TULSA, Okla. — This weekend people can shop small on a large scale.
Braum's An Affair of the Heart opened its doors giving hundreds of small businesses a chance to rebound from the pandemic. The craft show brings together small business owners from various backgrounds and allows them to sell their products in Green Country's largest pop-up shop.
Organizers said this year's event is more important than ever because many of the small business owners were not able to reach their customers in person last year, while others have struggled with supply chain issues. They said this year they are still fewer vendors than pre-pandemic, but it's still bigger than its last show and there are a wide variety of products available.
“Homemade goods, arts, crafts, boutique items, jewelry, apparel, gourmet food, anything to dress yourself, your house, your children, it’s just a great way to find hundreds of small businesses under one roof,” Kristin Ware, show promoter said.
Wendy Burg is one of the hundreds of small business owners selling their products at this year's Braum's An Affair of the Heart Show. She is the owner of W & J Custom Creations, a craft shop that makes resin pieces like charcuterie boards, mirror frames, and coasters.
“All of the wood that we use all comes from Oklahoma, it’s either reclaimed lumber or responsibly sourced lumber,” Burg said.
Burg launched her business last may after she was laid off from her former job last March due to the pandemic.
“I actually was in the medical field for 20 years, in Florida, when the pandemic hit the government had stepped in..into our surgery center and asked us to shut down so it kind of left me with all this time on my hands,” Burg said.
With more time in her hands, she turned a hobby into a full-time business and began selling her products online. The more she sold, the more orders she had, and suddenly her business took off.
“Our business really took off online, so these functions are a great place for me to come and showcase my work, get to meet all these new customers, and let people see what I make,” she said.
While her items have sold online, Burg said nothing replaces the face-to-face interaction with the customer.
“It’s hard to show this piece’s personality on a picture online so it really helps for these people to come in here and be able to touch it and see it in person,” she said.
She said to be grateful to have a place to meet new faces and put her work on Display.
“The energy, the excitement here…it was definitely worth the drive from Norman to be here,” Burg said.
Braum's An Affair of the Heart goes on all weekend. Tickets are $10 for all three days. Admission is free for children 12 and younger. Saturday doors will open from 9:00 a.m. - 6:00pm and Sunday from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
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