That’s thanks to new owner Donna McCrea, who bought the store just two weeks before it was scheduled to close in 2011. More than a year later, the store is full of the busy, cheerful hum of people looking for crafting supplies, learning about new crafting techniques, or browsing the items available in the new consignment section.
“It’s been unbelievably good,” said McCrea. “I’ve really enjoyed getting to know the customers as they realize we’re still here.”
She proves that as the customers come into the store, greeting them warmly and calling many by name. She asked about current projects they were working on, complimenting children as she and the customer headed into the aisles to talk about what products would work best.
When asked about the friendly atmosphere, she shook her head. “I usually bring my dog in,” she said. “I’m sure most people come in just to see my dog.”
McCrea has been in retail for 30 years, having gotten her start with a hardware store. Though she laughs about the change from chainsaws to cards, she said the principles of both stores are the same.
“The key is having a good product and good customer service,” she said. “I just like to meet people and help them go home with something they want.”
The scrapbooking bug hit McCrea when she moved to Utah, and six years ago she opened Just Bee Scrap’n in Brigham City. She divides her time between the two stores, currently spending four days in Bountiful and two days in Brigham City.
Despite the economy, she feels that expansion has only been good for her.
“People’s memories, and the chance to do something with those memories, is always a comfort when things get tough,” McCrea said.
She’s also made some changes to the store, including adding the consignment area that features jewelry, hair accessories, and other items from 15 local crafters.
Online, she’s started a Heartland Paper blog, which can be found at heartlandpaperandalittlemore.blogspot.com. The site includes information about the store’s page and card clubs, as well as all day scrapbooking events and a variety of craft ideas.
Information about Heartland Paper’s calendar or how to join their clubs can be found by calling the store at 801-294-7166.
McCrea’s enthusiasm for what she does, however, can only be felt by coming into the store.
“I love petting the new paper when it comes in,” she said with a laugh. “I’m always excited about the new products.
“And I love all the customers, of course. But that’s just a given.”