Local businesses inspired to ‘Pop-up’

Photo by Alice Barsky

Atlanta’s resident Root City Market self-describes its quarterly pop-up markets as the “London weekend market meets the Brooklyn Flea.” After attending, “southern charm” would also be fitting.

The Fall Pop-up Market at the Atlanta BeltLine on Saturday, Sept. 12, celebrated all things locally crafted, from clothing to artwork to chocolate. The market was held at Stove Works, across from The Krog Street Market, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

“The BeltLine has been wonderful for encouraging people to explore their neighborhoods and support local,” said Jen Soong, founder and curator of Root City Market. “We’re so excited to be hosting this event and helping create a community-driven, adventure-filled experience.”

Root City Market held its Fall Pop-up Market at Atlanta Stove Works, a factory whose presence dates back to 1889, which was recently renovated as an event venue. The massive open space housed artisan craft makers who specialize in locally sourced and sustainable products and goods.

The artwork displays were, by far, the most eye-catching booths set up at the market. One vendor, Yoyo Ferro Art, had unique Atlanta-inspired prints. Modern Giant, a design and silkscreen printing company based out of Macon, offered striking graphic tees and apparel.

Two quirky stationary businesses were also represented at the market.  Ashley Buzzy is a local graphic designer and artist who sells stationary for various purposes: personal and office use, holidays and bridal. She graduated from the University of Georgia and offers calligraphy workshops through her company.

Cherry Laurel Design also displayed their letterpress products, graphic design services and brand management consulting last Saturday.

More unconventional art included Amaranthus Paper & Flora as well as the carpentry work of Koby Downs. Amaranthus is a mother-daughter team specializing in handcrafted paper crepe flowers, which are perfect for a long lasting and allergen free gift. SOULFlowers, a boutique florist, also provided live floral arrangement.

One of the best ways to obtain a unique piece of jewelry is at markets like Root City Market’s Pop-up Market. For instance, Cameoko offered meticulously crafted necklaces, rings and earrings, while Drea James spotlighted more eclectic, repurposed vintage jewelry.

As people are becoming increasingly aware of the economic injustice, environmental degradation, labor law violations and animal welfare issues caused by the agribusiness industry, more are choosing to “eat local.”

At the pop-up market, several locally sourced and sustainable food products were sold. Nicobella and Xocoatl had samples of their delicious chocolates. Both use only pure cacao and organic cane sugar.

Additionally, Beautiful Briny Sea, an artisan dry-goods company that makes salts and sugars using locally grown herbs, foraged mushrooms and organic spices, also sold food at the market.

Fitting of their commitment to sourcing local ingredients, some companies incorporated social justice principles into their business practices. For example, Revive Bath & Body is an organic soap company that is partnered with HavenATL to provide job skills for women exiting the trafficking trade in Atlanta, the human trafficking capital of the United States. They carried loofah soaps, traditional soap bars, hand soap, bath salts and lip balm last Saturday.

All of Revive’s products come in a variety of unconventional scents, including such varieties as eucalyptus and cedarwood, fir needle and grapefruit, jasmine rose and sandalwood, lemongrass and ginger and tangerine lime and thyme.

Some ready-made snacks were for sale outside of the venue — Doggy Dogg artisan hot dogs, Wanderlust cold brew coffee and Atomic Ice Cream sandwiches were ready for any hungry attendees. However, Stove Works is also conveniently located directly across from The Krog Street Market, an indoor market of dining and retail. The market, located in a renovated warehouse from the 20s, has restaurants like Hop City, Fred’s Meat and Bread, Gu’s Dumplings, Superica and Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream.

Atlanta’s Root City Market’s Fall Pop-up Market on the BeltLine was a great way to spend a beautiful day outdoors supporting local businesses and the art community in general. Root City Market holds four pop-up markets annually, so all should be on the lookout for future events to attend — especially if they are held at the scenic Stove Works.