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Newsletter #2

Staff Focus - Olivia

Harvery Norman Balloons

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Welcome Aboard! Newsletter #1

  NEWSLETTER #1 - 8TH JUNE 2020

Ive had some false starts in creating this first news letter, but Im hoping that all the wrinkles are now ironed out and we should be ok to roll!!!

Kathryn Blinman quoted on facebook:  "FAIL - First Attempt in Learning!"  I dont know about first, but lets go with that for the point of this exercise.

The pressure is on now to come up with something interesting!

 

 

A BIG THANK YOU.

First and foremost, I wanted to use this first newsletter to thank our many wonderful customers who have supported us through first the Drought and then Covid 19. You have no idea how grateful we are, truly.  Surviving the drought was the hardest thing we have ever had to do and I mean that with no disrespect to the many farming families who heartbreakingly lost everything!

I think I will look back at Covid 19 and will be thankful that we went through the drought.  We were already at minimal operation level, as Staff left we didnt replace them, we were sensible with what stock we were buying and with the help of the Councils Business Parnter Program, we had built an ecommerce website that was in full operation and had reduced our overheads as much as possible.  When the Government announced that Australia would now to going into lock down, all we really had to concern ourself with was our Staff.  Jobkeeper was announced, so the staff were secure in their positions, so it was business as usual.

We were never told to close our doors, so we continued to operate through the lockdown.

The florist side of the business just flourished.  How prillidged were we that we got to be the sharer of your love with your families.  As we werent allowed to visit each other, we were giving floral gifts and hampers instead. That kept Olivia, Kate & I very very busy!! As Josh who looks after the flooring wasnt going into homes to do measures, quotes and laying, he and Jim were helping out with our floral deliveries.

Our flowers kept the furniture shop open for a few weeks there.  Mothers Day was over the top!  Olivia, Kate & I were working well into the night in the lead up preparing floral gifts.

This is a photo of our back storage area. I think these were the deliveries scheduled for FRIDAY alone!!  Saturday & Sunday were even bigger!

 

-  Some Mothers Day Statistics:

  • We took 77 online orders. Last year we took 7.
  • We did over 200 Mothers Day Deliveries in town over Friday, Saturday & Sunday. 
  • We ran out of flowers three times BEFORE Mothers Day!!!

So when we say "Get your orders in early",  its totally not a sales pitch! It means get your orders in because we may run out of flowers!  Thank goodness I have an amazing supplier, David who looks after me. I rang him on Friday asking what do you have left? He said I really dont know yet until I get everyones orders out. I said "when you know can you please send me everything you have left!" Which he did! Im so grateful. Without a great supportive wholesaler, than I cant supply my customers.

Here are some of our creations:

 

 

Order Flowers On Line

Ordering flowers online is easy! There are alot of choices available, but if there isnt the right thing, just message me and I can add it for you.  Customers can testify to this, I have added something specially for them to add to their cart. Pay with Credit Card, Paypal, Zippay or Afterpay. All payments except Paypal are proceessed instore, your credit card notification will come through when we process it and I will ring you with Zippay & Afterpay to process on your App as an instore purchase.

 

ISOLATION INSANITY CHALLENGE

This was a bit of fun we had instore during March, April & May.  It was amazing to deliver a balloon to as many children as I could during this time.  Parents were asked to share a funny story about what their kids got up to during isolation and then I surprised them with a special balloon gift delivery.

NBN were so excited when they read about it on the Namoi Valley indepedent Facebook Page that they contacted me for an interview and to tag along on a delivery.  Rachel from Winanga-li contacted me and shared some funny stories about the kids and what they have been doing at Winanga-li, so we thought what a great delivery to join us come on.

I have attached a link to the story below:

NBN News Video

This was such great fun for everyone! It really does give us so much pleasure to share the fun with balloons.

 

As a side note, and I will share this is another Newsletter, about the evironmentally friendly aspect of balloons and the way we respect the environment.

Below is a link to the Isolation Insanity Stores

Isolation Insanity Stories

APPRENTICE OF THE YEAR AWARDS

Another exciting thing thats happened the last month or so is that both our Apprentice & Trainee were nominated for the Apprentice of the Year Awards.  This is done at a Regional Level and then Regional Winners go through to State with a big affair in Sydney in November.

