Name of business: The Creative Market
Type of business: Handmade gift shop
Location: 1645 Countryside Drive in Turlock
Hours: 1:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Sunday
Contact information: @thecreativemarket_turlock on Instagram
Specialty: Wide variety of products
History of business:
Pop-up shops have become all the rage in recent years as artisan entrepreneurs selling handcrafted goods increase in numbers. Typically single-day, outdoor affairs, the vendors who frequent these events as a way to promote their merchandise and reach new customers now have a permanent storefront they can call home in Turlock.
The Creative Market takes a business model popular with several of Turlock’s downtown antique and gift shops, where vendors rent a space inside of the store where they can sell their own products. Owners Elizabeth Reyes and Theodore Heilman are both creatives who make and sell their own products at pop-up shops and online — a social media business model which has become popular during the pandemic — but the pair wanted to offer a brick-and-mortar spot where artists could showcase their items at a fraction of what other stores were charging.
After celebrating a grand opening on Saturday which saw a line of eager customers queue up to be the first ones inside the store, Reyes said the experience left her in tears.
“The fact that there was a line waiting for us absolutely blows my mind,” she said. “I think 14-year-old me would be proud, because this is exactly what I wanted when I was younger — an opportunity to showcase my talent. The fact that other people are able to have that too makes me so grateful for the opportunity.”
From hand poured candles and succulent arrangements to resin art and detailed clay earrings, it’s obvious that the vendors selected to be featured in The Creative Market are a cut above the rest. One space even features vintage, thrifted apparel that can’t be found anywhere else, among other collectible items. Customers can pick from the array of items vendors have made available for purchase in the store, and the location will also serve as an in-person pickup location for vendor items purchased or reserved online.
Reyes said they received over 100 applications from businesses hoping to be selected, but narrowed it down to about 50 vendors in the shop. While The Creative Market is no longer taking applications, Reyes and Heilman hope that eventually the shop can expand to accept even more vendors.
“We’re building a community, and we want this store to be a place where other artists can come in and collaborate,” Reyes said. “We want them to come in and learn how to expand their small business and we hope it grows from here. We have so many great ideas.”