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Tuesday, April 29, 2008


We have heard horror stories about getting permits in Atlanta and then how hard it is to get the work inspected, especially for the C.O. These stories made us feel the need to be there for each of our inspections. From what we have heard, this is not the norm, but we are both a little strong willed and have a tendency to micro-manage. Our contractor was great, but we wanted to be a part of the process every step of the way and decided we needed to become friends with our inspectors.

Our first inspections were electrical and framing. The framing inspector was super friendly, even giving us his cell phone number in case we had any problems and we were thrilled to find out he would also be our final inspector. When the time came and filed with the city for our final inspection we just called him up and he came by the following day. We then received our certificate of occupancy and were ready to move in. Being nice always helps you get farther than being rude. I really don't understand why some people do not realize that.

If you are ever needing inspections in Atlanta, here is a great page with inspection questions.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Embroidery Training

One of our favorite stores is Number Four-Eleven in Savannah, especially because of the custom monogramming they offer. They do their monogramming in the store and we feel that that is a great service to offer customers. The turn around time is often faster and then you can also control the quality and be more creative with your designs. The owners of the shop were very helpful and talked to my partner about the type of machine they have before we made a decision on what we should do. It was a service we really wanted to offer and wanted a machine that would allow us to custom design pieces for our clients. We decided to go for it and even before our machine arrived, we went to embroidery training. Three full days of learning how to thread the needle, oil the machine and work the software. It was quite overwhelming, but we figured if everyone else in our class could do it, then so could we. If you are ever interested in having a custom monogram created for you, please contact us (info@shopgramercy.com) . We will also have online shopping very soon where you will be able to order monogrammed products online.

Friday, April 25, 2008


We toiled and toiled over paint colors. We wanted to do the ceilings in one color, the walls another and the trim in a white. We wanted an industrial type of feel that would be neutral enough to go with all of our decor. Thus we were attracted to gray tones and found the perfect color for the ceiling on our first try. It is called gray clouds and we felt like that was quite appropriate considering it was for the ceiling. The wall color was an entirely different story. We must have tried 10 different sample colors on the walls none of which were what we were looking for. They were either too gray and looked like what we imagined prison wall colors are or had yellow undertones that did not go with the ceiling color. We consulted many friends and looked in every possible lighting situation and finally made our decision....which ended up being the wrong one. Thus the contractors had to re-paint today - one day before the carpet was to be installed and our last chance to change our minds. However, the color that we changed to is perfect. We love it and thanks to a friend who suggested diluting the color combined with the fabulous color of my master bath walls that were already painted when we moved in our house, we ended up with exactly what we wanted....Lattice at 45%.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

How much is 5,000 pounds?

During market we ordered quite a bit of furniture to carry in the shop. We love a classic style mixed with contemporary pieces and details. The pieces could mix in with your grandmother's beautiful antique dining table or be the more classic statement in a a very modern room. But their worth is not only measured in their beauty, but also their weight and when 5,000 pounds of the furniture arrived on one truck we were not prepared. It was mid build-out of our space and we knew there was a chance the furniture could arrive before everything was finshed so we had a plan. We left part of the back area open for storage, but did not realize that the 20+ pieces of furniture that we ordered would come to such an unbelievable weight. 5,000 lbs, 2.5 tons or nearly the weight of 2 cars.

The furniture arrived on an 18 wheeler without a lift gate. I guess we had not thought to ask for one, but we must have assumed that any truck delivering so much funiture would have one. Since there was no lift gate to lower the pieces off of the truck one by one. What was the most unbelievable is that although Bruce (the truck driver) was very nice, we were expected to get all of the furniture inside. Nearly impossible considereing the size of some of the pieces. Thank goodness for Danny and Tony who came to our rescue by carrying most of the pieces inside. Our husbands were very thankful they were out of town that day.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Monster Truck Race

We diligently checked on a our contractors every day and would inquire what two ladies that have no construction experience could do to help speed the process along. We had offered painting skills, demolition, whatever we thought we would be capable of doing to help. While it seemed that they were typically on schedule, we were on a deadline and did not what to take any chances. Finally, we received our first acceptance from Danny to go and pick up some of the supplies they needed for flooring. The only glitch was that we needed something bigger to pick up the supplies than our mid-size SUVs. Instead, he offered up his huge pick up truck with a lift that makes it almost necessary to get a ladder to climb inside. I made my partner drive because I was scared and just a little bit embarrassed as well. I have driven plenty of suburbans, but did not think I was ready for Big Red.

We pull out of the parking lot and the sound of the motor reminds us of a monster truck race as we barrel down Peachtree Battle toward our destination. We finally arrive and pull in the front as three of the salespeople are standing outside. We pull into 2 spaces and proceed to literally fall out of the truck on our departure. Both of us forgetting that it was a good 3 foot drop to the ground from our seat. The sales people try to muffle their laughs, but we just laugh with them and confirm for them that this is not our fine specimen of an automobile. Like they didn't already know... Then comes the news that we have to pull around to the back of the store and back up a ramp. Well we did pull around back, but we had to get someone else to back up the ramp. Finally, we were ready to head back to the shop, thankfully we made it in one piece and Big Red did as well.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Hello Mr. Electrician!

So we had several sub-contractors in and out of the space to handle the heating and air and flooring, etc, but our favorite by far had to be the electrician. He was definitely in the wrong profession. While his electric work was fine, he would probably have been best suited as a model.


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