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Furniture store to move downtown

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Hannah Luther, left, holds her 6-month-old Levi with Donna Little as they stand outside their furniture business Wednesday in downtown Rocky Mount.

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BY WILLIAM F. WEST
Staff Writer

Monday, June 10, 2019

Hannah Luther’s start in the furniture and home decor business can be traced to her sister Beth Ann Luther acquiring a house in Rocky Mount.

“And she’s not exactly one for decorating or really girly things,” Hannah Luther, 22, said of the sister, 26, who is a city police officer. “And she didn’t really have the money to go out and buy all-new furniture.”

"So we started finding some older pieces,” she said. “And I just redid them and then we realized that it was something that we enjoyed and that we could do. And people really loved everything that we were making.”

Approximately six months ago, Luther and her mother, Donna Little, 57, opened Count Your Blessings Furniture and Home Decor. The business is operating in small space with different vendors in a marketplace at Southern Fireflies Art and Boutique, just off Old Carriage Road in Nash County.

Little and Luther are preparing to relocate the business to a permanent place in a storefront at Station Square in downtown Rocky Mount. The plan is to have the location at 322 S.W. Main St. ready at the start of next month, with the official opening set for 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on July 13.

Little and Luther take old but unique antique furniture and re-purpose it. The two also do custom painting and home decor.

The mother and the daughter use their present space at Fireflies to show what they can do for a potential client.

“We decorate it like you would see where you’re walking into someone’s house so that the people can walk in and really get a vision of what it would look like for them,” Luther said. “So we really want to make the storefront look like that, so as you’re walking by, you’re kind of drawn in.”

As for why Little and Luther chose to relocate the business to Station Square, the mother said she loves downtown.

Little said she and her husband, David, moved to Rocky Mount approximately 5½ years ago and she remembers seeing the city center.

“And it was just such a vision that I saw for the downtown, just flourishing and just blooming,” Donna Little said, noting she saw restaurants and shops.

“And I wanted to be part of it,” she said.

She recalled telling her husband, “I want to be one of the first to come downtown.”

“And we live very close to here,” she said. “It’s very convenient for us — and with the location being so close to us, we just feel like that we have so much to offer to the downtown.”

Station Square Operations Director Anne Craig said Little called her saying she was considering relocating Count Your Blessings to downtown. Craig said she replied, “Well, come on. We have a place for you.”

“We showed her a space and within a week, she had signed a lease,” Craig said.

Ben Braddock and his partner, Andy McFie, have had Station Square for two years now. Braddock said the storefronts along Main Street had been converted to internal offices a long time ago, probably in the mid-to-late 1990s.

“And one of the things that we’ve been wanting to do since we bought the building two years ago was to reactivate those storefronts to get the people that were in the offices to internally relocate within the building — and then reactivate those storefronts,” he said.

Station Square has five storefronts, with Count Your Blessings to be the fourth to be occupied.

“When you have one store on Main Street, it’s difficult,” Braddock said. “When you have two stores on Main Street, it’s still difficult.

“But at least you have someone to keep you company. And then the more shops that we have on Main Street, the more foot traffic and the more just in general activity that we’ll have,” he said.

Little is from Sampson County in the Sandhills region and she has been worked for many years, including as a medical assistant, in the skin care business and as a health food store owner.

Little’s husband is a conservationist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Wilson. The couple went to a Bible college in Raleigh — the two are Christian ministers — but the husband was having to commute to his job in Wilson.

“And so we ended up trying to find a happy medium about halfway for him to drive back and forth,” Donna Little said. “So we ended up just searching out Rocky Mount.”

At Station Square, Count Your Blessings is going to be open from 11 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. The business is going to be reachable by phone at 919-637-3389 and also is on Facebook.

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