We knew we were taking a big risk when we decided to open a general store on a deserted street under the Williamsburg Bridge in early 2009. We signed our lease three days after we started looking, and less than a month later we were open for business. The first two years we did everything ourselves, from building and painting the store to designing and maintaining the website.
What we did have was a very clear idea of the aesthetic we wanted to create and to live in. So we quit our jobs, pooled our life savings, and moved into the basement of the space that would become Brook Farm General Store.
With fingers crossed we opened our doors. Happily, people somehow found out about us, and slowly our small store became a sustainable business. We opened our online store in the fall of that same year, and before we knew it, our mailman became our best friend.
We hired our first employee in 2011, shortly after we got married and learned we were expecting a baby. It was time to move out of the basement! Williamsburg was changing so rapidly, with new shops and restaurants opening every day, and everywhere you looked somebody was doing something interesting. It was a very exciting time.
Now, five years after we opened, the area is almost unrecognizable, we have become a family of four, and after many long discussions, we have once again decided to do something new. So we closed the Brooklyn store, packed up our home, and moved our caravan out of the city to the East End of Long Island, where we can focus on expanding brookfarmgeneralstore.com, our own line of homewares, and our wholesale business. A new retail shop is soon to come as well.
The years we spent creating our store were the most exciting and rewarding years of our life so far, and Brooklyn will always feel like home to us, but we are so excited for this new adventure, and can't wait to see what happens next. We hope you stick around for the ride.