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Exactly one year ago we signed the contacts to buy the vintage store that would become the new home for Red Velvet. It was an emotional day full of support, excitement and nervous butterflies. The process had happened extremely quickly and up until we were handed the keys we didn't want to get our hopes up too much. Buying a business can be extremeley complicated (much like buying a home) so we were nervous that something would happen in the last minute. Well, everything worked out and we were the new owners of a gigantic, fully stocked store. 

I remember it being a scary time. We had big plans for remodeling and making it our own, but having never done anything on that level before I was a little nervous. You can see the makeover we gave the store over the next three months Here and Here. Our goal was to open at the end of October, so we had three full months to remodel the store. We had a very small budget and tons of friends pitching in... It was a season I'll never forget. 

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The morning after we officially purchased the store I left for LA to do a Renegade with Emma and help her move home. A few months before we bought the store Emma had made the choice to move back to Missouri to start her Sweet Shoppe in the location of our new store. I could never describe how happy this made me and how incredibly special it was to drive across half the country and help her move. Since the day she moved home, it's been the best year of my life. 

Anyhow, the next few months flew by. Jeremy enlisted all of his guy friends to help move and build new displays. We filled our days with countless projects. I shared a few little peeks here on my blog and we spent about eight to ten hours every day working on the store remodel. In our 'free time' Emma and I were also conceptualizing the new website and our future plans for Red Velvet (like a first dress collection).

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Our family and friends were so supportive. We couldn't have done it without them. Having them share our joy made it so much sweeter! It felt like we were all living the dream together. When I watched Rachel build the children's section, it made me so happy that this was something we could all share! 

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Here are the tags we designed from our family photos. We use these in the shop every day! 

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And here are a few peeks at one of the many photoshoots we did last year. We built this little backdrop in our studio right behind the store. It's nice having it all in one building. Sarah is our main model lady... good thing she's marrying our little brother! 

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Hope's note was one of my favorite 'store warming' gifts! 

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It honestly doesn't seem possible that all these wonderful things have happened in just one year. The store opening was magical and surreal... a little girl's dream! Getting engaged and married... I don't even have words. Seeing Emma fall in love was another highlight of the year. 

There were countless other memories that made this the best year I've ever lived. It started with so much uncertainty and fear. I am so incredibly thankful for our friends, family and for my blog readers for so much encouragement. We're living our dream and I know this coming year will be amazing too..... lovelove, elsie  (some photos by Float Away Studios)

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