We figured before we started introducing you to our awesome vendors, we should probably tell you who “we” are. First of all, we should probably tell you that “we” never do this. We hate introductions, the camera, the attention or being front & center – hence why we are the market organizers. Also, big news – we aren’t a “we”, it’s just me.
Hi guys, I’m Ashlyn.
I usually always say “we” because Boho Saint Jo is very much a Shadden family affair. **Let us preface, none of this would be able to happen without the help from my mom & dad. (Even non-family members, both near and far, are such a huge part of our “Boho In The Making”!) For the sake of this “Introductory Post” though, let’s throw all my rules out the window & just talk about me!
Good. That’s settled. A little background info.
I was born & raised in little ‘ole Whitesboro, Texas, but couldn’t get outta there fast enough. From Whitesboro, I went off to Austin to this little school called The University of Texas for a degree in Journalism. (Magazine Journalism, to be exact.) It was in our great capital that I fell in love with all things weird, small, unique & hip. In fact, I loved Austin so much that I stuck around for grad school.
Grad school is expensive. Austin cost of living – that’s expensive too. So, I worked full-time. The job I had though, was not some awful, horror story job that you get to make ends meet. I had the best job. Not only did I get to help run a boutique, but I got to learn the ropes of retail from my best friend’s mom. Cynthia Harris of Sunny Paige Design took me in and mentored me without ever really knowing it. I grew up with a love for design since my dad builds custom homes & my mom is gifted with an eye for interior design, but it wasn’t until working retail that I discovered—hey, I kinda, really like this stuff!
After graduating with my Masters in Advertising, I got the job offer of a lifetime to travel the world & get paid to do it! I took a job as a flight attendant for a private charter company. For 2 years I got to fly celebrities & athletes around the world. The culture I got to experience traveling far surpassed any celebrity lifestyle fantasy you are thinking up in your head right now. I was definitely bit by the travel bug & my hidden talent is being able to pack a month’s worth of necessities at the drop of a hat, BUT my world travels gave birth to my love for street markets. Some of my most favorite memories & possessions come from the souks in Kuwait & Bahrain, Christmas markets in Germany & Italian farmers markets.
All of this is to say, that after traveling the world & coming back to North Texas there was a hole in my heart where unique, one-of-a-kind shopping once was. After flying, I moved to Saint Jo where my mom had opened a home, gift & women’s clothing boutique. Saint Jo is a great, cozy, little town, but it is very far from my kind of shopping. If only there was a way to bring the shopping experience of the Kuwaiti souks & Italian farmers markets . . .
Fast forward to Flea Style Summit.
I went to Flea Style Summit, a conference for creatives, and was inspired beyond belief. I had followed Flea Style for a while & my obsession was becoming unhealthy, but when I went to The Summit I felt called to do something. I had no idea what, but something. Then, over coffee one morning, filling in mom about The Summit – Boho Saint Jo began.
I wanted to create a place where people could come and shop one-of-a-kind pieces from women makers & creators. I was being selfish honestly. I was living in the middle of nowhere with nothing to shop & I selfishly longed to experience what I had while traveling. So for 4 hours, I wanted to curate some of my favorite women creators & give Montague County something unique to shop. I didn’t charge anything for the vendors & I was terrified that nobody would show up for them. I was wrong.
Fast forward 4 shows later & we have more than doubled in size and we are constantly adding to the show. I couldn’t be happier knowing that our little dream over coffee has turned into such a fun day. I love seeing our vendors that started their business at our first show that have grown so much – some have even opened storefronts! Things like this are what makes us so happy & are exactly the reason why we created Boho Saint Jo.
Never in a million years would we have guessed having more than the first show, but we are more than thankful for the support & encouragement we have received.
That’s enough rambling & talking about myself. I much rather tell you more about our amazing vendors coming to Boho Saint Jo this fall. We announce our Fall Lineup September 1, so keep your eyes peeled. You are going to want to start following them now so you can make your lists!
I won't be able to sleep at night knowing that I didn't give credit where credit was due.
Mom & Dad: You have been by my side through thick & thin. Through all the many weird, far-fetched dreams of mine, you were right there. Thank you for encouraging me along the entire way with Boho Saint Jo & never letting me give up or settle for less. I appreciate each of you and all of the hard work you both put in behind the scenes. Shadco, thank you for rushing to build me anything we may possibly need even when it is down to the wire AND for being the best maintenance man, problem solver & beer runner for all of us.
Camille Crist: Thank you for being the our Boho Saint Jo MVP. You have stayed up late and woken up early to help us with any and all things sewing & you are always all hands on deck when it comes to grunt work. You are the busiest of all the bees & the hardest worker we know. Thank you for being such a sport & helping us make our dreams come true. Mostly, thank you for your friendship, support & encouragement. Your words of affirmation have helped us pull ourselves out of the darkest of slumps. Thank you.
Paige Davidson: Oh boy. Thank you for being our biggest cheerleader in the most Paige Davidson of ways. You have sung our praises & helped spread word of our little show in your circle of makers -- making us look far better than we ever will be. Having your seal of approval is HUGE, since there is literally nothing in this world you cannot do. We owe you the world. Thank you.
Katy McNeer Pacheco: Thank you for driving down all the way from Amarillo to help us pull of shows without a hitch. Nobody is as organized as you are & our attorneys & insurance guys are ever so thankful for you. I am so grateful for your friendship & your selfless love. You keep me sane & on track -- a task nobody else has been able to conquer. Thank you.
Saint Jo, Texas: Thank you for welcoming us with open arms & allowing us to take over part of your square for the day. Merchants, restaurants & historians of Saint Jo are always so kind and welcoming to our shoppers. Thank you. Saint Jo City Council, thank you for allowing us to shut down Howell St. for the day to decorate & allow more vendors in to our event. You guys are a pleasure to work with & we owe much of our success to you.