Our 2015 Holiday Market Guide
We’re all too familiar with the feelings of last-minute mall trips and stress to impress during gift-giving season. The good news is that plenty of holiday markets and pop-up shops are emerging throughout the city… And if you play your cards right, you might not even break a sweat.
Peep our list of local ventures below so you can make moves and score some great gifts before the holidays creep up on us:
Named one of Buzzfeed’s “35 Indie Craft Fairs Every Creative Person Needs To Visit,” this year’s edition of Handmade Arcade will feature 150+ crafters, making it their largest showcase to-date.
While you’re here, shop original gifts and stocking stuffers for your loved ones, ranging from custom handmade purses at Jenny N. Designs, to quirky, colorful prints from illegible ink, and Pittsburgh-themed collectibles. And be sure to pick up a copy of Handmade Arcade’s first-ever print publication, “Things Making Things: A DIY Coloring Book,” featuring designs created by several local artists.
It’s all happening from 11AM-7PM on December 5 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center downtown.
Take a break from the nerve-wracking hunt for deals on Black Friday, and join the I Made It! Market team in supporting small businesses. Local artists in the city and surrounding suburbs will offer up great gifts for family and friends, like handcrafted toys and furniture from Bandy Woodworks, and statement-piece earrings and necklaces from glass jewelry shop, Broken Plates.
While you’re shopping, get your buzz on with a boost of caffeine from Zeke’s Coffee, and be sure to fuel up at one of the many onsite food trucks. The market is open from 12–8PM on November 27, and from 11AM–6PM on November 28 at Nova Place on the Northside (the former Allegheny Center Mall).
Peoples Gas Holiday Market returns for it’s fourth consecutive year, opening from November 20 through December 23. Inspired by the German Christkindlmarkts, its lights will guide you through the tiny village set-up in Market Square, and bring you to small wooden kiosks where your future purchases await.
Several businesses are also offering up some great deals here on Small Business Saturday; you can score a free glass ornament for your tree with a $25 purchase at Welcome Pittsburgh, or grab a new pair of shades for almost half the price at The Headgear.
Shopping hours are listed below:
- Mondays–Thursdays: 11–8PM
- Fridays & Saturdays: 11AM–9:30PM
- Sundays: 11AM–6PM
Come shop amongst our city’s creative community at Raw Pittsburgh’s Holiday RAWk showcase–a great place to cross off items on your shopping list while appreciating local artistry and enjoying live performances.
Here, you can pick up unique accessories, personalized paintings and crafty couture you wont find anywhere else; from nostalgic souvenir items at charmed by nature, to super hero-inspired artworks from Chris M. Kraski.
Make your way down to Mr. Smalls Theatre next Thursday, December 3 from 7-11:30PM for this one-night affair of creativity.
Local organization Second Shift Crafters consistently creates opportunities for emerging artists to exhibit and sell their goods, while giving PGH residents exposure to their talents.
On December 19, SSC will host the Procrastinators Ball from noon-6pm at Spirit Lodge in Lawrenceville; and it’s a great place for all you last-minute shoppers to pick up locally made wares for your loved ones. In addition, you’ll also get to enjoy live music, tasty cocktails and delicious food.
The Procrastinators Ball is still accepting vendor applications. Interested sellers can apply online.
Forget socks and sweaters this year; wrap up something funky and fanciful from this year’s Holiday Glass Sale at Pittsburgh Glass Center.
Make it a family-fun day and check out live glass demonstrations, or have fun making your own glass-blown ornaments while you shop for original gifts. Regional artists will be displaying handmade art and jewelry in all price ranges from December 4-6.
A schedule is listed below:
- Friday, 6-9PM: Holiday Glass Sale + Live Glass Demonstrations
- Saturday, 10AM-4PM: Holiday Glass Sale + Make-It-Now Ornaments
- Sunday, 10AM-4PM: Holiday Glass Sale
At the Counterculture Craft Fair, you’ll have an opportunity to snag the perfect present for that freaky friend or family member.
Handmade and gently used items will be available, ranging from unusual art and décor, to games and toys, to clothing and shoes. Or find something extra rare and special from the wide selection of occult books and underground music.
There’s nothing more exciting than buying an item at a price so great, it feels like a steal. So mark your calendar for December 5 and get out to the Freaky Flea. The fun goes down at Cattivo in Lawrenceville from 4-8PM.
On November 28, you’re invited to take a stroll down Penn Ave from 11AM-7PM for their Holiday Crafter Market and Small Biz celebration.
Shop an array of local galleries, like Most Wanted Fine Art, where they’ll be selling custom paintings, shirts, stickers and Christmas cards; or pick up some classic vintage pieces from Mostly Mod/ARTica.
Other participating businesses include local favorites like Bantha Tea Bar, LOCAL 412, Aahmani Afrikan Braids, East End Community Thrift Shop, and more.
Hop on Molly’s Trolley and browse or purchase a wide variety of items at each stop; from unique, affordable fashions at Broke Little Rich Girl, to locally crafted beers, sodas and ciders at Atlas Bottle Works.
The Cookie Tour takes place December 3-6. Hours are listed below:
- Thursday/Friday, 10AM–8PM
- Saturday, 10AM–6PM
- Sunday, 11AM–5PM
Did we miss a seasonal shop or market you’re planning to visit? Leave us a note in the comments, and we’ll be sure to add it to the list!