Hi all, Newbie to the forum here. Sorry if this has been discussed at any length but everyone's situation is unique I suppose so I wanted to get some opinions on mine. I've been preparing and planning to open a frame shop in my town for the past 4-6 months. I live in a small(ish) town. The population is 13,000 and the region (the county I'm in and the other that is next to me) is about 200,00-250,00. The southern tier of New York (bordering PA). The biggest city is Binghamton, NY (pop. 45,000) about 10 miles away. Actually a pretty good art scene in Binghamton. It's a pretty low-income area overall though. I plan to also sell artwork, mostly my own, maybe other local artists on consignment. So a combo frame shop and gallery/boutique type of store. I might get bring in other handmade items from local artisans to help bring in more customers in to "browse". I'm not trying to get rich and I also live a very modest and frugal life. Anyone else have a frame shop in a low-income area where an art scene is not very present??? My reasons for opening: 1) I am an artist who went through art school (BFA of Photography). I'm passionate about art and culture and want to bring this to my town which does not have a thriving art scene. It exists but I dream that it could be much better. I also have no other career path in mind... 2) My grandmother was an artist in her 50s/60s/70s and also a picture framer. My mom worked for herr and they did this for about 25 years through the 1980s-2000s. She had a frame shop in her basement for that time and did pretty well. However she did not handle the business side that great (she cut a lot of deals for friends) and didn't make a whole lot in the end after paying my mom, her only employee. I've learned the trade from my mom and have been doing it on and off casually for about 4 years. I've inherited some (rather dated) equipment. The Morso moulding cutter being the most useful piece. Also a joint nailer that has seen better days but still works. 3) I retouch photos for a wedding photographer as my main gig. But this only takes up 20 hrs a week max. My schedule is open though. I'm going to continue to do this and run this little shop. 4) I have a very small retail space to use for cheap. $200/month, its SMALL, about 200 sq/ft, maybe a hair more. My father owns the property. So going with a commercial space is low risk in this regard. No room for doing this at home. Any framing I've done so far has been done in my mom's basement which is dark and damp and somewhat dirty . My major concerns: 1) My region is pretty low-income and this is a "luxury" niche item. 2) I have very limited space to work and display frame and mat corners. 3 There are 2 BB stores and about 6 other competing frame shops in the whole region. 1 of those frame shops is only a mile or two away and offers a huge selection of mouldings etc. 4) The space has great parking and location but the building itself is nothing special. Looks basically like a house. So in terms of expressing that this is a fine art sort of establishment, the exterior of the building is not really helping. 5) I have no more than $5,000 to put into the business to get it started. Honestly the only MAJOR piece of equipment I truly need is new mat cutter. In order to compete with the established frame shops and BB stores, I plan to frame at the lowest prices around because of the limited selection of mats and frames. However, my opinion (and many might disagree) is that frame shops offer too many options. I feel that if there is less to chose from, the decisions will less daunting for the customer. And again, my space is limited so I kind of have to go this route. My hopes is that the shop itself will also be an interesting place to come into and look around. Anyway... For anyone who made through this whole post (my apologies as it has gotten lengthy) if you have some words of wisdom, advice, or cautionary tales, I'd be very grateful to hear it.