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The Big Move...

Discussion in 'Picture Framing Business Issues' started by John Ranes II CPF GCF, Aug 4, 2009.

  1. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I mentioned this briefly in another thread, but will share the news formally at this point... We're Moving!

    We've been in the same location since 1978, a strip mall with high traffic and visibility on Appleton's northside and expanded one from 2,000 sq/ft to 3,400 sq/ft when an adjacent business left the center in 1984.

    We've outgrown our current location. We were proposed an opportunity and decided that the time is right - despite the down economic atmosphere, rent is at better prices than in a long time, and bank loans are also favorable. So after some careful analysis, we signed the paperwork last month and will be moving over the next 60 days with a a scheduled GRAND Opening date in the new location of October 2nd!

    The new location is a free standing building about 1/2-3/4 mile directly East of our present location in a free standing building. It is an anchor building, part of a small strip mall and has an Ace Hardware on the other side as a neighbor. We're moving into 6,120 sq/ft.


    The picture above gives you a vision of the 4,200 sq/ft of the main building but just behind this is a narrower attached extension that adds an additional 1,920 sq/ft.

    Interior and exterior renovation began on Monday - walls coming down and new walls being built, the concrete cutters are in this afternoon digging 3 trenches for mulitple ground electric and CAT5 connections.

    Selecting carpet, tile and wall covering over the remainder of the week. More progress photos to come...

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  2. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    That is a good looking building!

    Keep us up to date with photos.

    Good luck with the move!
  3. blackiris

    blackiris SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    WOW!! Way to go JOHN!!! Congrats and GOOD LUCK!!!! ;)
  4. PaulSF

    PaulSF PFG, Picture Framing God

    Are you going to have one of those NASA "clean rooms" for your fitting?
  5. Grey Owl

    Grey Owl SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer


    ...uh...I see the barbershop pole. Will the barbershop be at the back? New motto - "fast framing while you are being trimmed?".
  6. freakquency

    freakquency SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I think you should go with Corbeled vaults and Corinthian columns for that Greek look .. yeah .. that's the ticket!! DO IT!!


    But really, congrats on the move. We are doing the same with our second location this month as well .. what a load of work eh?

    Hope it works out for you.
  7. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Very Nice John.

    It shouldn't take long to fill that 1.92 square feet in the back.

    I love the hardware store aspect also. How many times have we spent a half hour looking for less than a dollars worth of hardware.
  8. Jay H

    Jay H PFG, Picture Framing God

    That looks like good clean fun. Congrats! Can't wait to see the finished product.
  9. AnneL

    AnneL SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Congrats and good luck with the renovation and the move! What time is that Grand Opening going to be? I might have to close the shop and sneak over there for that.

    I think 1.92 sq. ft. is actually bigger than John's current office is. He'll have room to expand in there!
  10. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer


    It sort of does look like a "barbershop pole"....take another look and you can see that the stripes are formed by a bare tree's branches against the edge of the building. :)


    Not sure if this image above will show the details in the floor plan - we're adding a new wall to create about 2,700 sq/ft pure retail area including framing design counters, gifts, etc. The center section will give us about 1,500 sq/ft of framing workshop.

    The narrower extension in the back will be used for framing inventory, gift inventory and our shipping and receiving area.

    Shooting for a GRAND OPENING of Friday, October 2nd - I'll keep you posted Anne - would love to have you visit. Indeed our office will almost double in size as will the retail area. As you may notice in the drawing the large overhead door is being relocated to the rear of the building, and will be replaced with a new window area. This will brighten up the framing workshop area with some natural lighting (much to the happiness of our manager!) :D

    Thanks Shane (and everyone). A second location is even more ambitious - how old is your exisiting business? I've just started this project, and already I can say that it is similar to having children....best done when you're YOUNG! ;)

  11. Emibub

    Emibub PFG, Picture Framing God

    Wow, what a nice lookiing building! What a blast it will be doing that place up! Congrats John!
  12. Kirstie

    Kirstie PFG, Picture Framing God

    No, but I bet they will have an ADA approved bathroom!

    Seriously John, best of luck in the new location. Jeff and I are thrilled for you!
  13. joe

    joe CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    Very nice John. Moving to a new location is a lot of work but very exciting. Good for you!
  14. HB

    HB SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    All the best John, nice for you to share your progress too!
  15. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Funny.....that you mention this!

    If you examine the floorplan, you will see the new kitchen adjacent to the existing bathroom (fairly small). If we changed the bathroom in any way, it would have to be brought up to code (ADA) and this would mean it would almost quadruple in size! :) It was compliant when it was built, but the code has changed over the years.

    We'll live with it as it is.

