“Now she’s a chocolatier?” That’s just one of the comments Branford’s has heard from outside her new business at 566 Main St., – the .
If people are confused about what this artsy mogul is doing, Wyatt said she understands. Inside her 2,600-sqaure-feet of business space, she’s running eight businesses – one of which is a chocolate company called jcwyatt CHOCOLATIER.
The umbrella company of all these businesses is Branford Trading Company and within that, exists many manifestations of Wyatt’s ideas and ventures, which have been growing over the past 15 years.
And if you thought well that’s just not enough, Wyatt has also purchased the rights to "[insert town name] Trading Company" for all 167 Connecticut towns but Essex – Essex Trading Company was already taken. Her plans, she said, are to expand this new concept statewide and then eventually across the country.
Branford Trading Company will be the first local stock market for consignment goods. Born out of the idea to revive trading companies of the 1800s and inspired by a Christmas gift swap, Wyatt is hoping customers will use the Trading Company to barter goods. Based on an Exchange Rate Fee that is set daily by employees, the Trading Company will allow shoppers to trade their own items for items of equal value in the store – items traded could be new or used. If you want to trade but don’t see anything you want to buy, you can have the trade value applied to a gift card for later use at the Trading Company. The value of items will depend on demand, explained Wyatt, so for example seasonal items like Christmas ornaments might be worth more in the days preceding the holidays as opposed to after.
“People always have things in their basements and attics that they don’t need and if they can turn it into cash and buy something they do need, it’s a whole new business,” commented Wyatt.
In addition to launching the Branford Trading Company as her flagship store with great ambitions, Wyatt is returning to her roots in many ways, incorporating the products that grew her entrepreneurial endeavors over the years.
Wyatt first dipped into business in the mid to late 90s with JC Signatures – a greeting card company she launched after working for just six months in New York in her field of study, architecture. She also launched a candy apple business and was selling 36,000 $20-apples a year through her website. She opened a storefront where is today and sold various items similar to her current offerings from 2000-2004. Wyatt then opened The Old Mill Company at the Branford-East Haven line, which was open for business from 2006 to 2008. Also for years, Wyatt worked as a model and most recently was living in Scottsdale, AZ before coming back to Branford to care for her mother who had recently endured a stroke. The very versatile Wyatt also recently , running for First District Representative Town Meeting member and tax collector. on the political front.
Though everything in her new place of business will say "jcwyatt" or "Jacey Wyatt," this business guru is looking to step away from herself and open a space where the community can benefit from her experience and offerings.
“This is a great new place for Branford, a new type of business and a place for people to get involved in business… It’s a place of all my businesses but also a place for people to be part of business,” she said.
Below is a brief overview of the many goods and brands offered in the "Wyatt Mall" – a space uniquely designed by the businesswoman herself and master carpenter Ray Garcia of New Haven. All walls, including the art gallery space, are moveable as designed by Garcia, so don’t be surprised if you see some layout shift around over time. Also, much of the space has been crafted from existing architecture – two skylights and the tin ceiling were underneath the old ceiling of Kid Wishes and the brick wall on the right side of the shop was hidden as well. Wood floors have been brought back to the day when the shop was and the decor very much homage to the days when “trading companies” were frequent about town.
A place where you can participate in business. Sell and buy goods based on a daily exchange rate. Trade items from antiques to holiday décor. Call 203-481-0001 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more.
BRANFORD COUNTRY STORE
The Branford Country Store will be located in the basement of 566 Main St., and will feature various goods by Jacey Wyatt like jams and penny candy but is also open to those looking to sell merchandise. Wall units range from $75-$125 if you are interested in selling your country-themed items.
jcwyatt ART GALLERY
Right now the art gallery features works by Max Johnson, son of the , whose paintings are also in display. The next gallery opening will be Mother’s Day week and feature the work of Lucille Pascarella, Wyatt’s mother. The art gallery can be rented to showcase work for $500 a week and all mediums of art are welcome. The space is also open to vendors selling various items like baseball cards or even cupcakes.
BRANFORD CANDY SHOP
To start, the candy shop, which features 40 varieties of candy by the pound, will be open in the Country Store in the basement of the Trading Company. There are plans to move this business upstairs to the chocolatier space.
A dark roast of coffee, jcwyatt COFFEE will be available in the chocolatier space with a few tables inside and outside the business for sipping and relaxing at.
Coming back to her roots, Wyatt will be offering more than 40 flavors of candy and chocolate apples through her chocolatier business. Also expect a variety of chocolate goods like truffles, covered pretzels, boxed items, bars and more available in this space. All made by a supplier off site, Wyatt will host chocolate-making demonstrations in-house to give customers an idea of how her products are made. While the items in her cases will look good, she notes they are all food props. The real chocolate items one purchases will be kept in coolers and come to the store pre-packaged.
Jacey Wyatt Fudge Factory
Twelve different types of fudge will be sold through this facet of Wyatt’s business.
jcwyatt Signatures / Petals & Paper
Launched 15 years ago as jcwyatt Signatures, Petals & Paper is now Wyatt’s expansion of her former greeting card business. Petals & Paper will feature a variety of greetings cards and stationary as well as live and silk flowers.