Wednesday, December 11, 2019
Dec. 11, 2019

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Gift of gab helps girl sell gifts at holiday market in Vancouver

Vendor, 9, sells hand-painted pots, enjoys explaining meaning behind her designs

By , Columbian breaking news reporter
Published: December 1, 2019, 7:01pm
3 Photos
Sophia Campbell, 7, of Portland, and Emily Corsen, 9, of Vancouver, talk to Samantha Duenas, of Los Angeles, and Aaron Ferrara, of Vancouver, about the succulents and hand-painted pots they have for sale on Sunday during the Vancouver Farmers Market Holiday Market at the Hilton Vancouver Washington. (Roberto Rodriguez for The Columbian)
Sophia Campbell, 7, of Portland, and Emily Corsen, 9, of Vancouver, talk to Samantha Duenas, of Los Angeles, and Aaron Ferrara, of Vancouver, about the succulents and hand-painted pots they have for sale on Sunday during the Vancouver Farmers Market Holiday Market at the Hilton Vancouver Washington. (Roberto Rodriguez for The Columbian) Photo Gallery

Toward the end of a three-day market, Emily Corsen, 9, estimated that she had sold 90 small, designed pots with succulents. After a quick stop at her table, shoppers could easily see why Emily, who arrived with 117 pots, was successful.

“The best part is getting to talk to people,” Emily said. “It’s fun to explain things.”

Emily was one of many local artisan vendors who displayed their crafts during the Vancouver Farmers Market Holiday Market from Friday through Sunday at the Hilton Vancouver Washington, 301 West Sixth St.

Emily first ventured into the market scene earlier this year at the Vancouver Farmers Market Children’s Market. Hoping to raise money for a cruise in celebration of her birthday in January, she raised $408, said Jeri Cella, her grandmother who began selling designed bibs at the market nearly a decade ago.

“Emily’s like me,” said Cella, 61. “She’ll talk to anybody.”

Accompanying Emily on Sunday were her mother — Amber Corsen of Vancouver — and friend — Sophia Campbell, 7. After the two girls asked passersby if they were interested in the succulents and hand-painted pots, they were happy to explain the thinking behind the designs.

The pots, which took Emily about a month to create, included drawings of her pets, Harry Potter, the night sky and the “I (heart symbol) teacher” phrase. Some featured faces depicting various emotions, which she hopes will make for some thoughtful holiday gifts.

“You want to give them an emotion to show how you feel about them,” Emily said.

If those images didn’t suit her clientele, Emily had a backup plan. Some of the pots were simply painted with various colors.

“In case you don’t like any of the designs, you can just choose a random color,” she said.

Emily’s entrepreneurial spirit was not confined to her own table Sunday. She was also quick to point out that her grandmother had a booth just around the corner.

Cella said that other members of Emily’s family spend a lot of time volunteering, and the 9-year-old often finds herself holding conversations with adults. At the market, her ability to work a room was apparent.

“It doesn’t surprise me,” Cella said. “She’s very leader-like.”

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