  16. JFeig

    JFeig SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Looks like a great opportunity. Congratulations.
  17. jframe

    jframe <span style="color: red"><b><i>Charter Member</i><

    What a huge wonderful, exciting change, John! I can't wait to see pictures of what you and Sarah do to the interior!
  18. AWG

    AWG SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    John and Sarah: Congrats on the big move - it should work out BEAUTIFULLY for you and your business....Best of luck from both of us!
  19. scottk

    scottk CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    Great for you,Sarah, and the team John. Its a very good time to expand if the situation is right, and from the looks of it, the time was right! I'm going to see if I can get out there for the opening and visit my sis in Wausau as well.
  20. Ylva

    Ylva SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    What a beautiful building! Congrats and good for you!

    ...and tons of parking space... me jealous.
  21. mayos

    mayos MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    Congratulations...beautiful building. Hope everything goes extremely well.
  22. Paul N

    Paul N In Corner

    Beautiful place John, good luck!!
  23. JbNormandog

    JbNormandog SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    John, I thought I was the only crazy one moving this year.

    I hope your move (much bigger) goes as smoothly as mine did.

    If things get hectic feel free to use my mantra,"this is going to work, this is going to work........."

    Great building and soo much space, good luck.

  24. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Thanks for the nice words everyone....

    No...I'm just as crazy! :nuts:

    Bob, For a second there, I thought you were going to offer to lend a hand in the move, since you've recently been down that road!

  25. danny boy

    danny boy PFG, Picture Framing God

    WOW. Congratulations on the new digs. We are excited for you.
  26. johnny

    johnny SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Much congrats. That looks like a fantastic new home.
  27. Creative Chicks

    Creative Chicks SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I'm jealous;), but very happy for you. I really like the layout of the new place. Best of luck in your new location.

  28. Rick Granick

    Rick Granick SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Cogratulations, John, and good luck with the build-out and move. Can't wait to see interior photos. I can't believe no one has yet mentioned how cool it will be having a hardware store right next door. How convenient is that! The ACE near our house has a small Post Office in the back. Wouldn't that be cool too?
    :cool: Rick

    P.S. How about covering that brown fascia board below the gutters with some kind of interesting moulding, in effect "framing" the perimeter of the building. ;)
  29. auntiesarahjayne

    auntiesarahjayne MGF, Master Grumble Framer


    John, I do think you are crazy!

    But I wish you and Sarah well, just the same.

    Very jealous of all the space you will have!..

  30. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Progress Report - Week 1

    The first week is behind us, and I have to say that I'm impressed at how smoothly everything has gone, and what has been accomplished in the first 5 days of rennovation.

    We've already selected carpet for the retail and framing area, Tile for the entrance, fabric wall covering and paint. Spent some time with a good Interior Designer customer, and Sarah at the building...at the Carpet store - this process makes designing a framer for a customer feel like a snap! :icon19:

    Existing walls have come down and new walls errected; channels cut into the concrete foor for electrical, computer and phone wiring; An Overhead Door has been removed and relocated to the rear of the building, plumbing work completed and inspected, and electrical work about half done.


    Here you've entered the front door of the building and you're looking back towards a wall with a large accordian door - this will be removed. The blue painters tape on the floor defines where our tiled walkway will be laid. The three large white (Coroplast) pieces represent where our three Design Tables will be positioned with a new wall that will be errected directly behind. (Imagine the two contractors as staff helping framing customers!)


    Looking North to the entrance, the blue painters tape represents a new wall to be errected that will hold our corner samples. Each of the Design Tables (2 shown) has a surface area of 79x40 inches. The two small "dressing rooms" to the right will be retained and used for gift storage.


    From the point that I'm standing in this photo is where one fitting table will be placed, allowing a framer to view the design area and the front door. It also provides a nice place for framed pieces to be placed that come in for repair or other work. The white L (Coroplast) in the distance is the approximate location for a new island design counter to be built.


    This large Overhead Door is going to be removed and relocated in the rear of the building. (It was installed when the occupant was a SPA Retailer for a short time) It will be replaced with a window to match those that exist in the front of the building - this will kick some natural lighting into the framing workshop area (to the right of blue tape line).


    Door Removed - Being bricked in ready for window installation (Week 2).


    New location for Overhead Door - cuts made in outside wall. This photo shows our main storage area of the building. Our shipping & receiving area will be situated between this back/side door and the Overhead Door. The door to the right will probably function as our primary employee entrance.


    This wall needed to come down. Note the large opening into this rectangle - it was once used as a driving range! This building was originally (10 years) a Pro Golf Retail business. Note the green carpet pulled and stacked. ;) Yes....I know I should have saved this room for slow days.


    You can see how the new wall has been constructed and to the right cut the "Driving Range" room in half - this will be our new kitchen. the electrical conduit is installed in the walls, and they're completing the floor connections and boxes. Most will be for electrical only, but four of the nine floor boxes will have phone and IT lines as well.


