ALGOMA, Wisconsin (WFRV) – In 2020, the cancellation of art fairs and craft shows brought artisans in the area to come together under one roof: The Honeycomb in Algoma.
âIt’s always best to have different avenues where artisans can sell their products,â said Kimberly Iwen, owner of The Honeycomb and Queen Bee Handmade Soap. “All of these artisans are friends and people I know very well from festivals and farmers’ markets, and they have high quality products, and that’s what I wanted to focus on in my store.”
Another side effect of the pandemic is now affecting artisans like the 18 whose products are stored at The Honeycomb.
âI have had issues with the rising cost of soy wax for my candles,â Iwen said. âMy soap supply has increased by 25%, my candle wax has increased by 30%, I still had to change my containers because some are out of stock or I cannot get them on time. “
Supply chain and shipping issues plague small business owners.
âSome artisans will have to raise their prices because of this,â said Iwen.
Iwen said artisans like her try to keep their prices constant before the busiest holiday shopping weekend.
She hopes to see a lot of foot traffic on Saturday from small businesses.
âGo to your local store, go to your local store, whatever stores you have in town that have artisans, we also need support,â said Iwen.
The very issues that artisans face can help increase foot traffic this holiday season.
âThey’re not ordering anything, I think because they think they probably won’t get it on time or they are going to pay exorbitant shipping costs,â Iwen said of some customers she spoke to. . âSo they go to the local stores, which is great. “
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