In 2009, we bought our dream home. We *knew* this was our forever home and we fell head over heels in love. It was magical. My kids toboganned in our backyard, roamed the fields, played in our barn and climbed trees.
But… we soon realized it wasn’t really a fit for our family after all. It was so expensive to heat. We added a wood-fired boiler which helped with cost - but soon we found our time was consumed with chopping wood, stacking wood,loading wood…. It was a drive to even get to a convenience store - and the inconvenience grew. I could go on. It didn’t take long for us to realize, our dreams were bigger than a house.
Did we love the house? Absolutely. Wholeheartedly. Did we love spending all our time and money on a house? No way! And so, we made the tough choice to sell our home.
We often will ask each other - do you wish we had stayed in the country? And we agree, we loved the home and our time there - but it wasn’t right for our family’s needs. Do we regret buying it in the first place? Not at all. If we hadn’t, that dream would still be there. We’d still be wondering if we should move to the country. Circling farms in the real estate section of the paper. And giving a big piece of ourselves to this possibility. We needed to live it - to be able to move on from it.
The same is true today for me with JustOne.
Since I was a teen, I’ve dreamed of owning a store. I decorated my shop in my mind a million times. I imagined what I would call it, where it would be and how I would run things.
Thirty years later, my dream came true. We opened a shop as a pop up for one month in November 2019. That one month lasted three years - including many rounds of closures during the Covid pandemic.
And now I’m taking a step back and realizing, I have bigger dreams than a store. Do I love this space? Absolutely. Wholeheartedly. But my time and resources are going to keeping a store running and all the vendors we now partner with… and my main focus of working with our artisan partners gets my leftover time and funds.
And so, just like we did with our farmhouse, we made the tough choice to close the door on something we love - to open ourselves to our full purpose.
What does this mean?
November 30, 2022 - our one month pop up (that lasted three years + one month) will close. Our sweet store will close it’s doors.
Is JustOne closing?
No! Not in the least.
We’re going back to our roots. As of December 1, 2022 we will focus only on our artisan partners directly in Kenya and Uganda. We will be doing so with online sales, events, and wholesale (selling to other stores and organizations). We are also available for your fundraising campaigns.
By making a hard decision to close the door of something we love, we are able to have more to give to our mission. To the heart of JustOne.
What does this mean for you? Here are some FAQ’s from the conversations I’ve had so far!
Will you still be on instagram/tiktok/facebook?
Yes! We will still be just as present on social media! Make sure to follow along at @shopjustone on your favourite platform. (at the current time our FB is disabled as we were hacked, but hope to be back up soon!)
If I’m local can I still shop with you?
Yes! In December, we will be offering free delivery - stay tuned to see when we’ll be in your area delivering! And pickup will also be available in the Caledonia area from our home office. And make sure to watch our social media to see when we’re doing events and pop ups!
Is everything going to be priced to clear?
Not exactly. As we prepare to close, we will be clearing some items - but it is not a situation where we need to sell off everything. JustOne products will be staying with us in our new home office location. Some items are on consignment from vendors, and will be returned to them. But yes, there will be some great deals on many items as we get closer to the end of November! (Great time to purchase Christmas gifts!)
You mention “JustOne items” - what does this include?
JustOne items are the items made by the artisans we partner directly with in Kenya and Uganda. This includes our jewelry, dolls, wall baskets and wood bowls and spoons to name a few. You can see items specific to JustOne here: https://www.shopjustone.com/collections/justone
What are other ways we can be involved?
There are so many ways! Contact us about having us at your next event. Have me come and speak at your conference, school or church group. Host a party with your friends. Shop online! Ask your favourite local stores to carry JustOne items. Tell a friend. Stay connected on social media.
Will you miss the store?
Yes and no. I loved our space. I adored our small staff. I loved being a part of the Caledonia downtown community. Being a safe space for people who needed a spot to come in and sit, to talk or get a drink. I loved connecting face to face with so many of you. I loved supporting small businesses. But I will not miss having to miss family events and social commitments because I have to work in the store. I really will not miss paying rent, utilities, and more. I won’t miss coming home exhausted from working in the store all day - to go home and still work as I did not get a chance to do my computer work. I look forward to having more time and resources for both my artisan partners and our mission to them (and also for my personal life!)
Are you cutting back what JustOne does?
Not in the least! We’re simply pruning some areas, so the main areas can flourish! JustOne ran for 7 years out of my home, and we’re looking forward to moving back.
When is your last day open?
I am still finalizing plans but at this time, Nov. 26-27 weekend will likely be our last days open. Giving us a couple days to clean and move out. But remember - we’re still open online even at this time! Please stay tuned on social media as we announce plans moving forward!
We have loved having our little shop for the last three years and it would not have been possible without your support. No one can deny that it is a tough season for small businesses. And without you, we would not have made it. We’ve enjoyed in-store popups, book launches, and so many special memories. We’ve loved meeting so many of you and having incredible conversations. We have used our window displays to make statements about our values - and have appreciated the discussions this has generated. But it has also been tough. Almost every small business owner I’ve spoken to has said the same thing - 2022 has been the hardest year yet. Tougher than the years of lockdowns during the pandemic. We’ve seen so many businesses - and specifically many ethical businesses - close their businesses permanently this year. We are grateful to not be closing, but to be able to pivot our business so we can thrive for years to come! As we move forward, we will need your support more than ever. Any and every success JustOne has had - is only because of you. The purchases you make, the referrals to our business, the likes, shares and comments, the invites to your events… is making a difference. You’ve been a part of building homes in Kenya, sending children to school in Uganda, in breaking poverty cycles, and so much more.
Thank you for being a part of JustOne. Thank you for your support, encouragement and generosity. Thank you for following our dreams as they shift and grow. Thank you.