Gather is a beautiful, plant filled gift shop & classroom in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina that features a curated selection of well made artisanal gift products: local foods, bath salts and oils, plants and terrariums, jewelry, apparel and accessories for men and women, note cards and local foods, the majority of which are made by North Carolina designers. Housed in a micro space, we are a tiny shop with a lot of soul. In addition, our classroom space hosts craft, food, gardening and business classes.
The majority of goods carried by Gather are made by micro artisan / maker entrepreneurs meaning goods made by emerging business owners who hand-craft or manufacture their goods in small quantities. Gather’s owner Michelle is herself a maker entrepreneur who specializes in textiles, and home goods. Michelle’s goal is to elevate the work of these makers so that Gather’s customers appreciate the value of the product they are purchasing and the time and care that went into the making of each piece.
LEARN & INSPIRE
In the two years Gather has been in business we have hosted over fifty craft and business classes to hundreds of students, creating an additional platform and revenue stream for local makers and entrepreneurs, many of whom are the instructors for our classes. The classes also create a great forum for informal networking, community and friendship in real life versus on the computer or phone screen.
Gather strives to elevate the work of local and national artisans and creates ways to share their stories and their process through photography, video, spotlights, and selling their wares through Gather’s physical and online storefronts.
In addition to being a shop and a classroom Gather’s original downtown Cary location also served as both a coffee shop and a thriving coworking space that featured over fifteen, almost exclusively, female entrepreneurs, who utilized the space as a communal office.
Gather is passionate about helping maker entrepreneurs succeed and hosts monthly guided meet-ups dedicated to creating community through shared resources and conversation. Currently, over 50 local, micro artisan and creative entrepreneurs are part of these groups. We are also working on a podcast to be launched soon giving further audience to these conversations that target this specific niche.
Passionate about promoting emerging artisan entrepreneurs, community and revitalization Gather owner Michelle Smith founded The Rock & Shop Market in 2004. The event which was one of the first of this type of market in the country, was an annual event featuring over 100 juried makers alongside bands, Djs and food trucks and attended by 1000+ buyers per event. She has also created pop-up shops, merchandised unused store fronts, and founded indieNC, a blog dedicated to promoting inspiring and creative happenings in North Carolina. She also served as the creative director of the short-lived, but inspired non-profit retail incubator, Kindred in downtown Raleigh.
A maker entrepreneur and commercial artist herself, Michelle creates textiles, home wares and gift products under the name Gather Goods. She also works as a professional stylist and photographer. Her work has been featured in Real Simple, Southern Living, Design*Sponge, West Elm, Anthropologie and more.