The New Year has brought about some changes, including a new Crafter’s Market in downtown 100 Mile House opening on Jan. 18.
Local businessperson Maureen Pinkney says she decided to open a year-round, indoor venue for local Cariboo crafters to display and sell their own, hand-made items.
“This is a small, retail location that is going to be open retail hours, so 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., and it’s only going to be two days a week to start until we see how many people want to do it.”
It will be open Thursdays and Fridays, at 205D Birch Ave. (former location of Borgo’s Sport Shack).
Crafter’s may be from Quesnel to Cache Creek, from Interlakes to Canim Lake, and everywhere in between, she says, adding no commercially made items will be allowed.
From small quantities to large, booking a single day for an occasional hobbyist to every day possible for a home-based business, Pinkney says she offers a unique flexibility with 15 spaces, all indoors in a heated shop, where crafters may book once per year, once per month or as many “open” days as they can get.
Bookings will be on a first come, first serve basis, so if you prefer one spot over another, you’ll need to book it before someone else does, she explains. Booth rentals range between $40-$50 per day for one of 15 spaces, with one larger booth at $60, and multiple-day booking discounts are available.
“It really depends on how ambitious the local vendor is…. it’s open to everybody, whether you’re an actual business or not – my licence covers everybody.
“I want to showcase all of our talents here – that is huge.”
Travelling around to various community markets, Pinkney says she sees very few of the same vendors, and so many were selling “amazing, beautiful” items it made her realize the need for a year-round market.
Pinkney adds she expects some homemade jams and jellies, fudge and homebaked goods (as long as they follow the usual health permits and requirements) at the Crafter’s Market, but no food vendors will be serving hot meals.
Homegrown garden produce is allowed, although she expects most of those vendors will prefer to be selling outdoors at their local farmers’ markets during the summertime – including some leaving her fall and winter venue, she explains.
“This will be for people that maybe aren’t quite as comfortable outside, don’t need that big of a space or even have their own tent … this is basically set up, you bring your bin of goods, set up … take [it] with you when you leave, and you’re done.
“This time of year, if people have preserves … they can sell that, they can sell their garlic and their honey and all that kind of stuff. Anything goes, really.”
The indoor space she has arranged with large, permanent booths with sales/display desks, and even chairs and wall hooks, also means no harsh weather exposure to deal with – or to protect their products from, either.
As far as the summertime South Cariboo Farmers’ Market down the road at Birch Ave and Third Street, Pinkney says she hopes her Crafter’s Market “enhances” it by bringing more people downtown by offering more, and different vendors for shopping.
“We do have so many talented people that make products and then we typically see them selling at the community halls, the fall fairs and things like that. I think both for 100 Mile residents and for our tourists, we need to see that more often.”
Pinkney adds she believes the local crafters also need a venue open more often to sell their products, and to rent a small public space is often cost-prohibitive for a home-based business, particularly if they are still in a start-up phase.
For more information, or to book a space, e-mail mpink firstname.lastname@example.org.