Artists connect with community through Small Business Saturday

Published: Nov. 26, 2022 at 7:28 PM CST
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Many businesses opened their doors for big discounts on Black Friday, but small businesses saw their spotlight today for Small Business Saturday!

The day is an opportunity for smaller businesses to get the same attention as big corporations. Agora Borealis is an artisan marketplace in downtown Shreveport and it’s home to many artists in the Shreveport-Bossier area.

“We’ve been here for eight years. I like the name a lot and it means a lot to me. Agora, which just means marketplace in Greek, and then borealis means northern. So we’re the northern marketplace,” said owner Katie Larsen.

One of those artists is Lydia Craft.

“I think it’s incredibly rewarding to make one of a kind pieces of art and putting love and energy into something and having it come to life. Just an idea in your mind to something that someone can take home to display in their home, or wear on their body, or give to somebody that they truly love for a special occasion. I think that’s the ultimate honor,” she said.

Craft says she’s a firm advocate of small businesses, especially just starting her own.

“My business is an appointment-only tattoo shop called Sweet Nothing. Tattooing is something that can bring a lot of confidence and it’s very empowering. I think that’s probably my favorite part of the job. When it’s all done and I’m wiping their skin, and seeing them look in the mirror. The look on their face is the most rewarding,” she said.

Watching passionate artists like Craft reminds Larsen why she started her small business.

“When you meet these artists, you can have the one-on-one conversation about customizing something to you in particular,” she said.

Larsen says she thinks that’s what separates small businesses from big corporations.

“Usually when you go into a store, you’re buying something that tons of people can have. But when you shop locally, and you’re getting to meet that artist and customize it to you and your home, I think that’s something you can’t get anywhere else.”

She says she also loves being able to give back to the community.

“These people that you’re affecting are your neighbors. They live amongst you. They go to church with you, they go to your school,” she said. “I feel like it’s really special to be creative and celebrate those visions coming to life, and all the love that you put into this is to be celebrated.

You can find list of small businesses in the ArkLaTex by clicking here.