29 years ago I opened my antique business in my hometown of Pawhuska Oklahoma. Every since I was a little girl I have loved decorating and antiques. I would sneak away in college and go antique shopping! My mother use to drag me to antique stores as a young child and it suddenly just became a part of my life. I started with a few antique booths then opened a retail shop in my small hometown of Pawhuska Oklahoma. My mother owned a gift shop in Pawhuska for years. I did all of her buying at market, but antiques were always in my heart. I would purchase antiques and use the antiques for all of her displays.
I then opened my own shop down the street from my Mothers shop. My dad worked on the same street as a banker, so all 3 of us would meet for lunch many days of the week. I served as the President of the Chamber of Commerce, served as Vice President of the Heeko Club, Vice President of the Community Foundation, Vice President of the Senior Citizens and served on the HELP Workshop Board. I also served as president of the Osage County Kappa Alpha Theta Alumni group. I was nominated as Woman of the Year in 2000, awarded the Best of the Best for the Governors Conference for Women in Business and attended those ceremonies in Oklahoma City...never dreaming I would someday be living there! Owning a business in a small community enabled me to remember my roots, my foundation and treat everyone that entered my store with care.
One day I met a ginger taking out my trash and lo and behold, I got re-married and moved to Oklahoma City. Not knowing one soul in Oklahoma City I was determined to move my store to there anyway. I had faith that it would succeed if I ran it the same way I had been running it in my small community . After having my retail shop in OKC for 10 years, (that time flew by) I decided to find a small warehouse and hold sales to the public, sell to other antique stores and explore doing more design work. I also did this in order to travel to the UK more frequently.
Today my business has grown and I am providing antique dealers with inventory all across the United States.
I travel to England every 3 months so I have the best of both worlds being across the pond finding treasures for clients (and for myself) and being able to still be at home in Oklahoma. I keep my locals in the loop by having public warehouse sales every so often to give them bargains on my finds.
I don't sell anything I wouldn't have in my own home and many of my customers have become my dear friends. . Never forget your roots...its what keeps you grounded. I"m forever grateful for being raised in a small town and starting my career in my small community.
My parents are gone, but each day I open up the door to my office I hear my father saying to me on the day I opened my business "be kind to everyone and treat everyone with care and respect". That is how to run a successful business.