If you couldn’t tell by my last post, I am pretty happy in my current job. This is a first for me, and so this new contentment has led me to put my tea shop plans on a slight hold. I’m still planning and getting inspired, but without a timeline or rush to find a location or do a pop-up. This week I ventured out to a tea store where they give tea-related classes in Danville, KY. It was such a cute town, very historical, and I took a class on getting creative with your iced teas. I really kind of fell in love with the idea of playing with iced tea flavors, and Danville, so I plan to revisit soon for a full weekend stay!
My husband and I have talked about how we would be able to finance a tea shop, and honestly we have a fairly solid plan in place, but basically need to find the right property we’re looking for. It would also be smart to pay off the majority of our debt first, so that will take some time (3-5 years) as well, so this is my new timeline before I aim to go full-force into running my own business.
I go back and forth on how allergy-friendly my future tea shop will be. I only have a peanut allergy, and I’ve been able to find safe brands of tree nuts for myself that aren’t processed on shared equipment with peanuts, but I know many out there are allergic to tree nuts and would not be able to enjoy my tea shop if I use them or don’t watch for cc (cross-contamination). My gut tells me I need to go fully nut-free, for simplicity of branding and for my customers, even though it is not the easiest route for myself.
I appreciate that our local nut-free bakery (with the exception of coconut), Annie Mays, is also soy-free and gluten-free. I try to limit my soy intake, as I’m vegetarian and a woman, but I don’t need to be gluten-free. It’s nice that they encompass a variety of people with food restrictions, and I’ve seen dairy-free items in there as well. I do want to have gluten-free and vegan options with both being common intolerances, and I hope I’d be able to get some of those from the wonderful Annie Mays! I really need to do an informative interview with them there, but I’ve been nervous to reach out and inquire, since they’re so busy!
When going into writing this post I was going to ask if my future business should be only peanut-free, or fully nut-free, but it seems by writing this out I determined that myself! I would love any feedback you have about opening a sit-down tea shop… what hours you’d like to see, the aesthetic environment you’d like to enjoy tea in, if you’d like coffee/espresso as well, if you would order savory food or be okay with only sweets, what holidays you may want to visit on, who you would come in with, any food restrictions you have, etc.
One other aspect of running your own business that really excites me is you can do whatever you please with it! I’d love for it to have an art gallery incorporated in some way, for it to be environmentally-friendly and sustainable, and to only use cruelty-free products. We have been transitioning to be 100% cruelty-free at our home, and we designed our wedding to be sustainable and make sure everything was biodegradable. Small changes like this can make a big impact, and I love the idea of supporting the environment, animals, and community.
I’ll leave you with a few of my favorite inspiration photos to dwell on:
XO Enjoy the Spring weather that has finally arrived!