HomeArticlesArts & CultureBusiness & InvestLifestyleThe Village Markets – Taking Homegrown Talent Global
The Village Markets. Image credit: Soda Photography

The Village Markets – Taking Homegrown Talent Global

Kate Veling | March 2020

The Village Markets are more than just a market. It’s a collaborative community of small businesses, designers, artists, creative, foodies, musicians, culture seekers, sustainable shoppers and lovers of good vibes. Plus, it’s a launching pad for numerous local businesses and brands.

On the first and third Sunday of every month you can head down to Burleigh Heads State School to the boutique fashion and lifestyle market to browse and shop a carefully curated line up of stalls.

The bi-monthly event was started in 2008 by Gold Coast super duo Marissa Bowden and Sarah Schoeller who recognised the need for a platform to showcase emerging local talent.

“When we started The Village Markets (TVM), there were so many incredible creatives leaving the Gold Coast for opportunities in larger cities,” explains co-founder, Marissa. “As passionate Gold Coasters we wanted to provide more opportunity here and really foster something special for the region.”

Over the last 12 years, The Village Markets (TVM) have grown to become one of the city’s key cultural events and one of Australia’s most recognised small business incubators with many brands that began at TVM going on to achieve international success.

“We’ve managed to provide a launch platform for over two thousand small businesses in the creative space, as well as musicians and foodies.” 

Co-founder of TVM Marissa Bowden

“The Gold Coast is now such an incredible melting pot of talent and we’re so inspired by the calibre of businesses popping up and applying to join TVM,” says Marissa.

One of the many success stories that had its origins at the markets is Peony Swimwear. Designer, Becky Jack, says this auspicious start was vital for the growth of her boutique brand.

“In the initial stages, it allowed me to present my designs to the local market where people could come into my stall, touch the swimwear, see the prints, feel the luxurious fabrics and absorb the overall vibe of the brand. As a predominantly online label, my TVM stall brings Peony to life and gives me the opportunity to engage with my customers on a personal level. Unlike a lot of other markets, TVM provides an authentic local market experience that is unparalleled. It is truly is a fantastic platform for any creative brand.”

Co-found Sarah Schoeller says that as much as the designers and business owners love the markets, locals and visitors are equally delighted by the incredible calibre of wares on offer and the relaxed yet vibrant atmosphere.

“We often hear how surprised people are to find an event like TVM on the Coast and it’s been that element of uniqueness and amazing talent that has seen the event so well received,” she says. “Our community are an amazing bunch and the feedback we receive is always about the positive vibes, sense of community and ability of the brand to scale up after attending TVM.”

Read on to learn more about some of the brands and businesses that started with a stall at TVM…

Duke Of London

This edgy kids label creates unique, bold and on trend pieces for babies, boys and girls that strike the perfect balance between function and fashion. From humble beginnings at The Village Markets, the label is now stocked in over 50 stores across the globe, has been featured in Harpar’s Bazaar and is also worn by celebrity kids including the Kardashian clan, Gwen Stefani’s children and Chris Hemsworth’s little ones.

Ziggy Alberts 

With his heartfelt lyrics and husky voice, independent singer, songwriter and story teller, Ziggy Alberts, was wowing the crowds at The Village Markets long before his 2018 album, Laps Around The Sun, hit #2 on the ARIA charts. Alberts is now doing laps around the globe, touring his music to international acclaim.

Business & Pleasure Co

Defined by vintage-inspired aesthetic, Business & Pleasure Co creates high-quality, timeless and beautiful beach furniture and accessories including beach tents, beach chairs and premium beach umbrellas. Since their inception at TVM, Business & Pleasure Co luxury coastal accoutrements have become a summer main-stay on beaches across the globe.

Peony Swimwear

The luxury sustainable swimwear label has cemented itself as the ultimate summer staple. With inherently feminine style, all Peony pieces are made entirely from recycled and sustainable fabrics right down to the trims, padding and hardware. Now available in boutiques worldwide including Harrods and Saks Fifth Avenue, the brand is loved by the likes of Bella Hadid and Kendall Jenner.

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