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MKE Up Market
One Milwaukeean thinks there are not enough local markets and she's doing something about it.

Images courtesy of MKE Up Market.

For anyone who has ever yearned for the labyrinth of a good European flea market and wished we could have something of the sort in Milwaukee, the MKE Up Market might just be the answer to your prayers.

After spending 17 years in London, Milwaukee native Wren Solares is back and determined to recreate one of her favorite activities from across the pond. She’s been checking out as many events as possible in Milwaukee to be sure she is creating a distinct event for everyone to enjoy, and is thus featuring art, fashion, accessories, food, lifestyle, music and more.

The MKE Up Market will commence this Sunday, Feb. 17 at The Moct (241 E. Pittsburg). Subsequent market days are planned for March 3, March 17, April 7 and April 21. If arrangements with the city go well, Solares hopes to close the streets in front of MOCT and take the market outdoors starting in May.

“It’s not all about commerce,” she says. “It’s a community event. It’s all about giving Milwaukee something different.”

Solares says she wants to create an alternative to the typical Sunday "fun day" in Milwaukee (i.e. binge drinking and watching sports), and strengthen the community in the burgeoning Walker’s Point.  

Solares owns her own event planning company called Lost in Milwaukee, with business still in London and Ibiza. She will hand select the vendors both from Milwaukee and beyond. Items for sale do not have to be handmade, though you will find many local, handmade products, because let’s face it, here in Milwaukee we take care of our own.

There will be 20-ish vendors on site selling everything from jewelry and antiques to cheese and jam. Other confirmed vendors - just to name a few - include: Victoria Leigh Psychic & Clairvoyant, Zen Dragonfly hats, Pam Fieber cards, Lollie Deals vintage vinyl and more, Crabby Moon jewelry and accessories, Butterscotch Baby bath products, Crocket Kitten knit goods, 31 Functional Organizers,  Seriluna Spa Products and Pampered Chef.

The March 3 market will be MKE Fashion Week dedicated to beauty and style. “We are doing giveaways and will have models, makeup and a great stylists onsite. I am really excited about this one, it’s going to be big,” says Solares.

Find details on the website and contact Solares if you are interested in being a vendor.

Follow me on Twitter as @jkashou to stay on top of what's happening around town or search #GirlAboutTown.

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