What a unique spin on a gift tag! This letterpress-printed tag brings to mind a vintage luggage tag. With striking typography and festive details, this is perfect for any gift-giving Brooklynites. If I was from Brooklyn, I would attach one of these tags to the packaging of any homemade baked goods I gave as Christmas presents!
This year in our downtime, Raymond and I travelled a little bit again. In years past we’ve gone to India, San Francisco, London, Savannah, and South Korea, among other places. When we travel, both Raymond and I love to try out local foods. Well, earlier this year, Raymond said he really wanted to try some traditional bagels, so we popped down to Brooklyn, New York. While there, of course we had to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge to check out the view… and because it’s a great spot for a photo!
With the East River and Manhattan in the background.
On the iconic 19th century bridge.
Where else do you think Raymond went this year? Stay tuned to find out!
The Unofficial Harry Potter Christmas Kit is so fun! It contains everything you need to wrap gifts for your friends and family members who would prefer a foaming tankard of butterbeer to a mug of cocoa. The kit includes “Owl Post” gift stickers, assorted Harry Potter Christmas cards, Hogwarts greeting cards, Hogwarts gift tags, and “Charmed—Handle with Care” stickers.
My beloved Gävlebocken is back! The 13 meter tall Christmas goat has been erected once again this year in Gävle, Sweden. Make sure to follow him on Twitter or Instagram, or read his blog for a dose of julstämning. And if you’re a serious Gävlebocken fan like me, you might also like to check out the live feed on his webcam!
Whether you’re simply wanting to attend a holiday event or you need to finish up your Christmas shopping, indie craft markets are always an enjoyable time. These fairs feature vendors selling all sorts of handmade wares—everything from stationery to ceramics to edible treats and more. Many of these events include other fun bits, such as DIY workshops, giveaways, food trucks, and music from DJs.
Below I’ve highlighted a few of these merry markets, but if you have a favourite local indie craft fair in your area, let me know in the comments!
Founded over a decade ago, Handmade Arcade is an award-winning craft fair that features dozens of makers selling everything from jewelry to ‘zines to robots. If you’re inspired by all the products, you can also get crafty yourself at Hands-on Handmade, a variety of two-hour, half-day, or day-long creative activities. And while you’re at this fair, don’t forget to pick up a copy of Things Making Things: A DIY Colouring Book.
David L. Lawrence Convention Centre
1000 Fort Duquesne Blvd
Meet British makers at Etsy Made Local, which lasts all weekend long. At this event, you can sip coffee while you browse the wares from 50+ artisans, have gifts personalized on the spot, and amp up your gift wrap skills at the Wrapping Station. Not in London? Not to worry! Etsy Made Local is also coming to several other cities, such as Cardiff, Glasgow, and Birmingham. Simply visit here and scroll a little bit down the page for information on the other markets around the UK this weekend.
Etsy Made Local
The Vinyl Factory, Soho
51 Poland Street
London W1F 7LZ
[Nearest tube is Piccadilly Circus or Oxford Street.]
Urban Craft Uprising is Seattle’s largest indie craft show, and it has been going on for 11 years now. This fair features over 150 vendors selling all kinds of goodies, such as housewares, food, candles, furniture, and loads more.
The first 100 attendees on each day will receive a swag bag full of surprises from some of the vendors and sponsors. There are also crafty book signings and artist demonstrations. This sounds like a fantastic event, and I love Urban Craft Uprising’s manifesto:
If you’re in Chicago, head over to the Holiday Renegade Craft Fair this weekend where you can purchase handmade goods from any of 250 vendors, participate in hands-on workshops, or eat local fare while listening to a DJ. To add to the fun, there will be a photo booth, DIY sugar scrub bar, hand-drawn portraits, and face painting! Before you head out to the market, make sure to enter the giveaway on Time Out Chicago’s website for your chance to win an amazing prize package valued at more than $2,000.
A unique take on your typical December bazaar, Scoutmob’s Holiday Makers Market is a craft fair/Christmas party mash-up. This event includes 25 local makers, live music, artist demos, and DIY workshops. If that wasn’t enough, with admission, you’ll also receive an Old Fashioned, tasty small plates, and a gift bag! This shindig would make a festive and fun date where you and your sweetie could peruse leather goods, glass & film ornaments, ginger treats, and other intriguing items while sipping a handcrafted cocktail.
