It’s no surprise that being Black can be exhausting. What is a surprise is that the Come Up L.A. hasn’t existed longer. Before I give y’all an in-depth analysis of the Come Up L.A. (since I’m sure you’re curious what it is) I want to admit that I am late to the party. I’ve scrolled past Instagram posts from the Come Up for almost a year. I even committed to going to one several months ago and backed out. When I finally did go, the location had moved from the Arts District to Vector 90 – one of the last gems that Nipsey Hussle left our city.
So let me explain what this whole thing is. Take a farmer’s market, subtract some (but not all) of the produces (i.e. fruits, vegetables and all the toasted almonds they always have.) Add a live visual artist. Subtract the kettle corn. Add a soundtrack consisting of family cookout mixed with brunch music. Add a few alcoholic beverages and most importantly add the spirit of people in a city where they make up about 10% of the population and are mainly concentrated in the area where Nipsey created the majority of his opportunities.
Now to my personal experience at Come Up L.A. K so two Sundays ago, Doug and I took a little trip up the 110 to South LA. I immediately did a scan of all of the vendor booths that were set up in the Vector 90 parking lot and knew I needed to eat to give myself some energy before all the cash I was about to spend. I had the Jamaican Jerk wing plate from Stew & Tingz (@stewandtingz) and Doug got the tacos (@erybodyeatsb). Pro tip: always divide and conquer when it comes to food.
While we were waiting for the food to finish up, we headed upstairs to the most adorable and thoughtfully curated space upstairs. The fact that the alcohol was up there also helped. My favorite part of this space was the vibe. You could literally feel the Black partnerships, businesses, and dollars being created in the room as Uzi and 21 Savage played over the speakers. Patrons were networking, vendors were sharing their stories, all natural juice was being served, there was a florist making custom bouquets. I was in my element people.
Here’s what we picked up:
1. Simple things long sleeve shirt from Colour Bloc Creativ (@colourbloccreativ)
2. Edibles from Mavsauce (@mavsauce)
3. Seven Streams Club t-shirt from Seven Streams Club (@sevenstreamsclub)
4. Rose Oud Incense Sticks from PLTNC (@pltnc)
5. Good Vibes candle from LOT XI (@lot_xi)
6. Harlem Nights candle from Amour Noir (@amournoirlosangeles)
7. Sage/rose bundle from LOT XI (@lot_xi)
8. Support Your People cropped t-shirt from Amour Noir (@amournoirlosangeles)
9. Generational Wealth t-shirts from Seven Streams Club (@sevenstreamsclub)
My main takeaways:
- It was inspiring. This event sends a message that we can create anything. From a group of kids selling gourmet popsicles, to organic candles, to edibles, to plants and succulents – this place had it all. Pretty much sky’s the limit here. So, if you’re considering if someone would want to consume your product, listen to your song or read your blog 🙂 the answer is YES!
- It was a safe space. Despite media perpetuating this message that South LA should be avoided at all costs, there’s something comforting that people who look like you are gathered in a space to literally support one another. I didn’t have to worry about not touching anything on the vendor tables because they thought I was going to walk away without paying. I didn’t have to feel self conscious about asking if a product would work on my hair. What I did want to do is go back next time and spread the word.