Husband and wife team Chloe York and Eric Quick bonded over their love of all things taxidermy, insect specimens and other eccentric collectibles Now, they’re spreading the oddity love at their metaphysical store and online as Mytho Menagerie— a virtual Woodlawn Street Market vendor.
REV talked to the couple about their beginnings and their experience thus far with the virtual market
What inspired Mytho Menagerie?
The name Mytho Menagerie was first used as the title for a sculptural art series by co-owner Eric Quick in 2012. The series consisted of realistic, hand-sculpted mythological beasts like a chupacabra, an insectile fairy, and a kappa. The pieces were displayed like taxidermy one might find in a natural history museum. Mytho Menagerie by our own definition means “a collection of fantastical creatures.” And we thought the name was pretty catchy.
What types of items do you sell at Mytho Menagerie?
We first conceived Mytho Menagerie as a gallery comprised of strange and unusual fantasy art. We decided early on that we wanted to offer insect specimens, taxidermy and other curated antiques. We researched and found ethical sources for preserved specimens and we frame and compose the pieces ourselves. We slowly built a small collection of products until we had enough to launch an online store and start attending pop-ups and markets.
You also sell apothecary items. Are they made in-house?
After opening our mini storefront inside of Ritual+Shelter in downtown Homewood, we started expanding our inventory to include apothecary items like in-house salt soaks and candles by local maker Ecam & Co. We also offer the work of other local artists like Sophie McVicar, Hannah Hill, Taren Black of Oslo & Alfred, and Birmingham Oddities.
Mytho Menagerie provides art, home goods, and curiosities inspired by both the natural and the supernatural world. You can find hand-framed insect specimens, creature sculpts, original art, skulls and bones, candles, bath products, and more!
How long have you been vending at the Woodlawn Street Market?
We officially launched in July 2019 and had planned to take part in the Woodlawn Street Market in 2020. Then came COVID-19. Suddenly, all of our shows, pop-ups and markets, which made up about 75-percent of our revenue were canceled and we had to adapt. Luckily, WSM also adapted with the virtual street market.
What’s been your experience so far with the virtual market?
The Woodlawn neighborhood is so full of life and energy and the Woodlawn Street Market is always a fun and exciting one to visit, so we were understandably bummed that we couldn’t set up a physical booth space there. However, the virtual street market is a great solution. It is still curated, with different vendors each month to keep things interesting and with handy links to online stores, makes it convenient and easy for customers to connect to each business and shop directly. After taking part in the virtual market, we noticed an increase in traffic to our website and while we miss the energy and connection of an in-person market, the exposure from our inclusion in the virtual market has definitely helped.
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