 

Josh Dolbel - Flooring Specialist

Joshua Dolbel is who is Flooring Specialist and completed his Flooring Technology Degree earlier this year.  This was a four year course that Josh completed in 2 1/2 years.  The reason why Joshua was nomiated is becasuse he has developed techniques with measuring for jobs that cut the wastage of flooring down by a huge amout saving customers money.  Alot of the time Flooring is over-ordered and the customer pays for this wastage.  Joshua is extremely skillfull when it comes to measuring & planning the layout.  Josh is also very skilled with laying different types of flooring and a bit of a perfectionist. 

This is something that sets us appart from our competitors.  Our Flooring Specialist is the same person that will consult with the customer about the best flooring options for your needs, he will measure your room, work out the best way to lay your flooring saving you money with minimal wastage. Then Josh actually lays the floor himself with assistance from his "apprentice" Stu.  There is a high degree of continuity because the person consulting you on the best flooring solutions for your needs is also the person that inspects your floor and completes your flooring. Josh consults with the Reps on the lastest technology for flooring solutions, so what he brings to the customers is the lastest on the market, with the most upto date skills to get the job done right.

You can ring Josh to talk to him about a Flooring Solution to best suit your needs on 67421676

 

Kate Bishop - Retail Certificate III

Kate is pretty special for someone so young.  She came to us for Work Experience in 2017 and so impressed us with her positive attitude and great smile that we instantly offered her a school based traineeship.  She started working for us on Saturdays straight away and as soon as the paper work was signed in November she started her School Based Traineeship.  A School Based traineeship is done in the place of an elective during Year 11 & 12. The students attend one day of TAFE and have to complete 100 hours of work experience.  Kate finished both her TAFE work and her hours way ahead of time leaving time to concentrate on her Higher School Certificate.

Kate impressed her teacher so much, that it was her Teacher that nominated her for Trainee of the Year.  After her teacher had a conversation with us about some of the amazing things Kate has done on the job, she had plenty of stories to add to Kates nomination.  

A funny story with Kate:  So one Saturday morning we had a couple of young gentleman come into the store looking for something to house their clothes.  These guys had had a big night the night before, they still had their wobbly boots on.  Kate started talking to them trying to determine what would best suit their needs.  They said that this storage unit would be in the hall way/lounge room as there was no room in the bedroom.  Kate being a problem solver showed them the big gorgeous bar we had.  A Huge unit with stained glass at the front, a counter and heaps of cupboard and draw space at the back for all your glasses and drinks etc.  But Kate pointed out, they could use that to store their clothes and it wouldnt look out of placed in the loungeroom.  Well, they were sold on that idea, so rather than a chest of draws, they loaded up their beautiful stained glass bar into the trailer and off they went happy as larry!

Problem Solving and finding solutions for our customers is what Retail service is all about and Kate nailed it!!  

Kate will be returning to us fulltime when she finishes Year 12 to complete her Certificate IV in Floristy.  We cant wait for her to be with Olivia and I everyday!

 

 

 

Both Josh & Kate have been through the first round of interviews and were successful and both have proceeded through to Finals. They have been through a second round of interviews and the announcement of who will make the trip to Sydney from this region will be notified sometime this month.  Josh had 9 others in his category and Kate had 11.  Both are so deserving of this great recognition and are valued employees with us.  We think they are champions! We dont need a piece of paper or trophy!!!  But we wish them both all the best!

 

Furniture:

Furniture is a scarse commodity at the moment!!  With the docks being closed down for so long out of China, imports are getting hard to get hold of! Though we have amazing local designers and manufacturers which we are taking advantage off at every opportunity!  We have always promoted Australia Made Furniture, simply because of the amazing quality, service and warranty! Also now though is availability!  We can have a custom designed and made lounge to suit your needs perfectly in around 6 weeks at the moment! Imports are taking 4 times longer than that! So if you are thinking lounges, talk to us about getting custom made perfection for your home!!!

 

 

The above lounge is an Australian Made lounge which can be customised to suit your requrements. The colour selection and choice of fabrics is huge, plus you can configure this lounge as a corner, 3 Seater + 2 Seater, Ottoman, Single Chair, add a fold out bed. Whatever suites your needs!! Perfect!

