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"Holiday Pop-Up Shop' debuts in Roxbury's Dudley Square

Posted by Patrick Rosso  November 30, 2012 07:06 PM

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(Patrick D. Rosso/Boston.com/2012)


A passer-by peers into the ArtROX! Holiday Pop-up Shop.


As consumers head out to do their shopping for the holidays, Discover Roxbury, a nonprofit neighborhood advocacy group, is hoping to encourage shoppers to spend their money locally and support area artists at its “ArtROX! Holiday Pop-Up Shop.”

For the first time in its history the group is renting out a vacant storefront in Dudley Square, filling a space left empty for months by the closure of Footlocker. The space provides artists with a cheap way to present their works.

“This is an opportunity for the local public to invest back in those who live and work here,” said Derek Lumpkins, executive director of Discover Roxbury. “There’s a lot of variety here you won’t necessarily find in other areas.”

Renting the space from the Madison Park Neighborhood Development Corporation for a small fee, Discover Roxbury is able to provide a space for local artists, designers, and artisans to show off their work and fill a space in the busy shopping district.

“I think it’s a really neat idea,” said Latanya Ramsey, 35, as she set up her jewelry display Friday morning.

Born and raised in Lower Roxbury and now a resident of Allston/Brighton, Ramsey said the store provides a lot of opportunities to artists like herself to show off their work and keep overhead down.

“It really helps provide a venue for artisans who can’t afford a storefront,” Ramsey said. “It provides a low investment in a high-traffic area.”

Between 13 and 25 artists will populate the commercial space until Dec. 24. The store officially opened Friday with a flurry of activity, from holiday decorating to setting up the vendor booths.

“I think I’ll do OK here and if I don’t I’ll get the exposure and it’s not a major investment,” said Malika Crichlow, 63, a Hyde Park resident and clothing designer.

From handmade candles to paintings and jewelry, the shop at 2201 Washington St. had a little bit of everything with many products reflecting the flavor and attitude of the neighborhood.

“I love this. It’s so important to have a place to sell handmade goods,” said Jackie Harris, a 60-year-old Dorchester resident, as she picked out a pair of earrings. “A lot of consumers want quick things, but places like this sell quality. I wish they could do it year round.”

Although the store will only be open for the holiday shopping season, Lumpkins said it sends a broader message to the community, especially as new developments come into the community.

“It [the shop] reminds people that as new developments are built and more people come into the community, there is already a lot here and we need to make use of it,” Lumpkins said.

The "pop-up shop" is not a new phenomenon in Boston or the country. From Newbury Street to Oakland, CA. the temporary shops have been sprouting up to provide entrepreneurs a cheap way to display their work without the burdens of the brick and mortar storefront.

Roxbury's “ArtROX! Holiday Pop-Up Shop” will be open Friday through Monday, from Nov. 30 to Dec. 24. Although the closing hours vary the store opens at 11 a.m. For more information about the shop and vendors, click here.

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(Patrick D. Rosso/Boston.com/2012)


Latanya Ramsey, a vendor at the ArtROX! Holiday Pop-up Shop, sets up her stand.

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Email Patrick D. Rosso, patrick.d.rosso@gmail.com. Follow him @PDRosso, or friend him on Facebook.


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