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Meet Casey Garbers of Martbar in Mar Vista

Today we’d like to introduce you to Casey Garbers.

Casey, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
In 2013, I moved to Los Angeles to attend Otis College of Art and Design. As I worked towards my degree in Product Design, I found a great deal of passion for handmaking nearly everything I found interest in. Creating something with my hands (sometimes taking twice the amount of time) meant creating a gift for someone that reflected the time, effort and love I knew they deserved. Manufacturing something became almost vile to me in a lot of ways. There was even a point where I refused to use a sewing machine. But even with the endless suggestions to cut time in half and create a grander inventory, I remained persistent. I knew what was important to me and no one could change that.

Fast Forward to this past October, I was sitting at the ArtBar (the venue that houses the marketplace) doing some work when I heard a cough followed by my name, followed by the question, “would you like to curate a marketplace outside?” With shock and no hesitation, I told the partners I’d dedicate myself to it if they trusted me.

One month later, we had our grand opening Sunday, November 10th and still going strong today!

Has it been a smooth road?
It was definitely a lot to take in as one person. I had never stepped into an arena quite like this and to be honest, I was not prepared for the amount of work that goes into curating an event; let alone a bi-monthly market. But with trial and error, I caught on rather quickly and do everything I can to make the next market better than the one before.

I do work a regular job during the week along with freelance, and at the very start, I was helping my mother move down in San Diego every chance I got. So I’m unable to put 100% of my energy into this place, which can be very irritating. Between making connections, booking people, and creating and hanging flyers, it can be frustrating when I clock into my other jobs. BUT, growing up, my mother was a single parent with two children and three jobs so I figure I can do this.

The best advice I’ve been given in my moments of doubt is to not let the hiccups ruin my mission of building something for the community to be apart of and something I am proud of.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
The ‘Merchant Row’ of MartBar offers a uniquely intimate experience where potential consumers may engage artists on a personal level.

MartBar is a market place that celebrates local artists and designers; providing them a platform and a space to make connections and share their craft with the community.

Every Sunday evening, when the market comes to an end, I am overwhelmed with gratitude. Every individual involved has shown so much kindness, appreciation, and excitement for this new element in the community. They are truly the reason I have found such a passion for this. They encourage me to continue forward and make this possible. I grow with them and for them.

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
I think LA is a fabulous place for markets! Although there are so many already, we as people long for community and culture. We want to see new things, experience new people and ultimately love consuming. It doesn’t matter if you have a large market with over 100 vendors or a small one with only 15, people are drawn to the experience. It can be tough to start something new; like any business, you must get a following and make your presence known. But Los Angeles is one of those places that is full of opportunity and if you show passion and drive you can be apart of anything.

Pricing:

  • Vendors who are interested in taking part in one of our markets can pay $20 to reserve a space

Contact Info:

  • Address: 12017 Venice Blvd
    Los Angeles, CA 90066
  • Phone: 3108819312
  • Email: lamartbar@gmail.com
  • Instagram: @martbar_la
  • Facebook: MartBar

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