The Student News Site of Macalester College

The Mac Weekly

The Student News Site of Macalester College

The Mac Weekly

The Student News Site of Macalester College

The Mac Weekly

The Annual Holiday Craft Fair is Back!

Graphic+Zander+Leong+26.
Graphic Zander Leong ’26.

With the holiday season and finals week fast approaching, the age-old conundrum of finding the time to gift shop for friends and family plagues us yet again. If this dilemma resonates with you this year, fear no more! This Wednesday, Dec. 6, the Janet Wallace lobby will be hosting Macalester’s 10th Annual Holiday Arts and Crafts Fair. Starting at 10 a.m. and closing up at 4 p.m., this year’s fair will feature over 40 vendors, including students, alumni, faculty, staff and community members alike. 

The array of goods is just as expansive as the vendors, but knitwear and crochet work is by far the most popular craft this year, with around a quarter of the vendors specializing in fiber arts. However, within this quarter there is a wide array of products, from hand-sewn and quilted items, to micro-crochet earrings, to various articles of knit or crocheted clothing and accessories. Birdie Keller ’25 is one such vendor, who will be specializing in amigurumi, the Japanese art of creating small knitted or crocheted stuffed yarn creatures.

“I love stuffed animals myself, so the ability to make them has been game changing,” Keller wrote in an email to The Mac Weekly. “I participated in the craft fair last year. It was so much fun seeing the work everyone else has done, and sharing my work. I can’t wait to do it again!”

Ginny Moran ’90, Dewitt Wallace librarian since 2011, will be offering naturally dyed fabrics and wet felted objects. This includes scarves in silk, wool, cotton and rayon dyed in the skins of avocados and onions. Moran became interested in fiber arts during her time at Macalester, including such work in her senior exhibit. After graduation she put aside art, but, thankfully for us, she picked it back up seven years ago and began exhibiting her work in the arts and crafts fair. 

I love being part of this craft fair,” Moran wrote in an email to The Mac Weekly. “It is so open and friendly, and a great place to show my work. I always learn a lot from the other exhibitors and the student work is always amazing. The fact that it is open (and free!) to students, alumni, staff, faculty and friends of the college to exhibit their work is amazing; there aren’t many of these kinds of events that happen in the life of the college that bring all these communities together.”

Beyond fiber arts, there will be a wide array of other 3-D art available, ranging from ceramic work and recycled plastic items, to fused glass work and hand forged bottle openers. Justin Anderson ’23 was inspired to turn single use plastics into reusable items in an effort to be more sustainable. She began by sourcing plastic from Dupre trash cans and placing a plastic collection bin outside her dorm room, but has since won several grants that has allowed her to upgrade her set up. This is Anderson’s third time participating in the fair and she will be selling drink coasters, soap dishes and carabiners. 

Vendors will also be selling prints of their 2-D work, including photographs, lithographs, drawings and paintings. Megan Vossler, chair of the Art and Art History Department, will be participating in the fair for the first time, selling prints and greeting cards of her work. 

“There is so much talent, skill and dedication to craft on this campus,” Vossler wrote in an email to The Mac Weekly. “I think everyone who visits will be delighted to see what people in the community have been making.”

If you’re not looking to spend money, worry not — the fair is just as enjoyable without taking home a piece of art or two.

“Even if you don’t want to buy anything, please come and talk with the exhibitors!” Moran wrote. “We love to talk about our work and share our love for craft.”

Stop by the JWall lobby this Wednesday to cross gift shopping off your to-do list and check out the wonderful art made by your peers, teachers and community members.

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About the Contributor
Abby Bulger, Arts Editor
Abby Bulger ’24 (she/they) is the arts editor from Lambertville, N.J. She is a media and cultural studies major with minors in French and studio arts. She spends her free time consuming all kinds of media and painting.

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