As a special Welcome to my newsletter, I have added a 10% off discount voucher which can be used online or instore. 

Simply Quote WELCOME1 in the cart online,

or mention Welcome1 instore to get 10% off storewide. This promotion will run for 2 weeks only. 

 Visit the Website

Check Out Furniture One - Gunnedah

 

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Harper Button Back Chair - The Perfect Occasional Chair

ROOM STYLING

AUSTRALIAN MADE

DESIGN YOUR PERFECT CHAIR

  

What is your idea of bliss?

I love to read.  Reading has always been my go to “happy place”.  When I was young I used to read all the time and it would transport me away to another world where life was perfect.  All the hangups I had as an adolescent girl didn't exist.  I had the perfect body, the perfect boyfriend and life in my imagination was just so much better. 

Now I'm an adult and although I do firmly live in reality, I do still choose to take a step through my imagination where I am transported to the Scotish Highlands and spending time with a certain Redheaded Highlander, or enjoying the life stories of other people where we can appreciate how good we do actually have life.

There are two places I love to read.  One is in my bed! I have the most beautiful mattress to laze in (bought from the best mattress store ever of course!!)  and I also love to read in a sunny spot in my lounge room in a comfy chair.  This is what I will be talking about today!! That comfy chair!

The perfect Comfy Occasional Chair:

As far as comfy occasional chairs go there are two types of chairs.  Cute & Comfy, and it's a lucky day when you come across a chair that has both of these features!

We have found the PERFECT CHAIR.  It's both CUTE & COMFY and you can tailor it perfectly to suit your tastes and room decor.

 

HARPER BUTTONBACK CHAIR:

 

 Australian Made Comfort & Style

This Chair Features:

  • High Back

  • Side Arms

  • Solid Construction

  • Excellent Warranty

  • Custom Fabric Choice

  • Australian Dunlop Foam Seating

  • Styling Buttonback Design

  • French Piping

I had this chair made in the gorgeous green plush fabric and matching print from Profile Fabrics, but you can have it made in any colour that suits your style, taste & decor.  The choice really is endless. The selection below are some colour choices for the gorgeous “Velvet touch” type of fabrics.

 

PROFILE FABRIC SELECTION SAMPLE:

 

 

WARWICK FABRICS SELECTION SAMPLE:

 

You can choose to have it made in a single colour, or really express your unique style in a complementary fabric choice with a plain & pattern.

 

This is another Tub Chair for an incredible Australian Manufacturer we have made in the Warwick Flowerbomb Scarlet. We decided to go with an all over print in this style of chair as its smaller and wore the print really well. 

  

 

Making your colour selection:

There is no right or wrong when it comes to making a colour selection. You can carefully analyse your room decor and choose something to complement your current decor, or you can jump right out of the box and decide on an outrageous choice that you can make work through the use of cushions, throws and floor rugs.

I think if your room is in cool tones, it would be wise to stick with cool colours and visa versa with warm colours. 

My lounge room at home is currently (I plan to do a complete re style soon!): Warm Tones

Floors - Dark Wood Panel Vinyl Walls - CreamCurtains - Sheer Lace

Lounge - Burgundy LeatherFurniture - Dark Brown Wood.

Floor Mat - Burgundy, Forest Green & Latte tones

So the Flowerbomb Scarlet would suit my styling beautifully.  But I could also go for a plain Latte or Forest Green depending on whether I wanted to go with light or dark.

If your room was Cool Tones such as grey floors, white walls, grey lounge, light wood furniture then you could go with any cool tone colour and add splashes of that colour throughout the rest of your room with cushions & throws.

 

BUY AUSTRALIAN MADE:

Now more than ever we are talking about Australian Manufacturers.  By using Australian Made, we are using products from Australia. Hard Woods, Dunlop Foam, Quality Fabrics and Australian Leather.  

As the building items are higher quality, so is the warranty that comes with the Lounge.  With an imported lounge you may get a 12 month warranty.  With our Australian Manufacturers, warranty ranges from 10 - 30 years! On some products they offer a lifetime warranty. 

