Today we pick up the keys to our new main street store. We are freaking out a little – since this is the biggest business step our little company has ever taken. But it feels right – and this new leg of our journey is going to be an exciting one. I guess I’ve got a new blog topic!

In this post I’ll share the rationale and approach we’re taking to the new location.

Here are some pics of the space that we took last week:

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Our Need For An Office

Our business started at our kitchen table in 2008. And over the years that has worked remarkably well even as we’ve gone from a two person operation to a larger team. Honestly – it does feel like a circus sometimes – we have 2 rooms in our house that are pretty much dedicated business spaces and our garage is filled to the brim. And of course we still use the kitchen table for our team meetings, (pretty much all day on Monday). But we were okay ‘as-is’ until a year ago – when we launched Pixie Packs. In the last year that effort has grown too big for a garage operation. It’s time for a real office.

Screen Shot 2015-08-04 at 8.31.20 AMOur Hunt

We began looking for spaces about four months ago and started by narrowing the location down to the right city. We had 3 local towns to choose from – and although we debated each – we went with downtown Auburn since it’s the most convenient and the best of the 3 choices. We wished we lived closer to downtown Seattle (or San Francisco for that matter), or a few of the upscale cities east of Seattle, but we don’t. We live in small town America where the main street has a fair number of empty stores, little foot traffic, but still a very cute overall vibe. We knew we didn’t want to be in some gross business park, or a warehouse type location. We needed something more fun. When we saw the former “Love Travel” office we immediately liked the vibe it put off and could imagine our operation in it. We could imagine it feeling like a two story version of Britex (Cinnamon’s favorite store of all time).

Here’s a video Cinnamon did of one of our visits to the Britex Store:

Our Use

But the funny part is – although we now have a main street store (that feels very weird to write btw) – we really need it for offices, storage, work-space, not the retail aspect. So we’ve decided to go with a 90% office, 10% retail approach. But we want that 10% to be mind-blowingly awesome to doll enthusiasts. We will be open to walk-in customers, and carry a very limited supply of items for sale, but the primary purpose of the space will be to support our business, which is 100% online. How will we do that?

Our Vision

We are going to create something that we’ve never seen before. Maybe you have – and if so – feel free to shoot us a message with some pictures or links. Our vision is for a mixed up version of…

  • A doll atelier (workshop) that has active “artistry” happening for visitors (and customers) to see. This will include doll clothes designing, fabric cutting, construction, photography, and shipping – everything we do every day – on display for people to see. Of course the design work will all be modern, not historical. So think Euro Libby, Tokyo Libby, Outback Libby, or Malibu Libby.
  • Imagine the color and fun activity of a candy store where the workers are making the candy for people to watch, except it’s doll clothes.
  • Crash all that into the visual appeal of Britex Fabric.
  • Layer on a high-tech Silicon Valley styled corporate office upstairs – with the marketers using their online skills to pay the bills.
  • Sprinkle in artist/employees downstairs focusing on the product at a level of artistry that makes Dior In Miniature proud. Like this:

Our Branding

At first we struggled over how to do the branding because our primary business focus is Pixie Faire, (now with over 1 million patterns downloaded). But then we got clarity on the issue. The store will be Liberty Jane in branding and overall presentation. It will be “doll couture – custom fitted fashions rare and beautiful.” That’s who we are. But we will also run both Pixie Faire and Sew Powerful from the location. They’ll be upstairs and less ‘on display’ visually.

Our Dream

If we can master the business model we are envisioning, then we believe we can begin opening retail locations in more fertile locations in the future as our online business continues to grow. Our online business under-writes this effort of course – and it is the main focus of our lives, but retail feels like our destiny. Auburn will (probably) always be our home base, but having additional stores in more mall-centric locations seems like a fun dream – if we can pull it off.

Grand Reveal

We are going to try something very different and launch a kickstarter campaign to help raise the funds for the set-up. We are working on the details now and hope to launch it in September – it will include rewards that our fans will (hopefully) go crazy over. We plan on having a grand openning party after things are up and running – with friends and family, (and any Seattle area fans that would like to attend). Of course – I’ll share pictures and stories along the way.

Every step on our journey has led us to today. We are so insanely grateful for our growing group of fans, followers, and customers that loyally support Cinnamon’s work. It’s amazing to see it continue to grow.

Leave us a comment and tell us what you think, (are we crazy?). What are your suggestions for how to do this right?

63 Comments on The New Liberty Jane Main Street Store

  1. Congratulations!!! What an amazing opportunity. I wish lived up there so I could attend your grand opening.

  2. This brings a tear of happiness for you all! I am going to start setting money aside so that I can visit that store in person. Go for it!! The best is yet to be!

    • Be sure to let us know when you’re visiting Seattle. We’ll be excited to give you the grand tour 🙂

  3. This is amazing…another chapter in your journey that I can follow! LOVE it!!! Wish I lived closer…to visit and jump in to work. Keep us posted with the details as you move forward. Congrats and Good Luck!

