Farmgirl Pickings & KH Limited is a quaint boutique in the small town of Yakima, Washington. They specialize in clothing, home decor, plants, gifts and DIY workshops. The popular workshops often sell out and offer customers an opportunity for a fun outing with friends and to accomplish a small project for their home.
Tell us a little bit about yourself. Who you are, where you’re from – all the important details.
My name is Cindy Reed, I am a wife and mother to two adult children. I have lived my entire life in a small agricultural community outside Yakima in the central part of Washington state. My business partner, Kim Hayes grew up in Yakima as well. She also is married with two grown children. Both of our families’ livelihoods involve farming & ranching and we are now country neighbors.
How did you get the idea for your business?
I was a vendor in a local antique mall. To help increase traffic I began to offer DIY classes once a month. Vintage/antique sales have lessened in our area so I began to expand into more of a boutique with clothing and gift type items. My good friend Kim and I joined forces and moved into a stand alone retail shop. Workshops are still a big part of what we do. We even do team building events.
Our business is Farmgirl Pickings (that’s me) & KH Limited (Kim). We are a vintage inspired boutique that features clothing, home décor, gifts, plants and cut flowers & DYI workshops. I began as a vendor in an antique shop and started having monthly DYI classes as a way of bringing new customers into the building. They were a popular addition and my following grew with regular attendees. After 3 years I decided it was time to expand into a stand alone business.
Manning the shop was the biggest roadblock because I help with farming on the family ranch and book keeping for our trucking company. I do not have the ability to be in the shop every day, all day. I have been blessed with a wonderful friend in Kim! We both share a love for flowers & plants, decorating and do it yourself projects. We decided to team up and Farmgirl Pickings & KH Limited was born! Our home is in a 1920’s farmhouse and we love hearing stories from our customers about attending Mrs. Britt’s Charm School in the building. I had a fair following when we started and Kim has been in retail for many years so those relationships were invaluable to start getting people through our door. We are also fortunate to be located next door to a very popular and similar shop. Workshops have been key to introducing new followers to the shop.
Were there any challenges you faced when getting your brick and mortar started? If so, how did you overcome them?
Starting a new business takes over your life. Kim and I both work the shop daily, order, invoice, plan events and workshops, promote on social media and keep up with book keeping at all hours. We love it but are excited that we are at the point where we can hire an employee to allow for some time to focus on needs at home. The balance has been the biggest hurdle to cross. We’re getting better at letting some things go, becoming more focused and leaving things at the shop so we can handle things at home.
Walk us through a typical day in the life of a business owner.
Well….the typical day in my life includes farming/ranching. This morning before the shop opened I was baling hay for 4 hours. (And there are the morning chores to make sure all the livestock are fed and happy.) When I get into the shop my day consists of receiving inventory, pricing, displaying, book keeping and office work and helping customers. My evenings are spent (after evening chores) with browsing for product to add to the shop, invoicing and organizing workshops, planning social media posts, and promotions.
What was your biggest ‘a-ha’ moment?
I guess that would be realizing how important our DIY workshops would be for our business. Ladies love them! It gives them a fun night out event and something useful for their home.
Well our workshop are usually sell outs. Product-wise, I would say our reasonably priced boutique clothing, inspirational items, Swig cups and tumblers, leather earrings, candle lines and our hand made soaps.
What sets your store apart?
What sets our store apart… our unique blend of gifts, clothing, workshops and customer service. Ladies walk into our shop and say “wow! This is dangerous!” Although we use some of the big vendors, what sets our look apart from others is the use of small and local vendors too.
Our shop offers a unique experience for our customers. We’re small, but full! We offer a wide range of women’s clothing, jewelry, baby, inspirational books & gifts, specialty foods, home décor, plants, flowers, vintage items and more. Our DIY workshops are an opportunity for an outing with friends and family, to learn a new skill, to accomplish a small project and to add a decorative feature to your home. We love that Darice has the supplies we need to make many of these projects happen! Our customers tell that us that our workshops are a great alternative to popular paint nights and they enjoy making something they can use to decorate their homes.
As we strive to continue to grow our business we see workshops are one of our strengths. As our name implies we are farmhouse style focused, be it my traditional to primitive slant to Kim’s English/ French Country feel. We look for small or local vendor for over 50% of our inventory to give our shop a unique style that sets us apart. Affordable price points are very important to us!
What’s one piece of advice you’d give someone who’s looking to start their own business?
Our advice to someone wanting to start their own business would be, find something that makes you different from the others, and that is true to you. You don’t want to be like everyone else. Find the things you love and have a passion for and it will show. Look for good mentors you can use as a sounding board, join social media groups where you can get ideas, build relationships and learn from others. Formulate a plan and then go for it!
What do you do for fun in your down time?
In my down time you can find me in a tractor, swather or working cattle on the family ranch. Some may call that more work, but its one of my passions and rarely seems like work. For hobbies I would say gardening, decorating and riding horseback in the mountains. Kim’s passion is Labrador Retrievers! (Well, any dog really but she has a special love for Labs.) She is involved in showing, and using her dogs for therapy work. She also enjoys gardening, decorating and her family spends their summers boating and winters skiing. She also is a huge part of her family’s farming operation and you will find her out in the orchard making things happen.
Are you a brick and mortar who wants to be featured in our Independent Business Spotlight? Send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org – we’re looking forward to meeting you!
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Darice was founded in 1954, by Pat Catan, an entrepreneur from humble beginnings who valued hard work and dedication. Today, Darice Inc. is a premier manufacturer and wholesale distributor in the craft industry.