Nelson Designs to open at Shops at Tallgrass

WICHITA — Sharon Nelson’s new next-door neighbor will be an old friend, but that’s not what’s prompting her to move to the Shops at Tallgrass.

Nelson owns Nelson Designs, which will move next to where World Import Gallery is locating at the center at 21st and Rock.

Philip Holmes is renaming his Gallery the Rug Studio and moving in September.

Nelson is moving into 1,400 square feet in early October — she just signed a lease Thursday.

“Which is just so ironic because neither one of us knew,” Nelson says of herself and Holmes. “Isn’t that amazing?”

April Reed of Slawson Cos., which owns the center, handled the deal.

Nelson and her husband, Vernon, have been running Nelson Designs from their home.

“I think what makes us different than a lot of places is I’m the interior designer, but my husband joined the business about four years ago,” Nelson says.

She was having trouble getting workers to do things like laying tile and wood floors, so her husband stepped in and also hired some other dependable workers.

“I don’t have to go out and search for someone who I know will show up,” Nelson says.

She used to buy mostly from local clients, but then she started going to market and other places out of town for items.

“Pretty soon I started finding more deals than I had room,” Nelson says.

Friends and customers would stop by to shop.

One asked her: “Is it safe to assume that everything in your house is for sale?”

Nelson looked at her husband and said, “Well, he’s not yet.”

Nelson will sell tile, wood, accessories and mirrors out of her new store.

“Oh, it’s going to be crowded, I’m afraid,” she says.

Nelson says she’s been fortunate to do well through a tough economy and that sales have been consistent.

Still, she says, “It’s a leap of faith to open a store.”