  4. Congratulations! Love your vision and believe it will be a great success. Would love to be at the Grand opening but live to far away.
    Blessings.

  5. Cool!
    The aura of the brand you’ll be putting out with your retail shop is pure genius. A feast for the eyes and creative spirit. Right on! And the fact that you don;t expect it to make money sets you up for success.

    Kickstarter is a great way to go. It lets your fans support your new endeavor, and it gives them an easy opportunity to bring their friends on board, broadening your reach. It also adds to the newsiness factor.

    Kickstarter launched my business. I had imported a batch of cuckoo clocks I designed some years ago. People kept bugging me to import more. Kickstarter provided the vehicle and now I have imported two batches of the first design (a Quilt Shop Cuckoo Clock, have two new cuckoo clock designs about to debut, and am working on a partially American made line.

    Yes, you are totally crazy. Keep it up!

  6. Your accomplishments have been inspiring to watch and be a part of . Congratulations, and I look foreard to visiting your new store in the future.

  7. Bravo! So happy for your team. The timing seams perfect, and such an exciting hybrid business concept. Wish I didn’t live so far away. I’ll be watching for your photos and video(s) to see your growth as it progresses. Very best wishes and blessings to you.

  8. Congratulations. I can’t wait to visit your new storefront in Auburn.

  9. This could not have happened to more deserving people. Your generosity and compassion for others is inspiring and I truly believe that this new adventure will be very rewarding for you both and for all involved. I wish you nothing but success!!!

  10. Congratulations on the “Next Big Step”!!! Jason, I totally get the moving off of the kitchen table. Before I started doing doll clothes, I was/am a Stampin’ Up! demonstrator for 20 years. I also worked full time back in the beginning. My business was pulled out onto the Breakfast nook table every evening after the kids went to bed….When that no longer worked, I moved to the dining room table, as I only had to pick it all up when we had big family dinners!!! But I outgrew that and so I moved to the basement family room, taking over 1/4, then 1/3, then 1/2 of that. Fortunatly I was still doing workshops in customers homes…and little classes out of my own, but when I did, it meant totally moving furniture to accomodate tables. Alas, our family grew up, and out, so we decided to move the TV up into the living room, I moved my office in with my husbands, in the basement bedroom, and the family room became my studio/classroom. With that, I also was laid off from the 3rd of a series of jobs…and decided…maybe someone was trying to tell me something, and went to working my Stampin’ Up! and doll business full time. We evolve….Enjoy your new venture!!!

  11. So excited for you! I am looking forward to stopping in when we visit our daughter who lives near Seattle (I’ll just have to talk my husband into it!)

  12. This is so very exciting! Congratulations to all of you! I love working with Liberty Jane and I would LOVE to visit your store someday. How fun!

  13. this is big stuff, guys! Congratulations! If I move out there from Pa. Can I work for you? And by the way – I took the doll couture course- worth every penny. Been sewing for 62 years and was amazed at how much helpful stuff I learned 🙂
    Thanks,
    Arlene Coleman

  14. Congratulations on your vision and to you all for taking the leap to accomplish it. Your store space looks really nice and I love small town Main Street USA. Hmmm, your shop could very well become a travel destination to many designers/creators. (Myself included)

  15. I’m so excited and happy for you. You’ve been such a blessing of help to me in so many ways. I have children in Seattle and can’t wait to visit when you open. I’m in MN so when u open at the mall of America, I’ll be so excited. I dream big too. We’ve got one chance here so dream big. God Bless your newest adventure!

  16. This is so exciting! I want to come & work for you!! Next time I’m in Seattle to visit family, I know where I’ll be stopping to visit. Congratulations!

  17. There are so many Main Streets across the USA. It would be nice to know what town and which state to look in if I were to want to visit this store.

      • That’s good to know in case I go across the country. I have to go to Vancouver mid-October for a few days but cannot cross the border before Nov.5. Someday I might get back to Washington State so I will drop in.

  18. Congratulations and good luck! I see a field trip in my future!

  19. Hi Jason, Congrats on your next step up. I was all excited when you said Auburn, until I realized it was not Auburn, Alabama. I have a son in Alabama and would love to visit you their. Good Luck!

  20. Congratulations. Maybe someday I will be able to visit your store all the way from Centerville, Ohio. Before all my precious grandchildren started arriving ( I have six ), I use to do craft shows selling clothing for American Girl and Barbie dolls. I also sold cloth dolls too. I no longer do shows but I still sew for my two granddaughter’s dolls and of course for charity. I have learned so much taking all your classes and have enjoyed your patterns. Most of all, I am very impressed at all you both do to help others. I think your Sew Powerful is a wonderful charity. I did make purses last year and am now in the process of making more purses for this year. Never stop dreaming, because with hard work, dreams can come true. May God Bless You Both.

    • Thanks Marcy – I’m glad you’ve enjoyed the classes! And thank for your support and participation with the purse project – we are really excited about the impact that program is having. Grateful!

