HAMLET — Molly and Rodney Grooms will open a second 32 Thrift location Saturday morning, moving their furniture sales to make room for more second-hand clothing, shoes and purses.
The “new” redbrick building at 120 Raleigh St. will house used and new furniture — on Friday, a Deco “waterfall” vanity kept company with a new, handcrafted gray microfiber sectional — and the old building at the eponymous 32 W. Hamlet Ave. will be dedicated to wearables.
“It was just wall to wall (stuff)” in the old building, Molly Grooms said Friday, as she was making a run to the furnituremaker the two employ. (She wouldn’t say who he was lest a competitor find him, too.) “We had a little bit of clothing, but the furniture pushed it out of the way.”
The old store still has a huge cache of what-nots, including sofa pillows, cookie jars and used dinnerware. Some of that will adorn the furniture, but the Groomses hope to sell most of it so they can concentrate on what moves the best: clothing and case goods.
“We have a really good following,” Molly Grooms said. “I’m going to have two different clienteles, but I didn’t want to completely separate them.”
In fact, if one stood in front of the new building and turned his head to the right, he could see the old shop half a city block away. An alley runs straight from one to the other.
Their own expansion is all well and good, but Molly Grooms still harbors the idea of guiding other young entrepreneurs into the business. Earlier this year, the Hamlet City Council shot down her first proposal — for what the city manager characterized as “a strip mall of consignment shops” or “indoor flea market” in the former Resource Recycling property on Battley Dairy Road.
Council members didn’t veto the idea itself but denied a rezoning request as a result of concerns about the absentee property owner from whom the Groomses would lease their space.
“That’s all up in the air” still, Molly Grooms said. “I haven’t given up yet.
“I really wanted to be able to help other small businesses (by establishing a place) where they can grow and leave me, like little baby birds.”
The store opening will be 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Raleigh Street location, which used to be a drugstore, and then a fitness center. (The latter explains the mirrored walls.) Free hot dogs and chips will be available.
Reach Christine Carroll at 910-817-2673 or [email protected]