For me, the best part about hosting The Rock & Shop Market is getting to connect with and create a showcase for all the amazing emerging designers & entrepreneur makers that are making a go of running their own product based businesses, not just in North Carolina but nationally as well. When I started the event in 2004 (almost ten years ago, whoa!) there weren’t any markets like this in North Carolina, let alone the Triangle area, and the thriving, dare I say, “hip” culture that now surrounds these types of artisans also wasn’t there. Etsy didn’t even exist.
It’s an exciting time to be a maker entrepreneur right now because more and more consumers, media and national brands have caught on to this movement. Here are just of few of the 100 entrepreneurs behind the products that were at The Rock & Shop Market this past weekend:
Jessica Reed – Hawks & Doves – Tote bags & pillows made from vintage feed sacks.
Jennifer Pearl Lamendola – Om Beautiful – Hand dyed leggings for yoga.
Christopher Williams – Plastic Flame Press – Screen Printed gig posters
Julia Gold – Whispering Willow – Natural, handcrafted soap, lip balm and laundry detergent.
Sarah Tector – S. Tector Metals – Powder coated sculptural jewelry
Derek Keller – 440 Gentleman’s Supply Co. – Handcrafted leather accessories for men.
Liz Esser – Haden Designs – Leather and metal jewelry
Christie Calaycay – Calaycay Designs – Hand-crafted metal jewelry