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Studio 7 "downsizing" or Closing?

Original post made by regular of downtown, Pleasanton Heights, on May 28, 2009

About a year ago the owner took a job as a winemaker for a Livermore winery. After the Hospice Thrift Shop was pushed out of downtown and Studio 7 took over the space it seemed like just a matter of time until things would turn around and they would be sorry to have so much space and owe so much rent. How many thousand dollar art glass pieces does anyone really need? At least the thrift shop sold things that regular people could use and their staff was friendly. The people at Studio 7 always seem to be sizing you up to see if you should even be allowed to shop in their store. In a recession it does not pay to chase away the customers, what few customers are left these days.

Comments (9)

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Posted by millie
a resident of Parkside
on May 29, 2009 at 7:37 am

I have been in Studio 7 a few times. One time looking, and willing to buy, a gift. They were so rude and gave me the impression they didn't think I could afford to shop in their store. I guess to them jeans and a sweatshirt means you don't have money.
Needless to say I walked out and didn't buy anything. Went elsewhere and spent my allocated $500 in a store that seemed to appreciate the business.

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Posted by same here
a resident of Downtown
on May 29, 2009 at 7:41 am

I've been in there several times to purchase sometimes reflective of the area's landscapes or streetscapes. I have never had one person ask me if they can help me.

This was probably only a $100-$200 purchase, but at least it was a purchase.

I found the item I was looking for in another local shop for much less. Paid off for me that I was ignored during my shopping sessions.

Don't judge a book by it's cover sales folks. And that $100 purchase might just be the first of many.

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Posted by Claudette McDermott
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on May 29, 2009 at 9:51 am

I've been in there many times and have a number of small purchases. Yes, they don't run up to you and ask if you need help, but that's a good thing sometimes. I enjoy looking and get absorbed in ArtFul items, not needing someone to fawn over me while I am doing so. I have been asked if I need help or have any questions on a certain artist. Every Store or Gallery has a personality and staff has a strategy it is sometimes misread. I enjoy the staff and appreciate their Gallery, but in these times everyone is under stress and downsizing is better than closing all together. I hope they are able to stay. They have items that sell from, what I've seen $50 on up, excellent quality, and great gifts. I'd rather shop downtown than have to run to the mall. Perhaps if you wear a smile others will greet you with a smile.

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Posted by regular of downtown
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on May 29, 2009 at 10:58 am

Claudette, you are off base with your "perhaps if you wear a smile" comment. I have spent several thousand dollars in that store (years ago, never again) and would have thought that might get me something other than a sneer from the owner's mother. The last time I was there the mother, who knows me, asked in a very sarcastic voice "WHAT is it that you need?". Actually, nothing. Nor will there ever be again.
Two of my friends went there, both are known to the mother. She fawned over one, never even acknowleged the other although they stood next to eachother. Some of the regular employees can be quite nice, even sociable. But when the owner and her mother treat most of us as unwanted trash it begs the question of "wearing a smile." We did and still got the royal treatment.
It is good to see new stores moving in and I will continue to spend my discretionary dollars downtown. There are many nice stores, those that are not will just not get my money. It would be good for Pleasanton residents to support the downtown but some people just want to have it not support it. The recession only makes that worse.

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Posted by Jay
a resident of Vintage Hills
on May 29, 2009 at 11:10 am

I have always had a very positive experience with this store. Everybody who works there has been real friendly and helpful to me and has always come up to me to ask if they can help (but don't jump in me as soon as I enter the store which I hate). I also love just about everything in the store. They have some real nice art there and their "framing shop" does a great job. My understanding is they are reconfiguring the store. So they are not closing or "downsizing" but rather reconfiguring. Since the owner also owns a successful winery, I would not be surprised if she converts part of the store to a small winery story/tasting room/wine bar.

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Posted by I hear ya
a resident of another community
on May 29, 2009 at 12:41 pm

In years past I had dealings with the daughter and the mother and found both of them to be very unfriendly - bordering on rude. I was working for another company that was using (paying for) their services and I dreaded it every year - having to call them, work with their "oh, you again" attitude. I guess it must be nice to have so much business that you don't have to be pleasant and full of gratitude.

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Posted by regular of downtown
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on May 29, 2009 at 3:22 pm

Jay, I am happy that you have had good experiences. However, in the interest of honesty -- I think the real owner of the winery would be very surprised to hear that he is NOT the real owner. Winemakers are generally employees, not owners, although the previous owner of that winery was also the winemaker.
They have a display of framing items but they do not do framing. It is all contracted out.
The store is surely being reconfigured but also has walls put up and perhaps about half of the original space is now available for lease to another shop. Could it be another wine tasting venue? Who knows, might be a good addition to downtown.
It has been my experience that all of the art galleries in town have something of an attitude. I have been to galleries in many other states and throughout Europe and have never, ever, been treated with the disdain that is shown in Pleasanton. Must be something in the water.

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Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Jun 1, 2009 at 1:27 pm

Art galleries are often filled with wannabee's. Most are dilettantes, charlatans! I guess hanging out in the same room with a painting or trinkets in a downtown gallery helps them feel like they're in on the know...NOT! They're mostly knuckleheads...

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Posted by Jill
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Jun 1, 2009 at 4:06 pm

Jay, The owner of Studio 7 DOES NOT own a winery.She is a part time winemaker and the winery she works at is owned by someone else. They are downsizing!! They would love a winery lounge, but the rent is very high.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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