Our little idea that started four years ago in a spare bedroom office has grown a pair of wings and completely taken off. We had no idea when we launched LD Shoppe, as a complement to our interior design company, just how far it would lead us. We are grateful everyday for this crazy journey and the amazing team we have backing this vision.
We officially ‘opened our doors’ (it was just an online shop at the time) on September 15th, 2015. It took a lot of hard work to get it all together and Sacha worked day and night in that little office building the website himself. There’s been a steep learning curve and plenty of stumbling blocks to overcome (which never end) but eventually we found our way!
We purchased a new, larger home in 2016 to get more space for our growing family and business, and thought at the time that the finished basement would provide ample office space for us and our small team (we had our first two employees by then). We quickly realized that we’d underestimated our own growth and were bursting at the seams less than a year after moving in. The rapid growth we were seeing gave us the confidence to take the business outside our home and we took the plunge into a tri-use space. We set up shop, office and warehouse in the Canotek business park, east of downtown. At the time, it was perfect; good price, close to home, and plenty of space to grow (or so we thought).
In September 2017, we opened our showroom doors to the public!
We were over the moon to finally have a ‘real’ space and the 1800 sqft seemed abundant. We were certain we’d found a home for years to come. However, shortly after opening our doors we began to feel a bit crowded yet again. The response from the public was better than we could have expected, so suddenly our 1800 sqft was filled to the brim with furniture and decor, samples, and new team members. We barely had a second to take it all in before we realized that we needed to start thinking about a legitimate retail space. We loved our cozy & quiet little corner, but the reality is that being in a business park made us a destination shop only. The location wasn’t conducive to pedestrian foot traffic.
We searched high and low across the city and were pretty set on finding something centrally located, easily accessible, and with ample parking so people could quickly and easily pick up their purchases.
We explored a few options in the early stages, but ultimately Trainyards was the winner! We had just viewed a space not far from our current location and were seriously considering it (the space wasn’t ideal but we could’ve made it work) when the landlord at Trainyards emailed us to say that a unit had just become available and would we like to come take a look. We were thrilled (and a little afraid because it was over our budget) but excited about the idea of being situated in a busy retail destination.
Opening our Trainyards location has been the adventure of a lifetime. It took months and months of planning and the week before we opened was a marathon AND a sprint, with many of our team members putting in long days to ensure we’d be ready to open the doors on time. We were wiping windows, fluffing pillows, and straightening artwork until literally the moment before we opened.
Since then, LD Shoppe has really come into its own. The community response has been incredible and has allowed us to grow the brand even further in, again, less than a year. We’re now embarking on yet another expansion - this time into the space right next to us, to double our space and continue to offer the best and brightest in home goods. Renovations are underway and we are SO excited for what the coming year holds. Who knows - maybe we’ll even make it a full year without another expansion announcement!
People often ask us how we did it and usually I want to tell them that I have no idea. Ha! Another one we get a lot is ‘when did you decide to start a business together?’. The truth is, we didn’t. There wasn’t a single moment that we formally said to each other ‘let’s start a business!’. We just loved designing & being creative together, and our individual strengths and talents happened to click in the right way. We kept putting one foot in front of the other and walked slowly through an unknown that eventually took on the shape of a company. A company! I still can’t believe it sometimes when I’m talking about it. We couldn’t have done it alone, of course, and have had so many amazing team members join our team since those early days - the first one, Grace, just one month after we launched LD Shoppe online. She shares this milestone with the company and has been with us for four years now!
We truly love that our business is in a constant state of change and growth. It challenges us, inspires us, and has allowed us to create an engaging workplace for many talented & hardworking people. Getting to this point has not been without its headaches and hiccups, but we can truly say that they’ve all been well worth it. We are so excited for what’s to come!