    Behind the design wall, is the area created for our framing workhop which is now got additional opening for better traffic flow and is the drywall is completed. The left doorway is a new opening leading into the new kitchen. (You can see the newly finished trough on the floor cut to accomodate the plumbing.)
  31. Jay H

    Jay H PFG, Picture Framing God

    Hey John. This may be fun. What is one or more things that you never liked about your previous location that you are looking forward to correcting at this new one?
  32. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Good Question.....More Space!

    Your question made me pause for a second and really think about it... I guess that just having a larger facility might be too obvious of an answer.

    Our current 3,400 sq/ft location has been a wonderful home even as we've grown over 31 years, but it is in that expansion and difersification that key specific problems/issues/needs have been created and will be solved in the new location...
    • Retail Display Area - We've now gone beyond cozy. We simply do not have the space to display all of our gift lines. We've had to remove some product during Christmas including some of our print bins. :( Not good - the whole idea of bringing in retail customers during Christmas for ornaments is that they will potentially become core customers of our other services...art, prints and framing.
    • Receiving and Shipping Area - When we have to call vendors asking them to space out shipments, you know you're out of storage space. When you fear for your life that the Fire Inspectors will drop in during a three week period, you know you're out of storage space.
    • I've never liked the idea of pilfering framing fitting tables for receiving gift merchandise. I don't mind cross-training employees, but will prefer separate areas of adequate space for these unique job functions.

    Honestly, there has been little or nothing that we've "never" liked in our existing location...our issues are those that have developed as we've grown.
  33. couture's gallery

    couture's gallery PFG, Picture Framing God

    I'm spoiled..have a Home Depot 2 stores over on my side of the highway ( half a block walk, and Lowe's is directly across the street.....

    The new location looks fantatstic..and it is so nice to have a clean "canvas" to "paint" the store just like you want it to look and function....congrats and good luck.
  34. AnneL

    AnneL SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Looks great. I've always marveled at how you manage to get everything in your current place and still move around in there. So, how long do you think it will take you to fill up all that new storage?
  35. janetj1968

    janetj1968 PFG, Picture Framing God

    Hey John!

    Congratulations on the move.

    When I was in Appleton a few years back (and before I was on the Grumble) I rode by and saw your existing shop. Beautiful fronting..and very BUSY looking....nice traffic.

    I hope your new shop will serve you well.
  36. DVieau2

    DVieau2 PFG, Picture Framing God

    The space looks great.

    I've moved a couple of stores and found that renting temporary space in a self storage unit is very handy. You can rent for only a couple of months and relieves congestion and chaos in the old and new space.

    I also took an oath to only use 2' x 2' replaceable carpet squares in the future. One MN or WI winter will age your carpet 10 years in the high traffic areas.

  37. Jerry Ervin

    Jerry Ervin PFG, Picture Framing God

    That is great advice Doug!

    They sell those at Home Depot.

    There is a high end version that is sold at carpet stores called FLOR. It ain't cheap, but great quality.
  38. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Good Suggestions...

    Thanks Doug - appreciate the insight, as this will be our first business move ever, and although home moves have their own similar issues, I'm sure my experience here only lightly prepares me for a business move! (Hey...I should call on Ron Eggers as he moved his business three or four times if I recall.)

    As it turns out, our building will be ready for occupancy about September 1st and we do not plan to open doors in the new location until October 2nd. That combined with the fact that our existing lease does not end until Dec 3st means we have some flexibility built-in. ;)

    We did examine these, but cost pushed if back. Ten years ago we recarpeted our exisiting location and incorporated tile walkways and mats at key standing fitting areas in the framing area. These two moves have preserved our current carpet very well and so we have planned to utilize both in the new location.

    In the new location, Sarah selected Tile that has less color transition to the carpet so that they work together a bit more monochromatically. Naturally I'll post pictures for your review. :)

    Anne, When this new place is filled....it will be time to sell the business!

  39. W.C.Framer

    W.C.Framer PFG, Picture Framing God

    Awesome pics John!

    Reminds me of last November when I was building our new space with my dad. Things go a lot different when you actually have contractors to do the work!

    And its probably not too early to start seeking out your friends who have pick-up trucks for moving day ;)
  40. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Planning is everything!

    It's never too early for this kind of planning, Doug! :)

    We're looking at the middle of September, so if you do drive out with your pickup truck, please bring along a case of Cabernet from St. Supery and a bottle or two of Port from Prager Port Works. :thumbsup:

  41. cvm

    cvm PFG, Picture Framing God

    (don't laugh...)

