The Handmade Market … Because "mall" is a four-letter word.

The Handmade Market … Because "mall" is a four-letter word.

A showcase of independent designers, artists, and crafters in Raleigh, NC.

February Challenge Update

We have been seeing some posts and submissions for The Challenge!

Handmaiden Lois of it’s by design. “where are you Spring?”

We are actually extending the original deadline to the 25th this month, instead of the earlier stated 20th. We realize not a lot of you know about this yet, or if you do- you may need a few extra days to get your submission completed and submitted.

Rosa from Muro Jewelry. “Ice Ring”

We’d love to see works in progress too! To show us those, use the hashtag #maidenschallenge when you upload images to the various social media outlets. We’ve already shared some the last few days

Handmaiden Leeann: Snow Queen

Now that you’ve seen a few samples and submissions, we hope they serve as an inspiration to get your own submission ready. It’s not like we haven’t had plenty of inspiration right outside our front doors this week! For more details on The Challenge, click the banner below:

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Makers Flea Market

The Handmaidens are excited to announce a brand new event in downtown Raleigh: Makers Flea Market. We have handpicked some of the coolest local artists and crafters, asked them to curate their stashes into fabulous offerings for you, and will be popping up February 28th at Ornamentea. Whether you are a professional artist, crafty novice, or Pinterest loving DIYer, you will find some amazing trinkets at this event. The eclectic stashes include vintage displays, studio props, beads, buttons, antique jewelry, vessels, vintage knobs, ribbon, lace, stained glass supplies, old printer drawers, designer fabric, art supplies, barn wood, burlap sacks, and more.

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The Makers Flea Market will be held at 509 N. West Street in downtown Raleigh, Saturday, February 28th, 10:00 am until 3:00 pm. We have gathered everything you will need to spark your creativity and stock your studio for 2015 and put it all in one spot.

We will also have BamPowChow, one of our very most favorite food trucks, and wine and beer from Crafty Beer Shop to fill your belly.

Everyone is welcome, rain or shine!

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NEW: The Challenge!


All creatives need to be challenged every now and then. We all have moments where we are not inspired and need a little motivation to get our juices flowing. If this sounds familiar, raise your hand. We are a part of an incredibly creative community, and one of the amazing gifts that we can give each other is inspiration and a drive to keep going and growing.

We are starting something new motivated by these creativity slumps and the community we have. It’s called “The Challenge” and we hope you will play along (we will play too, though clearly our submissions aren’t eligible to win, they will hopefully serve as inspiration and motivation).

Every month we will post a new challenge. A word, a phrase, an idea, who knows!  Your job is to let that inspire you to create something new. These are our ground rules:

– It has to be new (it’s not inspiring to find something you made years ago and take a picture of it)

– You have to upload the picture somewhere online (facebook, instagram, flickr, your blog, etc) so you can submit the link to it.

– You can submit only one time per month

– Complete your submission by the 20th of the month

Throughout the submission window we will post some submissions that have caught our eye, to keep you inspired and motivated and possibly some exposure already.

After submissions close, we will post our top 10, then it’s up to you and everybody else to vote for your favorites so we can find the top three.

The first place winner gets their submission and link displayed on the website sidebar for a month, and all top three will be featured with their images and website links on the Challenge page, along with being featured in the blog, and probably also the newsletter.

This is less about winning a big prize, and more about inspiring, pushing, and supporting our selves, and each other. With the added bonus of exposure.
Also, since this is the first time we are doing this, we are likely to figure out changes along the way. Please keep this in mind, and “pardon the dust”. Feel free to post questions in the comment section below.

The February challenge is “Ice.”

Feel free to interpret that any way you like and use any medium of your choice.

Ready!? Create! and then submit it here!

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Change is good


This is an interesting post to write, because about 6 months ago, we didn’t know what we would be announcing. Were we going to continue for only one more year? Were we going to be done all together? Or, were we going to continue with fewer Handmaidens?

Before explaining further, we would like to acknowledge a milestone. We have been doing this for 10 years, and this November would have marked our 20th market! This fact is hard for us to wrap our heads around. The Handmade Market is a labor of love, but with 7 busy women at the helm- burnout loomed. Last summer the conversation was started about ending this awesome ride- could we, should we?

Then something awesome happened. Each time we got together to officially make an “exit strategy,” we just couldn’t do it. We have worked together for 10 years. We started producing shows when Raleigh’s creative community was still small, with lots of room to grow. We jumped in, figured out things along the way, and pooled all our talents in management. It’s been such a huge learning experience for all of us, both professionally and personally. As partners and friends, we have been through a lot in the last 10 years. We celebrated the highs and held tight through the lows. We had made our own magical little family and it just seemed wrong to walk away. Since starting The Handmade Market, Raleigh’s creative community has BOOMED, and it didn’t seem right to walk away from such an awesome event.

So…we are taking a bit of a break. We will be producing The Handmade Market in November 2015, but not this May. We are taking the time to bring some fresh, new ideas to the table. Stepping back, breathing, and regrouping.

Things are going to start looking a little different around here. Please pardon the dust as we work through the growth. Amazing things are coming- we will be hosting and organizing smaller, local events, producing “how to videos” online, ramping up the blog & web presence, consulting with artists, and laying out the plan for The Handmade Market re-launch in November 2015!

Thank you for all your support, thank you for being creative, and thanks for your patience!

The Handmaidens

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Love Reloved

Our friend Ashlee of My So Called Crafty Life has something extra special to smile about this holiday season. She has three projects featured in the November edition of Reloved magazine. And one of them is on the COVER!

My So Called Crafty Life blog has supported The Handmade Market and we thank her again for that. If you love thrifting, if you love creating, if you love DIY, or even if you love watching someone else do all that, you’ll want to go check out her blog!

Congratulations Ashlee!

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