Shop local, give local

Holiday markets focus on local, handmade gifts, and other local gifting ideas

Nasturtiums, Redwine and Autumn.

The Makehouse

Holiday Booty Market

The Makehouse, Victoria’s newest creative space to get fancy with fabric, is hosting a 10-day holiday market featuring the wares of more than 12 local artists — the perfect place to pick up a last-minute gift for a special, and conscientious, someone.

Makehouse owner Jenny Ambrose put the market together to offer an alternative to the shopping mall experience — a one-stop pop-up shop that only offers items that are hand made locally.

“I feel more joy when giving a gift if I know where it came from or if I made it myself,” says Ambrose.

“It’s more meaningful than going to a department store to buy something, where the story behind the product and the meaning is lost. Those things can be made in factories, sometimes by children, and we often just don’t know where they came from.”

Ambrose pulled together a group of local artisans to sell their products at The Makehouse for the 10 days before Christmas, with the market open until 3pm on Christmas Eve.

Ambrose will be selling her hand-made lingerie, including traditional French silk knickers, and bamboo briefs, as well as bamboo hoodies (made to order) and other clothing accessories.

The market also includes needle-felted creatures by Heart as Home (artsandcraftscollective.wordpress.com), preserves by The Life Nostalgic (thelifenostalgic.com), unique children’s clothing and accessories from Maven Creations (mavencreations.com), photography by Luis-Mario Guerra, art by Dennis Shields, crocheted scarves, upcycled clothing by Discarded Couture (discardedcouture.org) as well as soaps, jewelery, bunting and more.

Artist Freyja Zazu (zattazoo.blogspot.ca), who uses The Makehouse as a studio and gallery is also offering small-scale paintings, or “stocking-stuffer art” as Ambrose calls it.

“A lot of people have a rule around the holidays about gifts being hand made,” says Ambrose. “A lot of things are hand-made in factories, but generally [being hand made] means to have something made locally where the artist and the city are going to benefit from the purchase. This is how the artists make their living.”

The market will also have a fabric wrapping station, where customers can custom order sustainable fabric wrapping that can be reused for Christmases to come.

And to help relieve the stress of holiday shopping, Erica Ambrose from Halcyon Massage Therapy (facebook.com/HalcyonTherapyVictoria) will be offering back, head, shoulder and Thai Massages on Sat., Dec. 15.

The Makehouse stiching parlour (where you can come finish up your own hand-made Christmas presents using Makehouse sewing machines on a drop-in basis) will be happening simultaneously, from 10am-6pm Dec. 17-19 and 21. themakehouse.ca.

facebook.com/events/ 278584725594154

Winter Farmers’ Market and Artisan Christmas Fair

The last Winter Farmers Market before Christmas with a festive twist. Artisans will be on hand offering locally made treasures perfect for gift giving.

Sat., Dec. 15 from 11am to 3pm in Market Square. 250-386-2441.

 

Score!

Score some sweet, locally made gifts on the cheap at Score! the third-annual holiday craft fair by Olio Artists and Workers Cooperative where everything is under $20. Find locally made artwork, crafts, clothing, jewelery, baking, soaps and more, perfect for that not-so-special someone, the in-laws or the office secret Santa.

Sat., Dec. 15 from 10am to 4pm at Victoria Event Centre (1415 Broad).

facebook.com/events/418125934915027

 

Heart and Hands Silent Auction

While this isn’t a Christmas market, it’s still a great way to purchase local goods and services — all while supporting this community acupuncture clinic. Plus at silent auctions, you get to give and receive!

The silent auction runs from 6-10pm Sat., Dec. 15 at 851 Cormorant. Pre-bidding runs Dec. 10-14 at 250-590-3185 (or in person). Items up for grabs include gift certificates to some of the city’s most delicious restaurants, a huge supply of local free-range farm fresh eggs, artwork by emerging local artist Trisha Joy Bings, locally made clothing, pottery, jewelry, hair cuts refurbished bicycles and even a 15 minute pet reading from Kissing Frog Wallflower Native Seer Isabel O’Kanese — purrfect for the pet lover on your list.

Preview the items up for grabs online at heartandhandscommunity.ca

 

Other local gift ideas:

 

Cinecenta

Perfect for stuffing stockings, Cinecenta is offering two general admissions, with popcorn and soda for $18 until Dec. 21. Cinecenta.com

Theatre Inconnu 2013 Season Tickets

Victoria’s oldest surviving alternative theatre company is offering two-for-one four-show subscription packages at a special rate until Dec. 31. For a limited time, $56 will get two, four-show packages (including memberships, $112 if purchased individually); $40 for two student/senior passes; or $48 for one student/senior, one regular subscription. Single subscriptions are also 30 per cent off at $40 per person/$28 students/seniors. Call 250-360-0234 for more information. M

 

Rifflandia

Atomique Productions has put a limited number of Superpasses and VIP passes on sale for the holidays. Superpasses are only $100 and VIP $200 — for three full days and four nights of live music. No one in their right mind wouldn’t love to find one of these in their stocking this Christmas. Available at Ditch Records, Lyle’s Place, Habit Coffee (Chinatown), the Royal McPherson Box office (rmts.bc.ca, 250-386-6121) or Rifflandia.com.

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