from concept to hardscape

So vendors “What is next?”

Hello!  For those that have completed your questionnaire, I thank you for your interest.

I just want to take a quick minute, introduce and tell you a little about myself and give you a status update about what is going on at The Collaborative Shoppe (TCS) which is a brand new business opening in the downtown Gainesville area.

My name is Melissa, I am the proprietor of TCS, I am a Veteran of the Air Force and currently I am employed at the VA hospital where I make sure we have supplies to support the Veterans.  

When I am not at my “day job” I am a creative – most recently I have been teaching painted sign & chalk classes, mostly wooden signs with chalk paint/paste. While the classes can be 100% mobile, I had a space at the Good Life Market Place (TGLMP) in Alachua, which recently closed. One of the things I realized about the TGLMP was in order to be successful it needed a better location – so earlier this year I started out to find a shared studio space for my classes in Gainesville, not finding a match for me I built on the concept of a co-op business but make it so much more than what I was a part of in Alachua.

I have had my eye on several really great locations in Gainesville, however I feel like we are VERY close to having the best of everything I was hoping to find.  As I mentioned on your invitation we are finalizing the lease, never did I ever think it would take SO LONG to do this one thing, but I am hoping everyone can be patient while we finish up this process – it will be worth the wait!  Originally my concept was to have a large covered patio adjacent to a retail space for weekend markets… but when I came across an opportunity to have several thousand more square feet INSIDE I let the covered space idea go, I think everyone would appreciate air conditioning instead 🙂

So “What is next?” you may wonder:  I will know exactly what the space pricing will look like for monthly vendors soon- a monthly vendor is someone that is paying for space on a monthly basis, it may be wall space, table space, wall/table combo or maybe your space is one of the available rooms that you can use as a production studio and/or sales space (there are 4 or 5 available).  Monthly vendors do not need to be present to have sales – and when TCS processes sales for you there will be a SMALL percentage deducted from your sale to cover processing fees.  Most places charge 25-30% however I want you to collect as much of your sales as possible so it will be around 10%. Also, if you ARE present, you are welcome to process YOUR OWN sales and keep 100% !

Every monthly vendor will be able to have at least 1 monthly pop-up event; of course everyone does better when we combine our efforts so when a vendor is having their pop-up get together an co-host events – you will not be limited to one event!

In addition to the Monthly Vendors, if space allows we will have table space for weekend makers markets and event vendors.  They will be able to come in and set up a small table space for specific events. These spaces are secondary to the Monthly vendors and Event vendors will need to be present at their tables during events and process their own sales. 

The Collaborative Shoppe will have a small lounge area, coffee & wine bar and I hope to add some outdoor seating by the end of summer.  We will have a LARGE workshop space for DIY classes for painting, jewelry and anything one may want to teach.  We will have a schedule for events and advertise this to the community. We will be a part of the Monthly Art Walk that Gainesville holds the last Friday of each month – again, it would be good to be available to demonstrate your items however you need not be present to generate sales revenue.

The next step after the lease is to hold a VIP OPEN HOUSE event – this will be only for applicants interested in being a part of the Collaborative Shoppe.  We would ask that you bring a sampler of your work and a small bio/list about products you make/sell so that TCS board can review everyone’s items – In order for everyone to succeed, we will not have 3 makers selling the same type of product.  For example we have 3 parties interested and they all make handmade bar soap, 2 of the 3 may not be able to have their bar soap in the shop, it is my hopes that they make other products such as oils, lotions, bath bombs etc. so that each of the 3 may have their niche in TCS.  All samples will be returned to the owner after the vetting process is complete.  It is my hope that we open for business August 2018!

I really appreciate everyone’s interest, please feel free to email me any concerns/ideas – TCS is going to be an open forum for ideas and with that I am sure we will grow and bring a new concept to the Gainesville community.  Please LIKE and SHARE and of the social media pages:

Thank you very much, I look forward to meeting you!

Melissa Winko

The Collaborative Shoppe


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