First, I am so sorry about what you are going through right now. I'm sorry about school ending so abruptly. Graduation, prom, sports – all postponed or cancelled. I understand the gravity of our current situation and have done what was necessary to protect our customers and community by closing our doors on March 15th. When will we open again? The truth is I’m unsure. I feel the pain of our seniors and their parents, yet I know it was necessary for the greater good. It’s frustrating for us all when we learn that some people do not think you can feel grief and sadness at the same time as you feel gratitude for all we have. I feel both. I’m sad we had to close our doors. I’m sad for the community and students. But I’m also a nurse and feel strongly that precautions are crucial. We are all working together to help improve the outcome from this pandemic.
This has been very difficult for you. Prom is important! You’ve supported my store, and I want to give back to you. We are planning a community wide prom...later, probably July, maybe later…when it is safe. The community is coming together in their support, and we will make this happen. Let’s focus on each day and continue to support each other emotionally, spiritually, and financially in the best way we can. Now is the time to rally as a community.
A few of you have asked about returns and refunds. The fact that it’s only been a few inquiries tells me that you all understand how difficult this pandemic is on small businesses too. Thank you! The future of Glitter and Lace weighs heavy on my mind. The reality is, and it pains me to say it, we are unable to offer returns or exchanges. It is industry standard to not offer refunds as our manufacturers do not allow us to return dresses. Once we buy them, they belong to the store. We are brainstorming creative ways to help in other ways because I know this affects you too.
90% of our yearly revenue comes from prom during the months of March and April. That revenue gets us through to next January when prom season begins again. I want to be sure we’re able to keep the doors open for you in the future, for future events. By allowing returns, I would have to shut down the store. For now, I will be going back to nursing full time and may even take on some travel nursing jobs to help ride this wave. I just can’t quite on you and the store, or my dream to build a fun, safe space where girls can feel beautiful. I love this job! I love my customers! In a world full of hardships and pain, prom brings joy. It’s your one night to shine and feel like the pricess you are. And I want to be able to serve you for years to come.
Having said all of this, I am also a consumer and do understand your frustration and your own financial hardships. I worry about this, and I want to be fair to everyone and do something.
I have come up with 2 things. We’ll, of course, have the community prom. But I'm a photographer too. I can do prom mini photo sessions for all of our customers. I was first a high school senior photographer. Check out my website at Kimberly Hise Photography, and you can sign up for a session on our booking page on the Glitter and Lace website. You can book your free photo session here.
To reiterate, this will be at no cost to you at all. The only 2 qualifiers – 1. You are a current senior that purchased your prom dress from Glitter and Lace and 2. If you are working with a photographer already or are part of a senior rep program, please respect them and ask them first. They may already be planning something special for you.
My next concern is my employees. Melanie and Cameron have been with me from the beginning, and I value Nevaeh and Skye. I want to keep them all. I'm working night shift this week at the hospital and hopefully next week as well to be able to provide them with some sort of paycheck. If any of you are aware of any potential opportunities for them, please let me know as I want to be sure they’re ok too.
Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. Thank you to all of my brand ambassadors. Thank you to the countless people that came forward to help with our community prom. And thank you for the continued support.
I’m grateful for you all. Stay tuned for details about the coming community prom. Take care and stay healthy!