It’s been one year since Suzon Robbins of Bettendorf launched the Eclectic Market – and its next one is this Sunday, Nov. 19, noon to 4 p.m. at Village Theatre, 2113 E. 11th St. in the Village of East Davenport.
With a variety of different vendors each month, the market lives up to its name, including art, plants, books, vinyl, vintage items, oddities, taxidermy and much more for sale. Admission is free with a cash bar.
Robbins launched Eclectic Market last fall in an old church in east Rock Island and has settled into the Village Theatre since August.
“The market has grown exponentially. We have vendors from as far away as Chicago and Cedar Rapids,” she said this week. “I change the vendor lineup monthly except for me, and Misfit Hippies and Macabre Librarian with her blind date with a book.
“Our market is full of the unusual, witty, weird and cerebral,” Robbins said. “The stuff my artists are making blows my mind. So much creativity and now we are a little oddball family. I am so blessed to be able to collaborate with such kind, creative people daily.
Robbins previously sold her art at Abernathy’s for many years, with her section of the store called the SUZONE.
“A lot of my art isn’t art that could be displayed in public and I have a separate space where people can choose to explore the vintage (often comical) erotica that I use in my pieces,” she said. “I also am a repurpose artist and use the objects that I find around me — in the trash, dumpster, thrift store, estate sales — to make some interesting things. I have to make art daily or I shrivel and I am always making stuff that I can keep if it doesn’t sell.
“I am very thankful that people dig my stuff. I do the market every month, usually the end of the month, if possible,” Robbins said. “I have 14 vendors inside and weather permitting another eight outside the Village Theatre.
“I curate a good mix that I feel will provide the most fun shopping experience,” she said, noting they also have a house DJ — Ramiro the HAJ — who spins the entire four hours, so sometimes there is dancing.
“It’s such a fun group of people and we have great customers,” Robbins said. “I have people coming from all over the region now for the Eclectic Market — staying downtown and bringing money into our community. That is awesome. The QCA has a pretty cool scene.”
Abernathy’s has been open for 10 years now and Robbins said she’s lucky that they will run their famous bag sale from the Village Theatre stage at next month’s Eclectic Market, Dec. 17 — $25 buys you a bag that you can stuff whatever you can in it, she said.
“They are selling many of Mushroom and Ginger’s Vintage clothing collection, which is immense. I am super honored that they are coming to my market,” Robbins added.