Milwaukee Makers Market showcases Black-owned small businesses

MILWAUKEE - Milwaukee Makers Markets are designed to uplift and support local business owners, and a Saturday edition focused on Black-owned businesses.

Every business has a story. At Discovery World, from one booth to the next, the dreams and hard work of business owners were on display.

"You know they’re putting their blood, sweat and tears into their dream," said Ryan Laessig. "Bakery, coffee, jewelry – all sorts of great products that we want to get."

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Laessig organized the makers market.

"We have a whole variety of local, Black-owned businesses today," he said. "To really show the community, ‘Hey, these businesses exist in our neighborhoods. Go and support them.’"

"I love supporting Black businesses, and I love being a part of the community," said vendor Abbey Bell. "I think it’s really important to show people there is a lot of Black makers out there."

Bell sells paintings, sculptures and even jewelry with animal bones.

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"I love being a full-time artist because I’m able to sustain my lifestyle fully with my art," she said.

The pop-up event was a chance to make money and create new connections.

<div>Abbey Bells art on display at Milwaukee Black Makers Market</div>
Abbey Bells art on display at Milwaukee Black Makers Market

"Instead of going into a big box store where you’re a receipt number, here you get to shake their hand and say thank you," Laessig said.

"Every day we’re creating, and we are trying our best to build our community, and we’re trying to build our community up and show people we’re here," said Bell.

There will be a "Celebrate Milwaukee" makers market on 414 Day – April, 14. A "Celebrate Spring" makers market is scheduled for The Ivy House in May.