Local business owners say Christmas sales up

CNJ staff photo: Benna Sayyed Bob Morgan of Bob Morgan Photography frames Clovis High School 2012 senior class pictures.

Benna Sayyed

Christmas sales at a variety of Clovis businesses have shot up this year, according to local merchants.

Laura Ellis, co-owner of 2 Shabby Divas in downtown Clovis, attributes her prosperous Christmas season to local ownership and a loyal customer base.

“I would say that business has at least doubled this year if not more. Our items are also unique. A lot of our items we do ourselves so you’re not going to find them anywhere else,” Ellis said.

One-of-a-kind items found at 2 Shabby Divas include: outside silver lights made with bits of vintage crystal and crosses made of old jewelry, pieces of metal and old license plates.

Ellis said clothing and Christmas gift items have sold well this year. The store also extended its business hours to include Saturdays at the request of customers.

“I think people are excited about the new building that we’re in. It’s been restored to the way it used to look. We took it back to the old tin ceiling and the old wooden floor. I think people come in to see that. The building is unique and looks different than a lot of the buildings do downtown,” Ellis said.

A short distance away on Main Street, holiday sales also thrive. According to Chickie Enger, owner of Cool Stuff, inclement weather slows business a little but not enough to stir up any worry at her five and a half month-old shop.

Enger has offered various sales — half off on all plants and 20 percent off antiques — to draw customers. She said on average, her store has 60 or more customers every day. As Christmas approaches, the store has close to 100 customers on a busy day.

“I have repeat customers who come in just to come in and then they see something they like and buy, but I’ve had a lot who come in with lists,” Enger said.

Enger said her personally crafted silver jewelry and colored art glass have sold especially well. She said she has sold nearly all of her personally crafted paintings.

“People always say new stores will close within the first year if they’re going to go down. Not this one. People like this kind of thing. They comment that Clovis needed this kind of store. I think that’s so sweet,” Enger said.

Cindy Arnold, owner of Pet Logic, said sales at her store are up 20 percent from last year. She said her store has sold many puppies, birds, hamsters and rabbits this year.

“A lot of people are turning to pets because it’s so expensive to do anything else. Pets are something that give you joy all day long. A lot of people want something that will last. It’s not just a one or two day thing and burn out.”

On West 21st Street, Jo Beth’s Sugar Shack has been whipping up all sorts of sweets to satisfy the dessert needs of local households. Owner Jo Beth Saiz said the store’s sales of pies, rolls, and donuts have boosted her overall sales this year.

“Everybody has the Christmas sprit. When they come in the door, you can tell they’re a little bit more cheerful because it’s Christmas time,” said Saiz, who operates the store with a staff of family and close friends.

To boost holiday sales a display table of pies, rolls, and cookie platters was set up in the store’s dining area. According to Saiz, the goods on the table do not last long after customers arrive.

Christmas sales at Talico Video and Book Exchange on North Price Street have picked up from last year.

“The cold weather is our season. The colder the weather the more people come in,” said Sarah Scioli, manager.

Scioli said many people use her store’s merchandise such as movies, candy, lottery tickets, gift certificates and tobacco for stocking stuffers.

According to Bob Morgan of Bob Morgan Photography, the Christmas holiday season typically generates increased sales in photography, especially family portraits. His studio has been exceptionally busy this season.

“This is the season for it. We have lots of families come to town so we do lots of family portraits during this time of year,” Morgan said.

“Our sales are a little bit above what we did last year. We did real well last year also. This town never ceases to amaze me. I think we’ve been fairly fortunate to weather the economic downturn that the rest of the country has gone through. We seem to be doing really well in this area.”

To boost sales at Evans Jewelers, Terry Evans has offered jewelry catalogs at his store, inside the newspaper and on cable TV.

“I’ve been pleased with the economy the way it is,” said Evans.

Evans said a little bit of everything, from watches to gold jewelry has sold well. He said bridal rings have sold best.

“We like helping people select that special gift for their person on the gift list. We try to wrap it nice and make their shopping experience a good experience,” Evans said.