Our Story

     Founding Members of Flow

     Creating a cooperative of artists

Flow was opened in June 2010 by eight local women, all artists or makers in need of a retail outlet. When a lovely space in downtown Marshall became available, we jumped at the opportunity to pool our resources and open the shop. Most of us had no prior business experience, but we each took on one or more of the many responsibilities of an ongoing retail business-accounting, scheduling, marketing, floor display, consignor relations, physical maintenance, exhibitions & events.

Members staff the shop, so there are no paid employees. In early 2011, we became an LLC, expanded the showroom floor and added two more members.

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Arts in and for a small town economy

Without doubt, buying from your neighbors is good business.  It saves gas, supports the folks who live around you and keeps dollars in the local economy.  

But at Flow we believe that buying handmade products has more than just local economic impact.  We believe that our handiwork is a living, breathing organism that thrives on the conversation between maker and buyer.  

We believe that when you buy something handcrafted by one of our local or regional artists, you're using your dollars as cultural currency, investing in the creativity of the people around you who help to make up what is unique about your community.  

When you come in to Flow and have a conversation with an artist whose work     you might buy, that interaction has an impact on both the buyer and the artist. The buyer will absorb unique insight into the artist's process or vision and the artist will hear feedback that offers new perspectives on her own work. 

Mermaids in Marshall
Founding Members of Flow

Founding Members of Flow

Slow Craft

Offering the work not only of our own members, but also that of more than 60 local artists, designers and makers, Flow showcases the best handmade works of our own community and region. We also consciously encourage an older way of craft supported by the Slow Craft movement, which seeks to connect the public with the beauty of handmade objects and the people who make them. 

Not so much a reaction to modernity as a modest suggestion for its improvement, the Slow Craft movement proposes the thoughtful and time-consuming production of objects made by hand as a self-sustaining economic model based on respect for traditional ways of making, intelligent and careful design with an eye for the longevity of objects, locally and sustainably sourced materials, and encouragement of the local and regional flavors which lead to distinctive, as opposed to mass-produced, objects.

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When you come in to Flow and have a conversation with an artist whose work you might buy, that interaction has an impact on both the buyer and the artist. The buyer will absorb unique insight into the artist's process or vision and the artist will hear feedback that offers new perspectives on her own work. 

The invaluable cultural cross-fertilization in such an exchange is just as important to the viability of a community as dollars and cents, and the artists at Flow cherish the relationship with everyone who walks through our door for this reason. 

We are more than a shop of pretty things; we strive to be something of an artistic watershed for ourselves, the artists we represent, the community in which we live and work and the thoughtful seeker of crafted works.