“We kind of ran out of room to grow,” Gilcher said of the decision to change locations.
Originally opened in 2015 by Brittany Smith, Heart Mercantile is now co-owned by Smith, Gilcher, and Carly Short.
The shop has operated from its current location for the past four years, Gilcher said, but now, the trio of owners is looking to grow the business, both physically and virtually.
“We’re trying to expand not only our brick and mortar business, but our online business,” Gilcher said. “At our current location, we don’t really have room for back stock, and running an online store is pretty much like running a whole separate retail business, so we really needed more room to grow.”
The new Fifth Street location gives the boutique 1,200 square feet of space, which is about double the size of the current shop, Gilcher said.
If all goes to plan, Gilcher said the new shop will be up and running by the end of April. Until then, customers can still visit the current location.
“Right now, we’re doing some construction inside, redoing the floors and building displays, so we’ll still be open for business at our current location for the next three weeks, then we’ll slowly transition over,” she said.
Despite the universal effects of COVID-19 on businesses, especially small businesses, Gilcher said Heart Mercantile is thriving.
“Our customers are really amazing and kept us afloat during that stagnant period,” she said. “Now that things are kind of winding down, we’re starting to see a bit of an upswing, so it’s the perfect opportunity to get back to normal and keep growing.”
Gilcher describes Heart Mercantile as a Dayton and Ohio centric gift shop.
“We’ve got some funny merchandise that’s maybe a little more on the edgy side, but very community oriented,” she said.
The shop is looking to offer products from new, local vendors at the new location. Those interested can email email@example.com.
To learn more about Heart Mercantile, visit www.heartmercantile.com or visit the shop’s Facebook page.
Gilcher noted that Heart is currently raising funds to help the children of Ukraine affected by the recent Russian invasion and subsequent humanitarian crisis. As part of the effort, the shop is selling a t-shirt condemning Russian President Vladimir Putin — in true Heart Mercantile fashion — available in the apparel section of its website, and donating 100% of the proceeds to Unicef USA.