Hardware Retailing

FEB 2019

Hardware Retailing magazine is the pre-eminent how-to management magazine for small business owners and managers in the home improvement retailing industry.

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The shop recently hosted a trunk show with previews of a new dress line from a well-known designer. Ballantyne also chooses dresses to have professionally modeled for a Maine wedding magazine and has set up a booth at many bridal shows throughout the state. Ballantyne is all business about her bridal operation, but that doesn't mean she doesn't see the humor in buying a formal dress where customers can also buy a jug of milk and a pound of nails. In fact, when she got married in a Hussey's dress in 2016, Ballantyne joined in on the fun that many customers have and went to the store wearing her bridal finery. She and her husband Andrew posed for wedding pictures with a gun from the sporting goods department. She also showed off a six-pack of beer with her lacy Hussey's dress. Ballantyne loves that the store is a wedding tradition for many Maine brides. She thinks her great-grandmother would have enjoyed seeing how the business has developed since 1955. Brides-to-be often come and tell stories about how they're following family tradition because their mothers or grandmothers bought their wedding gowns at Hussey's. "It makes the experience that much more meaningful," Ballantyne says. "I think if brides can make that personal connection while wedding dress shopping, it's extra special to them." Hussey's General Store in Windsor, Maine, is a destination for its bridal shop, which Kristen Ballantyne oversees. Ballantyne (top) got her wedding dress at the store. February 2019 | HARDWARE RETAILING 93

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