Former Island Scrapbook Partner buys new business
July 28, 2011
By Steven FrankObserver staff
On the outside, a look around the Simon’s Plaza on U.S. 2 in Williston doesn’t signify any changes. The sign in front of the business between Allen HotSpring Spas and the Shell gas station still reads “Island Scrapbook Crafts & Supplies.”
Inside that 800-square foot retail space, however, changes are already underway.
On July 1, former Island Scrapbook co-owner Lorna Swann bought out her partner, Laura Sharples, and renamed the store “All Scrapped Up.” The shop’s general theme remains but Swann, 52, expects to breathe new life into a business that started in Grand Isle and came to Williston approximately three years ago.
“Island just didn’t fit with the name anymore. Now it’s just prime opportunity to get away from it, start with something new and fresh,” Swann said.
She added: “We have everything you need to make the scrapbook that you want.”
Those items include approximately 19,000 pieces of design paper — with themes from weddings to those for children — materials for stamp art and several types of adhesives.
All Scrapped Up also offers birthday party packages, classes on various scrapbooking techniques like photo cropping, and even getaways. There is a weekend retreat taking place in August and another one in November.
“The people are unbelievable,” Swann said of the groups that attend the shop’s classes and retreats. “There is definitely a passion.”
Swann, a Northfield resident, has two adult children and works two part-time jobs. She runs the store on Sundays and holds one of the classes.
“It’s fun, it’s relaxing,” Swann said of scrapbooking, which she began doing 14 years ago. “You can do whatever you want; there is no such thing as a mistake in scrapbooking. If you have something that is not just right it is an embellishment opportunity. Just cover it with something else or do something different.”
Linda Merchant also instructs a class and runs the store four days a week (it’s closed on Mondays). A scrapbooking enthusiast, Merchant introduced herself to Swann when the store came to Williston.
“I love interacting with people, helping them develop ideas and helping them expand on ideas,” Merchant said. “I really like the customer service end of things.”
Swann reported that a new sign for the store’s front is in the works and “just needs approval from the state.” She is also preparing to launch a new website. Swann said the site will include calendar listings of all the store’s events and consumers will be able to use it to purchase some of its products. Folks will also be able to learn about the different retreats and pay for them online via PayPal.
“I expect that by Sept. 1 we will have everything under control … It’s going to be really good,” Swann said.
For Swann, competition from larger chain stores like A.C. Moore, which opened in Williston earlier this year, and Michael’s isn’t much of a concern.
“To be honest, they aren’t competition. We are a specialty store,” Swann said. “People who truly scrapbook or card make or are true paper crafters know the difference in the quality. Most of (A.C. Moore or Michael’s) stuff is older.”
Swann also isn’t discouraged by the store’s location, which was originally at Taft Corners when it first came to Williston. It relocated to the Simon’s Plaza in April.
“We were tucked in the corner (at Taft Corners) and there were two trees blocking the storefront,” Swann said. “The people coming in and out of here are great. My only concern was parking but there is more than it appears … This is definitely going to work,” Swann said.
All Scrapped Up is open Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. For more information call 288-9616 or visit [email protected]