Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Here's the scoop!

55 West & Co is officially for sale. There are lots of stories and rumors about so I thought I'd share a little about what's really going on...

This past fall, I went for an annual doctor check-up and was shocked to find out that I am in stage 5 renal failure. I will start dialysis soon and will need a kidney transplant in the near future. The doctors say that I'm a prime candidate for a transplant, and it's a pretty common procedure these days--some good news! In the meantime, I am taking tons of herbs, eating lots of organic veggies, and seeing many new age doctors. I'm actually the healthiest that I've ever been besides the kidney function!

This has been a life-altering experience...I've decided that I need to make some big changes and really focus on healing. Many tears were shed when I realized that keeping the store open was no longer an option. I just can't physically keep up with it. On a positive note, I have decided that I will continue to create jewelry, artwork, rugs, and painted furniture. My plan is to find a barn in the country where I can have a workshop and host quarterly shows. I will also continue selling my wares to other retail stores; 55 originals will still be available in cute shops throughout Ohio and beyond!

The building and/or the business are for sale. I would love to see 55 West continue to operate in Millersburg. It's such an inspiring escape for regulars and a fun surprise to Amish country visitors. Because of the circumstances, however, I must consider selling the building alone should a buyer be interested. Please feel free to spread the word!

The plan is to keep the store open until it sells as long as there are no major health complications in the meantime. I have reduced the hours of operation, and sometimes just don't have the energy to open. So please call ahead if you're making a special trip! If the building sells and not the business, we will have a huge sale, but I'm still adding inventory at this point.

I'm so thankful that I got to be a part of Downtown Millersburg and meet thousands of interesting people over the years. I really appreciate all of the support from the community and fans of 55. The outpouring of support has been more overwhelming to me than hearing the news about my kidneys. Thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your support, prayers, and well wishes. I feel truly blessed by your kindness!


Anita said...

Aside from my grandma's - your store is one of my favorite places in Millersburg.
I hope all those herbs help a lot.
Love and prayers.

Ola said...


So sad to hear that 55 West will be closing. I will miss it...always my excuse for going to Millersburg. I am glad I have some items that make me smile from your store. I am glad you can continue to create as it seems to flow from you so beautifully. I trust your healing journey will be filled with peace and the comfort and encouragement of friends will surround you. Peace and prayers...Viola Miller

Christina said...

So sorry to hear this I loved going to your store for the first time this summer! Was hoping to come back this coming summer, but hey you still may be there. God Bless you!

Jmescola17 said...

Stef, there is no other shop like 55 West, and I can't thank you enough for sharing it with each and every person who discovered it like I did. Thank you for also welcoming me in to the 55 family. I will ALWAYS be grateful.

I'm so thrilled to hear that 55 will continue to live on through your art. Just think of the thousands of homes here in Ohio and across the country that have a special little piece of you and 55 to brighten them up. Last week, a friend asked me where I got my amazing dining room table. 55 West, of course. And then I found myself pointing from one piece to the next saying "55, 55, 55." Yup. The home that I love would not be what it is without you!

Thinking of you all the time...

Melnee B. Benfield said...

Oh my! I just read this blog, and am nearly in tears. I am so, so sorry! I will pray for your complete recovery, also, for you to have an abundance oflove and support.
Stay strong. Keep the creative juices flowing.
Melnee Benfield
Wooster, OH.

Judy said...

Stephanie, I wish you well. I love your shop since my friend introduced it to me a couple years ago. I also heard your "dog walker" past and am sorry to hear that. How's your puppy doing?

blueschoolmomma said...

Oh my goodness, I"m so sad! Your store was one of the reasons I came into Millersburg. You will be missed, but you've made a good choice! Take care of yourself!