppers from around the country and around the world. We now ship regularly to all fifty states and beyond. In May, we were honored for retailing excellence in being named one of 50 Retail Stars nationwide by Home Accents Today, the premier trade publication for the retail industry. Successively, Abby was invited to join HAT's Retail Advisory Board, a select group of eight independent retailers from throughout the nation who advise the magazine's editors on timely industry issues. Recently, Abby was asked to be a contributing columnist to Home Accents Today. The columns to which she'll contribute are new features that will debut in the magazine in 2009. In August, we were graced with our first national magazine press in the pages of Romantic Homes. The six-page full-color spread captured the essence of THE BLISSFUL through evocative photography and gave RH readers around the world a peek into Abby's background and her thoughts on the romance of shopkeeping and entrepreneurship. We also scored a mention on the widely read lifestyle portal Apartment Therapy: The Kitchn. Locally, we enjoyed press in About magazine throughout the year. Abby's blogs continue to be read by friends, fans, customers, and shop owners from all over. And at the brick-and-mortar store, 2008 was the year we grew our staff to include Zoey, Jamie, and Lindsay, a talented team of women who connect with the vision of the shop and contribute their warmth and creativity to building our brand and serving our customers. We look forward to 2009 with great optimism and a matchless enthusiasm for what we do. We'll start our year with a trip to Market in Atlanta, searching out fresh vendors to add to our mix and meeting with colleagues to share our vision and gather inspiration. As we continue to evolve our merchandise mix, grow our incomparably talented staff, and expand our Online Boutique, our goal is always to enthrall our customers with a fantastical, transportive shopping experience that is still relatable and approachable. We thank you for being a part of our vision. We create and continually recreate the shop with you in mind.

As someone reading this blog, I want to thank you, too, for being a part of this vision. What an unusually interesting life this is, being the proprietor of a shop. Without customers, friends, and blog fans, this vision wouldn't have come to life in the first place.

Merry Christmas, one and all. And warmest wishes for all good things in the New Year.

Please note that the shop will close early at 3 PM on Christmas Eve. We'll reopen the day after Christmas {Friday morning} at 10 AM.