We met Stacy Brown a few years ago as we prepared to expand into our current location shortly after we announced we'd be taking dealer applications. When we met her, her company was called Barn Swallow Hollow. Later she renamed her space SouthFORK and focused on vintage kitchen goods. Last Summer she opened an additional space with a collegiate theme called SCORE at Woodstock Market. And at the start of this year she unveiled her new brand, one she says she's determined to stick with, called Dixie Avenue.
Stacy still has two spaces inside our store, but many of you have met her lately in her trailer turned mobile store in our parking lot.
WM: Shoppers have been discovering your "Shop on Wheels" at the last several Market Days. When did your shop hit the streets?
Stacy: I finished building my mobile store on my mom's birthday late in April. I drove right over to her house in Towne Lake. She was my first shopper and picked out a State of Georgia Wrap Bracelet for her birthday present.
WM: Where did you come up with the idea?
Stacy: I have been selling Glory Haus products from Marietta online and in my shop inside Woodstock Market for a few years. Last fall, around the time I learned that I was among Glory Haus' Top 50 Retailers, a friend who is a teacher at Little River Elementary School asked me to be a part of the final fundraiser to prepare the way for she and her husband to adopt their baby girl. I loaded the cargo trailer I used for my antiques business full of Glory Haus' artwork, frames, and burlap door hangers. After a few trips back and forth from the driveway to Sarah Kaye's dining room, the idea for Dixie Avenue mobile was born.
It was a thrill to write that sweet family a check that day. My niece and several other family members are adopted. It's a beautiful process and I wanted to be available to help others pursue it. Dixie Avenue private parties and fundraisers bring the best Southern goods right to your driveway. Hostesses receive discounts and store credits or a portion of proceeds go directly to your cause. Our next fundraiser is to help provide a piece of therapy equipment for an East Cobb child with special needs.
At the same time, I'm a huge fan of Atlanta's Food Truck scene. I love that these small business owners are creating completely original menus and brands that are totally portable. They roll up and bring an area to life. Mobile retail is on the rise in cities like L.A. and Nashville because it's a great compliment to those cities' thriving food truck scenes. I'd love to be a part of that in the Atlanta area.
WM: What's the 'driving force' of Dixie Avenue?
Stacy: I love the South. Southerners are originals. The ingenuity of today's Southern artisans is inspiring. I love introducing those makers to new audiences. I find a lot of kindred spirits at the places I park. People who love the South, their roots, as much as I do. It's a joy to see that spark when they step inside my little shop.
WM: So we've established you're Southern... Where precisely are you from?
Stacy: I grew up in East Marietta but Dixie Avenue is named for the street in Smyrna where my grandparents lived and operated a small business. My mom was a flight attendant so I spent a good part of the week with my grandparents and great aunt. Many of my fondest memories are of shopping Belmont Hills and eating at Dunaway Drugs across the street from their house. Now my husband and I live in Cherokee County overlooking the charming town of Mountain Park. I bet my boys will feel about Lake Cherful the way I feel about Belmont Hills. It's like the whole city is held over from another time.