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A Father’s Backing Leads To Thriving Business

When Vicki Richardson Comer was 21, she would spend her nights making crafts at her family’s kitchen table. She had just started working after two years of community college, but she had no idea what she wanted to do with her life.  One day her dad said to her, “Quit your job, and I’ll back you in your own business.”  So she did — and she has never made anything since. She’s been too busy running The Olde Homestead, which began as a crafts store in 1990, but transitioned into collectibles, including the popular Boyds Bears.  “Crafts are what got us started, but it is the Boyds Bears years that really built this business,” she says.  But as women’s interests shifted and collectibles started to slide, Vicki identified a new niche: handbags and jewelry. In 2004, she brought in Vera Bradley, a brand that would change the direction of her business. Soon after came Brighton, Life is Good, Rainbow Sandals and Kameleon Jewelry.  “The customers’ purchasing has driven us where we have gone. We watch not what people are asking for, but what they are actually buying, and we grow that brand,” she says. “Jewelry is what is driving the business today.”  One example is Pandora, growing by leaps and bounds for her. Vicki upgraded to Gold status in the Fall of 2014 and did a major remodel, relocating every brand in the shop.  She is very optimistic about the future. We have built momentum from our business remodel, Pandora expansion and now our 25th Anniversary. We couldn’t be more excited about the future!

 
Meet the Girls at The Olde Homestead:
Front Row (L to R):  Teresa Brewer, Nancy Beck, Donna Shillinglaw
Back Row (L to R):  Kelly Kennedy, Lisa Yates, Vicki Comer, Denise Morris