Sunday, December 19, 2010

The Renegade Review

The annual Renegade Holiday Craft fair has come and gone, and while I may have come home with little more than a tote bag and a note card, I was filled with inspiration and excitement as I walked through the crowded exhibition hall.

To recap, my lovely hubbie and I drove to the City Saturday morning hoping to beat the crowds for the 11:00 start.  The weather was drizzly and the parking was sparse, but as we circled the surrounding blocks, we saw dozens of other craft aficionados, mother/daughter shopping duos and husband and boyfriends scoring those ever important bonus points just before Christmas.  Walking in through the glass doors was like taking those first steps off a long plane trip to the start of a long vacation, or, if you're a guy, it's like those first few steps out of the tunnel at your very first major league ball game.  Your heart starts racing, your eyes widen and you can't help but wonder what you may see today. 

By 11:15, the aisles were already filling with lookey-loos and last minute holiday shoppers alike.  There were so many things to look at, we wondered, where do we start?  How do we not miss anything?  A system was immediately established.  We'd start to the left, make a preliminary pass through and take notes along the way. 

One familiar vendor for me was Petit Collage.  I recognized the modern wall art from the last Renegade Craft Fair and was still enamored by the lovely little designs.  The artwork is created by founder Lorena Siminovich, an artist based out of San Francisco.  Her designs have been featured by Martha and are also seen in Anthropologie, Pottery Barn Kids and Giggle, so you know they're special.  I had such a hard time choosing a favorite - the city skyline, or the zoo animals, that I came home with neither.  Luckily, these delightful prints can be found online.

A new find for me came at the Spell it Out designs booth.  Can you take a guess at what to do here?

Believe it or not, it's a chalkboard sticker!  The stickers come in a variety of shapes and sizes, everything from sunglasses and cupcakes to rocket ships and guitars.  You can actually write on them just like a regular chalkboard.  Fun for all ages. 

One blogger compared the Renegade Craft Fair to walking the aisles of the best of etsy.  I have to agree with him.  While you can find all of the trendiest items here - owls, moustaches, retro t-shirts, there's also the one-of-a-kind stuff you'll find no where else.  With over 250 of the best independent crafters around, there's something for everyone.  And with over 250 vendors, the rest of the recap will come later, including one of the most creative and incredible hand made items I've ever seen at a craft fair.
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  1. When do you plan on putting on your exhibitor cap?


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