A Timeline of Creative Artist and Maker Marts for Awesome Holiday Shopping by Rachel Bone

Halloween is over, and November is here. In the spirit of the forthcoming holidays, here is an official, BmoreArt reminder to be a decent neighbor, and throw away that gnarly, mold-ridden Jack-o-lantern on your porch before it is reborn and eats someone’s cat. As you do that, think long and hard about the irony of wasting a perfectly good vegetable in October, only to buy a canned version of it for a pie in November… You’re already halfway into the holiday spirit anyway, so you might as well start planning your approach to holiday shopping, right? Get out your planner, because it’s time to talk craft fairs.

In the not so distant past, holiday artisan fairs marketed themselves primarily as the socially conscious, morally superior alternative to the shopping mall. “Mall Is a Four Letter Word,” quips the slogan for an annual fair in Raleigh, NC, put on by a group called — wait for it — The Handmaidens. Now, though, thanks to Amazon Prime, the M-A-L-L’s of America are being outsold by the laptop-on-sofas of America, and craft fair organizers have a different battle to wage. Not so much get people out of the mall, as get them out of the house. Even so, the list of winter craft markets in Baltimore gets longer every year, and with it, a number of diverse themes and approaches to getting shoppers showered and dressed and out the door.

What works? The added promise of a shopping experience that comes wrapped with the type of warm things that keep us human, and thus, in the holiday spirit in the first place: beer, food, music, twinkling lights, and, not shockingly, other humans.

Below is a list of craft and maker marts you should patronize this season. Do it because your family and friends deserve awesome, unique gifts, and because the creative community of Baltimore is an invaluable asset, making exciting things that are worthy of your dollars.

From a Black Friday sale at OpenWorks that celebrates crafters of color in Baltimore, to a Holistic lifestyle themed show at Mount Vernon Marketplace, to a confusingly-placed show overlooking the food court of the Towson Mall, there is a craft fair for everyone this year.

Could the latter be a sign that in-person retailers of all sizes have decided to team up, before we have to re-write that Clement Moore poem, swapping the visual of a “miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer” for the alarming sight of eight Bezos-controlled-delivery-drones crashing into the house? One can’t be certain, but just to be safe, let’s buy handmade, and locally, and celebrate community like we do best, in Baltimore.

’Tis the season.

  

Black Friday Black Makers Market
OpenWorks
1400 Greenmount Ave.
Fri, November 24, 9am – 4pm

 

Holiday Pop-Up Market
Waverly Farmers Market
432 E 32nd St
Saturday, November 25, 9am-1pm

 

Benefit Baltimore
Peabody Heights Brewery
401 E. 30th St
Tuesday, November 28th, 5 – 9pm

 

Bazaart
American Visionary Art Museum
800 Key Highway
Friday, November 24, 10am-6pm
Saturday, November 25, 12pm-6pm

 

Makers Alley
Local Color Flowers
3100 Brentwood Ave
Saturday, December 2, 9am-12pm

 

Baltimore Etsy Sellers Market
OpenWorks
1400 Greenmount Ave.
Saturday, December 2, 11am-5pm

 

Makers Market
Green Spring Station
10751 Falls Rd.
Saturday, December 2, 10am – 4pm

 

Local Makers Event
Towson Town Center
825 Dulaney Valley Rd (Towson)
3rd Floor Rotunda
Saturday, December 2, 10am – 4pm

 

4th Annual Winter Craft Fair
Baltimore Free Farm
3510 Ash St.
Sunday, December 3, 3pm-8pm

 

Women’s Unity Artisan Market
Mary Gardella Photography
3500 Parkdale Avenue
3rd Floor, Suite 5
Friday Dec. 8, 5pm – 9:30pm

 

Spin and Sell: Print Bazaar
Maryland Art Place
218 W Saratoga St.
Saturday December 9, 12pm-4pm
(preview event December 8, 7-10, $5)

 

Merry Mart
Creative Alliance
3134 Eastern Avenue
Sunday, December 3, 11-5pm

 

The Greater Goods Market
R House (rear garage)
301 W 29th Street
Saturday, December 9, 11-4pm

 

Under $500
Maryland Art Place
218 W. Saratoga St.
December 8, 7pm (on view through December 13)

 

MICA Art Market
Maryland Institute College of Art, Brown Center
1301 W Mt Royal Ave., Baltimore, MD 21217
Thursday, December 7 – Sunday, December 10, 11-7

 

Current Art Market
Current Space
421 N Howard St
Saturday, December 9, 12-6 p.m.

 

Holistic Holiday Pop-Up
Mt. Vernon Marketplace
520 Park Avenue
Saturday December 9, 10-3pm

 

Holiday Heap
St John’s Church
2640 St. Paul St
Saturday, December 16, 10-5

 

Baltimore Vintage Flea: Sip & Shop
R. House
301 W 29th St.
Sunday, December 17, 11am-4pm

 

Last Stop Hops & Shop
Peabody Heights Brewery
401 E. 30th St.
Thursday, December 21, 5pm – 9pm