You don’t say

“The first time somebody came in and was looking around for bargains.”

M.B. Ash of Ash-craft engraving on East Central on when she realized people thought she was going out of business (when really it’s Winstons/RSVP next door)

You don’t say

“This is a very dangerous time of the year for people to think we’re not here.”

Jody Lonergan of Maxine’s, a stationery and invitation shop at 5400 E. Central that is most definitely open (especially during this busy graduation and Mother’s Day season) but that some customers are confusing with nearby Winstons/RSVP, which is closing late next month

Winstons/RSVP to close after 35 years

WICHITA — A combination of the Internet and the economy is causing Winstons/RSVP to close after about 35 years in business.

“I’m forced into retirement because of the way business is,” owner Robert Hagadorn says.

Winstons, which is at 5634 E. Central near Central and Edgemoor, sells invitations, specialty papers and envelopes.

Business has dropped by 40 to 50 percent in the last two or three years, Hagadorn says.

“A lot of it has to do . . . with Internet business,” he says.

Hagadorn says a lot of people have either cut back on the number of parties they throw or choose to get their invitations online.

“I can’t fight that, really.”

Winstons first opened in Kechi in the 1970s as a small Christmas shop.

It has had a number of locations, different focuses and a name change during its history.

Hagadorn says he’s open to selling the business or his entire inventory.

“I’m not sure in today’s economy who would want to buy it.”

He plans to close at the end of May when his lease is up. If he needs a few extra months to sell his stock, he may renegotiate his lease.

Hagadorn says he’s served his customers for a long time, and he’d prefer to remain open.

“It was a tough decision for me.”