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Outside the Box: Valentine’s Day Collaboration

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Poet Silvi Alcivar set up a small desk and typewriter outside the Love & Luxe boutique
to write love poems for couples on Valentine’s Day.

Love & Luxe, San Francisco, CA

When Betsy Barron founded Love & Luxe on San Francisco’s Valencia Street in 2011, she wanted collaboration with small studio designers and other local businesses to be an important characteristic of the store’s personality. Valentine’s Day in the store has captured that philosophy over the past few years, having featured pop-up shops for a local chocolatier, florist and perfumery, as well as a poet writing love poems for clients. — T R A C E    S H E L T O N

This article originally appeared in the January 2015 edition of INDESIGN.

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INTERVIEW WITH Betsy Barron, owner

How successful has the event been?

“Each one has been incredibly successful at creating a festive atmosphere. The store was full all day long. For us, Valentine’s Day isn’t the biggest holiday for jewelry, but it is one to share the love and promote the store. It’s an inexpensive flowers and chocolate kind of holiday, so we thought we would provide those things. I love to throw a party. ‘Love’ is in our name, and we really do live like that.”

Outside the Box: Valentine’s Day Collaboration
Dandelion Chocolate has supported Love & Luxe with specialty chocolates, including one variety in the shape of a gem.

How did you work with the other vendors?

“We let everyone do their own pop-up shop. We didn’t take a cut, we just let them do their thing. One year, we had Dandelion Chocolate come in; they were a factory that didn’t have a retail location, but they were building one on our street. Now they are a huge business. We had them do a chocolate in the shape of a gem, only distributed through us. The florist I worked with was a customer, and she had a group of fashion photographers and designers called Locally Grown Weddings. They brought my jewelry in to use on their photo shoots, so it was a give-back situation. Last year, we had a pop-up perfumery in the store that stayed for about five months. We promoted it for Valentine’s Day and had people picking up perfume, flowers and jewelry from us.”

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How did customers react to the poet?

“People purchased directly from her. They tell her a story about who they want to give the poem to, and she types an amazing poem on her typewriter and wraps it in a bottle. Having Silvi on the sidewalk made people stop and say, ‘What is this store?’ This year, we’re going to pay for her to come and write free poems for our customers.”

How did you find businesses to collaborate with?

“I’ve lived in this city for 25 years and know a lot of people. Most of these vendors were new friends that I called and asked if they wanted to be part of it. Everyone jumps at the opportunity.”

How has the event paid off for the store?

“Every year, we get more customer loyalty. The first year was about getting the word out, and now it’s building and maybe eventually Valentine’s Day will be a big jewelry buying holiday for us. We hope if we keep doing these fun events, that will happen.”

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Sales associate Maricha Genovese paints X’s, O’s, and hearts on the sidewalk outside the boutique

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SPONSORED VIDEO

Wilkerson Testimonials | Sollberger’s

Going Out of Business Is an Emotional Journey. Wilkerson Is There to Make It Easier.

Jaki Cowan, the owner of Sollberger’s in Ridgeland, MS, decided the time was right to close up shop. The experience, she says, was like going into the great unknown. There were so many questions about the way to handle the store’s going-out-of-business sale. Luckily for Cowan, Wilkerson made the transition easier and managed everything, from marketing to markdowns.

“They think of everything that you don’t have the time to think of,” she says of the Wilkerson team that was assigned to manage the sale. And it was a total success, with financial goals met by Christmas with another sale month left to go.

Wilkerson even had a plan to manage things while Covid-19 restrictions were still in place. This included limiting the number of shoppers, masking and taking temperatures upon entrance. “We did everything we could to make the staff and public feel as safe as possible.”

Does she recommend Wilkerson to other retailers thinking of retiring, liquidating or selling excess merchandise? Absolutely. “If you are considering going out of business, it’s obviously an emotional journey. But truly rest assured that you’re in good hands with Wilkerson.”

