Melissa Quijano - Simply Melissy

“Simpatica Melissa” was the first iteration of Simply Melissy, a name coined by my sister, Jessica (namesake of my first skirt design), for an 11th-grade Spanish Class project. My “business proposal” was, of course, a fashion boutique selling camisas and faldas. However, I didn’t go right into clothing- for years, I used my budding handmade brand name for jewelry, doll clothes, stuffed animals, dolls…

Aside from designing, I am also a fashion design teacher to kids ages 9 and up. The idea to transition Simply Melissy from a sort of hodge podge of crafty items to quirky children’s wear came from them. Kids, especially pre-teens, have a foot each in childhood and adulthood. They want to be grown up, but still appreciate quirky figures like unicorns and narwhals. They want to run around and climb trees, but still express their fashionable selves. This was the inspiration behind my summer and fall lines. I wanted to create clothes that girls could truly live in. Nothing restrictive, fabrics that are sturdy, well-constructed, and mostly easy to clean, and high levels of twirlability. Plus, I offer customization, so if a girl wants a longer or shorter skirt, or something entirely different, I am always 100% ready to make a girl’s fashion dreams come true.

I love to sew, and appreciate so much that my skill enables me to stay away from a traditional 9 to 5 job. One day, I want to see Simply Melissy garments sold in small boutiques and manufactured within a network of makers who are striving to become independent crafters themselves. I'm excited to work with Marketspace Vendor Events at the October 14th Woodbridge Center Mall event. I have never brought my designs to a shopping mall before, and I am eager to meet a new (to me!) type of customer. 

Emily Gunselman - Birch House Candles

Hello! I am Emily Gunselman, owner and creator of Birch House Candles. I am a wife and mother of 2 and I craved having something to call my own. Out of a love for beautiful things and an obsession with candles, I began to develop a handmade soy candle luxury that anyone and everyone would be excited to gift and keep for themselves. The journey has also inspired me to educate on the benefits of burning soy and the self-care aspect of relaxation that comes with burning a candle.

Birch House Candles is a small-batch hand-poured soy candle company. Each candle is made entirely by hand. We use renewable U.S. grown soy wax, which burns cleaner, eco-friendly and non-toxic cotton wicks and premium phthalate-free fragrance oils. We sell a 11.5 oz glass candle and a 8oz tin in a variety of seasonal fragrances. A few of our best sellers are the sweet grapefruit, which is an uplifting blend of tangerine and grapefruit, and in the fall our apple maple bourbon is a huge hit, mixing the classic apple scent with an unexpected maple and bourbon twist. So many exciting fragrances to make your house feel like a home! Each purchase is packaged in a silver bag with bow and label, perfect for easy gifting!

I am super excited to learn about Marketspace Vendor Events and partner with them to boost my customer base as well as other crafters in the community. My goal for my brand is to broaden my customer reach and become a known soy candle company. It is refreshing to see a company like Marketspace for the sole purpose of making better events for customers and vendors alike. I look forward to see how this community will evolve. Thanks for including me!

Kimora Beaupierre-Liberati - Sucre Body Products

Sucre came about one very broke Christmas season while I was in grad school. I committed to making my gifts, as they would be more thoughtful to both my loved ones and my pockets. 

Throughout the years, Sucre underwent several logo changes and formula changes until arriving at where we are today. The most substantial change was the conscious effort to carefully select only simple natural ingredients for each body scrub. In my daily life, I try to live relatively healthily, and have a love for multipurpose household and pantry items.  I’ve been known to eat half of an avocado, and then use the other half for a hair masque!  Therefore, it is no surprise that Sucre Body scrubs use nature’s exfoliators, moisturizers, and scents to smooth and condition the skin while invigorating the senses.  Sugar acts our main exfoliant, while fractionated coconut oil delivers serious moisture! Our aromatics are provided by the 100% natural essential oils used in each scrub—no ambiguous “fragrances” here! 

Sugar, coconut oil, cocoa butter, coffee, rosemary, lavender, citrus, ginger… 
What’s in YOUR body scrub?