November should be called craft fair month. It is the first push towards the Christmas/holiday buying spree. There are art and crafts fairs everywhere from school gymnasiums to hotels to community halls. Everyone who gets involved in selling their art/craft is a small local entrepreneur. They struggle with rising costs for supplies and try to hone in on what is popular – what will sell.
Buyers are fickle. They want something for a good price and they want it handmade and they want it unique. These days when so much of what we purchase is made overseas, we crave the time and attention it takes to have something with some real human touch to it. A beautifully carved bowl, for instance, is organic, local and likely made by someone you know.
The environment around the Sooke region is often the inspiration for works of art and it is often also the place for materials. Woodcarvers, basket makers and assemblage artists all utilize our natural resources in beautiful ways. What a great way to find something made in Sooke. Or how about a book written by a local author?
When you start considering what to buy for someone, give some thought to buying local, buying from an artisan. Each of the craftspeople or artists are trying hard to make a living or at least a supplemental wage from what they do. They love what they do and they put their heart and soul into each piece they craft. They work long hours at it and it would be wonderful to see locals supporting locals.
Check our calendar in the print edition and the online calendar for times, places and dates of small and large craft fairs in the region. Then start making your list. You will make three people happy — the artisan, the gift recipient and yourself.