Renegade Craft Fair
If it has been a while since you visited a craft fair, you may be surprised to learn that crafting has come a very long way since cheesy macramé plant hangers and fake flower wall decorations were the norm. Today’s crafters have stepped up their game and their skills considerably and are able to fashion useful, practical and tasteful items from just about everything. To get a good look at what the Bay Area’s top crafters are creating these days, you need look no further than San Francisco’s Renegade Craft Fair held in July and November each year.
These craft fairs, called the July Market and November Market, are held at the Fort Mason Center Festival Pavilion, which affords the crafters plenty of space to showcase their wares. It also affords attendees the chance to browse a rather remarkable variety of handmade items set against the stunning backdrop of San Francisco Bay. For many attendees, the chance to speak with the person who crafted the items that interest them is a big part of the experience. They can tell the prospective buyer about how the item was made, where the materials were collected, grown or found and insight into the creative process. Such information often enhances the value and appeal of the purchase and is part of the fun of attending the event.
Although each Market features a different lineup of crafters, attendees can count on seeing and perhaps buying items from uncommonly skilled craftspeople, such as:
- Wood carvers
- Musical instrument artisans
- Furniture makers
- Crafters who take found objects and fabricate/repurpose them into useful and/or decorative items
- Artisan cheese makers
- Many, many other items that you never knew you needed until you saw it and thought, “That’s it!”
If you’re interested in attending an upcoming Renegade Craft Fair, you’ll be pleased to learn that attendance is free! The Festival Pavilion is located within the Fort Mason Center, which is located at 2 Marina Blvd. just west of Van Ness Ave. and San Francisco Maritime National Historic Park. Pay parking is available but somewhat limited. However, the Center is served by several BART routes that arrive and depart fairly regularly (check the BART website at https://www.bart.gov/ for timetables.) For more information about Renegade Craft Fair scheduling and other stops on the craft fair circuit, please visit http://www.renegadecraft.com/.