While I would love to feature all of the indie Christmas craft markets, I have to get back to my other elfy duties. But, since I really just can’t help myself, after the jump you’ll find info on just a few more craft fairs happening this month.
This 10" by 10" burlap canvas is just delightful! I love its simple design and whimsical calligraphy—plus the wee sprig of mistletoe is so darling. This piece of art would make a nice holiday gift for any Southerner on your list. If you want to share this festive message with several folks, you’ll be happy to know that the design is also available on a greeting card.
Since we elves enjoy making things at work and in our spare time, we love creative projects from other folks as well—be it new products, joyful music, or delicious food. So, it’s time once again this year to highlight some fabulous festive projects that are currently seeking funding on Kickstarter, a website whose mission is “to help bring creative projects to life.”
If you have an artificial Christmas tree, but can’t stand the green pole at the base, then the Christmas Tree Hugger is for you! The flexible hugger wraps around the pole and features a classic brown bark, white birch bark, or candy cane design.
Permanent and weather-resistant, you can easily install EverLights once and then enjoy them for years to come. Plus, you can customize the colours and sequence of the lights using the included smartphone app. After the Christmas season, you can change the lights’ colours to celebrate other holidays or even to match the colours of your favourite sports team!
Learn more about the EverLights Kickstarter campaign here.
These hand-printed tree posters are perfect if you live in a small space and don’t have room for a Christmas tree. Simply hang the poster on the wall and decorate with stickers, markers, or paper ornaments!
This delightful reindeer finger puppet is sporting a festive red hoodie complete with white pompoms. The reindeer’s face and antlers were needled felted with pure wool, and his hoodie was hand-knitted. A wonderful gift for a child who loves Christmas, this finger puppet could also be used as a cheery pen or pencil topper for children and adults alike. Also available as an ornament.
In 2007 Gretchen and Larry Witt’s 2-year-old son Liam was diagnosed with cancer, and they were rather surprised to find out that only a very small percentage of money spent on cancer research goes towards researching better treatments for pediatric cancer. The Witts decided they needed to do something about this, so Gretchen—along with 250 volunteers—baked and sold 96,000 cookies. This massive bake sale raised more than $400,000 for childhood cancer research! With the success of their first bake sale, the Witts decided to establish Cookies for Kids’ Cancer, an organization that raises funds for research for developing improved treatments for pediatric cancer.
Since its inception, Cookies for Kids’ Cancer has funded dozens of pediatric cancer research grants, which have lead to a number of promising new treatments and clinical trials. The decision on where the funds go is overseen by a Medical Advisory Board, which is made up of leading pediatric oncologists from top hospitals, such as Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.
If you would like to get involved with this admirable organization, there are several ways to do so.
Host a Bake Sale or Cookie Swap
In the spirit of how this charity was started, you could host a bake sale or cookie swap to raise money. Cookies for Kids’ Cancer wants to make it easy for you to host your event, so if you register your bake sale with them, they will provide support and tips to make the entire process simple.
Send Cookies to a Loved One
The cookies offered by Cookies for Kids’ Cancer contain all-natural ingredients and are shipped on the same day that they are baked. On top of that, 100% of the profits from the cookies go directly to pediatric cancer reseach, and each box includes a note explaining the significance of your gift. With a variety of flavours, such as Liam’s Lemon Sugar, Chocolate Almond Coconut Crunch, and Ginger Spice, these cookies will fill the tummies and the hearts of the recipients. Order a box for someone on your gift list or for your own family to enjoy this holiday season.
Attend Family Fun Day in NYC
If you live in the NYC area, you could attend Family Fun Day on Saturday, 5 December. Hosted by Milk Bar’s Christina Tosi, this event includes a meet, greet, and eat where you will get to sample and receive cookies from some of the USA’s top pastry chefs and award-winning bakers. Family Fun Day also features cupcake & cookie decorating, a photo booth, live music & a DJ, face painters, kid [and adult!] beverages, gift bags, and much more. Buy tickets for the event here.
Family Fun Day
123 West 18th Street, 2nd Floor (Between 6th & 7th Avenues)
New York City, NY
Saturday, 5 December