Fed up with mass-produced merchandise and stuffy, crowded stores? Try a holiday market instead. Fortunately, L.A. has a wealth of seasonal craft fairs you can browse if the shopping mall options or big department stores just aren’t your bag. These seasonal marts are great for filling gaps left after perusing L.A.’s gift shops, and for finding unique gifts handmade by local artisans. As a bonus, showing up at one of these markets is an easy way to get into the Christmas spirit. Just add hot chocolate and you’ll be on your way.
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Find the best holiday market for you
Any crafter worth her weight in cashmere yarn knows that Renegade Craft Fair is the fair all other fairs aspire to. Aside from the wares, Renegade offers all sorts of homemade DIY fun and holiday festivities: think classes and demos, free photo booths and tons of tasty food trucks. The holiday fairs in wintertime that help you check everyone off your gift list—including yourself.
Reserve a spot in your weekend for the latest installment of this Pinterester’s utopia. The Echo Park Craft Fair returns, welcoming artsy Eastsiders for a feast of hand-dyed clothing and delicately concocted bath oils, one-of-a-kind ceramics, weavings, jewelry and beyond. Founded by a shoe designer and a textile artist, the biannual extravaganza has grown from a backyard hangout to an artisan's haven, providing a number of local craftspeople a space to showcase their handmade gems.
Swing by Arts District mega gallery Hauser & Wirth for a two-day marketplace that makes room for local makers, eateries, nonprofits, artists and performers, as well educator-led family workshops. The lineup includes the likes of ARTBOOK, Echo Park Time Travel Mart, Cheezus, Everybody.World, IKO IKO, Otherwild, Paper Chase Press and more. Make sure to scope out the gallery’s excellent exhibitions while you’re there.
The annual Unique holiday market features clothes, accessories and art pieces from a number of quality handmade brands. Check out local products and rub elbows with the different designers and artists showcasing their work. The market visits SoCal this season with two pop-ups: one Downtown (Nov 31, Dec 1), the other in Santa Monica (Dec 14, 15).
Have a crafty start to the Christmas shopping season at Craft Contemporary’s annual holiday marketplace. If you’re making a list and checking it twice, consider this shopping event for unique handmade gifts and an opportunity to meet the emerging and established makers behind them.
Stroll through Union Station’s handsome south patio as this holiday market rolls into the historic train station. The market also includes live music, a craft beer garden and food trucks, plus a craft station and wishlist workshop for kids. And, of course, we couldn’t think of a more Metro-friendly location for a holiday market than Union Station.
Calling all vintage lovers! Shop more than 70 of the top vintage retailers (local and national) and private dealers at this vintage market. A Current Affair is a major source for stylists, designers and anyone in search of one of a kind vintage ranging from perfectly worn-in jeans to rare and collectible designer vintage. Shop an array of vintage clothing, accessories, and jewelry from the Victorian Era through today.
Bitchcraft is a badass, scrappy little market featuring a mix of metal-punk-western-hippie-inspired wares including handmade holiday balls, leather goods and astrology coasters. It sounds a little over the top, but there are many hidden gems here. You’ll find Bitchcraft this year at the Garage in Chinatown (1001 N Broadway).
If you’re making a list and checking it twice, consider this annual shopping event for unique kitchen, pantry and tabletop finds, plus all sorts of foodie goodies. This year, GCM hands over the reins of its holiday market to Artists & Fleas.
Gear up for the holiday season at this series of holiday pop-ups, boasting dozens of artisanal vendors including makers, crafters and chefs. You’ll find three Artisanal L.A. markets this season: a 30-vendor pop-up at Bunker Hill’s Bank of America Plaza (Dec 13 10am–5pm), a gathering of 75-plus makers in the parking lot begind the Pasadena Playhouse (Dec 14 11am–6pm) and an ongoing weekend market at the Third Street Promenade (Dec 5–8, 14, 15, 20–22).