When Rachel and Jesse Sample opened a business three years ago, they didn’t set out to have a storefront.
“We started out as Wichita Wood Floor Cleaning, and we only cleaned wood floors,” Rachel Sample says.
Soon, though, she says they started adding sanding and installation as customers requested it.
Then, Sample says, customers began asking, “Can we come see your showroom?”
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Except they didn’t have one.
Now, they will.
The company that’s now known as Wichita Wood Floor Specialists will open a store in 1,800 square feet in the former MGM Studio of the Dance space next to Crown Uptown Theatre, just east of the corner of Douglas and Hillside.
“You learn to grow,” Sample says.
She says she and her husband started their company because they wanted to do something where they didn’t have to rely on others for work.
“We were really broke, and we were both laid off at the time, and we were trying to think of something to do,” Sample says.
Jesse Sample had a background doing carpet restoration and wood floor cleaning. The two intended to simply offer wood floor cleaning.
“We kind of found out that not everybody just wants them cleaned,” Sample says.
As their customers have educated them, she says they’ve tried to educate their customers in return. That has included introducing the idea you don’t always have to sand floors unless they’re especially damaged.
“That’s been our toughest battle.”
The store will have wood, vinyl and stain samples. There will be a miniature basketball court in the middle of the showroom to show some of what the business offers.
“We’re actually going to be offering old barn wood that has been taken out of old barns in Missouri and Oklahoma and planed down and turned into flooring,” Sample says.
She expects the store will be ready by the end of January or early February.
“We’re finally in the home stretch.”
The holdup actually is the installation of their own floor, she says.
“But trying to do everybody else’s floors on top of ours can kind of be a juggle sometimes.”