Junction Boutique opened their doors in a small retail space in Belford’s Campbell’s Junction less than two years ago. The cooperative effort of local artisans selling their homemade jewelry, heirlooms, clothes, candles and bath products and other art started with eight local crafters.
Two months later Chris Slater, the organizer and inspiration of the group, attended a Made in Monmouth trade show at Monmouth University, where she met other Monmouth County based small business owners/artist. They weren’t competitors, they were collaborators. The number of businesses selling their products at the tiny store quickly grew and by the end of 2016 the 28 participants had outgrown their space. Slater said that all but a handful of the Junction Boutique artisans were connected through Made in Monmouth and all are New Jersey based.
Saturday, January 21, at noon, Junction Boutique will cut the ribbon on their new 1500 square foot location at 79 Leonardville Road, across the street from their former location.
Each artist/business owners is independent…they share the rent…and the store has no employees. 7 of the 28 participants take turns minding the store.
The group is comprised on patriotic artists, Slater told MMM. “Made in Monmouth, Made in New Jersey and then Made in America,” she declared. “We had an artist visit who suggested we import crafts and parts from China. No thanks. We’ve had businesses from Connecticut and California ask to join us, but we’re growing with Monmouth County artists.”
Made in Monmouth, an initiative created by Freeholder Tom Arnone and managed by the County’s Division of Economic Development, promotes small manufacturers located in Monmouth County. The sixth annual trade show at Monmouth University is scheduled for Saturday, April 8 from 10 a.m. till 5 p.m. Vendors’ registration closes on March 15 or when the show is filled to capacity. There is no charge for vendors who can register here.