Design is the at very heart of living in Guadalajara, and one of the deep pleasures of the Tapatio lifestyle is perusing its myriad craft festivals that spring organically from individual neighborhoods or emerge, especially this time of year, as major gatherings of some of the best artisans from around the area.
One such gathering is the decidedly upscale La Mirilla Bazar (otherwise known as “Yellow Suite”), a quarterly festival now celebrating its fourth year in Parque Silvio Barba at the corner of Avenida Providencia and Ruben Dario in the Providencia neighborhood. For the holiday season, La Mirilla opens for two subsequent weekends, and features hip designers from all over Jalisco and beyond.
Perhaps the best term to describe this season’s festival is “plentiful.” More than 100 high end vendors proffer their products, most organic and all handmade in small batches. You may wander through a substantial gourmet food court for sampling and gifting, through acres of accessories and shoes or organic cosmetics, to furniture, pillows and home design elements, to funky clothing for women, men and children – as well as trendy products for your pets.
Prices vary, and while the festival ranges from creative hipster to avant-garde designers with a following, overall the vendors keep their prices affordable for virtually every pocketbook, with countless inexpensive gift items for that hard to please person on your last-minute list.
Among my favorites last weekend were jewelry designer Mavic Maillard, whose elegant pieces in silver and semi-precious stones grace the bodies of many Puerta de Hierro mavens, and “Kia Tejido,” a socially responsible business model whose knit and crochet projects overseen by Canadian born Tanya Bieberstein provide employment for women in areas of Jalisco. Kia Tejido offers huge and colorful pillows, rugs, bags and whimsical stuffed animals, among other items.
A few of my other favorites include “Sketchable,” who create necklace charms from the client’s own drawings, Ibarra Remus or “Fulkeri,” bag designers, Mate Interiors and “Tigra” furniture designers, and Anemona, a small workshop producing sketchbooks and scrapbooks. The list could go on for pages – you really need to go see this for yourself.
If you missed last weekend’s festival, don’t fret. La Mirilla continues this weekend, Saturday and Sunday, December 20 and 21, from about noon to about 8 p.m. each day. Be warned, however, this weekend features a completely different set of nearly 125 vendor booths. Even if you didn’t get a chance to see last week’s offerings, this weekend’s choices are sure to be just as plentiful and exciting. As is true of the design field in Guadalajara, this festival just gets better with every season.
Kia Tejido information and wares available at www.kiatejido.com. Mavic Maillard Jewellery on Facebook @Mavic Maillard Jewellery.