The Cheerfully Made Fall Market is a craft market featuring the handmade products of more than 100 Canadian small businesses. Each year, they convene a different group of talented local creators and artisans to showcase their handcrafted creations to the public and expand their businesses. These makers come from all categories: food and drinks, clothing, children’s items, home decor, and much more! Their next market is coming up this weekend, September 24–25 at the Bell Sensplex. Some of the best-known Ottawa-based brands being featured include Blondie Apparel, Strut Jewellery, Alicja’s Confections, Undercarriage, Maiden Voyage Cocktail Co., and The Pie Bar.
“I have always been passionate about supporting small businesses and understand firsthand the guts it takes to put your work out into the world,” says Emily Arbour, owner of Cheerfully Made Goods + Markets. “Selling items you’ve made yourself is very much like wearing your heart on your sleeve, and it’s important to me that these brave individuals are encouraged to keep showing up for themselves.”
Supporting these small businesses was quite the challenge during COVID (because of course it was), though Cheerfully Made redoubled on its efforts, transitioning everything online and successfully hosting three virtual markets over the past two years.
However, according to Arbour, the energy of an in-person market is unmatched. “[Being] an entrepreneur can be so isolating for individuals, and during COVID, this was made even more apparent.” It’s more than just getting people to buy products: Bringing creators together in one space to connect, form friendships, and support each other in person is just as, if not more, valuable.
“Creativity makes the world an interesting place, and we need artists to introduce us to things we’ve never seen before and inspire others to explore their own ideas,” says Arbour. “In a world where it’s never been easier to purchase mass-produced items from faceless brands, I think it’s refreshing to see what an impact we can make by supporting local.”
Cheerfully Made’s upcoming craft market takes place September 24 and 25 from 10am to 5pm at the Bell Sensplex. You can go to their Facebook to RSVP for the event and find out more. The facility is accessible to those with mobility issues, and service animals are welcome. Admission is $5 each day, and children under 14 years old get in free.