New Normal Apparel hosts Bike Bazaar for local vendors

New Normal Apparel’s storefront on E. Clay Street. They’ve organized a bazaar to feature local clothing and accessory stores. Photo by Brooke Marsh

Sophia Belletti
Staff Writer

New Normal Apparel’s storefront on E. Clay Street. They’ve organized a bazaar to feature local clothing and accessory stores. Photo by Brooke Marsh
New Normal Apparel’s storefront on E. Clay Street. They’ve organized a bazaar to feature local clothing and accessory stores. Photo by Brooke Marsh

New Normal Apparel is hosting a Bike Bazaar in honor of The Richmond 2015 Road World Championships Sept.19-27 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. each day.

Sale items from the vendors range from jewelry and yoga pants to cutting boards. Currently, Sacred Waters Holistic Spa & Boutique, Superfun Yoga Pants, SolarMill, Sweetest Stitch and Robin Grabinska have all agreed to be vendors. Space for $1,000 for all nine days is still available for purchase until Sept. 15.

Originally, New Normal Apparel planned to be a vendor at Pop-up Revolution at Plant Zero or the Convention Center, but the organizers said the rates were too high for a small local business. This was the inspiration for their bazaar event.

“We’re so close to the Convention Center and it made sense. Why not utilize our space and offer a really affordable space for businesses that are the same position as us?” said Kelley Blanchard, cofounder and executive creative director of New Normal Apparel. “It was less of a risk than paying ten grand to be somewhere else. It all comes back to our mission of supporting local vendors.”

New Normal Apparel is a community-based fashion and lifestyle store that sources it’s products from local businesses. Blanchard explained how a lot of the vendors participating in their bazaar event have worked with them in the past.

“We collaborate with Superfun Yoga Pants and Sacred Waters a lot,” Blanchard said. “Whenever we do a pop-up or an event we invite them. They have also wholesale stuff with us before. And Solar Mills, we collaborate with him on our bullet casing necklaces. It’s just from our relationships with other local business owners.”

The bazaar will also hold two fundraising events. On Sept. 23 from 6-9 p.m. an “Aid Our Veterans” fundraiser is being held. There will also be a bike race celebration and benefit gathering for Amy’s Army, an organization which treats victims of spinal cord injury, on Sept. 25 from 6-9 p.m.

“We’re not really sure what to expect, but we’re promoting it and the vendors are excited,” Blanchard said. “The risk isn’t too high.”

Although this is the first nine-day-long bazaar New Normal Apparel has participated in, this is not their first time hosting. In the past, there has been a Mother’s Day bazaar and a Last Minute Shoppers bazaar a week before Christmas 2014. Six vendors were at the Christmas bazaar and were open for about eight hours long.

Although this bazaar is far more extensive than past events for New Normal Apparel, Blanchard is excited to see how it plays out, and he believes that both New Normal Apparel and the vendors will profit.

“I think it will be fairly successful since we’re right here next to the convention center,” Blanchard said. “We’re also going to be at Viva-la-Local, which is more around the finish line of the race. We’re going to have people on foot handing out flyers, and we’ve been promoting through all local publications.”

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