The Door reopens at The Wendy House
I spoke with Wendy Wright from The Wendy House in Maidenhead about her specialist boutique business and how it fared over the Covid-19 lockdowns. Wendy is friendly and vivacious and is the epitome of buying from a small business because of who the people are, not just what they sell. If you like Wendy, you will probably like what she has on offer in her unique Wendy House shop. I went and took photos of the business to help highlight some of the amazing things she has. These photographs can do more than simply show the products, they will help convey the overall feel and mood, along with elevate the look of the Wendy House in general. We spoke about the success she has found during lockdown, but also how hard she worked to get it. Nothing comes easy, but Wendy makes it look easy with her enthusiastic energy and personality, which she shares with her VIP group on Facebook.
Tell me a bit about your business and how it worked before Covid-19 entered our lives.
I run a home boutique selling clothing, gifts and stationery. I left a job of over 20 years and started The Wendy House nail salon from home, selling a few accessories which has grown to where it is now 7 years later a boutique that could grace any High Street in my opinion. I certainly have enough stock for it! 4 years ago in June my space was built above our double garage and that was when I really was able to see The Wendy House grow. The shop was open on Wednesdays, Fridays and an occasional Saturday, plus appointments were available at other times.
What happened to your business during each of the government shutdowns? Were you able to keep serving customers? How did things change?
From day one of lockdown one, during the November lockdown and finally the current one I went to selling via my Facebook VIP closed group and my son helped me set up a website. It is not a big part of my sales though they all come via orders from posts on social media and an occasional extra one when people collect as I have set up some stock at my collection point!
Have there been any unexpected changes that have worked out well?
People making appointments has been the best thing I introduced. In the last year the times I have been allowed to be open you must have booked an appointment so this way I always knew when people were coming and didn't have a day thinking will anyone come? I have always had events and these were always drop in but now I arrange tickets via Eventbrite with limited numbers per time slot.
When are you reopening your business for customers? What safety precautions have you installed that you tell me about to help reassure people?
12th April and if you want to keep socially distanced the best thing is you can arrange your own appointments so it is just you or with a friend. I will be providing sanitiser and still be wearing masks inside.
Is there anything else you would like to tell me or others?
I am not a pushy sales lady, don't get me wrong I am often described as a temptress but that's because my customers love so much of what I sell and all I do is show them what I have. I would rather someone book in to visit the shop and buy nothing than worry about coming and feeling "Oooh I will have to buy." I consider myself like any other shop, you can pop in to browse with no obligation EVER. Sadly Maidenhead has very few unique shops and I would love more people to know I am here and see what I have to offer. I think I sell good quality and have something for lots of peoples budget.
What will be your opening hours when you open after April 12 and how can people best find you/contact you?
When I open on the 12th, the first couple of weeks will be appointments but in truth I am still trying to decide how to move forward. I am thinking that at some point I won't be available on Mondays and that I make Wednesday a pop in day. If it is busy that day customers may have to wait outside where I will also have some stock in my undercover area below the shop!! All other days will be by appointment when you can come on your own or with friends as ladies love to shop together.
To make an appointment, please call me on 07818 407356 or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. For social media I'm on Instagram as @lovethewendyhouse and Facebook www.facebook.com/lovethewendyhouse. However, the best place to really get involved is my closed group which always has a fun element to it and is very friendly. To join here is the link: https://bit.ly/2QXMWzr
Thanks Wendy, it was great to meet you and have a peek inside your treasure trove of delights!
If you have a business in Maidenhead or elsewhere in Berkshire or Buckinghamshire and you need new high-quality photos, get in touch with me, Andrea at A+ Photography. High quality images stop people from scrolling past you on social media, the right images get people to find out more. Great photos can show you as a premium business where people can experience the best. Your website needs to have bespoke photography of you and your business on it. I can help you get those amazing images to make you stand out from the crowd.