We are so glad you have found Heartstone Tea Room Supplies. I'm sure you read about us on the home page of this website, so you know that we own The Secret Garden Tea Room and Gift Shop in Sumner, WA. We have been in business since 1989 (why yes, I was very young when we started!) and added the tea room in 2002. We had no pertinent experience in the food industry when we got the bright idea to have a Mother's Day Tea, but looking back, that may have been a good thing. We didn't know what we would be getting into. Hahaha! Our retail background did equip us for operating a restaurant in a lot of ways. We knew it was important to change things up to keep people interested, display and presentation are critical elements to "selling" the product, and pivoting directions as times change, keeps you relevant. Remember all the stores selling nothing but blue jeans in the late 1970's? Where are they now?
The Covid closure was certainly a shock, but I believe that when we look back on this period, it will be recognized as one of the most innovative times in our story. If you have weathered the storm, you should pat yourself on the back for being a smart business person who not only rolled with the punches, but turned up the throttle of creativity and found ways to motor thru the squall.
This blog conveys some of what we've learned over the last 30+ years. We share it with you, not as a blueprint for a tea room, but as inspiration. Don't try to copy our business model, but take from it the parts that are relevant for your dream and give them a twist to make them your own. We firmly believe that collaboration is key, so to facilitate tea room owners having a forum to freely discuss things, we are the administrators for a Facebook page that we encourage you to join: TREAT Tea Room Entrepreneurs Association Team. We look forward to getting to know you and to learn about your business!