Newfound lockdown talents are being put on sale as the number of new Rotorua market vendors soar.
And previous vendors used the "forced break" to get more innovative for a buck.
Both the Rotorua Night Market and the Farmers' Market were seeing an influx of new faces both coming down and setting up shop post-Covid.
Mourea local Miriam Odlin had started her own coffee bean roasting business over lockdown and had scored a stall at the Farmers' Market to get her new brand out there.
It was not just the beans that had made her business special though.
Odlin personally delivered every order on her electric cargo bike to all corners of the town.
From her property in Mourea, three times a week she would ride to town and even out to Hamurana to deliver between 10 and 20 orders by hand.
"I do it for a number of reasons - climate change, obesity. But also because it is iconic and people remember it."
She had quit her job just before lockdown to pursue her passion.
She said lockdown had been good for her as "everything just stopped for a while" and she could concentrate on getting her "ducks in line" for her new business.
She decided to start a stall at the Farmers' Market because it was a way to get her name and face out there and meet like-minded business owners.
Rotorua Lakes Council's markets and festivals lead Brigitte Nelson said they had seen a rise in the number of people heading to the markets post-lockdown and a lot more local faces than normal.
There had also been an increase in new stalls post-lockdown as people showcased newfound talents, she said.
From drying flowers to sell to offering home-baked goods, the markets had only diversified, she said.
Stall numbers at the Rotorua Night Market were at full capacity as people were "investigating alternative streams of income" post-lockdown, she said.
However, she said the rainy weather had caused major challenges for them because they had to cancel the markets several times over the past few months.
Several food trucks had organised alternative locations around Rotorua to keep their businesses ticking over and some vendors were branching out and developing new products, she said.
Popular market vendor The Homegrown Kitchen had diversified over lockdown to keep income flowing in.
Co-owner Kile Gilmore said they had become so well known for their flavours they thought why not offer to package their homemade sauces and sell them individually.
Over lockdown, they got hard at work making their popular onion and plum jams and aioli from their homegrown produce and started selling them online.
"We just thought what else can we do to get through this time?"
The sauces were popular and he said it was "natural progression" that they would look into further retail opportunities.
As restrictions lifted, he said they were able to get back to the markets, which he referred to as a "lifeline".
He said they had been doing really well since and selling between 100 and 180 meals a market, which was good for winter.
Kaya Sparke and her Vegan Eats Foodtruck had also taken time over lockdown to get innovative after a hectic first year of business.
She said they were able to reset and take a "forced break", coming back to the markets with new products like doughnuts and macaroni cheese on their menu.
When restrictions were tight, they operated a takeaway service outside their storage space which was very popular, she said.
She said since the markets had gone back they had been "busier than we were pre-Covid" and this was something she was hearing from other vendors too.
"Everyone seems to really be jumping on the support local buzz."
Owner of Guidough's Bakery Guido Bachmann, has run a stall at the Rotorua Night Market for 10 years.
He said he believed the markets were even busier post-lockdown as people were eager to get out of the house and see others.
"People are definitely in close proximity ... we joke about how it shows that Covid is over here."
His market stall came before his bakeries in both Otonga and Glenholme and he said they had been vital in getting their name out there.
The Rotorua Farmers' Market was always quieter this time of year and because there was less produce available they were looking for more "innovative cottage industries" to get involved, Nelson said.
"No idea is stupid," she said.
Nelson said they had started honing in on advertising the markets to the wider region to attract people from across the Bay of Plenty.