The first ever Waterloo Etsy Holiday Market was held November 26, 2016 from 10am-5pm inside RIM Park, and it proved to be a huge success. Etsy, a peer-to-peer e-commerce website focused on handmade or vintage items and supplies, is heralded as the go-to place for those in search of DIY products made by small business owners, and Saturday’s event was no exception. With over 70 vendors in attendance there was an immense variety of affordable products to buy or window-shop from. If you happened to be on the prowl for homemade, sweet-smelling soap, Soap Monkey, owned by Kitchener native Sara Casselman, was the place for you. Aren’t You Fancy, a hand-made accessories store founded by Toronto native, Andrea DiMaso, started as a one-product store which specialized in making handmade flowers, but has now expanded to also making modern sleep masks, fabric coasters, and clutches. Her buyers and
I for one, even after walking around the entire room twice, still felt like I hadn’t completely had my fill, because with every full walkthrough I discovered not just more interesting and attractive knacks, but also the origin stories that accompanied them. For example, Louise Jessup, owner of All Over The World, a “one-woman show” company that specializes in creating colorful typographic maps, actually started as a needlefelting craft store, but has made almost 400 sales to date. It’s stories like these that have made Etsy into the amazing platform it is today.
Most importantly, the Etsy Holiday Market proved that yes, one’s hobbies and passions truly can be monetized. So whether you happen to be stay-at-home parent, retired grandparent, or a university student hoping to make some extra cash on the side, Etsy is an amazing place to start.
Here’s to hoping for an even more successful event next year!