The founders of The Makers Mercantile, a locally sourced online shop and artist-focused blog, are on a mission to connect makers to a community “who appreciates the mission, story and craftsmanship of each artist,” says Maggie Meyer, who, along with Maria Carroll-Holton, launched the website in June. “The online shop strives to reach a broader consumer group unable to always attend weekend markets or find a source for highly sustainable, local goods with 24/7 access,” Maggie says. “[And it] provides artists with a greater market beyond North Carolina.”
The website shares hand-selected goods from local artisans, like Lo & Behold’s natural bath products or DSH Pipes’ handmade smoking pipes, and pairs them with “a blog offering a glimpse into the life and personality of the artist community.” It allows you to go behind-the-scenes in a studio and connect with their inspirations; envision the workshop of Evie Watts’ grandfather, which she describes as “an amazing mess, piles of wood, pieces of broken furniture, screws and nails in baby food jars, cans of oil and paint. The smell was fantastic.” Read how she depicts her style – “organic, sensual, with a twist of grit.” And then scroll through her creations.
“With each sale,” Maggie says, “the goal is for customers to feel truly connected to the piece and be able to pass along the stories and background behind the art.”
By The Numbers
- The Makers Mercantile started in March 2016 with a network of five artists, which grew to 15 by its June launch – and now boasts 20 makers throughout North Carolina.
- Seven Durham-based artisans currently sell through The Makers Mercantile, including Katie Berman’s Redden Goods, Ann Thaden, Anna Nickles’ Shibui South, John Parkinson Furniture, Evie Watts, Elisabeth Chadbourne’s Lo & Behold and David Huber’s DSH Pipes.
- The Makers Mercantile expects to host a total of 120 pieces on their website this fall.