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Renegade: A Community of Crafters

Last Sunday, I went to check out the Renegade Craft Fair, right here in Austin, Texas. If you’re not familiar with the Renegade Craft Fair, it is, in their own words, a “large-scale DIY arts + crafts event held in five cities across the nation, featuring hundreds of independent artists and their unique handmade items.”

The fair is held in different cities throughout the US each year; this year, in addition to Austin, they will hit up Chicago (where the fair originated in 2003), Brooklyn, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.

Only the Best

One of the cool things about Renegade is that the fair is juried, which means that crafters must apply and be accepted in order to participate in the fair.  This ensures that only the highest quality and most unique crafts are available.

Renegade Craft Fair features indie arts and crafts (as opposed to fine arts or country crafts).  Some of the crafts included jewelry, clothing, notebooks, screen printed and letterpress pieces, accessories, baby gear, and ceramics.  I could have wandered around there for hours, examining each vendor’s crafts and spending way too much money.

Try It Yourself

Another fun aspect of the fair were the workshops and demonstrations that were offered.  For those who have always wanted to try to screen print a t-shirt, make your own jewelry, or sharpen your photography skills,  there were plenty of opportunities to take part in the DIY craft movement that has taken off like wildfire the past few years.

In the end, we escaped with only two items: I purchased a very cool little zip pouch from Miss Alison to replace my broken wallet, and my husband surprised me with a beautiful necklace from Kate Winternitz.

Connect With a Crafting Community

If you are a DIY crafter and you haven’t checked out Renegade Crafts yet, be sure to visit the fair if you get a chance this year.  You can also purchase items from the artisans online at Renegade Handmade,  or visit their brick-and-mortar storefront in Chicago.

Supporting handmade crafts is the next best thing to making them yourself.  It’s also a very green choice!  Many of the crafters rely on recycled and repurposed materials, and buying locally produced goods is a great way to reduce your shopping carbon footprint – not to mention supporting your local economy.

Are you a DIY crafter? Have your ever been to or been part of the Renegade Craft fair, or something like it? If you have an online shop, feel free to leave the link in the comments – we’d love to check out your work!

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  1. Diana (Ladybug Limited)

    Oh, how I would love to have Renegade come to the Pacific NW! The closest thing that is somewhat local to me is the Meet Your Maker craft fair held in Eugene– same concept on a much smaller scale.

    And yes, I’m a crafter, too. I make fabric button hair accessories (snap clips and ponytail holders.) I know that there’s a ton of them out there, but I have 2 sections of my shop that are fairly unique: I collaborate with 2 children’s clothing makers to save their scraps from the garbage (and provide their buyers with matching accessories) and I am the creator of hand-stamped hair goodies– my Initially Yours are probably one of the most popular items in my shop (linked in my siggy.)
    .-= Diana (Ladybug Limited)’s last blog: Bumblebee Buddy — a custom pair of hand-printed fabric button snap clips or hair bands in your choice of colors =-.

  2. Stephanie P

    Would love it if I could get to one of these. Traveled to Austin for the first time ever just last month and loved the atmosphere 🙂

    Sadly, I’ll continue to make do with my greater Cincinnati and etsy fare. I’m not the crafter just yet.

  3. Lisa

    KATIE! This post, along with the recent strawberry pickin’ post, make me want to obsessively follow you around Texas. You find the most wonderful events — thank you for sharing them! It inspires me to keep my eyes peeled for fun things, too.

  4. Christine

    I didn’t know about that….I’m in the San Antonio area….we go up to Austin every couple of months.

  5. Nicole aka Gidget

    I didn’t know there was one in L.A.!! Hopefully I can drag my hubby up there to go in July! Thanks for the info, Katie!
    .-= Nicole aka Gidget’s last blog: Encylopedia of Me: D is for… =-.

  6. Sara

    So flippin excited that I get to go in Brooklyn in June!!!!!

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