  21. awesome news! I wish i lived closer to come visit. I look forward to hearing and seeing more as this new venture develops.

  22. Waahoo!! Can’t wait! My hubby works for the city and I will for sure be popping in, you are 2 blocks from city hall. It is a quaint downtown. Can’t wait for the grand opening!! Congrats on the new phase!

  23. Oh,this is great. When we take motorcycle trips my husband the geologist often routes us hundred of miles off the trail to see some rock formation or another. The rocks that make me happy are in jewelry stores so I’m often less than thrilled.
    We’ve missed Oregon and Washington on our quest to visit all the states on our bikes.
    Next year when we start to plan I’m going to make sure that our route includes a visit to your new shop.

  24. This is great! Whenever I’ve gone to craft shows, the only places I hang around are the ones that show the people working (sewing, painting, spinning). Same with the mall — who hasn’t bought a soft pretzel or cinnamon bun that they didn’t really want but just had to buy after being mesmerized by the people rolling the dough? This will be such a wonderful place. (Now that I’m way down here at the comment section, I forgot if you said there would be classes. I hope so. You’ll also have a Sew-Perfect display, too, won’t you? People should know. You could give out your purse pattern and have a donation jar.) Thanks for letting us be a part of your journey. I’m glad I met you guys when I did so I could follow all of this! Much luck!

  25. It’s the most fabulous plan. I’m only sad you are across the country and I can’t be there in person on opening day. I can’t wait to see your pictures as you go along the way. Wishing you the ultimate success and realizing your dreams. It’s a beautiful vision.

  26. Jason and Cinnamon – this is brilliant! Simply brilliant – this is a great way to move. It is unique, spacious, bright, imaginative and inviting. Seems like a home run to me – not that I am an expert. It just appeals to me – to my spirit, to my creativity.

    Many of us will watch the videos, read your news, and look for all the pictures – we will all want to visit, but you would never get any work done!

    Thank you for sharing with us at this stage in the process – it will be fun to be a small part of your journey. I am really happy for you and your family that you will regain your kitchen and garage 🙂

    As always, we will continue to support you all, and do what we can to help.

    Congratulations 🙂

  27. Jason & Cinnamon,

    Congratulations on such a successful business. It must be exciting to be moving to a storefront location. I had no idea this is what you two have been up to until today when I decided to click on the article that Christine posted.

    For the last five years I have had such a burden in my heart to help in rescuing the innocent victims of human trafficking. I thought the path of completing my undergraduate in Criminology was going to lead me to a prime job working for the Colorado Springs Police Department, which in turn would enable me to pursue helping the innocents home and abroad. When I finally landed a position with them in April I couldn’t have been more excited to begin what I was hoping to be a second career. However, that abruptly ended two weeks ago when I was suddenly let go. Talk about extreme devastation! But I told God to show me what I needed to do next. I said I would wait patiently (that’s hard for me) for an answer.

    Well I believe I received an answer this morning when I read the article about you guys. Something in my spirit was ignited like it hasn’t been in a long time. In fact, Samantha had said to me last week about doing a craft business and I kind of laughed. I truly am amazed and excited for you two, but yet feel I can and should help from this end in Colorado Springs. I don’t know how or when but I would ask that you two pray for wisdom and guidance. It’s rather funny that over the last two weeks my passion for sewing has been renewed. In fact, I’ve been busy making lots of baby things. Could be that I just became a grandma too. LOL. Anyhow, I purchased the book, Craft Pricing Power. I plan to read more about the Corridor Principle and start writing down my thoughts. It feels rather overwhelming, yet right. I wish I could come to Washington and help and glean inspiration. I am so new to all of this online stuff yet Sam received her degree in Media Technology in May. She grasps it and I see her as an asset and encourager. It’s rather funny how you, Cinnamon, got started. I wanted to make American Girl doll clothes 20 yrs ago when Sam discovered the American Girl product. I also wanted to write a boy’s version of their stories. So a little like Jason, ideas have floated around for 20 yrs! Haha. It’s all in God’s timing though.

    Any words of wisdom or insight other than what is in your books would be greatly appreciated. I know you two are very busy right now, but please consider what I said as far as helping in this endeavor on this end in Colorado Springs!

    Please send my love to your parents Cinnamon. Your mom and dad still inspire me to this day. They left such an indelible mark upon my life!

    In my thoughts and prayers,

    Mickey

  28. How awesome – I am very excited for you and hope it turns out even better than you plan.
    It will be destination for when I get to the West Coast!!!!

  29. How wonderful! Yes you have to do this! I will be watching your progress and praying for your success. Pity your Auburn isn’t the one here in Sydney. I’d be there in half an hour. God bless this great new adventure with all the right people and support you need to make it happen.

  30. How very exciting! Doesn’t sound insane me to me. Sounds like the next step in following your plans and dreams, and a well-thought out, sensible step. Plus, just so very very exciting! All the best to you and Cinnamon and the team. Go guys!

  31. I love you new shop. I hope someday I can come and visit in person! Cograts! You did well!

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