At first glance, it may look like any other store with shelves of products. But after closer inspection each section of shelving displays an individual vendor’s handcrafted work
Pam Taylor recently opened Pink Spotted Goat, which rents shelf space to local artisans, and she currently stocks items for close to 100 vendors.
The products, which range from handmade fly fishing nets and pottery to natural skin products and children’s clothing, are made by residents of the Thompson Okanagan.
“It gives the little guys a chance at retail space without the high risk,” said Taylor.
Pink Spotted Goat is located in a high traffic area on the corner of 32nd Street and 31st Avenue and tastefully displays the local products on wooden display shelves.
Taylor, who has her masters degree in education, moved back to Vernon with her three-year-old daughter Morgan last fall after working in northern Saskatchewan, where she was a literacy partnership facilitator.
Living away from family was challenging as a single mom, but she said finding a teaching job in Vernon is difficult, so she decided to create her own employment.
“I had to do something outside of the box,” said Taylor.
“I’m a very creative person so this fits my lifestyle and I have some of my pieces in here,” she said as she points out her multi-medium paintings.
Taylor is inspired by the amount of talent that she is able to display in her store.
When talking to artisans, as she researched her idea for the store, she found that many of them were doing it to make ends meet.
“It is like the ultimate in local economy,” she said.
“They are making their things local, selling their stuff local, the money is staying local.”
Word of mouth spread quickly through the local artist community, enabling Taylor to fill up her store with a large variety of items.
She doesn’t charge commission, only a flat rate of $24 a month to rent the shelf space, which she says keeps the cost of the items down, making the products affordable.
Taylor says the vendors support each other by purchasing each other’s products and she is thrilled to be able to help people shop local.
She says many of the people she sells for don’t have the time or know-how to market and sell their own products, which is where she comes in.
“I spend a lot of time staging people’s wonderful crafts and products.”