Shop Keeping, Episode 1

Suppliers Are Your Colleagues

Nov 15, 2019 · 2 min read

“Nice things, made by nice people”

That’s my reply to “What do you sell, Anne?”

When the government informed me that I was no longer entitled to the state pension at age 60, I realised I needed work. I looked for a little shop.

My Unique Selling Point? Absolutely no retail experience. Not even a “Saturday Job”. So how would that go?

I enjoy cooking; my hobby was writing a blog about free range eggs; cookware accumulates in my kitchen cupboards. So that settled it. I would have a kitchen shop.

Easy decision. Next, the practicalities.

I found a shop, I hired tradespeople, I started looking for nice things to sell. (I’ll pick up the story of “nice things” in a future episode. This one is “nice people”)

Before I bought even one item of stock, I made a decision. Not only did I have to like the product, I had to like the person supplying it. From the Jam Maker to the Enamelware Importer, I was looking for a colleague. Faceless companies could offer me fabulous items at fabulous prices. I’ll say “No thanks”. My suppliers are people, our transactions and deals are conversations.

A local woman who makes cakes and snacks (Yes Lesley, you!) jokingly said I should stop selling and start giving business advice. Well that’s not happening; but it started me thinking about my shop. Primarily, why is One Basket, Kelso so idiosyncratically “me”? Part of the answer is, my suppliers are my colleagues. It means a lot to me that I can tell customers about the products: who made them, where they come from, how I discovered them… In simple terms, they’re made by Nice People.

Thank you for reading my story. Please follow me if you enjoyed it. More to follow.

Instagram: One_Basket

Facebook: One Basket Kelso

Twitter OneBasket_Kelso


Written by


Food writing, living in the Scottish Borders.

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade