On the Road with Etsy Dallas: Renegade Chicago

In mid-September I had the pleasure of joining up with fellow Etsy Dallas members OneUpDesigns as well as fellow Texas Etsians 2Enju, MadelineWood, SquidInkKollective, and RoboRoku at the 8th Annual Renegade Craft Fair in Chicago.

I had a blast on the drive. Lynnea & Brian of SquidInkKollective drove up from Austin, picked me up in Dallas and after we played a serious game of tetris with two entire businesses' worth of stock in one vehicle, we headed up through Oklahoma and St. Louis. We all gratefully crashed in Peoria, Illinois, where one of my best friends from college is currently in graduate school at Bradley University. We might have been delirious by the time she showed us what we thought was the greatest thing Peoria had to offer. The next day, we finished the drive into Chicago and arrived at the home of our fantastic hostess, Tamara. Tamara is better known as TPDesign, one of the founding members of EtsyDallas. These days, she lives happily with her husband and son in a beautiful house right outside Chicago. Tamara took us to see all sorts of fantastic things Chicago has to offer.

I fell in love with the city - we really packed in some fun stuff before the craft fair including a trip to the aquarium, some delicious vegetarian restaurants (and Chicago deep dish pizza, no doubt!) and some nerd-tastic bookstores (plus Quimby's, a comic shop with a great selection of zines and limited edition art books).

Saturday and Sunday were devoted to the unique experience of Renegade Chicago! I was honored to be among more than 300 of the most talented hand makers the nation has to offer. Plus? Fair food and a marching band! Yes. Please. And the shoppers? Almost as sweet and fun as Dallas shoppers - which is a compliment indeed!

I loved every second of the entire trip and can't wait until next year when I may [hopefully] make the trip again. The drive home did present a pretty great little pit stop - an antique mall named for the huge pink elephant on the front lawn.

You can see additional photos of our trip here.
Posted by Cheyne of CutOutAndCollect