Photograph by Patrick Heagney
When Greg Martin and Michelle Larrabee-Martin opened Kolo Collection ten years ago, they were among the earliest retailers in the Westside district and among the first to offer upscale outdoor furniture directly to Atlanta homeowners. Now they’ve become pioneers again—literally knocking through the back wall of their Howell Mill store to connect with their new venture, Atlanta Made, which showcases local artists. “We’ve been following the ‘Made in America’ movement for years,” says Greg. “But local artists were frustrated that they didn’t have a good place to market their products.”
The new boutique features forty local artists in a wide variety of genres. Photography by Marilyn Suriani, bonbons from Chocolate South, sofas from Bjork Studio, handmade tables by Rough South Home, and jewelry by several artisans are part of an ever-changing collection that continues to expand.
The gallery is accessible through the original storefront or from the back of the Westside Urban Market shopping center, where a deck facing the city skyline shows off outdoor items. While Kolo focuses mostly on big-ticket furnishings, Atlanta Made will have more gifts and seasonal products. “I’m already looking forward to December,” says Greg. “There isn’t much going on in outdoor furniture sales around then, so we’re going to have a lot of fun with holiday events.”
Amy Wikman, owner of Bjork Studio, which sells both ready-made and custom furniture at the new store, enjoys connecting with other artisans through the Martins’ new space. “Most of the vendors already work together in many capacities—collaborating on area restaurants, residences, or commercial spaces,” Wikman says. “We already have a great deal of camaraderie and consider these artisans and companies our colleagues, and also friends. Michelle and Greg have created not just a store, but a community.” 1187 Howell Mill Road, 855-285-6233, atlantamade.us
This article originally appeared in our July 2013 issue.