If something does go wrong, the manufacturer is here in the same country so problems are addressed so much faster.  If you are having issues with electronics for example, a new cable is sent from Sydney, Melbourne or South Australia. You aren't waiting a minimum of 12 weeks for the next shipping container to arrive.

 

 

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Something More Personal

 

Im taking a little detour from my usual Sunday Styling Sessions to share something more personal with you.

On Friday, NBN Television came to the store to interview about a balloon giveaway I was doing.  It's called the Isolation Insanity Balloon Giveaway.  The idea is you share a story about some crazy thing that has happened in your house with the kids during Iso. Has the gold fish put on an incredible amount of weight because its being fed 12 times a day, have your Zoom Meetings being terrorised by a Woody & Buz invasion? Has dad been nearly caught nakie on a zoom hookup with your little school friends?? (This was actually a story!!) And I will randomly gift the children in your home a balloon to keep.

Here is a link to that story:

 

https://www.nbnnews.com.au/2020/04/24/funny-stories-and-balloons-keeping-spirits-afloat-in-gunnedah/

 

Isn't it funny how you just have an attachment to something in your life?  I don't know why?  I have a photo of myself as a little one, maybe 18 months old running in the backyard, one shoe off one shoe on holding a balloon with the biggest smile on my face.  That particular day must have meant so much to me. I don't recall the day, but the feeling from that day has stayed with me my entire life.

Balloons = Smiles = Happy

 

  

When my granddaughter come along the first thing I did was share balloons with her.  My daughter (Who says she hates balloons) didn't want me to, but I did anyway.  I gave her a made up balloon dog in one hand and a helium balloon in the other, and this kept her occupied for hours.  She had so much fun and the balloon went with her everywhere.

 

 

So with all this isolation going on, I thought what better way to give parents a moments piece than to give their children a balloon, so that's where the idea stemmed from.  I couldn't tell you the number of balloons we have delivered over the last couple of weeks.  Hundreds maybe. Some parents share a photo, some don't and want to stay private, that's ok I respect that. This giveaway isn't about exposure, it's about smiles. And my smile would be the biggest.

You don't know the joy of bringing a smile to someone's face until you do it. Most of my staff are blown away when they do a delivery for the first time and feel the absolute joy & gratitude of being the conduit between the person gifting and the person receiving the gift. It's a very special feeling and often it brings tears of absolute joy to whichever person is delivering it. It's a truly unique experience.

On a personal note:

Balloons represent freedom to me. I quiet often think about the graffiti artist, Banksy and his "Girl with a Balloon" piece. That's me. 

 

Before I bought the balloon business I was mentally trapped in a heavy depression and anxiety. There were alot of events over a number of years that I had not dealt with and it all culminated in a single event in my workplace that sent me over the edge.  I quit the job and holed myself up in my house and I couldn't leave it.  If I had to leave the house it would result in a massive panic attack and I would literally find myself on the footpath in bawling my eyes out and not seeing a way out.  If I saw anyone from my old workplace (Quiet a few of them were very nasty in the street, or make crude gestures to me if I was driving past) and this would trigger a complete meltdown. The doctors had recommended that I attend a psychologist. These were Workers Compensation psychologists and I have to say these people caused more harm than healing. Infact the whole process was so mentally destructive and had the exact opposite effect of mental healing I stopped attending.   I had a conversation with my local doctor advising that this whole process was doing me more harm than good.  The longer it went on the worse I was becoming.  I couldn't talk to anymore, I couldn't have a conversation with my husband without crying,  I was paranoid beyond comprehension because of what was being said about me by my old work colleagues. Some of the stories coming out after everything I gave them horrify me still to this day. People can be very cruel, very nasty and when you are a caring, soft, giving person like myself it can trigger the most destructive thoughts.

I was sitting at my kitchen counter one day reading the paper and noticed that a hobby balloon business was for sale. I said to Stu, I should buy this. It will give me something to do and people will always be happy to see me.  I talked to my Mum about it and she graciously gave me, as she put it "An early inheritance" to buy the business.  That was in 2004.  I remember going to my doctor and telling him that I have decided to buy this balloon business as diversional therapy and a way to heal my broken brain and broken heart.  If I continued on the medical path, I was sure it was going to result in the exact opposite of healing. I had two small children to raise and a husband to care for, and at that stage neither of them were getting a mother or wife they deserved. The doctor stated that I could kiss the Workers Compensation away if I did that. My response was no amount of money can fix a broken brain. Only I can fix my mental health, they can have their money.

