Get crafty with gift giving this year at 8 local maker fairs

Clockwise from top right: Photos courtesy of Upcycle Pop, Hadas Kol and Sac-Made

With the maker movement in full swing in the River City, you can find something for everyone on your holiday shopping list that's been handcrafted with care—from book-themed timepieces to bespoke baby blankets. Here are eight markets in the region where you can find that special gift, as well as support local artisans. 

Davis Arts Center Annual Holiday Sale

Nov. 30-Dec. 2 Over 50 local crafters will showcase their handmade wares at the Davis Arts Center’s annual fundraiser. Sip beer and wine as you browse items like Punny Bun plushies from Davis-based Kimchi Kawaii, glass decoupage wall hangings by Sacramento’s Why Girls Go Astray and handwoven scarves by Verena Borton, an instructor at the center. Kids can pick out their own holiday gifts at the Children’s Secret Store, a no-parents-allowed area where volunteers help little ones choose presents like art kits and pet costumes. Free. Times vary by day. Davis Arts Center. 1919 F St. Davis. 530-756-4100.

Holiday Show of Hands Craft Fair

Nov. 30–Dec. 2 This annual craft fair put on by St. John the Evangelist School will celebrate its 40th year by hosting over 150 artists from Northern California. Grab a program map at the front door before making your way to sections like the Fashion Pavilion to shop for steam punk jewelry by Scarlet’s Baubles or soaps shaped into treats like ice cream scoops and cupcakes by Sunshine Soap & Candle Company. New this year is a section dubbed the “Man Cave,” and it’s stocked to the brim with dude duds like flasks, belt buckles and sports paraphernalia. After you’ve checked everything off your list, stop by St. John’s Pub to dine on lasagna and enchiladas and warm up with Irish coffee or a Sleigh Ride—hot chocolate spiked with peppermint schnapps. $5 (Free on Friday). Times vary by day. St. John the Evangelist School. 5701 Locust Ave. Carmichael. 916-481-8845.

Handmade Holidays

Dec. 1 Broad Room—a community workspace in midtown established to support female creatives—will host its first-ever holiday market, featuring a dozen regional makers and their custom wares, which include funky wallets made from vintage maps and cookbook pages by Sacramento’s Heathered Wallets, herbal skincare products from All Elements Apothecary in Vallejo and feather earrings from Goodie Goodie Raindrops in Lincoln. Once you’re done shopping, head over to the courtyard to grab a bite from Bambi’s Vegan Tacos and join in a game of cornhole or giant Jenga. Free. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Broad Room. 2311 S St.

Clockwise from left: Never be late for a very important date with a book clock from My Booklandia, which will have a booth at the Christmas Arts and Crafts Fair in Folsom; Check out upcycled Bluetooth speakers by RareBird Stereos at downtown's Makers Mart; find your way with one of Heathered Wallets' vintage map wallets, which will be on display at Broad Room's Handmade Holidays. (Photos courtesy of makers)

Maker's Row Holiday Market

Dec. 1 With its doors newly opened at the midtown Ice Blocks, design store West Elm will welcome nine local makers for its first holiday pop-up. Featured items and makers include glass terrariums from West Sacramento-based Tufarock Design, donut-shaped soaps decorated with frosting and sprinkles from Sacramento’s Blossom Bathhouse and organic baby blankets sporting celestial designs from Roseville-based Pitter Patterned. Sacramento baker Joe Luna of Boy’s Bakery will be stationed at the door to dole out hot chocolate and Swedish fika bun pastries to guests before they head inside. Free. 11 a.m.-5 p.m. West Elm. 1610 R St. 916-441-1702.


Dec. 1-2 Celebrate the German tradition of Christkindlmarkt (outdoor Christmas markets) at Sacramento Turn Verein, where 16 makers from California and Oregon will set up booths to sell handmade and imported European goods ranging from bratwurst to ornaments to Baltic amber jewelry. Munch on Christmas gingerbread treats like lebkuchen and magenbrot paired with glühwein (warm mulled wine) as performers sing Christmas carols and carry out traditional German folk dances. St. Nikolaus himself and Christkind, an angelic giver of gifts, will make daily appearances to take photos with children. $5. Times vary by day. Sacramento Turn Verein. 3349 J St. 916-442-7360.

Christmas Arts and Crafts Fair

Dec. 2 Two hundred makers will take over a stretch of Sutter Street in Historic Folsom for this festive outdoor craft fair. Walk the strip to find everything from tiny coats for puppies by Lucky Wear of Fair Oaks, thick novels transformed into ticking clocks courtesy of Greenwood-based My Booklandia and rustic home décor signs made of old fencing by Eclectic Rustic Design based in Mather. Musicians, carolers and juggling elves will be strolling up and down the block, while Hefty Gyros and Cousins Maine Lobster food trucks serve up savory items like lamb gyros and lobster rolls. Free. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Sutter Street. Folsom. 916-985-7452.

Upcycle Pop Spark Eco Holiday Market

Dec. 2 This one-of-a-kind holiday pop-up market will highlight repurposed (or “upcycled”) home goods like jewelry made out of sterling silver spoons from Spoons and Vintage or antique suitcases that have been converted into speaker systems from Thump Case. The event will also show off the talents of local artists, including an exhibit by Locke-based sculptor and painter Brock Alexander titled Evil Empire, which will feature a collection of sculptures and paintings that depict political figures as characters from Star Wars—picture Bernie Sanders as Yoda, Donald Trump as Darth Vader and Vladimir Putin as Emperor Palpatine. Free. Noon-6 p.m. 7300 Folsom Blvd. 916-642-9415.

Makers Mart

Dec. 8 The Sacramento Convention Center will host a curated makers market with over 70 local and regional artists hawking handmade items like matcha chapstick from Sacramento’s Wholemaker Co., feminist-inspired enamel pins from Oakland-based Girl Gang Craft, durable backpacks from Sacramento’s Haven & Florin, mini hair bows for toddlers by Joey Mae Handmade and gold geometric necklaces crafted by designer Hadas Kol out of Davis. While you browse, pop a bubbly handcrafted soda or cocktail from Burly Beverages, grab a taco from Masa Guiseria or keep it sweet with a vegan gelato pop from Conscious Creamery. Free. Noon-6 p.m. Sacramento Convention Center. 1400 J St.

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