November 26, 2008

29th annual Holiday Craft Sale is Dec. 4-6

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- If, like Santa, you’re making your holiday shopping list and checking it twice, you’ll want to visit the 29th annual Holiday Craft Sale Dec. 4-6 at Southern Illinois University Carbondale. There, you can find all kinds of gifts, many one-of-a-kind, for the special people on your list. Kids can have some fun too while you’re shopping the final day of the event.

The Student Center Craft Shop sponsors the popular annual event, which runs from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 4 and 5 and from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Dec. 6. About 75 craft vendors from throughout the region will offer their handmade creations at the Student Center’s Hall of Fame and International Lounge.

The fare includes hand-blown glass ornaments, natural leaf wreaths, bass wood carvings, 3D wooden puzzles, wine bottle holders, jewelry, candles, deer antler art, handmade glass beads, fiber art doll ornaments and rag rugs. Vendors will also offer silks, baby clothes, purses, pottery, soap, hand-carved wooden pens, quilts, gift baskets, art prints, hats, scarves, woodworking creations, pottery and much, much more. You can even find Scherenschnitte, that most beautiful and delicate of paper-cutting artworks.

“People love to receive handmade things for the holidays,” said Ron Dunkel, Craft Shop coordinator. “Since the items are made regionally, including some created by SIU student groups, it makes them even more special.”

Admission to the show is free. You can take advantage of complimentary parking and free shuttle rides from the SIU Arena parking lot to the Student Center.

On Dec. 6, children ages 5-10 can just pop into the Craft Shop any time between 10 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. and make any number of fun crafts to take home, perhaps as a holiday gift.

Crafting options, and the nominal cost to cover supplies, include: mosaic candleholder (for age 9 and older) for $10, holiday cards for $1, picture holder for $2, candy cane ornament $2, plaster hand $8, beaded necklace or bracelet $4, origami ornament $2 and snowman centerpiece $3. That’s just for starters. Some craft sessions will run continuously while others are set for specific times. For the exact schedule and other details, contact the Craft Shop at 618/453-3636.

The Kids Pottery Wheel set for 2-4 p.m. on Dec. 6 gives children ages 8-12 the chance to work on a real pottery wheel. As they learn techniques and practice under the tutelage of an experienced instructor, they’ll even get their best pottery fired and glazed to take home. The class is limited to eight children and the cost, including materials, is $25. To register, contact the Craft Shop.

For more information, look online at or call 618/453-3636.