Taste of Central West End.... Fun, Lots of Sun, and the Best Customers EVER

June 15, 2009
This year, we had a booth for the second time at the Taste of Central West End Festival in the hip and happenin' CWE area of St. Louis.

I (Malene) drove into a horrendous and violent tornado-warning storm storm (what we like to call normal summer weather in the Midwest) while commuting from Atlanta to St. Louis for the festival. Because every radio station in ears-length was screaming out the fact that a tornado was on the ground - and that I was driving right into the heart of the storm at night - I surged on and did not let the rain dampen my spirits and hoped for a great weekend (okay, I'm completely lying... I was scared out of my mind)....

scary St. Louis weather (seriously, ya'll)

I had thoughts of turning around and stomping right back to lovely Atlanta (where we only have to worry about the heat wave), but persevered. I arrived safely in St. Louis two hours after my scheduled arrival time and kissed the ground when I arrived at Mari's house.

Mari did this festival by herself last year, and realized it was an extraordinarily busy event. With the success of last year, we decided to give it another go with the two of us this time around.
our booth at the festival

Despite the scary commute to St. Louis, the weather over the 2 and 1/2 day festival was FAB-U-LOUS, and the customers came out in droves. Admittedly, were placed in quite an odd area off the main drag of vendors, but were placed toward an exit area, which resulted in a great flow of buying customers.

standing room only!

Anyone who has ever worked a festival knows that it's a trying, tiring effort that that takes all the strength you can muster. This particular festival went from 11am to 11pm every night, so we needed help just to make it throughout the day. We're thankful to have wonderful friends and family who are always willing to stop by and help. Big "ooo-ooooh's!" and hugs to our mama and great friends, Mike, Cara and Liz. We can't thank you enough.
We also had the pleasure of neighboring with a fellow jewelry designer named Melissa. Her jewelry was also chunky and funky, and she had a good weekend overall. Spending time with her and her parents was great fun.
our beautiful mama modeling our necklace and ring

the brains and the brawn for the weekend, our friend, Mike

our booth neighbor and fellow jewelry designer, Melissa
The biggest advantage of doing festivals is that we get to meet our buyers in person. There's no better test of your product and marketing efforts than seeing how your own product presents itself in the face of the potential buyer.

I'm proud - and unabashed - to say that our customers are the BEST new business owners could ask for... they're always honest in their assessment of our new designs, and are happy to give recommendations (and plenty of compliments) on our lines as a whole.
As it says in the liner of this entry, we also have the most fly and cutest customers ever! From indie, to sophisticated, to conservative, we create designs that look great on all. The best part?

Our oh-so-cool customers allow us to take photos of them wearing their purchases! If ever you visit our website - http://www.iidesigns.com/ - and are unsure whether or necklaces will fit right on your frame, or whether they're too big for you, just take a look at these lovely ladies wearing some of our creations:

yellow jade woven necklace

rust recycled palm wood woven necklace

green recycled palm wood double woven necklace

gray agate slab single strand necklace

It was a fantastic festival full of great music, great food, and great people. We look forward to seeing you all next year!

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