Entrepreneur Jennifer Kirk recently completed the fifth expansion of her Posh Puppy Boutique in seven years, converting her old space in Rocklin’s Plaza at Stanford Ranch into a grooming salon and opening a 3,000-square-foot shop next door.
“I can hold more of my inventory and show more of it than what’s online,” Kirk said. “People like to touch and feel, and it sparks a spur-of-the-moment buy.”
Since relocating the boutique last February to its new space, 6040 Stanford Ranch Road, she has hired five people. But, after opening the adjacent grooming salon a week ago, she’s had so many bookings that she’s hiring two additional employees.
The store has more than 15,000 items for sale, including Chewy Vuiton pillow beds with matching squeak toys, the Barkingham Palace bed that retails for $3,000, Duck Dynasty caps and beards, Halloween and Christmas outfits that sell for $20 or so, Sniffany & Co. tutus and PetHead bath products.
Kirk never expected her business to grow so much. She founded Posh Puppy at home in 2007 as an e-commerce business, something to keep her busy while her daughters were in school, she said. They all loved buying outfits for the family dog, Kirk said, and she figured other people would, too.
She’s part of a pet industry of products and services that is now $57 billion in annual sales.
Kirk cemented her status as a canine fashion maven in 2011 by helping the producers of the “Beverly Hills Chihuahua” movie sequels find the right designer outfits and accoutrement for their canine stars, but she maintains that status by visiting other trendsetting pet boutiques and attending the annual SuperZoo trade show in Las Vegas. While the movies boosted her online orders, Kirk said, her brick-and-mortar sales have grown because of community outreach, customer votes in the KCRA A-List competition and foot traffic to other businesses in the Stanford Ranch plaza.
Part pub, part film theater
Cancer survivor Jackie Nadile is merging the tavern concept with a screening room to create Public House Theater in Sacramento’s Tahoe Park neighborhood.
“I got the idea probably about 15 years ago when I went up to Portland and went to one of the pub theaters up there, McMenamins,” Nadile said. “I was there on vacation, and a friend of mine from there had told me to check out this place, and I did and I loved it. My place is a little bit different than up there because our pub is separate.”
Nadile said she decided to separate her screening room because she found it awkward in Portland to get up and get a beer while the movie was playing.
A former anesthesia technician at Mercy San Juan Medical Center, Nadile left the health care field after she survived a battle with colon cancer. She chose the location, at 5440 14th Ave., because it wasn’t far from her home and she thought her concept would be well-received by neighbors. The movies will be those available on Blu-ray DVD.
The Public House Theater got off to a soft opening last week, and Nadile isn’t charging yet for the entertainment on the big screen. Once the place officially opens, movies will be $4 and the screening room will be available for rent. She’s serving sodas, wine and craft beers on tap from Bike Dog, New Glory and American River brewing companies. The pub fare must wait until after the health inspection, but it will include paninis. One offering will combine almond butter, jelly, jalapeño and bacon, while another will have pastrami, cream cheese, olives and jalapeños.
To keep costs low, Nadile enlisted her friend Norma Ford to help make the renovations. Ford will be the manager at Public House Theater.
“We put the bar in probably about a month or so ago,” the 49-year-old Nadile said. “We had to totally renovate this place because it was in pretty bad shape, but I wanted to keep it in Tahoe Park.”
A word of advice: Don’t try to enter on 14th Avenue. The Public House front door actually faces the back parking lot.