Greensgrow Farms Holiday Bazaar

Greeensgrow Farms is located in Philadelphia’s Kensington neighborhood, and they sponsored a holiday bazaar on two consecutive weekends this past December.  I am not familiar with Kensington, however I found their location fairly easily off I-95.  There was free parking on the streets.  I understand they are also accessible by public transportation.  Greensgrow created an urban farm on a vacant lot in 1997.  They were selling local apples, there was a booth selling food inside the farm, plus a few booths selling/tasting local beers.  There was also a crepe truck parked outside.  No one will go hungry at the holiday bazaar!

The event is held within a greenhouse enclosure.  It was fairly comfortable for a crisp and chilly winter’s day.  There were approximately 30 booths, selling items such as jewelry, artwork, clothing, and did I mention the beer?

Joyce Mercer, of Jewelry With Me, had a booth for her lovely wire jewelry.  Joyce uses colored large gauge aluminum wire to design, create and twist wonderful creations.  Here she uses wire in complimentary colors to fashion necklaces.  Please click on the photos for larger images.

And here is a photograph of her ring collection.  Joyce will actually create a ring in exactly your size while you wait.  I watched her do this skillfully and quickly.  I have made some of my own wirework jewelry, so I have a good understanding of how much artistry and dexterity her craft requires.

There was fairly good foot traffic at the bazaar.  Sellers are able to pick one or more days for their booth — they are not required to sign up for all four days of the bazaar.  In my unofficial survey of the success of the bazaar, answers ranged from “it’s a bit slow” to “it’s great and worthwhile”.  I therefore suspect the answer is somewhere in between.  I will also opine unofficially that I believe items that could be considered urban, hip, or funky would sell the best at this venue.

Written by Diane Olivia

Abington Friends Craft Show

Abington Friends has a craft show each December, and this year was the first time they decided to go handmade only.  How nice!  If you’re not familiar with Jenkintown, it is a little tricky to find the school, however that morning there was a mascot dog waving folks in.

Open free parking was available, and the craft show is in a fairly new building on the ground floor.  Instead of a large open room, the booths were set up all up and down the main halls of the building.  All was on the ground level.There was a large selection of crafts in over 50 booths.  I saw crochet, jewelry, decorations, candy, totes, pottery, and baby items in the mix.  A luncheonette section, where one could buy food and sit down to enjoy, was located centrally.Michelle Ciarlo-Hayes of MKC Photography in Philadelphia had a table that showed several different crafts all in her one booth.  A creative artist indeed!  I first noticed a resin pendant that pictured a pink hydrangea, one of my favorite flowers.  It was encased in a silver bezel and strung on a ribbon. 

Next, there was an illustrated height chart made from vinyl with a sticky back that could be moved several times.  I thought that was a great idea to be able to move the chart if needed.  If that wasn’t enough, Michelle designs her own cloth and sews them into pennants, or buntings as they are sometimes called.

Yet another item are her archival photographic prints showing her imagination and sense of whimsy.  Here is a print of ruby slippers asking a question that perhaps one may not want to answer.   Please note there is already the assumption of being a witch!  All of these photos should enlarge if clicked.The show was held on a Saturday with great fall weather, and it was fairly well attended.   I shall unscientifically note that there seemed to be more lookers than buyers.  It was a nice show to get in your holiday shopping, and there was a nice mix of handmade items for those contemplating a booth for next year.

Written by Diane Olivia

Sugarloaf Craft Festival

This weekend I attended the Sugarloaf Craft Festival in Oaks, Pa.  This show was a treat for the eyes- not only was the talent unquestionable, but so many of the booth displays were almost as inspiring as the artwork.  


The three-day show featured over 300 juried artisans, gourmet food vendors, interactive demonstrations, live music and even children’s entertainment.  Maybe it was the fact that it fell on a weekend of fabulous weather, but attendance did seem a bit light, at least on Sunday, the day I was there.   

In addition to shows in VA, CT, MD, and NJ, the Sugarloaf also comes to the Philadelphia area twice a year, once in the spring, and again in the fall.  If you are considering doing a Sugarloaf show, booth fees start at $595, and jurying for fall 2010 began in January.   

Elkins Park, PA artist Kristen Stein & daughter of Studio Artworks


Blue Bell papercutting artist Jupi T. Das

Crafty Baby- A fun & colorful booth

Posted by Lauren Meakim of Gigglepotamus