Gumballs & Overalls offers relief from the high cost of kids fashion

Having two young children of her own, Nicole Kraft had been shopping kids’ consignment shops for years. Earlier this year, she decided to open her own to serve the Merrill area.

Nicole’s home at N1122 County Rd. Q had previously housed a home-based business, so she already had suitable space available, including a bathroom that now doubles as a dressing room.

Her husband, Joe, offered assistance in converting the space for a retail shop, and he also thought up a clever name, Gumballs & Overalls. The store opened Aug. 20.

Because children grow so fast and want to have fashionable clothes, Nicole saw the need for a consignment shop.

“Kids want to look fashionable,” she said, “and it’s hard to keep up with the styles and prices. I’ve always shopped consignment, but I had to drive for it. I wanted to bring it to Merrill.”

Gumballs & Overalls strives to offer clothing for children, newborn to teen, in almost new condition at a fraction of the price of new. In two months, Nicole had received merchandise from over 30 consigners to fill the shop and have stock to spare. Nicole is able to rotate items as space opens up in the store.

A computerized tagging system keeps track of each consigner’s items and keeps their information confidential.

Having the business in her home works well for Nicole and the rural location hasn’t deterred shoppers.

Gumball’s & Overalls also deals in other children’s items, such as toys, books and video games. During warmer weather, larger items are displayed outside. During the winter, pictures of larger items are placed on a bulletin board in the shop.

Gumballs & Overalls is currently accepting fall and winter items. The business will hold a grand opening this Saturday from 9 a.m.-5 p.m.

Regular business hours are Tuesday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Wednesday 10 a.m.-7 p.m., Friday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and Saturday 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Gumballs & Overalls can be reached at 715-573-5338.

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