EW's 2008 Gift Guide (download the PDF)
Sampling the Wares A few gems from the Holiday Market’s hundreds of booths
Local Pride Unique Eugene stores provide all kinds of options
Body Love Treat yourself and others this season
Handmade in Oregon
I freely and cheerfully admit it: I’m a junkie for Etsy, the worldwide online marketplace for handmade, found, vintage and otherwise crafty goods: pretty prints, cute hats with cat ears, amazing soaps and pampering bath goods, vintage dresses, steampunk brooches, delicate earrings, old wooden crates and lord knows what else. It’s sort of like a searchable thrift store with extra-cute repurposed items alongside the old shoes. But sometimes even the most devoted online shopper wans to get out of the house and support her local economy — and sometimes crafters, who often work at home in their spare time, want to get out and meet the people who like their stuff. The Saturday and Holiday Markets are testaments to that — and so is the new Meet Your Maker indie craft show, a monthly event created by Amy Vellutini and Megan McQueen, who both do double duty as organizers of and vendors at the show.
The event pulls together local crafters, designers and artists of all kinds, some of whom have been highlighted in EW before (like Bullfight’s sassy undies). Cold hands? Pick up some nifty armwarmers at Loop’d or Bliss Monkey Studio (where you’ll also find quirky reusable coffee cuffs featuring sock monkey, pirate and gnome designs). Need a gift for someone who needs to relax? La Petite Vie’s salt scrubs and herbal oatmeal baths might be just the thing. Shop Knitty Bitty offers charming baby hats and silkscreened shirts and onesies (one bears a tattoo-inspired image of a heart with a MILK banner). LuckyLisp’s SmartyPants are “everyday basics repurposed and re-imagined with hand-embroidered designs from modern and vintage patterns,” according to her Etsy shop’s profile. Practical Rabbit’s T-shirts, tote bags and clever buttons bear images of bikes, cats and birds — and don’t miss her felt creations, pictured above, at the Holiday Market; Things ’n Stuff sells everything from toy catapults to messenger bags.
At press time, Vellutini (who sells as both Loop’d & Knitty Bitty) and McQueen (La Petite Vie) weren’t yet certain which vendors would be at December’s fair, but if one of those listed above sounds interesting and isn’t present, you can also find the online shops listed and linked at meetyourmaker.net. But there will be plenty of crafts and creations to browse through at the show, which is also part of the annual Downtown Holiday Party and takes place at the same time as the First Friday Artwalk. A wine tasting and raffle (with vendor-created prizes) add to the reasons to swing by — not to mention that after this, the fair will take a break for a few months and start back up again in the spring. So now’s your chance! Meet Your Maker indie craft fair, 5-8 pm Friday, Dec. 5, The Broadway, 200 W. Broadway. — Molly Templeton