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Eileen McClelland

How Mora Contemporary Jewelry Pulled Off a Successful December Shopping Event

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Marthe Le Van, owner of Mora Contemporary Jewelry in Asheville, NC, combined what she knew about local life with what she knew about popular shopping trends to pull off a successful December shopping event in her store.
The beauty of it, she says, is that it will work for her any time of the year.

She dedicated all of her showcases to the work of contemporary, local artists for one full day, recognizing the importance of locally made goods in Asheville.

She also thought the idea tied in perfectly with the recent popularity of pop-up shops. Because it lasted one day, it created a sense of urgency, too.

“People are used to getting whatever they want whenever they want it, online, and it’s kind of a niche to have things available for a limited time,” Le Van says.

She invited 15 artists to participate, about half of whom were not normally represented in her store. She also scheduled an artists’ reception in the afternoon hours. The artists were able to help out with sales and answer questions about their pieces and how they were made. That aspect was invaluable, she says.

“We could bring over the person who actually made it, to tell the story of the piece and the process.”

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The results were beyond her expectations, with 250 people responding to her mailed and emailed invitations, a number that represents more people than have ever been in the shop in one day. Several of the new artists were so popular that she invited them to be represented in her store full time. Business was terrific.

“We liked it so much, we’re going to do it again this year,” Le Van says. “And it doesn’t have to be Christmas-themed in Asheville. We can try it in the middle of summer.”

Eileen McClelland is the Managing Editor of INSTORE. She believes that every jewelry store has the power of cool within them.

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