When COVID-19 shut down the public markets she usually sells in, Fort Langley crafter Marjie Van Dyk had to come up with a plan B to market her handmade windchimes, bookmarks, pottery piece, and beaded art objects.
It turned out to be just s few blocks away from her home, on three tables set out in the front yard of her son’s house – in the 8900-block of Wright Street, where Van Dyk was awaiting customers on Saturday, Nov. 27.
“He lives on a busier street,” Van Dyk explained.
Her son also has a open space with a roof for his vehicles that she can use if the weather turns bad.
COVID-19 precautions are observed at Van Dyk’s mini outdoor market.
She has arranged her tables so that would-be customers can get a good look without coming too close.
When Van Dyk isn’t being interviewed or having her picture taken from a safe distance, she wears a mask and has her own home-made hand sanitizer for customers.
She is a veteran of public markets, who has noticed some of the people who have bought from her in the past have turned up at her new roadside location.
“I’ve been beading since I was 16 and I’ve been doing markets for 10 years,” she elaborated.
“I have people who [come here and] say, I saw your stuff at the Kwantlen centre or the [Langley] seniors centre.”
This year was very different, due to the pandemic that has closed down the indoor public markets she usually sells in, and as a result also made it hard to get spaces in the few outdoor markets that are operating.
Van Dyk tried a virtual market, but she had, as of Saturday, gone more than a week with no sales.
So Van Dyk set up her own roadside attraction, open Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
“Good. Quite good,” she replied.
She plans to continue until the last Sunday before Christmas.