While I love that living in SoCal means there is always something new you can discover, I feel it is a bit embarrassing that before Friday, I had never paid a visit to San Pedro! SP is a beautiful port town smack dab between Long Beach & Los Angeles. Driving over the St. Thomas Bridge made me think of it as our own Golden Gate…just, you know, minus the brick-red shades!;)
The reason that finally took me over there was the Etsy Crafting Party at CRAFTED, the amazing crafts center inside a converted old navy warehouse. San Pedro is home to many & the plan is to eventually take over a few of them, which would put CRAFTED on the map as the largest of its kind in the country…and, with a lease of 35 years, they are definitely in this for the long haul!
Something else quite unique is that to be a vendor with CRAFTED, your creations must be made in the Los Angeles area, so no going around the house for trinkets you no longer want from a store;) All vendors are some of the most dedicated crafters you will find, & whether it be preserves, jewelry, cookies or scrapbooking, its inspiring how devoted they are to their passion.
Launching in June, CRAFTED is the brainchild of Wayne Blank, best known for the Santa Monica based art gallery, Bergamot Station. While art may be his thing, DIY arts & crafts is apparently a new venture for him, with many of the city people & crafters teaching him about it as he goes along! How awesome that someone new to the world of crafting & Etsy would be so supportive of this great vision!
With CRAFTED, vendors are paying a monthly rent for a 10×10 space that is equivalent to what they pay for only a week elsewhere. While most are there weekly, some may be absent here & there if they have other commitments. They personally decorate their space which gives it a great, creative ‘home-y’ vibe; you feel as if you’re walking into their home at each space you visit.
With a few hundred crafters & growing, it truly is the sky’s the limit for what you will find & walk away with…jewelry, cookies, paintings, apparel, papercrafts, pogs made into earrings (remember those?!!?), body lotions, even homemade pie! You could find everything you need for decorating your home, plus accessories for yourself.
Before the Etsy party got into full swing at 7, I was treated to the VIP treatment at a special event for bloggers, where I gained much of the insight I now know, met with other great bloggers like Rebecca Rider (below) & had the chance to get a taste of what the artists offer at their booths as I was treated to the nicest gift bag you can imagine! In the coming weeks, I will be telling you more about each of the vendors who so nicely gave me a sample of their work…& maybe….there will be a GIVEAWAY here ‘n there!!;)
The theme of the soiree was “Wish You Were Here” & many of the decorations were made out of freeway maps, like the ‘kite’ above! As someone who is not as crafty as she would like to be, simple creations like that blow my mind. It also made me think of my friend, Deanna, & her blog, When Kites Fly🙂
Rebecca, Erin, Jamie & I had such a blast at the nail polish crafts station! They had colors galore & we gave each other a manicure which resulted in this….
SoCal Lady Bloggers WERE here!;)
Another great thing to check out are the food trucks that frequently are at CRAFTED, there was an amazing looking pizza truck, complete with gluten-free offerings, that was closing up by the time we checked it out….reason to go back asap, no??;) I also tried the most unusually delicious soda pop….coffee soda! At first, I didn’t think I liked it, but, all of a sudden I wanted another one. Imagine strong black coffee with some spritzer to it, yummy!
CRAFTED is located at 112 E. 22nd Street in San Pedro, they are open Friday through Sunday & while its free to get in, parking is $5 unless you find street parking or a free lot. It’s a great way to get out of the house no matter if you have kids, want a day with friends, significant other, or simply feel like browsing on your own. Theres always various food trucks as well as food inside. This weekend for Labor Day, they will be having a BBQ (Including roasting a whole pig) with live bands as well as The Fox Pizza Truck returning, so something for everyone…especially if you do not eat pork;)
I cannot thank CRAFTED enough for having me, & look for more posts about the vendors…next up, I will be introducing you to the jewelry makers of the marketplace!
Disclosure: I was a guest for CRAFTED’s Etsy Craft Party & provided with free admission/parking, food coupons & a goody bag. All opinions are my own & I love their vision! All photography by Along Comes Mary. Please contact her for permission BEFORE using in your own media. Thank you!