Monday, May 4, 2009

End of an era...

Last week was administrative assistant's week and I woke from a dream where I forgot to send out postcards for an Encore promotion. I took a deep breath and remembered that I no longer have a store to have anxiety about. This was always a great holiday for us...

I miss these events but I also am ready to move on. I have currently expanded my job search to everywhere and am focusing on communication, marketing and student affairs. Our house will be on the market by June 1. Big steps... deep breaths. I need to let go to move on.

With that said, this will be my last post on this blog.
I am moving all activity to, which means there will be a lot more chaos to add to the chicken.

Much love and luck in shopping,
The woman formerly known as ShopGirl... hopefully soon known as something new (you know I will have a name.) See ya at Chaos!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Can I get a pass?

So lately I have been contemplating on idea of checking out of my life with the option to return. You know--- like summer camp for adults. What do think? Could we start a committee to figure this out? The old me would want to chair it :)

How do you do that? Sell such an idea to your something-like-a-husband? Tell me... I am a salesperson and I think even that might require an expert's advice.

I just learned that a bike shop will go into the Encore space. I have to admit, I had an allergic
reaction to it but am letting go... this is me letting go. This is me breathing (taking yoga across from this new bike shop). Must move on. Move Up. Move out. I just decided today that if I were a musician (I do love the music but have you heard me sing) this might be the title of my new album. Yes, I know... get a job already!

xoxo- lady formerly known as ShopGal

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

So much time, so little to do!

Hello everyone,
It has been almost one month since I closed the doors in Encore. Up until last week I had not set foot downtown (yeah, denial, it's a fun place to live). So here is how I have been spending my time...

Week One- Cleaning out Store, Teaching, Sulking, Not Doing Taxes
Week Two- Looking for Job, Teaching, Baking, Sulking, Not Doing Taxes
Week Three- Looking for a Job, Teaching , Baking, Exercising and Occasional Lunch or Coffee with Friend (thanks, btw), Sulking and Not Doing Taxes
Week Four- Died my hair Chocolate Cherry, Exercise, Looking for Job, Baking and NO MORE SULKING but Still No Taxes... Why do this week what you can put off til next

After a weekend away, I have a new attitude. This change has been hard and I must admit that I am having a little bit of an identity crisis but SULKING does not help. For the past 10 years my life has been jam packed with so much to do so I need to learn to enjoy free time because really, how often do you get it as an adult? Plus... I still have taxes.

Miss you more than you know. XXOO Shopgirl
PS- Email me at
PPSS- Since cooking and baking are my therapy I have tons of new recipes at

Monday, February 23, 2009

Shop Girl Cries. . .

This weekend was a little harder than I thought. On Friday night I paid tribute to the store by cranking up the music, vacuuming and crying. When I left, I felt optimistic for the future but a little sad for the bit of me I was leaving behind. Saturday was strange without Karen (she moved out Friday) but was filled with visits from familiar faces and friends. Thank you so much for your support of my very hard decision. Thank you for your words, your flowers and your kind thoughts... thank you most of all for an amazing time!

I am still trying to figure out what to do with the blog... I mean, can one such persona still be Shop Girl if one does not own shop? TO BE CONTINUED...

Thursday, February 19, 2009

An emotional thought. . . two more days!

Since about a week after my announcement I have been in "Operation Close Down" mode and have felt pretty good about things. Customers come in with heavy hair as I call it (head tilted, super sad look) to see if I am "Ok"... I have been able, until today, to remain very logical. As I wrote my last Shop Girl Speaks email I was sad. I cannot believe that was my last email to you as store owner. I will no longer be a business owner in two days. Wow...

Over the next two days I am offering 90% (yes, you read it correctly) off of EVERYTHING. Please, Please come take stuff off my hands so I do not have to haul it off on Monday--- I mean, basically I am almost paying you... and believe it or not, we still have good stuff left.

Two furniture pieces that are almost FREE to a good home:
Ball Foot Cherry Table- $75
White Pine Victorian Mantle- $100

I am not saying good bye... hopefully I will see you very soon.

Until then, lots of love and luck in shopping.
Always your shop girl,

Thursday, February 12, 2009

MORE markdowns!!!!!

We have a little over a week left (I know, sad, right? ) and to the theme of "Everything Must Go" I have marked everything down once more...

Merchandise, Furniture and Fixtures 75%
Seasonal 90%

CRAZY- Huh???? So, the Victorian Mantle in the window and Pump Organ are now (Originally $500),The $125Mahogany Clawfoot Table is $150, the 19 Century Wormy Hutch is now $250!!!!!

We still have lots of FREE PAINT and items in crates labeled FREE TO GOOD HOME!

Plus, the GIRL SCOUTS are going to be in on Saturday selling COOOKIEEEES!!!! Please! Please! save me from buying the entire case of THIN MINTS.