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Outside the Box: Valentine’s Day Collaboration

Published

on

Poet Silvi Alcivar set up a small desk and typewriter outside the Love & Luxe boutique
to write love poems for couples on Valentine’s Day.

Love & Luxe, San Francisco, CA

When Betsy Barron founded Love & Luxe on San Francisco’s Valencia Street in 2011, she wanted collaboration with small studio designers and other local businesses to be an important characteristic of the store’s personality. Valentine’s Day in the store has captured that philosophy over the past few years, having featured pop-up shops for a local chocolatier, florist and perfumery, as well as a poet writing love poems for clients. — T R A C E    S H E L T O N

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This article originally appeared in the January 2015 edition of INDESIGN.


INTERVIEW WITH Betsy Barron, owner

How successful has the event been?

“Each one has been incredibly successful at creating a festive atmosphere. The store was full all day long. For us, Valentine’s Day isn’t the biggest holiday for jewelry, but it is one to share the love and promote the store. It’s an inexpensive flowers and chocolate kind of holiday, so we thought we would provide those things. I love to throw a party. ‘Love’ is in our name, and we really do live like that.”

Outside the Box: Valentine’s Day Collaboration
Dandelion Chocolate has supported Love & Luxe with specialty chocolates, including one variety in the shape of a gem.

How did you work with the other vendors?

Advertisement

“We let everyone do their own pop-up shop. We didn’t take a cut, we just let them do their thing. One year, we had Dandelion Chocolate come in; they were a factory that didn’t have a retail location, but they were building one on our street. Now they are a huge business. We had them do a chocolate in the shape of a gem, only distributed through us. The florist I worked with was a customer, and she had a group of fashion photographers and designers called Locally Grown Weddings. They brought my jewelry in to use on their photo shoots, so it was a give-back situation. Last year, we had a pop-up perfumery in the store that stayed for about five months. We promoted it for Valentine’s Day and had people picking up perfume, flowers and jewelry from us.”

How did customers react to the poet?

“People purchased directly from her. They tell her a story about who they want to give the poem to, and she types an amazing poem on her typewriter and wraps it in a bottle. Having Silvi on the sidewalk made people stop and say, ‘What is this store?’ This year, we’re going to pay for her to come and write free poems for our customers.”

How did you find businesses to collaborate with?

“I’ve lived in this city for 25 years and know a lot of people. Most of these vendors were new friends that I called and asked if they wanted to be part of it. Everyone jumps at the opportunity.”

How has the event paid off for the store?

Advertisement

“Every year, we get more customer loyalty. The first year was about getting the word out, and now it’s building and maybe eventually Valentine’s Day will be a big jewelry buying holiday for us. We hope if we keep doing these fun events, that will happen.”

Sales associate Maricha Genovese paints X’s, O’s, and hearts on the sidewalk outside the boutique

Advertisement

SPONSORED VIDEO

Wilkerson Testimonials | Sollberger’s

Going Out of Business Is an Emotional Journey. Wilkerson Is There to Make It Easier.

Jaki Cowan, the owner of Sollberger’s in Ridgeland, MS, decided the time was right to close up shop. The experience, she says, was like going into the great unknown. There were so many questions about the way to handle the store’s going-out-of-business sale. Luckily for Cowan, Wilkerson made the transition easier and managed everything, from marketing to markdowns.

“They think of everything that you don’t have the time to think of,” she says of the Wilkerson team that was assigned to manage the sale. And it was a total success, with financial goals met by Christmas with another sale month left to go.

Wilkerson even had a plan to manage things while Covid-19 restrictions were still in place. This included limiting the number of shoppers, masking and taking temperatures upon entrance. “We did everything we could to make the staff and public feel as safe as possible.”

Does she recommend Wilkerson to other retailers thinking of retiring, liquidating or selling excess merchandise? Absolutely. “If you are considering going out of business, it’s obviously an emotional journey. But truly rest assured that you’re in good hands with Wilkerson.”

Promoted Headlines

Most Popular