So that was that.  I bought my balloon business and began the healing process.  I remember the first order that came through.  I was lying in bed, not being able to get out of it and the phone rang wanting a delivery.  My first emotion was panic! How am I going to do this!  I told myself just one step at a time.  I still remember preparing the balloons, putting them into the car and driving to deliver them.  I remember getting out of the car, walking down the footpath and knocking on the door and my heart was in my mouth.  I had to push every single step I took, trying not to cry or melt into a blubbering heap.  Thinking about it now I have tears in my eyes, it was so hard!  But I did it, I knocked on the door and the most beautiful person opened the door and gave me the brightest smile! It was just so worth all that work to get out of bed, prepare and deliver these balloons for that beautiful smile. I'm friends now with this person and I have told her she was the first balloon delivery I ever did.

So you can see why balloons are so important to me, why I am still so passionate about them.  Balloons to me mean freedom to face the day with a healthy brain, freedom to pursue a career I enjoy and not have to work for people that are so ungrateful and careless with your heart and mental health. Financial freedom, to be able to buy new shoes if I need them! (That's my idea of being wealthy!) Freedom to live my life and be happy. 

Balloons = Smiles = Happy.

This might give you a bit of an insight now into why I have done what I've done with my balloon giveaway.  No one knows what goes on behind the doors of other people's houses. If by giving someone's  child a balloon which gives them a moment of happiness than that's all I want.

If you haven't shared a story yet, please do.  I am making my way through the stores and I will get to your place over the next couple of weeks.

Thank you for reading

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Sunday Styling Sessions - AUSTRALIAN MADE - Design your perfect lounge

 


Introduction

I am often asked “Why a Furniture Store?”. As with every question that people seem to ask me, it comes with a long winded explanation!

The choices I make in my life are always extremely personal. It's not just about income or a career with me, there will always be a deeper reason for my actions. 

I was always somewhat a “trend setter” at school. My friends may disagree with that description, they may call it “Different”  or even “Rebellious”, my choice of definition was Trend Setter.

I didn't like to follow the other sheep, being told what to do, what to wear, what to like.  I liked what I liked, I wore what I liked to wear regardless of what the world might be selling me.

As an adult I now know it was about FREEDOM OF CHOICE for me.  Being free to express myself and my personality through my choices of clothing, room decor or my car.

Going back to the original question “Why a Furniture Store?”, because it's all about choices. The choices of Styling in your home should reflect a statement about who you are.  As my original quote says: “A room should start a conversation before people actually start to exchange words”

Where does one Start??

This is where an Interior Designer can help, and particularly an Interior Designer who owns a Furniture Store - because the choices we can offer are not limited to what is on the  showroom floor, but what options are available to build your own unique piece from scratch!

  

Design Your Own Perfect Lounge Suite:

Things to consider before you start:

  • Space

  • Style

  • Fabric/Leather

  • Durability

  • Colour

 

Think about your space, and what kind of lounge will fit it comfortably.  Regardless of the area we are working with, there is a solution.

 

What Style of lounge would you like? Is it important that you have recliners, do you want a chaise with your lounge. Would a corner modular suit best? Do you want the option of having a fold out bed for guests?

 

What would you like your ideal lounge made from?  Leather or Fabric? Do you want a plush fabric or linen? Is durability important in your choice?

 

Finally what colour suits your styling?

 

Once we have considered these options it reduces our choices making the concept of designing not as daunting. 

 

Services I can offer you as a Designer:

As a designer, there are services that I can provide you to make your choices easier:

  • Room Plan

  • Vision Board

  • Fabric Samples

  • Consultation with Manufacturers

 

Once the lounge arrives we can deliver it for free and set it up in your room, and I can also style it for you.

 

 

Lounge Otions:

BUY AUSTRALIAN MADE:

Now more than ever we are talking about Australian Manufacturers.  By using Australian Made, we are using products from Australia. Hard Woods, Dunlop Foam, Quality Fabrics and Australian Leather.  

