Combining the sun-dappled charm of the South with a true home for makers alike, Made South came to fruition as a means to celebrate the artistry of the Southern spirit. The market is where artisans and makers bring their creations to life.
Founder Chris Thomas’ entrepreneurial courage was sparked to create a community for artists of all trades after more than a decade of partnering with none other than financial guru Dave Ramsey. Uncharted dreams met raw determination when Thomas decided to depart from his full-time role to pursue something that could not only create memories for his family but could be passed down to them as well. “I wanted to create an event where makers of all trades could come together in community to celebrate their talents," Thomas says. Over time, the event has become a symphony of community and creativity, with a shared love for the South right in the heart of Franklin.
Calling attention beyond the bright lights of Broadway, Made South elevates the voices of makers and artisans of the South – a treasure trove of talent waiting to be celebrated. What began as a humble venture soon blossomed into a movement surpassing even the Thomas family’s loftiest prayers. The evolution of the Made South brand is a direct reflection of the strength of the vibrant communities around it, resulting in forging a commitment to creating memorable experiences for makers and buyers alike.
Made South began as what was expected to be a small market for local artists to hang their hats to gain awareness for their brands. It grew into a fan-crazed event, demanding more space than what was originally acquired for it. When the opportunity arose for Chris Thomas to move the holiday market to the Factory in Franklin, it was a serendipitous moment of what was truly meant to be. Up and coming, the Factory was a place that blended the rustic allure of concrete and brick. In a space where the air itself seems to carry the aroma of creativity, its aged walls seemed to blend effortlessly with the essence of Made South's magic.
As Made South's story unfolded, so did its trajectory. The transformation was a graceful dance, shifting from subscription boxes to a universe of events and experiences that bloomed like magnolias in the Mississippi Delta. The event’s story is not merely about material possessions, but about the narratives woven into those possessions, the skilled hands that crafted them, and the people who have poured their hearts and passion into every stitch and stroke.
Chris Thomas began to realize that it was time to move on from Made South, but after receiving feedback on how much it would be missed, he decided to look for someone to hand off the reins to.
While Chris Thomas and his wife remain the steadfast guardians of the Made South brand, a new chapter unfurls as fellow Made South maker Chris Richardson from Birmingham, Alabama, and his wife step into the spotlight, taking the reins of the Holiday Market event. “The thing that drew me to Made South was the fact that as a maker myself, I felt celebrated each time I participated in the event.”
A true match made in business heaven has created a seamless transition for Made South, beginning a new era that allows both Chris Thomas and Chris Richardson to showcase their shared passions and strengths.
If you are a lover of the South, a patron of small businesses, and an adventurer seeking the heart of authentic creativity, then follow your path to the Made South Holiday Market on November 17-18 at The Factory in Franklin.
Blending the sun-kissed allure of the Southern landscape with a vibrant haven for artisans, Made South is a beacon, reminding us that the Southern soul thrives in the artistry of its people. MadeSouth.com
“The thing that drew me to Made South was the fact that as a maker myself, I felt celebrated each time I participated in the event.” -- Chris Richardson