    One thing that's really been helpful in the past when moving stores with lots of small items is 'renting' about 10 shopping carts from the local grocery store where you do all your shopping. You know, the store where the manager recognizes you. $100 or so usually gets the job done. Wheel the carts through your old store, load up the stuff, wheel 'em up into your rented truck. Drive over to the new location, wheel 'em off the truck into the new store and unload. One person can do the work of three. :)
  42. Mike Labbe

    Mike Labbe Member, Former moderator team volunteer

    What a nice place! It makes our lil 1000sf shop look like a toy :)

    Will there be any changes to the lighting, to darken it up and light up wall art with floods? How high are the ceilings? (ok for your visualization?)'

    Are you planning a CCTV system, too? If so, it might be good to include those wires now while everything is opened up. We have 2 cameras watching the outside of the shop, and 2 watching the inside of the shop (gift items/POS/design terminals/exits). You would possibly need one with 8 cameras for such a large space. If the DVR and screen were in the warehouse, this would give the advantage of being able to keep an eye on everything from back there, including audio. The new ones are HD, have night vision, and can be accessed remotely from home or from the road. (via the internet)

    It must be nice to have such a canvas, to paint as you wish. :thumbsup:

    Good luck with the building and the move. Very impressive!
  43. JbNormandog

    JbNormandog SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    CVM, That little tip would have helped me BIG time about 6 months ago.

    Great idea, I just hope I never need to use it cause I don't want to move again.

  44. W.C.Framer

    W.C.Framer PFG, Picture Framing God

    HA! I could probably handle the St. Supery, but I can guarantee that the Port wouldn't make it much past Nevada... love that stuff!

    Although, what is your new address out there? I can probably make an arrangement for you to meet your new UPS driver ;)
  45. John Ranes II CPF GCF

    John Ranes II CPF GCF SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Progress Report - Week 2

    OK... Week 2 is now behind us, and the majority of the landlords work will be completed in the next week. Accomplished in the past 7 days...
    • Drywall work completed on all new interior walls.
    • Concrete poured in all electrical conduit ditches.
    • Concrete drive way poured to new Overhead Delivery Door location.
    • New Air Conditioner Unit installed for back storage area and holes cut for duct work to be placed in early this coming week.
    • Glass Window installed in old Overhead Door location.
    • Tile Work at entrance leading into retail area installed.


    Lower left of this photo is the entrance leading to the framing design table (upper right). You can see the new window installed in the upper right which will spill natural light into the framing workshop area.


    Here you can see how the tilework will lead customers to our design area with "wings" branching off to our gift display areas - 18 inch tiles.


    Not a very exciting photo - Nonetheless it shows the "Hallway" leading from the framing storage area (matboard & glass) into the Framing Workshop Area (Right) into the Retail Area (Straight Ahead).

    Now that the majority of the drywall is up and textured, the painters will come in on Monday to spray primer on any new or repaired walls.

    Hopefully in Week 3 we will complete 90% of the electrical work, start painting interiors - office, kitchen and bathroom for sure and install additional lighting in the storage/warehouse area.

    One glitch we're discovering in this current economic environment is that labor and contractors are ready and easy to jump into project on schedule or earlier. On the otherhand some supplies are more difficult to come by as distributors and manufacturers have let inventories drop.

    We're finalizing design plans on Building signs, Banners for the road, and store fixtures. We have found a local manufacturer of store fixtures and will be relaminating a few older fixtures to make these match new items brought into our shop.

  46. Kirstie

    Kirstie PFG, Picture Framing God


    When you say the majority of the landlord's work, what do you mean? Is the landlord paying for any of this? It looks like a beautiful and very expensive job! I am in awe. Very nice so far. I hope you have some photos of yourselves in work clothes pitching in! I have some from 1977.
  47. jframe

    jframe <span style="color: red"><b><i>Charter Member</i><

    It's common for the landlord to make alterations to the property for new renters. That would include paint, flooring, and some walls to alter the floor plan. Is that true for S.F.? The price difference for remodeling between San Francisco and Appleton would be enormous.
  48. Rick Granick

    Rick Granick SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Typical scenario is for the landlord to provide the tenant a "vanilla box" build-out with walls, floors, etc. in good condition, to current codes, and ready for their ultimate surface treatments, with electric, plumbing, and HVAC infrastructure in good working order. Details beyond this would be negotiated into the lease. For instance, a finished drop ceiling with particular lighting might be furnished, etc.

    I had to vanilla box the space next door about 6 years ago, which was a former Domino's pizza. The hardest part was chiseling out their special restaurant tile floor. :faintthud:

    :cool: Rick
  49. Bandsaw

    Bandsaw MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    Amazing attention to detail - see you've all ready got your "Going Out Of Business Sale" sign so you're ready for the next recession!
  50. AnneL

    AnneL SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    John, are you going to be hiring someone to do the painting or doing it yourselves?
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