I hope you’ve heard of Unique LA by now. If not, I hope it’s because you just moved here and are wandering aimlessly about the city, trying to figure out where the soul of the city is beneath the relentless traffic and weird, indecisive weather. Well, I’ll just tell you: a little bit of it can be found this weekend at Unique LA. This would be a congregation of over 300 (!!) vendors selling everything from messenger bags to home decor to cupcakes. Each and every one of these vendors is based here in LA, so the city’s influence is there, somewhere, in their nifty designs. When you need to break, grab a drink (your ticket gets you free drink, and there will be a host bar) and grub from, among others, The Manila Machine, Flying Pig, and Platine. Or, hang out at an eco workshop or learn how to sew or do something useful at a one of the DIY workshops scheduled throughout the weekend.
Across the street, Artisanal LA pops back up from its very successful autumnal debut: it’s strictly a pop-up this time, so, no, there won’t be any Lord of the Flies moments. But, there will be over 30 local artisanal food vendors with delicious treats for immediate and future consumption. The Flying Pie Man falls into the former category; he’s whipping up a special Pork Belly Sukiyaki Pie just for the event. Nosh on that and pick up something bacon-ized from Cast-Iron Gourmet, for that friend of yours who hopes and prays that the bacon trend never ends. And that’s just the beginning – the entire list of participants is here.
In keeping with community spirit, a portion of Unique LA’s proceeds from the ticket sales will benefit 826LA, and a portion of Artisanal LA’s proceeds will benefit LAUSD’s Edible Schoolyard Program. This all works out so that you, an Angeleno, can support your friendly neighborhood businessperson, and together, everyone can help support the local community. Is your heart warmed yet? Good. ‘Tis the season, you know?
Unique LA will be at the penthouse of the California Market Center downtown, 110 E. 9th Street. Artisanal LA will be across the street at the Cooper Building, 851 Santee St. Tickets to Unique LA are $10; if you buy pre-sale tickets, you’ll score a little goodie bag. Whether you buy the tickets in advance or the day-of, your Unique LA wristband will let you into Artisanal LA for $5 instead of $6. Other option: check out the full details on Artisanal LA’s 2-for-1 offer here. Both events run from 11am to 6pm Saturday and Sunday.