Walker’s Footwear and Apparel doesn’t just sell clothes anymore. The Uptown shop now sells everything from plants and ceramics to, of course, shoes.
Owner Amy Longcamp has been trying to expand inventory to accommodate every kind of shopper.
Longcamp, along with her friend Jennifer Domenico, opened a flower stand inside the store last spring.
“Just knowing Jen and what she creates and how beautiful the things she makes are, I thought it would be a good match [for the store],” Longcamp said.
Domenico has grown flowers on her farm, Cedar Hill, since 2017. She started learning about the regrowth of the local flower industries after seeing all the locally grown flowers at farmers markets.
Domenico’s home grown “Bloom Bar” features seasonal flowers that customers can purchase by the stem.
“A lot of people think you have to be able to arrange a large bouquet, and that is kind of overwhelming for most people,” Domenico said. “People need to be aware that you can just grab a flower or two.”
The Bloom Bar inside Walker’s also features prearranged bouquets and “everlasting” bouquets, which are dried up greens that can be featured far longer than regular flowers.
In season stems sell for anywhere from $1 to $5, and larger, mixed bouquets range from $15 to $35 depending on the size.
The petite jar, a small arrangement made ready-to-go of flowers and greens in a Mason jar, allows customers to get the in-between of a large bouquet and just a few loose stems.
Faye Sawtelle, a Miami University sophomore who works at Walker’s, said she hopes the Bloom Bar will draw new customers to the shop.
“We have a lot of inventory that would appeal to college students regarding clothing and room decor,” Sawtelle said. “I really like some of the new flower pots and Patagonia jackets we recently got in.”
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The Bloom Bar is just one part of the expansion at Walker’s. Longcamp hopes to add in more plants and home goods, as well as other brands.
“I’m happy to have Jen bring as much as she wants,” Longcamp said. “We have pots and a few plants now, but I’d like to have more plants so you have a variety to choose from.”
Longcamp said Walker’s will continue to carry brand names like Patagonia and Cotopaxi but will now have more small brands’ accessories and clothes to go along with them.
“Most of the brands that we carry have a give back strategy,” Longcamp said. “We have a lot of women-owned businesses that we brought in.”
The new brands and accessories, as well as the Bloom Bar, have gone over well with Walker’s customers too.
“Once people find out we have a flower bar, they frequently stop by for bouquets,” Sawtelle said.
The Bloom Bar is restocked one or two times a week, giving customers the option for fresh flowers that they can pick from.
Domenico’s Cedar Hill has also done events at Miami and bouquet orders in the past and hopes to continue working with flowers outside the Bloom Bar. Walker’s also hopes to host events in the future where groups can come in to build their own flower bouquets or wreaths, depending on the season.
Domenico said she hopes the Bloom Bar will bring more people into Walker’s and keep the local floral business going.
“People need to be aware that you can just grab a couple flowers,” Domenico said. “If you just want to grab a flower or two to have on your nightstand, it's an easy and inexpensive way to have flowers all the time.”