When did the shop open?
How did you choose the location?
During a drive we happened to pass the premises and noticed that it was still empty after a year. We thought it would make a perfect antiques shop as it had adequate parking and two floors with plenty of space. We phoned the owner that evening and secured the property – just in time, or it might have become a memorial shop selling coffins (that business got in touch with the solicitors the next day).
How is the shop set up?
It’s a fantastic size, solidly built, wind- and water-tight. That’s all you need really. Inside there isn’t a design concept.
We’ve just made the layout easy for customers to move around without knocking things over. Nothing worse than having to sidle sideways down the aisles.
How has the passing trade changed?
We cannot be specific regarding customer visits, as it can change dramatically from one week to the other. It has definitely gone up over the past four years as more people hear about us.
One shop you like or admire?
I absolutely adore is the hair salon Roots, which is attached to us and run by our extremely talented daughter Carly.
The first thing you do at the shop in the morning and last thing in the afternoon?
First thing is to remove cages, put the signs out, switch the lights on, have a general tidy-up, check messages and prepare to enjoy the rest of the day.
We do have a closing time for each day, but sometimes we will stay open later if it is a nice evening or if we have customers in the shop – we’re in no rush to get them out of the door.
One change you would make given an unlimited budget?
We have a container at the side of the shop but I would love to build an extension.
I’d also love to have electronic front doors. It would make it so much easier when taking in large items of furniture.
The Merchant 38 Greig Street, Inverness, IV3 5PX