To Market, To Market: Holiday Shopping In the RI Region
November 28 is Small Business Saturday, which, despite its American Express origin, has sort of become the antidote to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. But really, buying locally from businesses on the smaller side is an all-year-round practice in the Rural Intelligence region. And in the leadup to the holidays, it’s just a lot more fun, especially when you’re shopping at a fair or festival; it’s all about community.
To make things easier for you, we’ve compiled a guide to some of the many holiday “mall-turnative” opportunities (moniker courtesy of MacKimmie Co.) in the region. Don’t forget to bring your own bags.
November 27-29 and December 5-6, Pittsfield: Hancock Shaker Village
You are sadly mistaken if you think the only thing to buy here are the famous Shaker oval boxes — although they are all uniquely handmade and pretty fab. The end-of-season sale in the village store offers deep discounts on most merchandise including the boxes, foodstuffs, basket-making kits, and other Shaker-inspired wooden items.
10 a.m.-4 p.m.
843 West Housatonic Street, Pittsfield, MA
December 5, Monterey: The Monterey Library
The library’s Knox Gallery will host an artists/makers sale by some of Monterey’s most popular creatives. Meet the artists and peruse earrings by Maureen and Michael Banner, baskets by Wendy Jensen, pottery by Ellen Grenadier, fabric and decorative pillows by MaryPaul Yates, and art by Joe Baker and Julie Shapiro.
11 a.m.-4 p.m.
425 Main Road, Monterey, MA
December 5-6, Pittsfield: The Handmade Holiday Festival
Alchemy Initiative presents its 7th annual curated holiday market. As it’s changed its location from year to year, it seems also to have gotten larger, and now features nearly 50 contemporary artisans and food producers offering things you’ve never seen before and items you didn’t know you needed.
Saturday 10 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Paterson Field House at Berkshire Community College
1350 West Street, Pittsfield, MA
December 5-6, Stockbridge: Berkshire Botanical Garden Holiday Marketplace
Here you’ll find one-of-a-kind Christmas decorations, gifts by local craftspeople and artisanal food vendors. This year, there will be a gift basket station so you can create your own personalized holiday presentations using wares from regional vendors. And you don’t have to pay the Garden’s admission fee just to enjoy the Marketplace.
10 a.m.-4 p.m.
5 West Stockbridge Road, Stockbridge, MA
December 11-13, Pittsfield: Shire City Sanctuary Holiday Shindy
The 10th annual Holiday Shindy is a juried sale featuring more than 50 of the region’s most notable makers of fine and original crafts and artisanal food products, and will include screen-printers, textile artists, soap makers, jewelers, potters, woodworkers and others. It’s held in the Shire City Sanctuary, a former church. (Be honest: can you resist an event called a Shindy?)
10 a.m.-5 p.m.
40 Melville Street, Pittsfield, MA
Now-January 2, Hudson: Cashmere Popup Shop
We write about this every year, because one can’t own too much cashmere, and because you can’t beat the prices at this sale of top-of-the-line, deeply discounted cashmere scarves, throws, wraps, women’s and men’s sweaters, and scores of gloves and knit caps.
11 a.m.-5 p.m. daily. Fridays and Saturdays open until 7 p.m.
535 Warren Street, Hudson, NY
November 27-28, Claverack: Traditions Linens Factory Outlet Thanksgiving Traditions Sale
We wrote about the Traditions Linens Labor Day sale, and heard that the place was packed. So expect the same as you save on linen napkins, cotton sheet sets, stonewashed coverlets, terry towels and much more. The company’s Facebook page says these are the lowest prices of the year. We’re so there.
9 a.m.-4 p.m.
29 Route 9H, Claverack, NY
Photo: Hannah Ray Taylor
November 27-29, Hudson: Basilica Farm + Flea
In only its third year, this market is fast becoming the Big Kahuna of Black Friday alternative shopping. In collaboration this year with the Hudson River Exchange, the event offers quality products from a diverse group of about 125 regional makers, farmers, chefs and vintage collectors in a building that’s pretty vintage and fabulous itself. New this year: expanded tastings and educational workshops, as well as an exciting expansion on the “Flea” component of the market – a special concept space featuring even more collectors and collaborators.
Friday 2-5 p.m., with a Black Friday Soirée from 5-9 p.m.
Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
110 Front Street, Hudson
Nov. 27-29 and Dec. 5- 6, Spencertown Spencertown Academy Arts Center Handmade Holiday Pop-up Shop
It’s back this year by popular demand, which tells you something about this curated sale featuring cards, ceramics, jewelry, quilts, cutting boards, knitwear, felted puppets, fired glass, baskets, paper crafts and edible delicacies made by Columbia, Ulster and Berkshire county residents.
10 a.m.-4 p.m.
790 Route 203, Spencertown, NY
November 28, Pine Plains: Le Shopping @ Stissing House
Eat, then shop, or the other way around; it’s all good at the Stissing House, where local artists and artisans will be presenting new creations.
11 a.m.-7 p.m.
7801 South Main Street, Pine Plains, NY
Nov. 27-28, Kent: Kent Holiday Champagne Stroll
The Kent Chamber of Commerce bills the event as “the benchmark for all holiday strolls,” and considering the Champagne that will be flowing, the billing might be accurate. Thirty shops will be serving 30 Champagnes and bubblies along with special promotions and sales. Strollers begin by visiting The Swift House to purchase a champagne flute and receive a map of the evening’s events.
Check in at The Swift House, 12 Maple Street, Kent, CT
November 27-29, New Milford: Local Artists Craft Show
If you’ve been reading RI lately, you know New Milford is a creative hotspot, and here’s further proof. Returning artists include Don Turner (photography), Linda Banks (Banks Glass Studio), Celeste Belemare (fibers), Reese Piper (Ridge Runner Soaps), Bern Richards (gourd & feather art), Rob Wotzak (blacksmith) and Cynthia Battista (jewelry). New this year is potter Jan Lesnikoski (Moss Farm Studio). A portion of the proceeds are donated to The Animal Welfare Society of New Milford.
10 a.m.-5 p.m.
New Milford Railroad Station.
11 Railroad Street, New Milford, CT
Nov. 27-29 and Dec. 4-6: The Christmas Shoppe at the historic Merwinsville Hotel
The historic 1843 hotel located in the Kent, Sherman and New Milford area has a fascinating history as one of the last of the trackside station hotels east of the Mississippi. Now a nonprofit organization in the middle of a substantial renovation, it’s hosting its second year of holiday weekend activities. Baked goods, chili, Christmas trees, wreaths, and local artisans’ work will be available amidst the decorations and displays.
10 a.m.-7 p.m.
1 Brown’s Forge Road, Gaylordsville, CT
Dec. 5-6, Salisbury/Lakeville: Holiday Artisans Market (Part 1) at the White Hart Inn
Produced by the Artisans Group, a collective of artists from the tri-state area, this is the 11th annual event. Shoppers can choose from jewelry, pottery, organic skin care, wood and leather goods, fiber arts, gourmet food and more.
10 a.m.-5 p.m.
White Hart Inn
15 Undermountain Road, Salisbury, CT
Dec. 12, Falls Village: Holiday Artisans Market (Part 2) at the Center on Main
The tri-state artisans bring their arts and craftworks to NW Connecticut, this time to Falls Village. See listing directly above for items offered at the market.
10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Center on Main, Falls Village, CT
There are more shopping opportunities in our Shopping Intelligence listings.