See you soon!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

February 21- Last SALE day

Hi Guys!
To make sure we are ready to leave the building on
February 28, our last day in the store to have sales
is Saturday, February 21. Just wanted to let you know
so you can plan to pick up some great deals!

See you soon,

PS- There was a little employee confusion this morning and apparently the store did not
open til after lunch. Many apologies to anyone this inconvenienced!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Final Liquidation- 60% off Everyday, 75% off Seasonal and 50% off Furniture and Fixtures

Okay... this is it!
Starting tomorrow, Friday, January 30 we are going to our FINAL level of liquidation. Come early in weekend or call if you have something in mind because I am certain that people will be coming out of the woodwork. We open at 10 a.m.

60% off Everyday, 75% off Seasonal and 50% off Furniture and Fixtures

Monday-Saturday 10 to 5 p.m. 540.639.2015

Saturday, January 24, 2009

One Mans Prop...Another Person's Treasure???

Just a reminder that we have some great finds for sale (or for FREE) from our storage!
As most of you know, I love to re-paint walls, furniture and almost anything. I have LOTS
of paint for FREE. Just come in and ask to see it. I have some 5 gallon containers and a lot
of gallons with just enough for a small project.

Also, check out our props, baskets for $1, old windows for $5, White lights $.50, Fabric $2,
Ribbon $2 and interesting display pieces that you might find new uses for!
Also, if you know anyone moving, we have tons of boxes (Again, just ask to see them).
AND, we have a lot of broken merchandise in our stock room that we will throw out.
Any of this is FREE to you if you have a craft project that you can incorporate them in!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Now 50% off Storewide, 75% off all Seasonal

Well, we are two weeks into liquidation. On Thursday we had a Customer Appreciation Sale to
kick off 50% off. Believe it or not, we still have a lot of great stuff. On Monday I will be discounting several furniture pieces so make sure to stop by. It sure is bittersweet to see you all these days...

Thanks for a Great Story...

It is hard to like anything you read in print about you closing your store but I think this article did a great job. Recently published at, my friend and collegue, Tim Jackson, did a great job covering the store closing.
Visit to see more of his work!

Radford Store Closing Feb. 28

(This is me, running like crazy from the camera & helping people. Scott says I unfortunately
look like I am at a bar having one too many martinis... )

by Tim W. Jackson

The old Radford Fitness Center building on Main Street has been vacant for nearly a decade.
The crowd in Radford’s Encore Artful Gifts was thick Thursday evening. Customers came in to take advantage of the great sales.
“Seasonal items are 75 percent off,” owner Stacey Price told customers as they came in the door, one after another, from the bitter cold. “Everything else in the store is 40 percent off,” she added. But you know this isn’t just any sale when Price called out her next line: “All furniture and fixtures are priced as marked.” Encore isn’t normally in the business of selling furniture or fixtures.
After six years of making a go of Encore, Price decided that Feb. 28 would be her last day of business.

She sent an e-mail and postcard to customers on her list giving them the heads up on the major sale that started Thursday, including the furniture and fixtures. Everything must go. “I like to tell customers to come get a piece of Radford history,” Price said with a smile.
But Price probably would have had a bigger smile on her face if her store had been that populated with customers on a regular basis for the past six years. Encore joins several Radford businesses to close in the past year, leaving more than a half-dozen storefronts empty on the small stretch of Main Street from Tyler Avenue to Third Avenue. More buildings stand vacant if you travel on either direction on Main Street, including the BB&T branch on the West End of town, which closed in December—just days after Pascal’s Kitchen abruptly closed at 1150 East Main Street.
Price said that Encore had a handful of challenges. “I consider this to be a destination store,” Price explained. “And for a destination store, it’s best to have a parking lot.” At the same time, Price said that a general lack of foot traffic in downtown Radford is a challenge for businesses. Plus the general economic situation is hurting businesses everywhere. “Radford, in particular, is a fiscally conservative town,” Price said.
Price’s advice to potential downtown businesses is to make sure they have the financial resources to weather an economic storm such as the one gripping the country. “You should have enough to pay all of your bills for a year,” Price said. “I didn’t have those financial resources.”
Other former Radford businesses have continued to survive elsewhere, including Vintage Cellar,
Bohemian Trading Company, Annie Kay’s and Imaginations, all of which still are open for business in their Blacksburg locations.
“We always seemed to come up just a little bit short in Radford,” said Keith Roberts, owner of Vintage Cellar. “We’re maintaining our success here in Blacksburg, though. We’ve found that in this economy, a lot of people are nesting. They’re not going out and spending the money. They’re entertaining at home, which is good for a store that sells wine and beer.”
Becky Haupt, executive director of Main Street Radford, said that each of the aforementioned stores that had two locations in the New River Valley had unique situations as to why they closed the Radford stores.

Encore owner Stacey Price stayed busy helping a full store of customers Thursday evening as major sales went into effect.

