1. Walden Three – Holiday Shopping Edition!
    December 21, 2012 by Walden3

    Rachel Maxi’s tiny tornado – what a score!


    Holiday shopping can be a real drag. There is just so much useless junk out there – mass produced, uninspired and just plain old boring. I used to try and hit all the flea markets and pop up craft fairs, but I’ll be damned if they didn’t run me all over town, or I missed the date, or they just didn’t hit the mark. I think a lot of people want to support local arts and crafts, especially on more digestible levels. Sure I love Mary Iverson and Vic Haven and Harry S. Smith’s work, but I’d have to sell my car to even come close to affording it.

    Rebecca Raven’s brilliant little oil paintings (this one painted on the head of a quarter!)


    This year, I did 80% of my shopping in the artist bazaar at W3. with only 100 booths, they were able to really cherry pick a great collection of wood workers, painters, jewelers, print makers, upstart designers and record labels, photographers, indie zines, fashion makers and one guy who makes boomboxes and Air Jordans out of cardboard (Michael Leavitt). Some people thought early on, that $200.00 a month for a booth was too much, but the half dozen vendors I talked to today said they easily make that back on a good Saturday afternoon. With the Pike Place Market to the north and SAM across the street, this bazaar is a bustling marketplace, and the quality is so high. Kind of astonishing that this much talent lives within a few miles of here.

    They always keep ten booths available for daily rental ($20) which is great for artists in Portland or Vancouver or any points in between, who are either passing through or just have an idea that can pop up and break down in a given day. It also insures a constant new crop of things to look at and purchase.


    Here are a few of the things I bought today. Rachel Maxi makes these incredible little oil paintings, and this little tornado is only 2.5″ x 3″. Rebecca Raven also has some excellent little works (some too risque to post here) but this little nude was only $75.00 and my brother is going to love it. What else – I have 4 young nieces and this little chicken sweater is for Ingrid, the jumper is for Anja (and they make adult sizes) and I got this felt owl pin for my mom. I already had one of Jack Daw’s Disobey tee shirts with Thoreau on it, but picked up another three for friends. I couldn’t help but pick up a cherry pie merkin from some company called Dr. Merkin’s Original Snatch Patch, and I’ll probably have to go back and drop a little more cash before Christmas (there were some sweet things that just sold out, but I was promised they would come back with more).

    The bazaar is such a win-win, as it not only generates a lot of money for the artists and craftspeople showing there, but is an entirely profit generating floor at W3 (it takes in about $23,000.00 a month in rentals). And with a waiting list two pages long, I’m pretty sure the quality and diversity of the goods will remain high throughout the course of the project.

    Come on down and do some shopping! And if you get tired you can drop down to the Dial for a Hot Toddy, sit down on the Denny Steps and catch an hour of art history or a lecture, and the Dearborn and Mercer Galleries are both excellent. Walden Three is a busy beehive of activity this season, and sure beats shopping at the big department stores. Happy Holidays!