Two Trading Tigers consignment shop in jeopardy

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

A treasure chest of a shop with something for everyone.

Store-wide Sale on August 1st


Story and photos by Donna Hawkey

It’s a stressful time for everyone, and for some, it’s like being in limbo. Owners of Two Trading Tigers in the Lake Forest Park Town Center are feeling that way. As a non-essential business, they had to close for almost three months to comply with COVID-19 mandated public health safety measures. 

Two Trading Tiger Consignment Shop located in the LFP Town Center, upper parking lot.

The owners have missed all their big holidays - Easter, Mother’s Day, and Fourth of July - and soon, they’ll be behind another entire season of merchandising.

Two Trading Tigers sells select new items, too.
 
Two Trading Tigers will host a one-day storewide sale on Saturday, August 1st from 11:00am to 6:00pm. And they feel it’s a real possibility they could be closing in the fall. 

“Right now, we are just trying to hang-on. Negotiations with the landlord have not been easy with no rent relief. As a small consignment shop owner, I don’t know where to go with all this,” sighs Mary Anchondo, Co-owner of Two Trading Tiger.

Many of Two Trading Tigers’ consignors are seniors who rely on consignment stores for supplemental income. Mary says, “That’s a hot market of folks who need and access the shops.” 

There’s always been a bit of an international flair here.


The store has contracts with each consigner and needs to honor those terms. Mary now offers consigners to either pick-up their items or leave them to sell at a reduced price. Mary can’t even guarantee them cash in their pockets. Instead of cash, she is offering private, thirty minute shopping sessions for consignment commissions.

Today, they aren’t sure of the outcome, except there will be a 20% off sale on Saturday, August 1st. 

“We’ve experienced a Lake Forest Park village extend themselves to us, and this community support has wowed us,” says Mary. And it goes beyond her shop, “the residents care about the whole shopping center.” She is wowed by that, too.

The two owners are a mother and daughter team. Mary and her daughter, Rachel Brennan, bought the business from the original shop owners Marlee McKibbin and Cherie Lee, who started the store in 2004. Marlee is an extensive traveler, and she always searched out items that were either unusual, interesting, or of particular beauty. 

A sports fan delight.

Two Trading Tiger is a unique merchant niche. “It’s not a thrift store, it’s a high-quality consignment shop, and that comes from the original owners’ values,” says Mary.

Rachel and Mary retained the same values and character in the store. “The store looks like a treasure,” says Mary, just like many Lake Forest Park residents and beyond feel, so it was essential to the new owners to honor that intention. 

It’s been a success with Mary and Rachel doubling their consignment base since they bought the business. They value their loyal and friendly customers and wish for Two Trading Tigers to continue.

They’ve been especially known for fine quality items.

Mary reflected when she decided to extend her shopping hours into the evenings that Third Place Commons held live music events. A gentle but determined woman entered the store and told Mary she had to find a fancy top to wear dancing. The customer was so happy to be successful and immediately put on her new find in the dressing room. She left the store with a great big grin and then headed over to the Third Place Commons for a night of dancing with friends.

Mary, co-owner, prepares for a safe shopping experience.
 
Those are the moments when Mary and Rachel feel they are a part of a wider community, and that’s a win-win for everyone.

“It does require a six-day a week commitment to stay afloat, but it’s a sustainable business. And it’s a good business in both a good economy and especially a downturn. My daughter and I would love to keep this unique shop going in some way,” says Mary.

With family members in the Covid-19 high-risk category, they will consider an offer to purchase the business or a potential partnership.

If you would like to contact Mary about Two Trading Tigers, please do so at mary@twotradingtigers.com

And don’t forget to stop at the sale on Saturday!



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