SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - At a time when shoppers are looking for local vendors, pop up sites have provided the space and the leasing prices that make it work for the holiday season.
There are now multiple offerings for shoppers popping up this month and some are already telling a success story that many keep them going strong into the new year.
For shoppers, it gives them many options in one location. A site called the Holiday Shop is in the Paseo Nuevo Mall with eight sellers. " Yes and people like that, the consumers are starting to go to all of the them and check out all the cool stuff that we have. We all have different unique stuff," said Rafa Martel with Mely's Clothing. It is located on the Santa Barbara Westside but this new site for the holidays in the Paseo Nuevo mall is bringing products closer to the main shopping area downtown.
Erika Gutierrez with Paparazzi Jewelry says she is competing against on line sellers but has an advantage. "Right here you can try it on and see how beautiful it is. When you see it, when you have the piece you love it."
Many vendors who never thought they could afford a retail site are now getting their first shot at the experience. "We're very excited to be able to create this type of an atmosphere because it does feel good to be able to allow other people to have that initial step in as well," Lindsey Cossman with Dancing Flame Glass. She is in with 12 sellers in the 600 block in an artisans store. "I've always wanted to have a space on State Street. It's been a life long dream of mine."
Along with clothing and jewelry, there are unique photographs of Santa Barbara including the Old Mission after the 1925 earthquake, and a full rainbow over the waterfront. Some artisan food is also on the shelves including Ojai honey, Shalhoob beef jerky and Ivan nutrition bars.
Where sellers collaborate such as the Holiday Shop, one might sell a dress and another add the jewelry accessories.
Winter clothing is selling well. "Oh yes, they have been moving really fast," says Martel. His fleece and lined coats are in the $20. range.
The downtown area has a Twilight market in De La Guerra Plaza with about 50 vendors in it. It is steps away from the smaller sites on State Street over several blocks. They include the recently opened "Miracle on State Street" store at 1021 State St. Inside the mall there are also other multi-use sites. One is the annual YES store put on by artists with handmade local items that are only sold in this setting once a year.
Many shoppers say they plan to visit all the sites when they are out because of the variety offered.