Designer's Downtown Market Hello all, this is Wayne and this would be my first ever wrap-up.  Until now you have been treated to the literary and pictorial observations of my dear sweet wife, Julia.  It is my hope that the following post is up to high standard to which you have, no doubt, become accustomed. With that having been said, Saturday March 17th was a glorious day for setting up tents and pedaling handmade arts and crafts.  Having done a few festivals in the Raleigh area, I knew that I would be in good company.  I arrived at Ornamentea, an adorable shop that hosts the Designer's Downtown Market. The shop is a jewelry maker's paradise and has a wonderful vibe.  It is bordered one side by a rail line and the other by West Street and is just a block or so off of Hillsborough Street in downtown Raleigh.  The parking lot is surrounded by a collection of herbs and flowers.  The rosemary bush in the corner of the photo was in full bloom and abuzz all day with bees. The organization for this market was impeccable, which is always a plus.  I checked in and got started setting up.  Within an hour everyone was putting the finishing touches on their booths and were ready for the festivities to begin.  Here is a picture of the market once we were all set up.  Our booth has the beige tablecloths in the foreground. Here is a closeup of our setup.  We are sporting a new look this year.  Gone are the black tablecloths.  We are introducing more earth tones and a bit more texture. Fortunately, I was able to get set up a bit early and had time to walk around and talk to some other vendors. The first booth that caught my eye was Amy's Creative Corner.  She had a variety of paintings of dogs (always a draw for me).  Amy was super cool and we talked about doing dog portraits of our four pups (Julia's b-day is coming up, mums the word). Believe it or not I noticed the huge display of delicious looking cookies!  The folks at Monster Cookies & Cakes were lots of fun and the cookies tasted even better than they looked. Dee Holland Photography had a great collection of photographs from around the Carolinas. Posy was the last booth that I had a chance to visit.  Laura & Suzanne have a wonderful collection of hand sewn goodies. After the market I had a little time to kill before meeting my sisters and mom for dinner so I meandered over to an adorable store, Gypsy Jule. All in all it was a wonderful day.  The weather was great and the customers at the Designer's Downtown Market were wonderful.  We are so grateful that we were given a chance to participate and hope to make it back to Raleigh soon. Be Well, Wayne  

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