Artisans, customers find community at Hardywood West Creek for Small Business Saturday

 Charlotte Rene Woods    Nov 26, 2022

Annette Daly browses the Gemini Collective’s products during the Small Business Saturday Artisan Market.

For the Gemini Collaborative, one of more than 20 other artisans who gathered at the event to display their goods, the circumstances surrounding the pandemic provided their motivation.

Though different ages, sisters Dawn, Dana and Jamie Clough share the same astrological sign.

“It was a lot of birthdays close together growing up,” Dawn said.

Shortly before the pandemic, Jamie had to step back from her career to care for her daughter, who she said was undergoing some health problems. Then, people began quarantining in the early days of the pandemic. This was when the sisters decided they could turn their artisan hobbies into a small business.

“We’ve always kind of tinkered and done different things,” Dawn said. “With the pandemic, we just kind of decided that life can change very quickly, so it was time to start changing with it.”

So, the crafty sisters decided to compile their various skills to create soaps, candles and perfumes. Dana even built the carved wood display table for their products that could have passed for an elven set piece on Amazon Prime Video’s “The Rings of Power” streaming series.

Dana laughed as she recalled a childhood memory: For Christmas, Jamie requested a soldering iron “so that she could make jewelry.”

The Small Business Saturday event was Gemini Collaborative’s first time working a holiday event, but they’ve previously set up tables at the Lakeside Farmers’ Market in Henrico County.


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