Entrepreneur plants her online pottery biz in downtown Fairmont – Times-West Virginian

Light rain early. A mix of sun and clouds in the afternoon. High near 55F. Winds WSW at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 80%..
A few clouds. Low around 25F. Winds W at 5 to 10 mph.
Updated: December 3, 2022 @ 1:03 am
Hannah Lenhart stands next to her temporary “pop-up shop” in 312 Adams St. during Small Business Saturday. She was selling her merchandise while discussing her plans for the building with the public.
Two of Hannah Lenhart’s big plans inside her new building are to expose the original brick and remove the drop ceiling.
Many of Hannah Lenhart works are colorful and themed on West Virginia. Pieces like these will fill her storefront once her shop is opened.

Reporter
Hannah Lenhart stands next to her temporary “pop-up shop” in 312 Adams St. during Small Business Saturday. She was selling her merchandise while discussing her plans for the building with the public.
Two of Hannah Lenhart’s big plans inside her new building are to expose the original brick and remove the drop ceiling.
Many of Hannah Lenhart works are colorful and themed on West Virginia. Pieces like these will fill her storefront once her shop is opened.
FAIRMONT — Another small business has chosen downtown Fairmont as its physical home.
Hannah’s Clay Creations, an online pottery shop, will open a physical location in downtown Fairmont on Adams Street.
Owner Hannah Lenhart is no stranger to Fairmont. As a graduate from Fairmont State University and a native to the area, she’s familiar with The Friendly City and is excited to take a big step forward with her business.
“This is a huge jump,” Lenhart said. “Before, my studio was in my parent’s basement, and I was pretty cramped for room. This new space will give me a lot more space and help me be more connected to the public.”
The new space is located at 312 Adams St., the former location of Ray’s Jewelry and just next door to Veterans Square. The 2,500 square-foot building has display space and plenty of room for Lenhart to mold into her own studio.
When Lenhart mentioned to her family the idea of having a storefront, her father suggested the Adams Street location. She said it was love at first sight.
“[My dad] has driven by this place many times and saw the sign in the window. In August I was talking to him about expanding my business and he mentioned this building being available,” Lenhart said. “The moment I toured it I fell in love… now I’m really excited to renovate it.”
The location also has a sentimental connection to Lenhart and her family. Ray’s Jewelry, the previous inhabitant, was where her father purchased her mother’s engagement ring.
On top of falling in love with the building, she’s also fallen in love with the business environment in downtown Fairmont.
“I really feel like there’s a lot of new excitement coming into the downtown Fairmont area and I’m really getting in on the ground floor,” Lenhart said. “There are a lot of naysayers about businesses coming to Fairmont. I hate that’s the position people have. … I really want to push the idea that change is only going to happen if people really want it to happen and I’m excited to be a part of that change.”
There’s still a lot of work to be done on the new space, but Lenhart is determined to make it her own and she has big plans.
She reports that the structure’s bones are solid “like a tank” and the most work to be done will be aesthetic repairs. Her first few tasks will be removing the drop ceiling and updating the inside of the building.
But the more ambitious plan is to entirely replace the building’s facade. Currently, the front door is set under a small entry hallway with display windows on either side. Her vision is to tear all that out and bring the entrance right to the sidewalk.
To help with that project, she was awarded a $5,000 facade grant from Main Street Fairmont earlier this fall.
While the space will have her actual pottery pieces for sale and on display, she also plans to have a full pottery studio for classes, rentals, and parties. She’s even considered having a sort of membership program where customers can pay a monthly fee to use the pottery wheels any time.
But she is not at that point yet and ambitiously hopes to be finished with renovations by spring 2023.
In order to fund the renovations, she will still sell her work online and is also selling a T-shirt commemorating the new building’s history as a jewelry store. Information about her products and renovations can be found at her website www.hannahsclaycreations.com.
Lenhart’s pottery is colorful and creative and that’s by design. On her website, she says her goal is to make the mundane just a little more exciting.
“My focus through my work is to help make life’s little rituals a little more special. From a morning cup of coffee to setting out flowers on a table; I seek to bring a bit of brightness and whimsy to help enhance the small moments in life,” Lenhart writes in her artist statement. “Through the hustle and bustle of daily living, it is my hope that my work can create a moment of pause and act as a reminder to take a breather.”
Lenhart becomes the third young entrepreneur to take up space in downtown this year, joining Loving WV on Monroe Street and Social Bee Marketing Agency, just one door down from Lenhart on Adams Street.
Dan Swiger, director of Main Street Fairmont, said that these young business owners are bringing new life into downtown.
“We’re excited to have Hannah’s Clay Creations join our growing downtown. Hannah’s Clay Creations, Social Bee Marketing Agency and Loving WV are new businesses owned by young entrepreneurs that have moved downtown in the last few months,” Swiger said. “Their spirit and enthusiasm are breathing new life into our historic downtown.”
The U.S. Small Business Administration acts as an incubator and support system for businesses like those that are starting to populate Fairmont’s downtown. West Virginia’s SBA Director Karen Friel says that this renaissance is being seen around the country.
In West Virginia, these businesses act as the main drivers of the economy and nationally, small businesses employ half of all workers. Friel said young entrepreneurs are leading the way in many communities.
“This new generation of entrepreneurs brings innovative ideas to the table and show immense leadership,” Friel said. “When our nation’s small businesses do well, our communities do well. When you shop small you are turning a dollar in your own community.”
Reach David Kirk at 304-367-2522 or by email at dkirk@timeswv.com.
Reporter
{{description}}
Email notifications are only sent once a day, and only if there are new matching items.
Sorry, there are no recent results for popular images.
Sorry, there are no recent results for popular commented articles.
Sign up now to get our FREE breaking news coverage delivered right to your inbox.
First Amendment: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

source

Hire me on the World’s Leading Online Marketplace Freelancer.com to design your website. Additional services like- graphic design, virtual assistance, SEO, Data entry, etc are available. Click on This Link to start your project

Write a comment