As the building items are higher quality, so is the warranty that comes with the Lounge.  With an imported lounge you may get a 12 month warranty. With our Australian Manufacturers, warranty ranges from 10 - 30 years! On some products they offer a lifetime warranty. 

If something does go wrong, the manufacturer is here in the same country so problems are addressed so much faster.  If you are having issues with electronics for example, a new cable is sent from Sydney, Melbourne or South Australia. You aren't waiting a minimum of 12 weeks for the next shipping container to arrive.





Designs & Fabric Choices:

Design Choices are limitless!! Even if the manufacturer hasn't done that particular size or style before, they are happy to do a custom build for you.

In Fact many of the design shows on TV use the exact same manufacturers that we do.  They will have a designer tell them, “We have this space we need to fill with a lounge” and they will build that to their exact measurements. 

Let's talk choices:

 

  • Single Chair/Occasional Chair

  • 2, 3 & 4 Seater Sofa - Modular Design, with Recliners or Without. Electric or Manual

  • Corner Lounge

  • Add a Chaise with Storage, an Ottoman or Fold Out Bed

  • Fabrics - Print Or Plain, Plush or Linen

  • Aged Leather Look Fabric - perfect for pets.

  • Australian Leathers in hundreds colour choices

  • Design matching/contrasting throw cushions, have matching curtains made?

  • Add a Console/USB or 240 V Power options

  • Outdoor Fabric Options & Styles

  • Thousands of Fabric Colour/Print Choices from a number of Fabric Manufacturers.

In Fact any choice you think of there is a design solution. 





 

 

 

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The Family behind Enchanted On Conadilly

 

Hey there,

With everything that is going on in the world at the moment, I thought it might be a good time to share a little bit about the faces behind Enchanted On Conadilly.

We have visitors (Before Isolation) from all over Australia who come into the store and are really surprised when they ask about the set-up of our diverse shop.  It’s not something Stu and I think about because it is what it is. We just take it for granted now, but looking at it from an outsider’s perspective, I suppose it can be a little daunting. 

Enchanted On Conadilly was born in 2018, but to get to this point it’s been a bit of a journey.

Let me share our story with you.........

 

 

 

Stuart & I moved to Gunnedah from Moree in 1996.   In Moree Stuart was working for an Ag Retail Store, B & W Rural, and on the side he produced a herbicide additive.

We were also partner’s in a small Nursery called The Flower Mill.  This was located at the premises of B & W Rural. What weekends weren’t taken up mixing crop oil, were often taken up watering and caring for the plants in the Nursery.  

Our kids were just little babies at the time and loved going to work with us.  At the Nursery we had the most amazing little playground that the guys made for the kids. (All the partners had little ones).  It’s funny looking back into our work history and seeing what we do now so many years later.  All your knowledge seems to come together.

Coming to Gunnedah, Stu starting working at Pursehouse Rural as an AWB Representative, when the AWB opened up their own Branch in Guinnedah, Stuart Managed that Office.  After changes within the AWB, Stuart started working as a Business Analylist travelling around Australia talking to Farmers about what the AWB could offer them as a Business Platform and based on the information, Stuart then put proposals to AWB for future opportunites. (Once again, incredible experience for what would come in the future).

This was taking Stuart away from his young family, so when the research was concluded, he started his own Agricultural Consulting Business in 2004.  He specialises in finding the right price for farmers who want to sell their grain, grain brokerage.  As part of that Stu analysis the World Grain Markets, discovering what opportunities are available for farmers to help them get the best price for their crops.

Stuart starts work at 6.30am everyday where he will analyse world markets when it's nice and quiet with no interruptions. He will draft his marketing report and send that out to farmers in the morning and again in the afternoon with a price analysis. He has continued to offer this service right through the 2 1/2 years of drought, basically missing out on the income of 5 harvests.  It's this commitment that shows he is dedicated to this field and we look forward to Farmers once again reaping a good harvest after all this wonderful rain we've had.

Coming from Ag Retail Stu gained a good understanding of plant growth and combined with a little knowledge gained while we had an interest in the Nursery has taught us a lot about Floristry.  After working with the Australian Wheat Board from the Melbourne Office he gained management & business development skills. From analysing what a customer requires, building a platform to deliver that and what is required to make it viable.  All amazing skills moving forward.

