I went back to the West Portal Arts Fair yesterday afternoon. It was sunny and windy, nice for a stroll to admire all the interesting things the artists and crafters had brought. I got a bunch of photographs – used here with permission from the stall-holders. If you’re interested – go today. It ends at 4 p.m., and after that it’s gone until next year.
I tried getting a list of all the stall-holders and what they were selling, but I couldn’t find the organizer. People kept telling me he was on the other side of the road… which was rather like “jam tomorrow.” Next year, maybe I’ll try email.
Meanwhile, here’s a bunch of the stalls that I stopped at. (I ended the trip with a shoulder bag with froggy yogis, and a small welded-scrap owl.)
SOME OF THE STALLS
This glowing art glass caught my eye – it reminded me of the Dale Chihuly exhibition of a few years ago.
Across the road, this stall was selling colorful switchplates and small salt-and-pepper sets.
This one had such cute kiddy clothes, it made me wish I’d someone to buy them for. Unusually, it had some neat stuff for little boys as well, with dinosaurs and sharks and pirates.
This was unusual – photographs printed on slate (yes, the rock) and then mounted in slate frames. If I had any wall space left, I’d probably have got one … some pieces were really beautiful. The slate gave them a texture and a solidity one doesn’t associate with photographs.
Quirky fridge magnets, earrings, and what looked like Christmas decorations here:
These bags were simple, and beautifully made. But what made them special was the whimsical fabrics the artist chose. (I got a bag with froggy yogis on it – frogs in yoga poses.)
Comfortable clothes that still have an artisanal look attracted quite a few visitors.
A few artists let me photograph their work. (Some others didn’t want their work photographed, I guess because people sometimes rip them off by making cheaper copies.)
Figurines dressed as old men accompanied by furry animals, made of real fur – this stall seemed like it was planning ahead for winter and maybe Christmas.
I’d seen welded scrap sculptures before, but this lot from Metal Souls were unusual – it had Dr Who themed stuff like the Tardis and Daleks, Star Wars figures like Darth Vader, a few dragons, and a whole menagerie of animals from alligators to owls.
The San Francisco-themed photographs here showed scenes familiar to us San Franciscans.
Organic cosmetics, with none of the strange-sounding additives of commercial brands.
The bold jewelry designs here were quite elegant.
Each of these salt-cellars and pots was hand-made.
Ramos Designs had really pretty sparkly and unusual necklaces and earrings.
This man was explaining an odd-looking piece of furniture – the bed desk. It’s like a little book-holder, and can lock into various positions so it can become an easel, a snack tray, or a lap-top table. It folds flat. There’s a great little brochure that explains its versatility – or you could visit the Fair and get a demo.
The silver jewelry in this case was very pretty and delicate.
And the last stall I photographed: wooden toys. They were beautifully made.
Of course, that’s not all the stalls, even if I include the ones I saw yesterday. Some people didn’t want their work photographed, and I didn’t manage to get to all of the stalls anyway. (If anyone wants to send me more photos, I’d be happy to run them.)