Saturday, December 6, 2008

In spite of all my good intentions, another month has passed since I've taken time to sit down and write. Now the holidays are almost here, Christmas music is playing on the radio every day, and the end of the year will arrive before I even get finished with Christmas. I wish everyone a wonderful holiday. Come in and visit us, maybe take the time to have some coffee, and look at all the giftware we have.
Now .... to bring you up to date with the latest happenings at the Studio: We've had meetings with the heads of the building, zoning, and fire departments of Dade County, as well as our County Commissioner. The first step in resolving the problems of our community of stores and studios is to get the zoning changed to allow retail sales. Many of the current stores will be forced to close, since they are not qualified as "light industrial". We're not in violation, since we fabricate all the artwork here. Our biggest problem is the building & fire codes. Our lofts (some were built over 32 years ago, others through the ensuing years) are entirely wood. They are attached to the walls with supporting pillars. However, the walls are hollow cinder block, and the floor is only a slab, there is no foundation underneath. To remedy this, the owner of the buildings wants to demolish all existing lofts, as well as all electrical, telephone, and air conditioning. If that happens, we will definitely need to move to another location. If they leave us the A/C, electrical, and telephone wiring - we can rearrange things on the main floor, and make do with less floor space. Needless to say, I'm not getting much sleep these days - I keep having strange dreams where I'm travelling to distant places, or moving, or packing boxes!
We've put out all the Holiday decorations and gifts (on sale), and have even put all the finished panels on sale. Next year, we're going to start putting other things on sale - something different every month. If we can reduce the amount of inventory, it will make moving (or rearranging) easier. Sign up for the newsletter, or stay tuned to this blog to get updates. There will be some unadvertised sales only for newsletter subscribers, and I'll be trying to sell some of the used equipment are very good prices too.
I've been blessed with many wonderful customers over the years. Some of them, when hearing about our situation, have offered to help with the "move". So, as a reward, I've decided not to just accept the generous offers, but to give store credits in exchange for hours worked. If you're interested in volunteering, just let me know. I have no definite idea when all this will happen, but I'm hoping for this coming summer when business is slower.
Best wishes to all for a loving and happy holiday season, and only success in the New Year.