READ SHOP

A few weeks ago, I enjoyed a day of exploring with Christina Kwan from Tide & Bloom.  Part of our adventure took us just north of Atlanta to Vinings Jubilee.  We halted in our tracks when happening upon Read Shop..."What is this adorable place?!!," we said.  No surprise, it happens to be from the same visionary behind The Merchant, one of my favorite shops in Atlanta.  



With dark navy walls, leather seating, antique tables, and ladders for reaching top shelf books, Read Shop feels as if you've stumbled into a friends library.  Filled with a curated assortment of owner Dan Collier's favorite books, hand-picked selections, and NY Times best sellers, alongside a few thoughtful giftables and greeting cards, the shop evokes the same love for paper goods as The Merchant and Archer Paper Goods, while remaining its own delightful concept all the same.


The bookstore also boasts a coffee shop brewing Stumptown Coffee, an amazing company that supports coffee producers by forming partnerships with them through regular visits, implementing new techniques, identifying and investing in future producers, and paying a fair wage (you can read their story here).


What Dan Collier concept isn't complete without branded cups I'd love to buy in bulk?


Above the seating area is an inventive "chandelier" of books.


Owner Dan Collier has over 20 years experience as a wholesaler at the AmericasMart with the Daniel Richards showroom (which has recently expanded) and successful retail locations including The Merchant (on both the Westside and at Krog Street Market), Collier Candy Company, and Archer Paper Goods (both at Ponce City Market).  Dan is truly an inspirational entrepreneur and so I reached out to him to ask a few questions, which he so graciously answered.

Where do you glean inspiration to keep your assortments fresh and unique both in your retail locations and established showroom at the mart?
In truth we/I get inspiration from everywhere - social media, print mags, tv, word of mouth, and trade shows.  I question and listen to what our employees have to say about trends and I look to our manufacturers to set new trends.  And finally, my intuition speaks to me about what is trending up and down and I go with that most often.

With so many different facets of your business, what are some of your favorite tools to stay organized?
I'm old school by keeping things organized.  I have one of our assistant managers come into my office every couple of weeks and he files all of our orders, paperwork, etc.... And, I like to make piles of paperwork and catalogs, leads, etc.  Then, I go through and edit what I don't really need.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to a budding entrepreneur?
Owning your own business is all consuming.  You have to be willing to work, work, work.  I built this business on 14 hour work days, weeks without a day off, and making our business the single most important thing I do everyday.  Sometimes, I do take a day off and I do go on holiday...but because I'm more interested in producing, being away from work is not a priority.  I take great joy in working, and I love the people that I work with, It's fun for me.

What is your favorite travel destination, either for relaxation or creative insight?
London is my favorite place to go for both.  I go in September every year for Top Drawer and it's a great escape.

The Merchant, Read Shop, Archer Paper Goods, and Collier Candy Company all have a vintage feel.  Can you share a little about the direction for the Collier Department Store planned at the urban renewal project on Memorial Drive?
The department store will look and feel like nothing else we have done.  There will be no vintage, it will not have the same lines that our other stores have, it will have totally new offerings that we have not dabbled in the past.

Are there any future plans to create an online storefront?
We have just recently beefed up our online presence.  You can find our online store at shopthemerchant.com.  We are adding new product everyday!!

Read Shop is located at 4300 Paces Ferry Road SE Suite 125, Atlanta, GA 30339.  Hours of operation are Monday through Saturday 7am - 6 pm and Sunday 8am - 5pm, Contact: 678.742.7853.  You can also visit a "mini" version of Read Shop at Krog Street Market near the front entrance.  Follow Read Shop on instagram here.

*The urban renewal project at the old Atlanta Dairies Cooperative at 777 Memorial Drive is a mix of shopping, dining, office space, apartments, music venue (from the owners of the Georgia Theatre and Variety Playhouse), as well as "The Yard," over an acre of outdoor space for events and to relax, set to open late 2017.  Collier's Department Store is anticipated to be 10,000 sf with "a focus on everyday conveniences like cosmetics and personal care, baby and kids, furniture, denim and workfare for men and women, home decor, confections, stationery, and books" (from What Now Atlanta).  We can't wait!

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