When artist, model and entrepreneur Makara Adkins sought a suitable venue for her and a friend’s work, she couldn’t find one.
The result of this effort was for her to eventually open her own – downtown Victoria’s Good Vibe Space.
“The best way to describe the store is as a lifestyle boutique,” said Adkins. “It’s a storefront that’s part art and crafts retail space – what is essentially a small art gallery and partly a consignment store for artisans.”
Located at 565 Johnson St., Good Vibe Space was founded along with then-business partner Linda Mitchell at the height of the global pandemic in October 2020. Shortly after, family obligations required Mitchell to step away from the operation, retaining shares in the business while Adkins continues as its sole owner.
“Our focus is certainly about art as I’m an artist myself,” she said. “I’m also a professional model, having worked in the fashion industry for over 15 years, as well as in television before moving back to BC where I was born.”
Initially opened as a consignment store for artisans, Good Vibe Space has expanded to a point that allows Adkins to purchase and market artworks directly.
“I work with about 65 local artists and makers right now, from across the Island, the Mainland and from the rest of Canada really,” she said.
“My theory is if I can’t find it on the Island, I’ll try the Mainland. If not there, then the rest of Canada. I’ll even import some if that’s what I must do. I also work with a lady from Vancouver whose focus is fair trade – working with artists from Latin America, so I’ll occasionally work with her to bring in some pieces from Mexico, Columbia and elsewhere. Art and creativity aren’t restricted to any one country or area, it’s universal.”
Offering a range of products and unique items to her growing client base (both local and visitors to Victoria), Adkins’s venture has flourished despite being launched during the economic chaos created by COVID-19 – proof that the desire for art and crafts exists regardless of fiscal conditions.
Being an artist, living a creative lifestyle requires both a steely commitment to your craft, and an acceptance that what you do isn’t always about money or profitability, but about the act of creation itself.
For a growing number of artists and makers, Good Vibe Space provides a welcome venue to allow creativity and commerce to co-exist. One of Adkins’ key business philosophies summed it all up when she said: “We do what we do to support our dream.”
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