We had the good fortune of connecting with Weatherly Munroe and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Weatherly, maybe we can start at the very start – the idea – how did you come up with the idea for your business?
I have always had a creative nature, and learned early on to appreciate the various shapes and forms of art through my mom, who was an architect, and dad, who was a furniture designer. As a collector, I wanted to create a space where people could wander (and wonder) and enjoy an amazing array of handcrafted work by alot of different minds and hands, all in one place. I imagined a mini arts festival that changed often, with moving walls, changing art, and rotating artists that would seem new each time someone stopped by. I wanted a place where both the artists and the customers were treated the same, knowing we could not survive without either. I visited many galleries around the southeast, and aimed to pull together the best of what I saw. I knew the name on the outside had to be as compelling as what people might find on the inside, one that said, “that place sounds happy, let’s go in!”

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I don’t consider myself an artist, but I do consider myself a creative. My career started out in the hospitality industry, and I have owned an event management business for a number of years, using my creative spirit in event design and incentive travel. There, I learned that I really enjoyed making people happy, and getting an immediate return on my investment….by seeing joy on the faces of those attending my events. I get the same satisfaction from those coming into the gallery who are moved by an artist’s work, or are belly laughing at something whimsical we may have. Joy is my motivation. I never went into this venture thinking about the financial return. I wanted to make certain everyone felt welcome and had the ability to leave with something special. One of the most important things I have insisted on over the years is that we always have a wide variety of price points so that everyone felt included in our little world. My greatest sense of accomplishment is when a child comes in to spend their $1 allowance on a handcrafted wood spinning top, or handblown glass coin. I think I would want people to understand that we feel the most successful being a part of a larger whole…part of the lives of the people in the community around us. Both those trying to sell their artwork in our space to those coming in to see what’s new…or just those who stop by to say hi so their dogs can get their weekly treat.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
That’s a hard one…Atlanta has so many VERY different spots…and each is unique in its own way. There’s not a change anyone could run out of things to do.

Day One – Definitely spend a day in Decatur visiting the galleries, unique shops, and eating at one of the many amazing restaurants on the square., don’t miss The Iberian Pig! I’d choose a day where there is a free concert on the square (you can listen to tunes while indulging in some lavender flavored ice cream). I’d end the evening at Eddie’s Attic listening to super-talented singer-songwriters who you are certain to see on the big stage down the road.

Day Two – Visit Scott’s Antique Market to check out any and everything vintage, make a deal on a random piece of Americana to add some flavor to your home’s decor, and eat some real southern food in their cafeteria styled food area.

Day Three – Take a bike ride on the Atlanta Beltway, all the way out to Stone Mountain Park. If you still have energy, hike up the mountain and take in the breathtaking view. Ride the tram down.

Day Four – Do a segway tour of midtown, and enjoy a picnic in Piedmont Park for excellent people watching. Take in a live concert at Chastain Park Amphitheatre, the best music venue ever!

Day Five – Take in the College Football Hall of Fame, and The Georgia Aquarium in Downtown Atlanta, Both are worth the visit!

Day Six – Spend the day with friends on Lake Lanier on the north end of town, pull up to one of the laid-back restaurants on the lake for a great burger.

Day Seven – Before heading home, sooth your soul with a drive through the North Georgia Mountains….

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I’m going to give my initial shoutout to my mom, who raised me to be independent, fierce, and taught me that hard work always pays off. After having six children, mom decided to finish college . She went back to the University of Tennessee and received her Architectural Degree (with honors) while raising all of us to be somewhat decent humans, and caring for each other while she was studying, and often missing nights of sleep. I can remember being so amazed at how much my mom could handle, and always with grace and humility. She was always my hero, problem solver, and teacher of how to treat others. Secondly, I also have such a deep gratitude for the initial artists who were willing to jump in with me as I started this venture almost 12 years ago, those who trusted me with their precious work, even though they didn’t know me. We all had alot of trust for each other, and I wouldn’t be in business today without them. Lastly, my employees who have come and gone over the years have been so instrumental in keeping the business fresh and fun, all coming with unique ideas, strong values, and have treated the business like it was their own. I’m grateful for so many people during this amazing journey.

Website: wildoatsandbillygoats.com

Instagram: wildoatsbillygoats

Facebook: @WildOatsBillyGoats

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