Monday, January 21, 2008

CRAFTY BIZ: crafty co-op shop proposition

Lara originally posted this on the wall of the TCA facebook group and I invited her to send it along to be posted here. I think this is a much-needed venue for Toronto crafters to incubate their businesses and share their work...read on and contact Lara if you'd like to see this happen.

bluebanana advert

the blue banana in Kensington has come under some scrutiny--gentrification/the wrong aesthetic/rips off artists---but while reading a promo flier the other day I realized they DO have a pretty sweet business model:
1. buy HUGE 16 000 foot property in prime location
2. rent out parcels of HUGE property to artists/craftsmakers

the benefits: artists dont have to man the store and they can keep track of their stock online
the downsides: rent, for not-so HUGE stalls, goes from $150 to $500 and commission on everything sold is 14%......

so, I was thinking.....why not the same idea, but a CO-OP?-->vendors provide a day of labour a week to keep rent and commission down this would allow people to sustain their "hobbies"... artistic hobbies can be expensive and should be accessible to all of us, no? it might even give people the push (mentally and economically) to do their "hobbies" for a living.....or, is there already a place like this in toronto? (let me know if there is, lara.noell@gmail.com)

2 Comments:

Anonymous sloanbuller said...

Well isn't that kind of how the Fresh Collective down on Queen West works? I mean, it is specifically meant for clothing and jewelery designers, but those designers take turns working in the shop in order to be able to sell their goods there. It isn't exactly what you are talking about, but I think the main woman, Laura-Jean, the knitting queen from Freshly Baked Goods sweaters would be a good person to talk to.

I went in that Blue Banana place the other day and was surprised at how much crap was in there. Too bad; it would have been a nice spot for local folks to show and sell their stuff.

8:02 PM  
Anonymous Amanda said...

I think that it's a great idea Lara and maybe Toronto is a big enough city to sustain many crafty handmade good co-ops. I would be interested in doing something... it would get me off my ass and get a business plan together... perhaps it would do the same for many others!

Amanda

7:52 PM  

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