The weather couldn’t have been better for outdoor shopping on Saturday, so we headed to Adams Morgan for a solid afternoon of perusing the Washington City Paper-sponsored Crafty Bastards Festival. The 150-plus vendors—selling handmade housewares, jewelry, clothing, and more—featured arts and crafts of a new generation. Gone were the stuffy knitted scarves and cheap beaded jewelry, and in their place sat stalls brimming with hip graphic T-shirts, sculptural silver jewelry, and standout graphic design. A break-dance competition was welcome entertainment. Read on for a look at the loot we loved and a list of designers to watch out for.
BAGS AND ACCESSORIES
Final Approach. Hand-painted vintage suitcases accented with bold colors and the occasional Winston Churchill reference make for luggage that’ll stand out on the baggage-claim conveyor or serve as quirky at-home storage. Final Approach’s Etsy shop closed to prepare for the festival, but check back mid-October, when new cases will be available for purchase. Have your own ideas for a custom case? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for special orders.
Pistol Stitched. Cheery fabric bags with cherry-wood handles—perfect for preppy ladies who brunch. We especially like the Brown Knots Supper Clutch, but if you’ve got another fabric/shape combo in mind, creator Ali Dryer is happy to fill custom orders.
Barry’s Farm. What’s not to love about poptart iPhone sleeves and shirt-and-tie laptop cases? These vinyl, heavy-stitched electronics covers inject a sense of humor into everyday objects.
Figs & Ginger. This eco-friendly gunmetal jewelry—designed around forest-animal and plant motifs—emanates Southern warmth and hospitality. The dainty circle lovebird necklace makes a great gift for girlfriends, moms, and best friends, and we dare you to find a prettier accessory than the Secret Garden Series Rose Ring.
Swear Jar Design. These nautical-inspired silver-and-paint-laquered pieces strike just the right balance between graphic and crafty. We flipped for straight-drop earrings such as the Yo-Yo and Little 8 and can’t wait to wear our new dart pendant with slouchy cardigans and boyfriend jeans on the weekends.
Something’s Hiding in Here. We fell for the organic glamour of the lacquered-wood cocktail rings (e-mail email@example.com to request one) but were pleasantly surprised to find an Esty site full of quaint stationery and modern Christmas decorations as well. An added bonus: The duo behind the label offers great home-design and wedding ideas on its blog.
B-kao. The majority of Crafty Bastards clothing vendors offered little more than graphic T-shirts, but B-kao stood out with cozy piece-meal sweatshirt tops accented with lace and vintage materials. Slouchy fabric bags—such as this Painter Stripes Hobo—are also worth paying attention to.
Kristina Bilonick. Neckwear was the number-one reason to head to this DC-based clothier’s stall. Her printed vintage ties—available at Bilonick’s Etsy site and the Civilian Art Project shop—are suited for hipster teens, and this buffalo-printed cotton scarf will add a dose of personality to plain T-shirts and jean jackets.
Loyalty & Blood. There’s something oddly appealing about the pale-yellow Bearded Man tee, and the Eyeballs shirt does an edgy science-class kid thing we can’t get enough of. Also worth checking out: the mismatched gun-and-dagger earrings and pages of quirky pendant pewter necklaces.
POSTERS AND STATIONERY
Dirty Pictures. Anthony Dihle’s silkscreen posters pay homage to the local music venues Black Cat, DC9, and Iota Club & Café, but the skinnier size (12 by 22 inches) and weathered graphics give them a vintage Nashville feel. His Ten Feet Tall Grocery Bag Graphic is going straight on our desk wall.
Craftgasm. The Marion Barry button earrings drew us in, but we stayed in the booth an extra ten minutes sorting through the adorable recycled-map stationery—perfect for sending letters while away from home.
Moonlight Bindery. So many clever pieces to choose from. The Lock Unlined Moleskine is perfect for jotting down notes on the go, and there’s something soothingly old-fashioned about carrying around personal pictures in the Geranium Wallpaper Accordion photo album.