Reported by: Simone Collins
One of the best parts of living in the Windy City is the fact that not only do we have a large variety of galleries and museums to visit and take in some great art, but we also have some of the best craft shows and fairs around. This year marks the 10th anniversary of the One Of A Kind Show in Chicago.
The One Of A Kind Show offers consumers in Toronto, Vancouver, Chicago and New York a chance to purchase unique gifts during the holiday season. Featuring everything from jewelry, to ceramics, to sculpture, there is something for everyone on your shopping list. This year’s show in Chicago showcased over 600 artists from across North America.
This year, Etsy was a sponsor of the show. The site had a prominent booth that highlighted sellers who were at the show in a special Etsy Artist Pavilion. By making a purchase in the pavilion, shoppers received a free raffle ticket to win an Etsy shopping spree. They also had hands-on craft workshops that attendees could participate in throughout the four days of the show.
Within the Etsy Artist Pavilion area, there were several brand new artists to the show, as well as some of the best booths of the show. One of those booths was filled with some amazing glass art by Kit Paulson, an artist from our very own city. Her hip flasks, bottles, and votives would be a striking addition to any home.
We also met a very cute husband-wife team from the Etsy shop, Man vs. George from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. This graphic design firm sells fun and modern greeting cards and invitations that are designed by the husband, Ryan Fitzpatrick, with his cat, George, as his armchair critic.
One of the cutest booths in the Etsy Artist Pavilion featured the work by Bunny With A Toolbelt from Portland, Oregon. These figures, created from upcycled wood and mixed media, were total attention grabbers with their unique sense of humor.
The sister-sister team of Muggy Tuesday, had some of the most interesting accessories at the show. Their crocheted earrings, rings, and headbands would make the perfect gift for your best friend, sister, mom, or even your son’s first grade teacher.
Another local crafter that always draws a crowd is Emmy Star Brown. Her painted glass works are created using found objects around the city, and are always done freehand.
If you are still working on that holiday shopping list, there is still time to take the Handmade Pledge. We encourage you to support the crafters and artists of this world and buy handmade. With so many choices available online and at local events, buying handmade has become easier than ever. And with the most unique items to choose from, you can be sure to find something for the hardest person on your list.
Take the Handmade Pledge today!
Are you shopping handmade this holiday season? Been to a great craft show or fair in your neck of the woods? We’d love to hear about it.