After surviving two pandemic lockdowns, My Sister's Closet in Kanata is becoming a victim of the third.
In a recent post on Facebook, Julie Sheaves, the owner of the small thrift and consignment store, says that she is heartbroken and that she had no other choice but to close her store due to the pandemic.
"Believe me when I say I've tried everything to stay open, but it's just not feasible," she writes. "I will miss you all very much, I have made many friendships with many of you, enjoyed so many laughs and even tears, the 'therapy' went both ways."
"Next month was to be our 25th-anniversary event, I so wish I was getting celebrations ready instead of saying goodbye," adds Sheaves.
The post continues to be flooded with outpouring support from the community.
My Sister's Closet, located on March Road in Kanata, is home to many items such as gently used and affordable clothing, toys, books and accessories, which customers could be bought and traded in.
Although she remained optimistic, Sheaves admits things started to take a turn for the worse once customers could no longer visit the store regularly and were restricted to curbside pick-up options.
"We've such a wonderful customer base and amazing clients but people are getting weary of everything that's going on around us, I can see it and I certainly hear it in their voices," Sheaves wrote in an email previous to the announcement of My Sister's Closet closing. "I've been able to keep my staff but unfortunately had to reduce work hours for them as my sales have dropped significantly since the pandemic started."
The entrepreneur is left wishing the government would have allowed her store to stay open, as she believes it is a necessity for those (particularly seniors) who needed affordable and convenient shopping options. The continuous change of restrictions was something that was frustrating for other thrift and consignment store owners in Ottawa too.
My Sister's Closet will remain open for the next three weeks, in order for customers to pick up any remaining items. Sheaves says she's counting on the support of the community during this time.