FAIRBORN — Opening day was a non-stop rush of business for Honey Hole Thrift Store owners Mechelle Becraft and Crystal Watkins. The store, located on the corner of South Central Avenue and Main Street in Fairborn, opened its doors for business on Tuesday, March 2 to a flurry of welcome by local customers.
“We had a line of people down the street,” Becraft said of their morning opening.
The store is a labor of love for the sisters, who say that thrifting has been an activity in their family since they were young.
“We always wanted to do this,” Becraft said. “We grew up going to thrift stores and loved them.”
The pandemic impacted both sisters’ line of work last year. Watkins previously worked as director of sales for Hilton Inn, and Becraft designed commercial interiors for hospitals. Both industries were significantly impacted by the pandemic, as people stopped staying at hotels and hospital renovation and construction slowed down. As their hours and work dried up, the two single moms took the opportunity to finally start a business of their own.
“We’ve always had a dream to do it, but it was kind of crazy how it happened so fast,” Becraft said. “We just made the decision in December. We drove by, saw this empty space, talked to the landlord in the first week of January, and things just fell into place.”
Just three months later, Honey Hole came to fruition. For such a short turnaround time, that meant sometimes working six or seven days a week to get the shop up and running.
Honey Hole is a for-profit business, and the thrift store carries “anything and everything,” Becraft said. However, the sisters say the store still gives back to the community with their pricing, the quality of goods they carry, and the potential impact of the business in the local area.
“We wanted footprint to be really unique. We want people to have fun here, for it to be memorable and for them to come back,” Becraft said.
“The other thing is that we wanted people to be able to afford it,” she continued. “COVID has impacted a lot of people. A lot of people can’t afford to go to the mall to buy clothes for their kids. We want to be able to give back to the community.”
So far, the mentality has paid off.
“It has been wonderful, the feedback, the business today. Everybody was very kind,” Becraft said. “The first day of business has been excellent, nonstop.”
Honey hole is also accepting donations during regular business hours, Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The store also offers a donation pickup service.
Reach London Bishop at 937-502-4532 or follow @LBishopFDH on Twitter.