A Crafts Community For Craft Ideas & DIY Projects - Craftster.org
Help | About | Contact | Press | Advertise | Cookie Policy | Terms | Site Map
Welcome, Guest.
Please login or register.
Jingle bells, jingle bells, it's time to show off your TREE!  Show off your flocking and garland with us this year.
Total Members: 314,823
Currently Running With Scissors:
159 Guests and 3 Users
Home Craftster Community Crafting Articles Craft Tutorials My Craftster Crafting Calendar City Guides Craft Shop

Pages: [1]
Jump to page:
  Show Images Only     Send this topic  |  Print  |  Bookmark  
Topic: LaunchPad recycled furniture  (Read 2018 times)
Tags for this thread:  Add new tag
Share the love... Pin it Submit to reddit
« on: August 08, 2005 04:00:58 PM »

Hey everyone,

I need some help from all you crafty Arizonans (phoenicians, specifically) in making my dream a reality.

I've already brought this up in the Business Ventures thread to get help picking a name, and now I want to bring it back home Smiley

I live in the heart of Tempe, and I've lived all over the Phoenix metro area. One thing I've noticed is that if you're a college student or a young professional, it's difficult to find affordable, stylish furniture.
You've got two options, basically - IKEA or thrift/yard sales.

IKEA is great for basics, but when I was walking out of my old apartment in Tempe, I happened to see FIVE ikea lamps, identical to mine, through various windows and on porches. I figured, if they have my lamp, they probably have my sofa, my coffee table, my dresser, and everything that I got at IKEA.

Thrift shopping for great pieces is fun, but it's just not practical for most people. You need a truck, a place to work on your finds, and the time and patience to invest in finding that perfect piece. Most people give up and take the IKEA route.

So, I thought, why not take the work out of it? Why isn't there a store where they go to yard sales, thrift stores, estate sales, and their customers (trade-ins), pick out the great pieces, clean them up and apply a little style, and resell them for a still-low price, and even deliver to apartment dwellers with bikes and tiny cars? I'd shop there and I know a lot of people who would. Sort of... a Buffalo Exchange for furniture and housewares.

I happen to have the great fortune of working as a graphic artist for a valley business that specializes in training entrepreneurs. We're encouraged to "walk the talk" and eventually leave to start our own endeavors, should we desire. LaunchPad is what I want to do, and I have the assistance and support to forge ahead and do that.

However, I think all great things are created from the community up, so this seems like a good place to start Smiley
I have a few questions:

1. Am I re-inventing the wheel? Can you think of anything else in the Valley like this? I'm aware of places like Rezurrection Gallery, etc - but it's a different feel from what I think I need to provide. This is clean, inexpensive, modern furniture. No rotating beds or velvet Elvis here - retro influences, while fun, will be sparingly applied.

2. Would you shop at a place like this?

3. Would you work at a place like this? We'd need people who are interior wizards - jacks-of-all-trades who can work with wood, simple reupholstery, etc. Your schedule would be self-directed and your creativity would be honored and nurtured.

4. Here's the biggie: I know, from a banker or a venture capitalist's perspective, that the management team is the biggest piece. I've got great ideas, but without real experience at the helm it'll go nowhere. I'll need a partner, and I'll trade half of the remaining shares of the business (after investors) to compensate. Can you think of someone (maybe yourself?) with good retail store experience, great business acumen, and a desire to branch out and try something new?

I hope this didn't sound too hokey or too much like an ad. I've been a lurker for some time, and I know the Craftster crowd would be a great resource for questions like this.

Your help is much appreciated! At the very least, you'll be helping to create a cool Valley location to get awesome stuff for your home.

Thank you!

« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2005 07:58:39 PM »

melanie - i think you've got a great idea here. i am a local craftster who also has some good connections to people who are planning businesses. this sounds right up my alley, i'm  involved (low-key) with a few other local businesses right now, but can definitely take on more. please shoot me an email, i'd really like to talk to you about this.
« Reply #2 on: August 09, 2005 10:05:26 AM »

You may want to talk to the Rezurrection Gallery people, they are closing in September and moving thier business online-only. Maybe you can take over their space? Or at lease get some information about the market there. Location can really make or break a business. Maybe south Scottsdale is better than Tempe?

I would think that there would be a market for more unique but reasonably priced contemporary furniture for those that want a step up from Ikea, but don't want to pay for Denmarket.

My Etsy Shop: http://chriswass.etsy.com
The Phoenix United Craft Society: http://www.phucs.com

"To make people free is the aim of art, therefore art for me is the science of freedom." -Joseph Beuys
« Reply #3 on: August 09, 2005 02:22:29 PM »

Avocado, I emailed you Smiley

Chris, what a morsel of information! It's a perfect part of town, for a Tempe shop anyhow, and perhaps a little friendly chat will reveal more about why they're closing up shop?

Thank you both so much - it's becoming more and more real to me with everyone who offers support.
Tutorial Contributor

Offline Offline

Posts: 351
Joined: 01-Jul-2004

View Profile WWW
« Reply #4 on: August 09, 2005 03:55:04 PM »

Dear Melanie,

It is obvious from your post that you are intelligent, you communicate well, you are creative and you are doing all of the right things to start a business.   Best of luck to you.  Please keep us posted.  I don't have any specific advice or tips, I wish I did....but believe me, these AZ Craftsters are a brilliant bunch.  You can trust them.  Take care.

Laura K

« Reply #5 on: August 09, 2005 05:32:25 PM »


I am blushing sixty shades of red right now!
Thank you for the kind words Smiley The support is wonderful, especially as I wonder if I am giving up the security of my job for a crazy lark!

I am, however, a bona-fide expert on crazy larks and this one just feels different.

Thank you so much! I feel like I'll be relying on the friendship and knowledge of these boards quite a lot as I build this dream up - I'm glad I can!

« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2005 01:38:08 PM »

    I think that is a great idea for a store. I am probably your perfect target audience, since I am a 22 yo college student, who lives w/a roommate. I usually depend on furniture that can be given to me and my wall art consists of posters or stuff I pull out of magazines.  I always want to go to thrift stores or garage sales to find cool home furnishings, but I have no air in my car and don't even know where to start looking. Even if I did find something I liked, I wouldn't know how to fix it up (although my goal is to learn how to).
    Good Luck and let us all know if you need any more help.

I miss you, but I haven't met you yet.
« Reply #7 on: August 11, 2005 12:32:57 PM »

Here's another crazy idea- don't know if it fits into your business plan or not--

Maybe it could be an open studio type setup where one could take a class on how to revamp furniture or rent on-site tools.

My thought is that someone who wants to DIY and has limited budget (such as college students) may not be able to pay enough to make a profit on how much design and thought you put into each piece especially if you don't make a hundred of something. So maybe if you can make customers of people who want to DIY along with those who want you to do it for them.

I would probably shop for ideas at this type of store, but might come in for a class or to rent tool time for a project that I bring in myself.

Good luck on your business.
Threads you might like:
Pages: [1] Jump to page:
  Send this topic  |  Print  |  Bookmark  
Jump to:  

only results with images
include swap threads
advanced search

Latest Blog Articles
Tute Tuesday: Holiday Lantern
Handmade Holiday Gift Guide 2017: Danish Heart Basket
O, Christmas Tree

Support Craftster
Become a
Friend of Craftster

Buy Craftster Swag
Buy Craft Supplies

Craftster heartily thanks the following peeps...

Follow Craftster...

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.11 | SMF © 2006-2009, Simple Machines LLC
SimplePortal 2.3.5 © 2008-2012, SimplePortal
Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!

Copyright ©2003-2017, Craftster.org an Internet Brands company.