Where can you find locally-crafted ceramics, artisanal cheeses, hand-made jewelry, a couple types of Arkansas chocolate, some beard oil, and thrift store paintings that have been made new again with the ironic addition of robots, giant squids, and marshmallow peeps, all in one place this weekend?
There is only one placed that we know of. It’s The Little Craft Show, of course.
The event is set for Nov. 30-Dec. 1 at the Fayetteville Town Center, and will feature hand-made arts, crafts, home decor, and edible creations from more than 100 makers from around Northwest Arkansas and the surrounding region.
The Little Craft Show began in 2011 as a small event held at a local church on College Avenue. It exploded from there, however. The event quickly grew into a multi-day event in Fayetteville, and has since added shows in Bentonville, Springdale, and for the first time this year, in Little Rock.
“With an ever-growing creative economy in Northwest Arkansas and the surrounding regions, we are proud to offer these talented artisans and craftsmen and women an opportunity to showcase their work to a diverse audience now with four events in four cities; Fayetteville, Springdale, Bentonville, and Little Rock,” event founder Amber Perrodin told us this week.
Some of the items from a previous show / Courtesy
The new show in Little Rock is set for Dec. 8 inside the brew room at Lost 40 Brewing Co., located at 501 Byrd St. just off I-30 not far from downtown.
“Man, we are so excited to partner with Lost 40 Brewery in Downtown Little Rock,” Perrodin said. “They will be clearing out their brew room for us to take over for the day while leaving their delicious restaurant open for our shoppers. We will be packing over 30 wildly talented makers into one room to offer our Central Arkansas friends a chance to check off their holiday lists from their favorite artists.”
In addition, The Little Rock show will feature gift boxes filled with goodies from the makers, along with craft beer, giveaways, photo ops, and great food, Perrodin said.
The Bentonville show took place earlier this month at The Record on Nov. 17.
The Fayetteville show this weekend will kick off on Friday night at the Town Center, with a free shopping event planned from 5-8 p.m.
There have been a few changes in the format this year.
“For the first time ever we are offering FREE holiday shopping on Friday night,” Perrodin said. “In years past our Friday night shopping was reserved for ticket holders to gain first-hand access to our makers with added perks throughout the evening. This year we are opening up Friday night shopping to the public while still offering a goody bag for the first 200 shoppers to arrive!”
Little Craft Show usually has a few surprises up its sleeve, and this year is no exception. Perrodin said a new $5 raffle unlike anything they’ve done before is planned for Friday, featuring a pre-lit Christmas tree packed with tons of presents from the makers, plus a $100 shopping spree to be used at the event as prizes.
The Friday night event will also include a visit from old St. Nick himself, and attendees will have the chance to have their photo taken with Santa for $5.
The event will continue from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Saturday as well.
Makers expected to be in attendance this year include visual artists like Fayetteville painter/sculptor/muralist Jason Jones who will be bringing some of his Altered Thrift Store Art and other pieces, and Fayetteville artist Macy Burr, who creates graphic posters that also serve as notations of popular songs.
A Little Craft Show maker booth / Courtesy
The event will also include jewelry makers like Bella Vita Jewelry, Lauren Brook, Your Words Cuffs, and Amber Lea Designs.
Want ceramics? Makers like Sunroom Studio will bring their unique words earch mugs, Joy Elizabeth Ceramics will bring hand-painted pottery, and Christina Blackwood Ceramics will bring her black-and-white designs.
“Christina Blackwood is a ceramicist based in Fayetteville, Arkansas that just continues to blow our minds,” Perrodin said. “Her body of work is so incredibly captivating with her matte black pieces alongside her gorgeous white and gold functional pottery. We just can’t get enough.”
Perrodin also highlighted a new maker that they are excited about this year called Ozark Brothers.
“This fresh new brand was founded by two brothers right here in Northwest Arkansas and they have the most clever t-shirts and good ole boy humor,” she said. “To quote them directly, ‘We make apparel inspired by bad jokes, dad jokes, having one too many and our never ending love of the Ozarks.'”
Perrodin also mentioned Mandy Couey of Bella Vista-based Shepherd’s Knot, a company that makes chunky knit blankets in an array of colors, as another new vendor not to miss at this year’s show.
“They’re just so beautiful,” Perrodin said. “She also has a lovely assortment of popular weavings and home decor that she creates from different fibers and textures.”
Artists bringing edible creations include local chocolatiers Kyya Chocolage and Markham + Fitz, and Bentonville cheese-seller, Sweet Freedom Cheese.
The show’s Instagram page is also a good source of info.