Getting Products Into Stores

By Brenda Heuvelmans

March 21, 2022

retail, storefront

Getting Products Into Stores!

Paul and I are so excited to announce that we have been accepted as vendors at the Billings Bridge location for the new Ottawa Artisans' store opening on April 1, 2022. This opportunity will enable us to showcase our custom wooden cutting boards and charcuterie trays to the community.

We would never have imagined that one day our products would be available in a store. As we look back at the journey, it's been a lot of hard work but we are proud of what we have accomplished. This is a huge stepping stone for us and we are very excited for this new adventure and look forward to the possibilities that lie ahead.

As an e-commerce business, we started out selling direct to consumers but then saw an opportunity to get into a mall store by simply filling out an application form and crossing our fingers.

Dusty Workbench Online store

We had no idea what the process would entail. How long was it going to take to hear back from them? Our products are handmade and built in small batches with lots of love from the beginning to the end. Would we have enough stock to provide a store? Would they even like our products? What if they said no?

We had been working for the past year on perfecting our product designs and manufacturing them. We had already finalized our website and e-commerce platform. A lot of work had gone into building the brand, developing the logo, our packaging, and all the software and materials that would be used in the online store. That being said, we would like to send a BIG shout out and thank you to Stephanie who has been a pillar in helping us with these digital designs! You rock Stephanie!

Dusty Workbench Logo

A few weeks had gone by since we sent in our application when we received an email with the subject line: "CONGRATULATIONS YOU ARE IN"!


Our first reaction was of excitement.....then we panicked....and then got excited again. WE DID IT! We actually secured a public-facing outlet for our wood projects.

Within the next two weeks, we produced more inventory, ordered relevant advertising material for the business (Thank you cards, tote bags with our logo on them, care instructions cards for the wood know.....things like that) and crossed our fingers hoping that it would all go smoothly.

It did. Although we were working on organizing and packaging our boards until the very last minute, we were done in time and ready for the big day!

The day came to finally deliver our merchandise to the store. Paul and I were thrilled and we were on a high. We are going to officially be entrepreneurs!

We drove to Billings Bridge and found the location of the future store. A few artisans were inside placing their handcrafted work on their shelves and tables. Looking around, we could already see the room start to come alive. Some will be selling handmade soaps, others jewelry, spices, personalized items, etc.

It felt so good to be adding our work to the shelves and being part of such a great community. It was a feeling of satisfaction but also of belonging. Being part of such a creative network has given us encouragement and motivation to keep on this journey and meet extraordinary people - like-minded people - who are also doing what they love best.

Paul and Brenda with new display

With our products now on the shelf, we are ready to move forward and see what this opportunity will bring us.

It's simple - we either sink or swim. But knowing how hard we are trying to reach our goal, we realize we are on the right path and there is no going back!

While the process may seem daunting, if you can plan ahead and keep an open mind, you'll find that getting a product placed into a mall store isn't as difficult as it seems.

This is just one example of how dreams can come true if you work hard and believe in yourself. Don't give up on your dreams and don't listen to people who try to discourage you.

"Believe you can and you are halfway there". Theodore Roosevelt 

If you had the opportunity to see us at the Billings Bridge Shopping Center please leave a comment below and let us know what you think.

Brenda Heuvelmans

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