For several years my husband, our son, and I talked about having a store to sell our wooden products directly to customers. Last year it was built and finally this year it opened. We've had customers every day. Some people are just looking over this new store, but many have bought. Even customers from Prague and Vienna have visited. One of our neighbors often stops by to buy several small items.
The store is named after my mother-in-law. Rina's Carpentry Store, or, in Czech, Riny Truhlarsky Obchod. Rina was interested in all aspects of what we do, particularly loving the forests. Many times our forester took her to visit one forest or another. She actually helped in the carpenter shop sometimes when she was 86 years old!
Our products are all made of wood from our forests using mainly spruce, birch, pine and beech. These trees were planted by my husband's grandfather after WWI. A large section in the store is devoted to slats for fences or balconies. There are different profiles and varying sizes. These are very popular items. Gates may also be constructed for customers.
Popular for gifts, or perhaps for remodeling, are shelving units with open slats, or with solid shelves. Smaller display shelves in varying sizes and designs hang on walls, holding knick-knacks, spices, or even cleaning supplies. The woman who runs the store asked me to provide her with some knick-knacks and mugs. A son-in-law in the USA keeps his Becherovoka on one! From the hooks below the shelves, I have seen soup ladles or aprons or attractive coffee mugs hanging on different people's shelves
Several smaller items can be snatched up for gifts – for others, or for yourself! There are two types of knife blocks, wine racks of various sizes, key/coat hangers and a good number of do-nothings. (Do you wonder what this is?)
Doors are good sellers. We have some standard types and are able fulfill special orders. Many doors have glass inserts and/or are lined in wainscoting.
It's really fun to decide on a cupboard or chair or coffee table and have the carpenter make something to order for you. I've done it and love this. Late this winter we made a couple – I guess you might call them freeform – corner cupboards for our dining room.
If you want to visit our store, carpenter shop, or forests look on our website [in Czech] for directions. www.plotovky-homolka.cz Or, e-mail me: firstname.lastname@example.org. Maybe the summer will warm up, and we'll drink our tea together on benches on the lawn!