Monday, February 14, 2011
Indulge inner shopaholic -- and feel good about it
Nona Nelson | The Roanoke Times
Purrfect Treasures, located next to the Franklin County Humane Society's adoption center, sells new and used donated items. All proceeds benefit the Humane Society.
Anita Scott, the adoption coordinator for the Franklin County Humane Society, helps restock shelves at Purrfect Treasures.
Nona Nelson, The Happy Wag
Read Nona's blog, The Happy Wag:
I love shopping. Blame it on my mall-rat days in the '80s, but I can happily meander around stores or the Internet for hours just browsing for bargains.
So imagine my delight when I was scrolling through Facebook one morning and I saw a gorgeous table for sale that would work perfectly in a spare bedroom I have been slowly redecorating.
And then picture how happy I was that it was a brand-new piece, deeply discounted, and that my purchase would help care for shelter pets.
Color me six shades of giddy.
I dragged my husband -- who does not share my love of shopping -- to Rocky Mount the next Saturday afternoon, and we bought the table at Purrfect Treasures, a cozy retail store located next door to the Franklin County Humane Society Adoption Center on U.S. 220.
If you drive too quickly, you could miss the 600-square-foot store. And if you do happen to notice it, you might mistake the name for a kitschy kitty-themed boutique.
Purrfect Treasures is part antiques store, part home furnishings outlet. The little shop has all kinds of merchandise, new and used, at bargain prices, and all the proceeds go to help care for the pets at the adoption center.
Besides the table, I bought a couple of candle holders and a pair of bookends. The store also had lamps, wall decor and other furniture, including a high-back upholstered chair that I would have purchased if I had anywhere to put it in my house.
Donna Essig, the Humane Society's president, said that the store sold mostly donated secondhand items, including housewares, dishes and books, until November. That's when new, higher value items, including furniture and home decor, started coming from Uttermost, a home furnishings manufacturer headquartered in Rocky Mount and owned by Inglath and Mac Cooper.
The Coopers are longtime benefactors of the Humane Society -- the adoption center bears their names.
Inglath Cooper said her company started donating sample items and factory seconds to Purrfect Treasures to help boost sales.
"Anything you can find that works in fundraising is what you have to do," Cooper said.
According to Essig, it's working. After the new items were added to the inventory and Cooper and other volunteers rearranged the store for marketing appeal, sales doubled and have been steady ever since.
"It's a nice eclectic mix of new and old," Essig said.
The store is open from 1 to 5:30 p.m. Fridays and from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturdays. However, you can cybershop on the Humane Society's Facebook page any time, and Cooper said special appointments can be made to purchase items during the store's off hours.
Donations of used items -- no clothes please, Essig asked -- are accepted during office hours at the store, the adoption center or the adjacent Planned Pethood Clinic.
The table we bought, by the way, was a perfect fit. With the impulsively purchased bookends sitting on top of it, it really ties the whole room together.
Nona Nelson's column runs every other Monday in Extra.