Must-Visit Artist Co-Ops and Markets
Check out incredible studios, collectives and pop-ups supporting DIYers across the country.
Photo By: Courtesy of Dutch Valley Artist Co-op
Photo By: Courtesy of Artists and Fleas
Photo By: Courtesy of Bib and Tucker
Photo By: Courtesy of Indie Craft Experience
Photo By: Courtesy of American Field
Photo By: Sarah Cole, Courtesy of Green Pea Press
Photo By: Courtesy of Crafted at the Port of LA
Photo By: Courtesy of The Rust Belt Market
Photo By: Courtesy of Equinox Studios
Photo By: Courtesy of SOMArts
Dutch Alley Artist Co-Op
New Orleans' Dutch Alley Artist Co-Op should be on everyone's French Quarter to-do list. The art gallery is located in the historic French Market and is managed by co-op artists themselves. Browse local artwork for a one-of-a-kind souvenir from fun paintings to funky prints. If jewelry is your vice, there are co-op jewelry makers who melt their own silver to create custom pieces.
Artists and Fleas
New York City's Chelsea Market may be known for the food but the real gem is browsing the racks at Artists and Fleas. The market features dozens of artist stalls with wares ranging the gamut from woodworking to weaving to photography. With other markets in Brooklyn, SoHo and now across the country in LA, Artist and Fleas features hundreds of artists a year. Don't miss the DIY workshops at all the locations. Classes include silk painting, jewelry soldering and bike maintenance.
Bib and Tucker Sew-Op
Bib and Tucker Sew-Op sounds like it might be just for pro seamstresses, but the Birmingham, Ala. group welcomes all skill levels. In fact, one of their workshops is called "How Does This Thing Work?!" and focuses on using, maintaining and loving your sewing machine. Other workshops include how to piece, appliqué, quilt and bind a wall hanging.
Indie Craft Experience
Atlanta's Indie Craft Experience or ICE is a seasonal pop-up market featuring local crafts and vintage goods. This summer’s two-day market event will have nearly 100 vendors. Show up early as the first 250 attendees get a local artist-designed swag bag.
"American Field was created to serve the exact opposite of a normal purchase process," said founder Mark Bollman. "You get the chance to meet so many brands. You leave with so many stories." The pop-up expo and craft fair features hundreds of made-in-America brands and artisans from across the country. Handmade wares include clothing, jewelry, woodworking, home goods, pet goods and more. Don’t miss the mustache pretzels while you shop. And there’s also custom on-site embroidery for items you buy at the market.
Lowe Mills Arts and Entertainment
Lowe Mills Arts and Entertainment may not be a traditional co-op but it is the largest independent arts center in the nation with 148 studios and six fine art galleries. The Huntsville, Ala. space is home to Green Pea Press, the state's first community printshop.
Crafted at the Port of LA
Browse dozens of Southern California wares at this handmade market. You'll find everything from apparel and jewelry to home decor, paper goods and natural beauty products. Don't miss the artisanal food makers and kitchen for chocolate, preserves and boozy cake pops.
The Rust Belt Market
The Rust Belt Market features dozens of Detroit makers and artisans plus tons of great vintage and rummage thrifting. Waste an afternoon browsing retro shirts and stock up on quirky Detroit gifts for the holidays.
Founded in 2006, Seattle’s artist enclave Equinox Studios has more than 50 tenants specializing in trades from blacksmithing to ceramics to leatherwork. The studio, a WWII-era factory building in the Georgetown neighborhood, features 36 studios and shops.
Not a co-op or a market, SOMArts is one of San Francisco’s six city-supported cultural centers. Dozens of contemporary artists are featured in exhibitions of performance art, digital media, visual arts and multimedia. The center has a ceramics partnership with the San Francisco Art Institute and drop-in adult classes are offered every Wednesday night. If you’re in the Bay Area during the month of October, don’t miss the center’s annual Day of the Dead exhibition.