As I have shared on the Blog earlier, in the article "What is success in Business", I started out working for myself in 2003/2004 with Balloons and Wedding & Event Decor.  While the kids were young, I worked from home. 

 

 

In 2011 I thought it was time to open a "Real Store".  This was so scary.  Stuart was a business analyst, it's what he does, so we sat down to do a business plan and worked out the amount that was needed to do this and what I would have to turn over every day to afford to stay in business.  It was scary stuff and I will never forget the first week of my store being open I just cried and cried because no one was coming into my shop!  I was going to go broke! 

Our Local Council has always advocated for Start Ups.  We are so lucky Gunnedah has such a progressive Council.  Back in 2011 Adam Marshall was Mayor and he would visit me and encourage me personally.  We knew Adam through various local pursuits and early on he encouraged me to apply for the Business Partner Program, which I did and was successful in getting a small grant.  The deal was that if you closed up shop within 3 years, you had to give that money back!!! So that really spurred me on to make this work. I started off with myself and 2 junior staff members who helped out on weekends and after school.

In 2012 things really started to pump along and I was getting more and more enquires for Floristry work, so I began some study in that area. I beleive that you have to let your customers guide for your focus, determine what it is they are looking for.  I'd always had an interest in Floristry, my Pop was a keen gardener and I loved cutting the stems and arranging them in my bedroom and I also had the experience in the nursery in Moree, so it wasn't totally out of the question for me. Training started and I officially became a Florist.

I kept growing and growing. I also started a Scrapbook Shop called the Scrapbook Nook.  We had classes and a huge range of product. But with the onset of online buying keeping that business viable became very difficult. I looked for another area and something that became obvious to me was Ladies Fashion.

In 2015, Stu & I went to Sydney to have a look at a couple of Ladies Fashion Brands I just loved to buy myself and because you have to buy over 6 months in advance with Ladies Fashion it wasn't until about August 2015 that I got my first shipment of Winter Stock and started selling clothing. This led into so many other problems! Now I needed a bigger store.

In October 2016, Stu & I bought the Furniture & Carpet Store - Riley's Furniture & Carpets.  We would make it into a Department Store combining Furniture & Carpets, Blinds, Ladies Fashion, Florist, Gift & Homewares. Stuart would also operate his Consultancy from these premises as well.

 

 

Our Son Josh came on board and trained as a Flooring Specialist and that's how we started. Stuart, Josh & I, as well as Laurie who was retained to look after Blinds. I had my staff from the Balloon Shop, Amy & Roxy plus my gorgeous junior Arna. While the girls took care of the Flowers, Balloons & Fashions, Stu & I started to learn all about Furniture & Mattresses.

We turned over a few staff at the beginning. Furniture was a completely different ballgame.  Arna went off to Uni, Roxy & Amy moved onto other pursuits.  We hired another Florist so I could concentrate on Furniture and developing this new business to bring it all together.

We entered the Regional Business Awards under the category of Start Up Superstar and we won it in April 2017, this took us the State Business Awards in Sydney in November the same year. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We were starting have a little difficulty offering the selection of Bedding & Mattresses that we thought the town required as we just didnt have enough room, so in November we opened our second store across the road at 250 Conadilly Street

We split the Stores in 2017 when Stuart, Josh and Laurie moved the bedding, flooring and blinds into that store. We were a member of the Funiture House Group at this time and we had recently won an award for increased sales, so opening the second store was a step in the right direction.  Customers didnt have to go out of town to try every mattress they needed to, to get the perfect night sleep!!

But having the two doors - one with the "Girls" and one with the "Boys", the battle of the sexes had started!!!!

 

 

 (- Zombie Walk 2017)

 

So as to not bore everyone to tears, I will continue with that story in another post.

As you can see though, the face of our store has changed to meet the needs of the commuity.  Even in the days of my Balloon Shop, I was always adjusting my focus, listening to what customers were looking for when it came to supplying a certain service. Its an ever changing landscape, and we have had to re-educate ourselves along the way to meet our customers need.    

Keep an eye out for what comes next....