Haupt said that it’s sometimes hard to find the perfect entrepreneur for downtown Radford, someone who has the right mix of enthusiasm, expertise, and financial means.
Haupt added that her organization has an incentive program in place now that can help to pay things such as interior and exterior paint, signs, and awnings.
But even with incentives for potential business owners, will customers patronize a downtown business? “Sharkey’s has done extremely well,” Haupt said, offering an example of a new business that came to Radford and had that mix of enthusiasm, expertise, and financial means.
But not all Radford residents are particularly keen at shopping in downtown. Liz Koch said, “I very rarely ever shop downtown, and when I did the prices were so expensive I couldn’t afford it.”

Radford resident Eric Melniczek said, “I shop in Radford quite frequently. If you take 100 percent, I shop in Radford 25 percent of the time, Christiansburg 25 percent of the time, Blacksburg/Roanoke 15 percent of the time, and online 5 percent of the time. The remaining 30 percent is shopping that I do while out of town.”

Melniczek said that there are many factors that make it challenging for downtown businesses to survive. “Today, customers want to shop at shopping malls [or] shopping centers with chain stores,” he said. “It is sad to see more customers go to Subway than Screamer’s.”

Thursday, December 4, 2008

To Everything There is a Season. . .

Six years ago this week I made a decision to buy this business from Carolee and Ken
Bondurant. The day I announced my decision there was snow on the ground and holiday
decorations adorned what was to be my new store. At that point, this was the hardest and biggest decision that I had ever made.

Now, exactly six years later I find myself announcing another very hard, emotional decision...
I have decided that it is time I pass along this wonderful gift... Encore Artful Gifts is officially for Sale. I have had almost six amazing years... now it is time to move on. A dear friend and customer commented on my decision by saying that in life we all go through seasons and I am embarking on a new season. As winter comes, I need your help finding someone that is ready to embark on their own journey into small business. I will discuss details of the sale with interested buyers. I am, luckily, willing to help finance a part of the business if necessary.

I am sorry you are not all hearing this from me in person but I wanted you to know from me before you read it in the paper.

I will cherish my six wonderful years that I have had with you. . . more than you know.

Much love and many memories,

*Please come and celebrate with us next Thursday as we will cheers to all of the memories and what the future has to bring*

You are INVITED!

Join us
next Thursday, December 11

5 to 8p.m.
for our

Annual Holiday Mixer and Gourmet Food Tasting

15% off Storewide
40% off of Holiday

Great Gifts from Dogeared---Under $40!

From humble beginnings as a rough grain of sand, the pearl slowly grows into an object of beauty and simplicity. symbolic of honesty, integrity, prosperity and wisdom. pearls represent the best within us. let your necklace be a daily reminder to open doors, make trails, and allow your best to shine. enjoy and believe!

Some cultures say you have to wear a horseshoe "open end up", to catch all the riches and luck from heaven. Others say you should wear it with the open end down so the riches can pour out on you. Call us greedy, but we didn't want to spill any -- so ours is a bit tipped to the side. Our necklace will hold all the luck you live and create -- and luck goes with everything, so you can wear it everyday!

Our gift to you... Time!

New Holiday Hours through December 24
Monday 10 to 6
Tuesday 10 to 6
Wednesday 10 to 8- OPEN LATE
Thursday 10 to 8- OPEN LATE
Friday 10 to 8 - OPEN LATE
Saturday 10 to 6
Sunday 1 to 5

December 24- 10 a.m. til 5 p.m.
Re-Open December 26 from 10 to 5 p.m.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Holiday Tip #1--- Use Coupons

See, it PAYS to get our emails!
**** Valid tonight starting at 6p.m. til Sunday at 5 p.m.! ****

6 ways to the Heart of a Hostess

As you travel for the holiday week, keep these hostess gifts in mind.
1. Keep her busy hands soft with Savannah Bee Company Royal Jelly, $23.99!
2. Great to serve with creme cheese. Bring a gift you can share with all-- Bella Cucina Marinated Onions and ChickPeas, $8.99
3. Nutty Girls' (sm 7.99, lg 15.99) Packaging and Flavorful Taste are sure to show you are NUTS for her hospitality!
4. Get a jump on Santa and give her kitchen a touch of Christmas with our Pomegranite Dish Soap, $15.99
5. Give the gift of the season with these festive Vintage Turkey Dishtowels, $8.99.
6. Sweet and Savory, Stonewall Kitchen Apple Jalepeno Jam ($8.99)is a nice surprise for any cook.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Great Teacher Gifts

$20 for three personalized pads!
Must order by December 10.

Visit to view all styles and fonts.

Give the Gift of Ease!

Don't forget to to order your holiday gift baskets!
Our most popular are:
Fruit Bouquet
$25, $40, $65
Coffee & Chocolate
$30, $50, $75
Snack Attack
$30, $50, $75
$30, $50, $75
email us at or call us at 639.2015 today to order. Discounts given for bulk.

A reason to GIVE THANKS!

Open 10 til 6, Friday after Thanksgiving!
We will be samplin lots of goodies and giving back with every purchase!