Thursday, January 23, 2014

2013 in Review: 4th Quarter

By Tracy Zhu, Owner
It's a leaf blizzard! October in Port Gamble.

The last quarter of the year was the most intense. I had the opportunity to open a pop-up clothing store, which I put together (including sourcing and ordering inventory) in eleven days. With our locations doubled to two (woo hoo!) and offsite events to exhibit in, I ended up working every day of November and December except Thanksgiving, Christmas, and December 30th. Drew was pressed into service as well. I managed to badly sprain my ankle in early November which added to the grind. It was a tough quarter but worth it, as we ended up with record sales.

The pop-up store, Tango Zulu Too.

My bum ankle. I'm wearing a fair trade slipper from Kyrgyzstan, fair trade boot toppers from Nepal, a fair trade dress from Nepal, and a sweatshop-free cardigan made in the U.S.A.

  Many thanks to local Jerry Cornell (he and his wife own The Quilted Strait) for transforming our front yard. He approached me last fall about removing the sod and replacing it with native plants. My always-accommodating landlords, Olympic Property Group, removed the sod at no cost to me, I bought the plants, and Jerry did the rest, from design to sourcing to planting. We are looking forward to what each season brings.

We ended up the year with a 20% increase in sales over 2012, but the higher overhead (rent, payroll) took a toll on net income. One of the big questions for 2014 is whether we can fully utilize the new space and our wonderful employees to grow sales further and become a stronger business. Managing growth can be harder than it looks. We'll see how I do in 2014.

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