Friday, May 3, 2019

Introducing our Design Team Decorators for Alpharetta

Introducing Shana and Melissa, our two very talented decorators for our Design Team Tuesday in Alpharetta! Beginning Tuesday, May 14th we will be offering one-on-one, complimentary design consultations from 11 to 2 EVERY Tuesday in Alpharetta. Book your complimentary one hour appointment today by calling the Alpharetta store at 678-297-7571. If possible, bring the following items to your consultation: photos & dimensions of your room, items you want to keep, measurements of areas needing furniture, artwork or lighting, paint and color scheme ideas and your design inspiration (Pinterest, magazines, photos, etc).

Meet Shana Gonzales of Vintage Bleu 72

Shana Gonzales of Vintage Bleu 72 is located on Queen and Battery St in Queen of Hearts Alpharetta. She specializes in French farmhouse decor and her dealer code is BLEU. She has been a dealer-merchant at the Queen of Hearts for 2.5 years and will be one of two featured decorators on our Design Team Tuesday. She is currently in school at New York Institute of Art and Design. One of the favorite things in her home are 3 watercolor paintings she purchased off of a street vendor in Venice, Italy. Besides her love for collecting antiques, interior decorating, and refinishing furniture with great bones, she loves to travel. She is married with 3 children, grew up in Arizona and California, and has lived Roswell, Georgia for 7 years. You can find more of her great merchandise on Facebook and Instagram.

Meet Melissa Dale of Story House Home Staging

Melissa has been married to Patrick for 18 years and has two sons, Jackson (15) and Peter (10). Originally from South Florida, the couple moved to Alpharetta in 2008 and after several moves out of state over the last 11 years, they keep coming back to their beloved Georgia! Her booth is located on Queen Street and her dealer code is STORY. Melissa's first memory of decorating a space was her 5th grade bedroom. Arranging, rearranging and decorating started at the age of 10 for Melissa and hasn't stopped since then! 

Today, Melissa is a dealer at The Queen of Hearts in Alpharetta and holds her Home Staging Certification and is also a member of the Real Estate Staging Association (RESA) and International Association of Home Staging Professionals (IAHSP). Throughout the last 20 years, Melissa has successfully designed, staged and sold many of her own homes and is excited to help you create the space of your dreams in your home. She is excited to be a part of this new opportunity at the Queen. You can find more of her great merchandise on Facebook and Instagram.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Queen Owners Stacey & Jim Anderson: A Love Story

From the owner, Stacey Anderson, about husband and co-owner Jim Anderson. "People often ask how me and my husband (and co-owner of the Queen, Jim) met. Well, here is the full story!"

My agenda for the winter of 1986 was to sit home, needlepoint and eat popcorn. Okay, and the occasional tennis lesson. Out of the blue, a friend of my mother’s asked if I was dating anyone . . . the answer was no and then I reiterated my winter agenda. She said there was a guy, named Jim Anderson, that worked for her husband and she wanted us to meet.

Well, back then we had answering machines and no cellphones. So if you missed a phone call via the landline, you would listen to the message when you got home. Well, Jim did call and left a message to call him back – BUT left no phone number. And back then the machines did not record the numbers. So for the next week, I waited patiently, for Jim to call back while adhering to my winter agenda (remember: eating popcorn and needlepointing!)

He did call back a couple of days later . . . only to ask me out for Friday and Saturday. My answer was NO, just Friday night. So he came to the door, and I looked in the peephole to see a sandy blonde haired, bearded guy. I thought "not bad" . . . I always wanted blonde and blue-eyed children. So we talked for a while at my house and then went to see The Color Purple at Phipps. And in case anyone was wondering if the date went well - yes, we did go out on Saturday night too.

Jim traveled 5 days each week for Timberland so we spent hours on the phone each night getting to know each other. Three weeks into us dating, he asked, “When are we getting married?” I said “I don’t know.” Was it sparks and fireworks? No. Was it comfortable? Yes. Did we have a lot in common? Yes. Did I want blonde, blue-eyed children? Yes . . . are you getting the picture?

We then started planning a November wedding that same year, since my mother said she did not want us to share a wedding with Christmas and we could not pull off having a double wedding with my sister, Monica, on April 19th. And yes, my mom and dad footed the tab for two weddings that year! All my friends all thought I was on the rebound having just ended a 7 year relationship. But they say... "when you know it is right, it is right!"

It was a whirlwind romance that has sustained for almost 33 years, produced two great sons - Tyler, 30 and Keaton, 28. So all I can say is that is has been, and continues to be, a great ride with a life partner that has weathered some ups and downs, including breast cancer 20 years ago, to losing parents, and everything else in between.

Our wish is for everyone to find their Valentine and then buckle up for the "ride of life" together – weathering all the ups and downs, but learning to lean on each other, growing closer everyday, and coasting into the last chapters of life together. Happy Valentine's Day, from the Queen!

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Evolution of the Queen of Hearts

As most of you know, the Queen of Hearts has been in business for over 20 years. When the Alpharetta location opened with 12 dealer-merchants, Jim and I were so excited. We definitely didn’t know then what we know now – at the time, we thought we were rocking it!

Jim Anderson signing up a new dealer-merchant in 1998

By 2003 we had slowly grown to over 200 dealers in Alpharetta. We bought an established mall in East Cobb, and opened the Buford Queen within four days of each other. Can you say, risk takers?? At the time, we were also raising two boys that played travel hockey and tournament tennis. We eventually sold the East Cobb location, opened the Marietta Queen on Hwy. 5, and moved that store to its current location in 2012.

Selling space in the Marietta Queen location

Whew! What a whirlwind for the Queen of Hearts and our family. The boys ate many pizzas on the counters in the Alpharetta location and skated up and down the aisles where there was open space. They still reminisce about it and loved growing up at the “store.”

Keaton & Tyler helping set up for Grand Opening, 1998

Many customers stop me and ask, “Where is your booth?" It comes as a surprise to many that I do not have one and never have. They always ask me why. My response is that after much research before opening the Queen, Jim and I visited many malls across the country and found that the majority had owners competing with their dealers to make sales each day. In our book, that just wasn’t fair to the dealers. It was decided that we would work on a business model that serviced our dealer-merchants, making them successful. If they were successful, then the Queen would be successful.

Dealer-Merchant Training Class

Over the last 20 years, we continue to vet each and every dealer-merchant that wants to join our team. An application and photos are required, then it is determined if they'll be a great fit and have the right merchandise to be successful. We strive to provide our customers with a wide-range of merchandise in each of the stores—traditional, farmhouse, vintage, mid-century, French country and more.

Chili Cook-off in Alpharetta

The dealer-merchant relationships and friendships that have evolved over these last 20 years brings lots of joy to us. We love hearing the stories when we share in dealer events – Wine & Dines, Chili Cook-offs and Meet, Greet & Eats. We love the veteran dealer-merchant as much as the ones that are beginners. Each one brings to the table their decorating flair, their passion and their love for the Queen of Hearts. The Queen of Hearts salutes our 550 dealer-merchants - thank you for all you do!

Stacey "working" through dinner!

Stacey Anderson is the owner of all three Queen of Hearts locations in Alpharetta, Buford and Marietta. Follow us on Instagram or Facebook to see more from our dealer-merchants!