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Best Holiday Craft Fairs in New England

Best Holiday Craft Fairs in New England
6 votes, 3.83 avg. rating (76% score)
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Vintage ChristmasHoliday craft fairs fill the weekends between Halloween and Christmas at churches, community centers, schools, and function halls all across New England. Offering food (for snacking and giving), handmade gift items, and a healthy dose of holiday cheer, they are often one of the earliest signs of the approaching holiday season.

Why not visit one (or two) this year and pick up a thoughtful gift, add to your own holiday decoration collection, or use the browsing experience to fuel your own creative energy? Here are our picks for just some of the biggest and best holiday craft fairs in New England, with selections for each state. The list of potential holiday fairs taking place each year is massive, so let us know if we missed your favorite — they just might make the list for next year!!

***Dates have been updated for 2014***

BEST CONNECTICUT HOLIDAY CRAFT FAIR

November 8-9: CraftWestport
Nearing its 40th year, this annual juried crafts bonanza features 170 metal, fiber, wood, paper, and clay artisans, with all admissions net profits to benefit local charities. A pop-up marketplace of local artists also includes some fun, budget-friendly items.
Staples High School, 70 North Avenue, Westport. 800-649-0279, 845-331-7900; rtrider.com/WPT14.html

BEST MAINE HOLIDAY CRAFT FAIRS

The Gifted Hand — Cancelled for 2014
You’ll find a decidedly contemporary bent, with more than 60 local artists, many of them from the next generation of twenty-something crafters. While only founded in 2005, it’s already a Maine tradition.
Ramada Inn (Tennis Court Area), 215 High Street, Ellsworth. 207-664-2404; giftedhandshow.com

December 6-7: United Maine Craftsmen Holiday Arts & Crafts Show
Some 95 local artisans in varied media: fiber, silver, sea glass, clay, and cookie dough (there’s food, too) at this annual event with free gift-wrapping and hourly door prize.
Sullivan Gym, University of Southern Maine, 66 Falmouth St., Portland. 207-621-2818; unitedmainecraftsmen.com

BEST MASSACHUSETTS HOLIDAY CRAFT FAIRS

November 28-30: Old Deerfield Christmas Sampler Craft Fair
More than 330 booths feature local, regional, and national artists. This show offers a wide selection of traditional crafts, with plenty of holiday decorations–carved Santas, ornaments, wreaths, and so on–on hand. Don’t miss the circa-1897 miniature Christmas village.
Better Living Center, Eastern States Exposition, 1305 Memorial Ave., West Springfield. 413-774-7476; deerfield-craft.org

December 5-7, 12-14, 18-23: Harvard Square Holiday Craft Fair
Celebrating nearly 30 years, this holiday fair at the First Parish Cambridge lures tourists and locals alike throughout the month of December from its prime location just steps from the MBTA. Inside: an underground bazaar, a riot of Indian textiles, painted silk, fused glass, and pottery, among some 40 stalls.
First Parish Unitarian Church, Church St. and Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge. harvardsquareholidayfair.com

December 5-7: CraftBoston Holiday
The Society of Arts & Crafts was founded in 1897, the first American organization of its kind, which in turn organized the first formal crafts exhibition on these shores. Now, more than 100 years later, it’s still running our region’s granddaddy holiday event, with 176 artists, a craft book seller, and informational booths promoting non-profit craft organizations and schools. Such prestige means high quality and generally higher prices, though SAC does highlight items under $100.
Boston Center for the Arts Cyclorama, 539 Tremont Street, Boston. 617-266-1810; societyofcrafts.org

BEST NEW HAMPSHIRE HOLIDAY CRAFT FAIRS

November 14-16: Castleberry Faire New England Holiday Craft and Specialty Food Fair
This annual show, started in 1995, takes a something-for-everyone approach, with 250 artisans in categories from angels to wreaths to gourmet foods, including dip and bread mixes.
Rockingham Park Racetrack, Rockingham Park Blvd., Salem. 603-332-2616; castleberryfairs.com

December 6-7: Castleberry Faire New England Holiday Craft Spectacular
Celebrating 15 years, this craft “spectacular” features jewelry, glass, candles, sports-themed gifts, art, photography, food, and more.
Rockingham Park Racetrack, Rockingham Park Blvd., Salem. 603-332-2616; castleberryfairs.com

BEST RHODE ISLAND HOLIDAY CRAFT FAIR

December 5-7, 12-14: Foundry Artists Association Holiday Show
For three decades, this show has selected wares from an impressive roster of artisans. Handmade items for sale include paintings, photos, jewelry, sculpture, textiles, ceramics, clothing, and accessories. Of course, it helps to have all those RISD grads in your backyard. Includes a silent auction.
Pawtucket Armory Center for the Arts, 172 Exchange Street, Pawtucket. foundryshow.com

BEST VERMONT HOLIDAY CRAFT FAIRS

November 22-23: Craft Vermont
Celebrating more than 60 years, this annual show is put on by the oldest and largest juried craft organization in the state of Vermont.
Sheraton Conference Center, 870 Williston Road, Burlington. 800-373-5429; vermonthandcrafters.com

November 28-30: Putney Craft Tour
An open-studios southeastern Vermont event for 35 years, with nearly 30 noteworthy artisans to visit. Printable map available online.
802-387-4032; putneycrafts.com

Please Note: This article was accurate at the time of publication. When planning a trip, please confirm details by directly contacting any company or establishment you intend to visit.

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3 Responses to Best Holiday Craft Fairs in New England

  1. Misty Maciejewski October 26, 2014 at 10:12 am #

    I’m writing to ask if their are any spaces available for the craft fair’s in Massachusetts on Tremont St. Or in New Hampshire at Rockingham Park race track. I am doing these craft fair’s this year to help raise money for my mothers lung surgery.., As she has lung cancer with no real insurances to pay for her procedures the insurance she has will only pay for a small portion of what she needs to have done. I. Would really appreciate it if possible.
    THANKS FOR YOUR TIME.,,
    Misty Maciejewski
    missvariety12 at gmail.com

    • Brenda Darroch October 26, 2014 at 1:51 pm #

      Hi Misty,
      You should contact those craft fairs directly to find out if they still have space available. Good luck!

  2. Matt Gang November 6, 2014 at 7:26 pm #

    Burlington’s Women’s Festival of Crafts should most definitely be on this list. This amazing show is celebrating it’s 25th year this November after Thanksgiving.

    http://www.womensfestivalofcrafts.com

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