What Level is Your Design Business?

Amy Baradell and Amy Meinecke: Advice When Thinking of Partnering Your Business

Episode 128 of Window Treatments for Profit

Today With Amy Baradell and Amy Meinecke:

Welcome to Window Treatments for Profit! Listen in today as I speak with two great ladies who have created a wonderful partnership over the years, Amy Baradell and Amy Meinecke. They met in 2003 through the High Point Chapter of the WCAA. At that time, they each had their own window treatment business. In July 2009 they merged their businesses to form Window Works Studio, Inc. 

In today’s episode they will share with us how their journey started, what are some of the most valuable things they have learned about a partnership, and of course how they overcome difficult situations as a team.

More About Amy Baradell and Amy Meinecke:

Amy Baradell and Amy Meinecke met in 2003 through the High Point Chapter of the WCAA. At that time, they each had their own window treatment business. In July 2009 they merged their businesses to form Window Works Studio, Inc.

Amy Meinecke’s first career was a Registered Nurse. She worked in Critical Care for 10 years and then in a local Cardiology office for 6 years. Her mother-in-law taught her how to sew when she was pregnant with her first child. After that, she took classes, learning through practice. Growing up, she wanted to be a Nurse or an Interior Designer. In 2000, after many years of Nursing, she decided to fulfill her other dream and started her own business creating custom window treatments. Her home based business quickly grew. She was the founder of the High Point Chapter of the WCAA.  She worked from her home until 2009 when she merged her business with Amy Baradell, creating Window Works Studio, Inc.  Amy M. loves working with clients and enjoys getting to know them through the design process. She has worked with a wide variety of clients and a wide range of budgets. She has experience designing and making custom window treatments, bedding, pillows, cushions, and slipcovers.

She has been married for 34 years and still enjoys spending time with her husband! They  enjoy time with their grown children, extended family and friends. About once a month they get together with a group of long time friends to play Bunco. Saturday night is still “Date Night” for her and her husband. She loves to be outside, has been an avid runner and has recently taken up biking. She has quite a green thumb with both flowers and vegetables.  A huge supporter of Habitat for Humanity, she has organized two women only builds over the past few years. This fall she is organizing Habitat’s main fundraising event that will take place on September 22, 2022.

Amy Baradell began sewing at a young age. Her first “project”, at the age of five was a pillow for her grandfather who had suffered a stroke. In 1983 she obtained a bachelor’s degree in clothing and textiles from UNC-Greensboro. In 1987 she began her own business, fabricating custom window treatments for designers in Charleston, SC. Having just had her first baby, she often brought him along for her  measuring appointments. Her business was home based until 2003 when she purchased the space where Window Works Studio is currently located. Through the years Amy B has worked with homeowners,  interior designers, and furniture showrooms. She has designed dance costumes, historical costumes, weddings gowns, custom window treatments, bedding, and slipcovers.

She enjoys spending time with her husband. They married in 2018 after being introduced by Amy Meinecke. They share a love for running and music. They have four grown children between them and two grandchildren whom they  enjoy traveling to see. Amy can be found hiking, running, cooking, and trying new local restaurants. She is serving this year as president of WPF, Women’s Professional Forum. It is an organization formed in the 70’s to encourage, support, and educate professional women.  She and her husband are members of Hope Chapel in Greensboro and enjoy serving the community with them.

Window Works Studio, Inc. has grown in many ways over the past 13 years. When Amy and Amy began, they  were both fabricating, consulting, and designing. Fairly quickly they realized that they would be more efficient if they divided the duties. Amy Meinecke’s focus is sales to retail clients, designing, marketing, and keeping up with the numbers. She also trains  design consultants. Amy Baradell’s focus is providing service to interior designers, managing the workroom team, designing, and fabrication. She also provides training for our fabricators.  In 2015 they were able to purchase the unit next to their original space, bringing the square footage from 1600 to almost 3000 square feet. In the summer of 2020, during COVID, they upfitted the space, creating a larger workroom, a fabric sample room and a showroom. They have six seamstresses, an office assistant and have just hired a second design consultant.  Through the years they have invested in business coaching, attending conferences, and most recently took Vita’s class at LuAnn University.  Their goal is to continue to grow, document their systems, and have a saleable business in the near future.

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Other Shows Mentioned:

#43: Peggy Morgans: How Do I Get My Business Ready to Sell?

Other Resources Mentioned:

The 7-Step Sales Process

Systems-Driven Operations