How can this even be? I can't believe it's been over 5 years ago that I saw Natalie Chanin post about being a part of an event in Montgomery, Al that would celebrate makers from the south. More importantly, makers from Alabama. I was working for Southern Accents Architectural Antiques at the time and I called my boss and told him we had to be a part of it. I had already emailed and left a voice mail message and was ready to fire up the trucks and get to Montgomery! That night I got a message that they weren't taking more vendors, but for us to get on the email list and be ready to apply for next year, ummmm no. I told her we would be a sponsor, what could we do to be a part of this? The best part is the girl who was responding to me, Tiffany, later told me that her mom came into Southern Accents on Saturday and told her it was a fabulous store and she had to make a trip to Cullman. Come on, it's so meant to be! My boss drove to Montgomery and met with the team and next thing I know we are IN! I was so excited because I would pretty much do anything to take a class from Natalie and to be a part of something that is celebrating southern makers was going to be right up my alley!
There was a lot of planning and creating and time and hard work that went into that event and I'm so thankful to have been a part of the planning of it for several years. This year was a little different. It's been in May every year and when it didn't happen in May, I was terrified that it wouldn't. I got an email in July saying I was accepted and needed to respond if I could make the show. I didn't know. It was going to be very hard to do this show coming off of July Gift Show and August Apparel Show and then my kids starting back to school that same week. We a small group, y'all. It's not easy to get it all done already and all of those shows within weeks of each other? Somebody help me! I did find help, though. I hired a couple of sales people and they helped with the July and August shows and then I had some of my best friends show up at Southern Makers. IT TAKES A VILLAGE!!
This event, though. I wish I could find the words to describe what it feels like to be a part of such an amazing weekend. There was a beautiful dinner on Friday night featuring outstanding chefs from all over the south. Saturday at Sloss Furnace it was literally blazing hot outside and we were all worn down by the humidity, but the people, y'all, the people that come out to support all of these makers. They are curious and kind. They want to know what you do, why you do it and where you do it. They have a genuine love for seeing someone thrive in their passion. I was in awe with every purchase made. Everyone wants to connect with you and tell you their story. It's like we are all a big family full of love and kindness.
I can't even start with my fellow makers. We put in hours upon hours of work getting ready for something like this.
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