Christmas Craft Market 2015

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Karla and I LOVE craft fairs.  Remember how I endured the crowded chaos at the Etsy Fair?  If there are locally made goods and artisinal products, we will be there and we will endure the claustrophobia. Luckily, the Circle Craft Fair’s Christmas Craft Market that started last Wednesday, November 11, and runs through Sunday, November 15, is being held at Canada Place. The hall that it’s located in is huge with generous space in between and all around.  We dropped by yesterday after our lunch with Ama at G Men.

There were over 300 artisans displaying their wares.  Things got crazy when we got to the food stalls and had to try every sample IN EVERY FLAVOUR, of course.  So much for saving up an appetite for dinner.  We got there just after 5 pm and got the 2 for 1 admission price ($14 for 2). Just a tip since they don’t mention this in their website.

Here’s a roundup of our favourite things:

PRODUCTS:

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1. Sandpiper Studio – This was our favourite hand blown glass stall by far.  The owners were a lovely couple who create bold, modern designs in eye catching, vibrant, candy colours.  Karla bought a set of 4 delicious water tank tumblers.  Each water tank graphic is an iconic style from a different city.

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2. Russel Hackney Ceramics – The artist’s wife overheard me say to Karla, “they remind me of Wedgewood!”  She piped up and said that they were from the town Wedgewood as well and it was there where her husband acquired the very same skill of embossing ceramics.  His beautiful work has a flawless quality and such delicate details. I love love loved the muted neutral palette.

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3. Heyday Design – Do you know about my bottle bug? If you don’t, I have a terrible case of it.  So naturally, these beautiful porcelain pieces that mimic glass flasks, bottles and jars absolutely tickled my fancy.

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Photo Source: Glasnost 

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4. Glasnost – Beautiful and functional handmade clothes and bags made out of waxed cotton and leather.  Stephanie Schneider, the artist behind the beautiful brand, pointed out the hidden details that she is most proud of such as the stitching inside the bag.  We were captivated by the story and lifestyle as much as the beauty of the design.

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5. Steidle Woodworking Company – Fantastic handcrafted pieces made out of wood.  I especially loved the chopping boards and the knives.  The chopping boards smelled amazing!

EDIBLES:

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1. Mellifera Bees – After trying every sample I decided my favourite was the Thai Chilli Infused Honey.  I loved the the heat that follows the sweetness.

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2. The Fishery Seafood, Ltd.  – We tried every single sample and everything was delicious.  I especially loved the salmon pate.  Oh it was sooooooo good we had to get 3 bricks of it.  We also bought the assorted 7 smoked fish pack.

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Photo Source: Coachouse Shortbread Co.

3. Coachouse Shortbread Co.  I’ll admit it, Martha Stewart’s face on one of their posters is what drew me in.  Now I know Martha and I have the same taste because these shortbread cookies are the best I’ve ever had.  Just the perfect amount of sweetness (I find most shortbread cookies too sweet) and so so light I want to describe it as feathery.  Yes, we’re still talking about shortbread cookies here.  So so good that by the time we got to their stall they were sold out and only had samples to hand out.

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Photo Source: Sweet Truth Canadian Gourmet Candy Co.

4. Sweet Truth Canadian Gourmet Candy Co. – I was skeptical, I thought the toffee would be too sweet.  As soon as I put their Original Almond Butter Toffee sample in my mouth all I could think was WOW.  Of course we had to buy a tin.  How could you not after trying that?

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5. Nut and Fudge – We tried almost all the nut samples and settled on the Chipotle Pumpkin Seeds with Dried Cranberries, Caramel Glazed Almonds, and the Sea Salt and Honey Peanuts.  Their caramel apples were equally delicious!  We tried the Cinful which is their caramel apple rolled in their signature cinnamon glaze.  Oh it was such a perfect combination of tart from the apple and sweet from the cinnamon caramel glaze.

I’m officially in Christmas shopping mode and I can’t wait for the next one! Here are the rest of the craft shows for the year:

November 19 – 22 – Eastside Cultural Crawl

November 28 – Strathcona Winter Craft Fair

December 3 – 6 – Make it!

December 12 + 13 – Got Craft? Holiday Edition

Happy Holiday Shopping (and holiday feasting)!

– SS

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