Before Kristin Stock moved her business, Artzy Haven, into the building at 2422 13th St., it was TC Home Furnishings, a furniture store, Ron’s Furniture before that, and before even that, a JCPenney.
While Stock’s creative crafting business is new to the building, she isn’t, as she has memories of shopping at the JCPenney back in the day.
“I remember coming into JCPenney, buying clothes and going downstairs to buy dress shirts for my husband,” Stock said. “This was JCPenney, I came in here all the time.”
All of those businesses either closed or relocated, paving the way for Stock to come in and do the thing that she wanted to do when she bought Artzy Haven in 2018: Expand her business space. That has been achieved in spades. With the move Monday over to its new home, Stock now has an entire storefront with which to place her entire inventory at the front, instead of having to move some things to the back.
“It’s really going to give us the opportunity to breathe,” Stock said. “We have so much more space. We can take our product and showcase it and people can see it. There’s not nooks and crannies that things are hanging on. I feel like we can showcase the products that we have.”
The move from their prior home of Park Plaza was an interesting one. Plans were already underway to move when the basement of the store at Park Plaza flooded due to a water main break in November. Because a good deal of her product was at their crafting exhibition at the Ramada Hotel and River’s Edge Convention Center, she had to make plans to find a spot to put her stuff.
“We had a huge room where we stored everything,” Stock said. “We had most of our stuff at the Ramada. We lucked out. Our stuff wasn’t in Park Plaza.”
She ended up moving her inventory to a temporary location that was also housing her many events. That temporary location is still in service, at least for now, but the parties are without alcohol consumption. A temporary liquor license is in the works for the old place, while a permanent one is being worked on for the new store.
The studio space that had been a part of the old location is currently being rebuilt in the new one, part of many things that will be an improvement on what they had in Park Plaza.
“I cannot wait (to see the new studio),” Stock said. “I cannot wait to have the studio back over here when we’re all under one roof. I was counting the hours to come here just so we can have that elbow room, that breathing space, and to be able to have that studio space downstairs is going to be amazing.”
There will be things that people miss about working in Park Plaza, which is located right across from Frankfort Square. Indeed, there were window areas where people could take a look outside and watch the activities going on at the square, from Columbus Days to Lawnchairs on the Square to the Christmas Stroll.
“It was fun to sit right off of Frankfort Square and watch the activities,” said Lori Clausen, an employee at Artzy Haven. “The people who walked by, we got to know who had dogs. At the same time, you saw a community; we got to see everything come to life.”
But the employees feel like they have found a good place to work in a bigger spot. No longer will they have to sift through inventory in the back to find something for their customers; they can just find it on the retail floor.
“It was finding things that we had that we forgot (about),” Clausen said. “It was being able to spread things out and seeing the look on the scrap-bookers faces when they come in and they (say), ‘Oh my gosh, you have this!’ Yeah, we did, we forgot! It’s been finding all of these things and being amazed that we can spread it out.”
The facility is still a work in progress, with a liquor license and studio still in the works for later this year. But Stock is happy to see how her loyal customers have reacted to the move. It hasn’t been an easy process, but she’s now in a place that reflects their status as a thriving company.
“It’s been fantastic,” Stock said. “It has made us so happy. My staff and myself, we worked so hard to get this perfect and make it something that would be fun and a great space. So far, everyone has been blown away by the room, the lighting (and) the atmosphere. It feels like home to us now.”
Zach Roth is a reporter for The Columbus Telegram. Reach him via email at email@example.com.
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