Friday, December 4, 2009

Downtown Market + DIY Shopping

For the 5th year, the Downtown Holiday Market will operate on the sidewalk in front of the National Portrait Gallery. It opens today at noon and runs until 8:00pm daily until December 23. That's pretty close to Christmas for all the late blooming shoppers. The location is F Street NW between 7th and 9th. Free entertainment on tomorrow including three bands playing blues and rock throughout the day.

Expect the usual; lots of hand made jewelery, crafty items, various mediums of art, clothing and artisan foods. Not all of the artists will be at the market each day. Some are there the first two weeks, then leave, others aren't here now, but come later. Check the website to see what may look interesting to you and plan your visit accordingly.

Downtown Holiday Market won't be the only place to shop while avoiding malls, department stores, DCUSA and Georgetown. Here are a few other ways to get unique or local gifts for yourselves and others.

Rock-N-Shop at the Cat
Recently reached favorite holiday tradition status among our circle of friends. This is sort of a free for all for dealers or collectors of old records, video games, screen printed shirts, crafty art, vintage clothes and other stuff I can't even imagine right now. Drink beer, walk around, listen to sweet DJs and maybe buy something from a person you probably already know. This party has gotten increasingly crowded over the years, so come early. December 19. 8PM until. Black Cat Mainstage. 1811 14th Street NW.

Cheap Art Sale at La Casa
A longer write-up from earlier this week is here. But, basically this is a STELLAR art sale with STELLAR artists, many from Mount Pleasant. The prices happen to be CHEAP. They are trying to provide great art at affordable prices (nothing over $100) and help out Neighbors' Consejo by donating the proceeds. Tomorrow! 1-5PM. La Casa. 3166 Mount Pleasant Street NW.

The Gift of Fab at Past Tense
Mount Pleasant is doing double duty DIY shopping this weekend. Also happening tomorrow is the cleverly named Gift of Fab holiday sale at our very own Past Tense Studio. This is not just a sale for enthusiastic yogi. The studio will have several booths/tables set up inside with unique gifts like hand made holiday cards, organic skin care products, photography and more. And yes, if you want to buy a yoga mat, you can do that, too. Past Tense will have it's own booth. Tomorrow, too! 1-5PM as well. Past Tense Studio. 3253 Mount Pleasant Street NW.

Capital Riverfront Holiday Market at Navy Yard
This is a rather new one. Two years old this year, the Capital Riverfront (neighborhood near Nationals Ballpark) is hosting a holiday market that looks promising, but won't quite rival the Downtown Market. Not this year anyway. Sounds similar though; live music, crafty exhibitors, lots of jewelery, and you can bet someone's selling ceramics. December 15-18. 12-6PM. Canal Park. 2nd and M Sts SE. (PDF)

The Flea at Eastern Market
The old standby Eastern Market and accompanying flea market is a weekly delight, but I haven't been in a while. Specifically, the Flea Market operates on Sundays and there you can find various items from copper-plated cups to curios. The Flea operates out of the parking lot behind old Hines School, across the street from the historic Eastern Market building. Every Sunday. 10AM-5PM. Eastern Market. 7th and C Sts SE.