Tell us about Sarah’s Place.
Sarah’s Place is the world’s smallest (I think) vegan curio shop – located in the heart of downtown Victoria. The shop measures in at a scant 7.5 feet wide and 30 feet deep. The boutique is a collection of some of my favourite vegan items. I carry pottery by Jeanette Zeis, clothing by Bernie Dexter, Hemp Hoodlamp winter jackets, Zimt chocolates, Estrella Soap, New Moon Kitchen cookies, etc., etc. I could make a long list :) If you can’t come to Victoria to visit, you can always visit the online version of Sarah’s Place store and check out all the items. I ship world-wide!!
What are some great new items folks can purchase from you as holiday gifts?
I have tons of yummy treats for stocking stuffers and/or I highly recommend Earth’s Herbal Teas as a stocking stuffer. They are wildcrafted by my dear friend Lily Fawn here in Victoria and all the teas have a medicinal quality to them as well as being super tasty.
For kids either or both of The Monkey Bunch music cd’s. Kids go crazy for The Monkey Bunch!! For the man in your life … a Hoodlamp P-Coat would be great! A purse always makes a great gift! If you’re looking for someone who likes to have fun in the kitchen then the Spirooli Slicer is perfect and of course … you could always get them a cookbook. I can think of 4 that I would highly recommend. :)
The one thing I DON’T carry at my shop is my new iPhone/iPad app called GoVegan! w/Sarah Kramer. It’s weird to have a product that I can’t physically touch or hand to someone. It’s available at Itunes and you can “gift it” to anyone you know who has an iPhone/iPad. We’re hoping to have a version of it available for androids very soon.
I love how your shop is so physically tiny – what are some benefits (and drawbacks) of taking a small, carefully curated approach like that?
Me too. I love my little store … it’s the shape of a shoebox and one side of the store is all windows. It’s like I’m in a human sized aquarium. The benefits are the rent. It’s expensive to rent a space in the downtown retail core of Victoria and so this tiny shop is affordable to me. It’s such a unique space that I initially had some issues with where to put everything but after a trip to Ikea for shelving and using some of the store’s vertical space to showcase the clothing… it feels small in here but not cramped. Although on a Saturday afternoon when everyone is in here shopping … having more then 6 people in here can feel tight. :)
The only downsize is that I would like to carry more products and just don’t have the room … but I wasn’t sure what the feedback would be for the store so I thought I should start small and see how it goes. I am in absolute shock at the response to the store. I’ve been busy since the first day I opened my doors and I am so grateful for all the people (local and from out of town) that come and visit me.
Has any actor from Sleepaway Camp ever purchased something from your store or one of your books?
OH MY GOD! Why are you asking me about Sleepaway Camp? [Ed. note: This is why.] Did you feel that chill run up my back?? I saw that movie in the theater when I was a kid and I almost shit my pants I was so scared … I don’t want to ruin the ending for anyone but the twist in the end scared me to my core. I can’t even think about that movie without feeling scared … ahhhhh! Next question!!
Tell us about another vegan-owned business that you love that other people may not know about.
Well I of course love the crew at Herbivore Clothing. I’ve been long-time friends with them and they are such good people. I also love VX in London and have worked with Secret Society of Vegans for years. They did the graphics on Vegan A Go-Go and also my 2010/2011 Calendar. I LOVE the ladies at Moo Shoes and of course Food Fight, Cosmo’s Vegan Shoppe, etc., etc. As for new places – there’s a new Vegan Shoe store in Victoria that just opened up called VShoen. I can’t go in there anymore because I always walk out with a pair of shoes. *laugh*