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Sunday Styling Sessions - Simple & Inexpensive Styling Tips
I've found now we are staying a home more, people are talking about making their practical living space a homely living space. Is there are difference? Yes, although a room might contain all the essentials required to use it, such as lounges and a tv, it might be lacking a visual invitation to come and relax. In this article I am showing how just adding a few simple touches can all the difference. In design we talk about some basic elements: - space - line - texture - colour - pattern - shape - light.
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To Throw Or Not To Throw - That Is The Question?.... The Art Of The Throw Cushion

For those of you who aren't familiar with our store. My husband and I own a Furniture Store in Gunnedah NSW. We both have been self employed in our own industries for over 20 years and this last four years we have teamed our expertise into the one enterprise.  "Enchanted On Conadilly". We sell Furniture - Fashion - Flooring - Florist and all the accompanying bits and pieces.

 Enchanted On Conadilly Store

Seeing as we have completely opposite tastes and our expertise is in completely the opposite areas, it does cause a few epic "discussions".

So our plan this last 6 months is that we have our own designated areas. I am in charge of the front of the store (The "girls" section - we have smelly candles burning, nice music playing and decorated with pretty things including doilies!) and he is in charge of the back of the store (The "Boys" Section. They have no candles masking the smell of their spring rolls and pies, and everything is lined up very practically - beds with bed, lounges with lounges etc). It works well and people can see who runs what area very plainly!

Our one very large point of difference though is the Throw Cushions......

Kas AUstralia

(Photo: Kas Australia Instagram)

I believe in making the store look like you would want your home to look.

I like to tell little stories throughout the space. It gets your imagination going and helps you to visualise how you can see things in your own home.

 

My husband thinks that putting that "crap" all over the beds and lounges stops people from trying them out and therefore not selling the furniture that the cushions are sitting on! 

This is a never ending argument and one neither of us will win, because both arguments have merit.

What do you think when walking into a Furniture Store?  Do you like to see a room decorated to look like a real family home or do you prefer to see bare furniture that you feel free to sit on without moving things around? I'm sure that husbands & wife disagree on this all over the world!

     (Photo: Kas Australia Instagram)

(Photo: Kas Australia Instagram)

However, when it comes to Home Styling, throw cushions and throws can make all the difference between a house and a home.

There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to styling with cushions. It's just a matter of person taste and how they work in the context of the whole room.

There are a few little hints to consider though:

  1.       Co-ordinate cushions with your existing decor. Look for cushions in colours and patterns that will match your colour palette. That being said though, one of the trends in 2020 is not matching the cushions to your lounge. If your lounge has matching cushions, get rid of those and use cushions with co-ordinating colours and patterns instead.  
  2.       If you have a neutral colour theme in your room, choose two or three bold coloured or patterned cushions to add some depth to your space.  The opposite if you have a more vibrant colour palette with a bold lounge, add more neutral colours and textures to create a warmth.
  3.       Layer Textures.  Don't be afraid to mix textures and patterns Velvet, fur, silks mixed with cotton and linen will create a modern yet cosy feel to your room.      Re-arrange how you have your cushions sitting on the lounge.  You can position them next to each other across the lounge, or layer them in one corner with a throw rug.
  4.       Vary your cushions shape and size. Cushions come in all shapes and sizes. Try an extra large cushion with a traditional 50xm x 50cm cushion and add a long or round cushion.
  5.       Create Contrast.  Using block colours and horizontal or vertical lines in a narrow space can play with the eyes and make the space seam larger.
  6.       Feel free to be create.  Let your creativity flow, don't be afraid to play with your favourite colours, and bright patterns and textures. Be confident in your selection because at the end of the day, this is your home and as long as you love it, that's all that matters.

We have a large rnage oof cushions instore from leading brands such as Kas Australia, Logan & Mason & Weave by Warick. Come in and play with a few looks for yourself and see what works best for your space.

https://enchantedonconadilly.com.au/kas-throws-cushions

 Love Jodi & The Enchanted Team xx

 

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INTERIOR DESIGN: Need a little help?
Custom Design Furniture Pieces, interest Free Finance, Interior Design Tools
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SHOPPING - Buy Interest Free
Interest Free Purchasing with Enchanted On Conadilly
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