Crafts Popping Up All Over
You want handmade local gifts? Bring it on: Holiday Market, Meet Your Maker, Heron Building artists … and now Taco Time.
That’s right, the buiding that featured a UO gift store during the Eugene Celebration (and long before that, a rather down-at-the-heels fast food place) hosts another group of crafty artists during this holiday season, and it’s possibly the early version of what will someday be a permanent downtown store.
Knitter Laura Long, who’s part of the Meet Your Maker handmade arts/crafts group, moved to Eugene a few years ago. She enjoys the Meet Your Maker scene but wants to see something like it more year-round — not to mention that, she says, “You can’t make a living knitting.” But a collective group of crafters might have a better chance, so she’s dreaming of opening a business called Made: Indie Craft Boutique at some point in the next year or so.
Though she’s holding off on the permanent storefront for now, she heard via a long chain of crafters, starting with a City of Eugene employee, that the Taco Time space was available for the holidays.
She and her husband looked at the space, and then she “just went for it,” she says. They’ve been in there for a few days “trying to make that space as pleasurable as possible with limited resources.” She opened on Dec. 3, and more vendors started moving in just after the Meet Your Maker show ended Sunday, Dec. 5.
At the time of the interview, Long had 13 vendors lined up and was in discussion with three or four others. Everything from knitted hats to soap, photographs to edible finger paint, and much more, should be available for your holiday delight. Many of the vendors use local products and care quite a bit about keeping their materials environmentally conscious as well. “It’s really encouraging to see how everybody’s getting into sustainability,” Long says, “and doing things a little simpler.”
She admits that knitting isn’t actually that simple, but if Eugeneans want handmade items, the Made holiday pop-up shop will be open roughly noon-7 pm M-F ('til 9pm on Dec. 17, "Who did you forget on your list" day) and noon-5 pm on the weekend days, every day but Christmas through Dec. 31. Crafters who want in or curious shoppers can contact Long at 541-570-2508, email her (firstname.lastname@example.org), like the Made Facebook page (http://wkly.ws/ym) or head to the shop at 39 W. Broadway (the corner of Broadway and Willamette). — Suzi Steffen