I will get, assuming the USA does not implode in the next few years (a distinct possibility, unfortunately) a small teacher’s pension. I’d like more money than that to live on in my “golden years.” It won’t be a luxurious amount unless I can supplement it with some part-time income. I COULD continue to teach, but who in their right mind wants to continue doing that? That is like voluntarily joining the line for physical and mental abuse, as discount prices! Besides, there are only a few countries that allow older folks to teach, so as I age, my options shrink considerably for teaching. I’m wanting something ELSE.
What I WANT to do is start a co-operative business with some like-minded people, so that nobody has to tend the shop full-time. Each co-owner can work one or two days a week, and enjoy the profits from sales made every day. Plus, not having to mind the shop every day creates free time for people to create, either in an in-store workshop, or at home in their own studio. I’d like a varied sort of co-worker/co-owner: perhaps someone who grows herbs or fresh produce to sell, perhaps someone who makes soaps and bath products, perhaps a furniture maker, some artists and craftspeople, a potter, someone who does fiber arts….a range of people means a range of products that can be offered for sale in the shop.
I need a PLACE to do this. Location is paramount. I don’t want to pay rent on a store, because I don’t want to have to make the choice to prop up a business either at the start, or later on during an inevitable sales slump. I need to own the property. Or, ONE of us in the group needs to own it. Ideally, it would be in a location appropriate for a specialty shop of this sort. A touristy sort of spot would be ideal.
Then, I need some FRIENDS. I need some friends who do these sorts of things as their hobbies, or as their living, or as their part-time jobs – and they make quality things that people will buy. I don’t mind having some of them who just contribute stuff to sell, those who are working a full-time job and can’t volunteer to take some days at the store, to help them get established. AND, I think 15-20% of sales is a good commission for the store to take to pay for electricity, seeing as how it is my intention to own the store location outright.
Plus, co-owners could teach classes in the shop if they would like to do that: painting, making jewelry, crochet, knitting, sewing, etc. Some people want to learn how to make their own, and are willing to pay for that privilege. I think we might could accommodate that!
I expect it would start slow, and grow accordingly…which is just fine by me, especially if I live on an upper floor of the place. That would be ideal. It is something to plan for, anyway! Everything starts with a DREAM, right??