The best holiday markets and pop-ups to shop in Metro Vancouver 2018

    1 of 26 2 of 26

      The Christmas décor is out, the wish lists are being drafted, and your credit card is likely about to take a beating—yes, it's that time of year again, folks. But shopping for family, friends, and office Secret Santas doesn't have to be a dreadful (or generic) experience thanks to the myriad of holiday markets, craft fairs, and one-of-a-kind pop-ups taking place in Metro Vancouver over the next month.

      Skip the mall this winter and head to one of these 25 holiday-shopping events if you're looking to impress once St. Nick's big day rolls around.


      My Sister's Closet

      My Sister’s Closet Commercial Drive Pop-up

      From November 1 to December 31 at 1151 Commercial Drive

      Big festive draw: Downtown consignment shop My Sister’s Closet has opened a temporary location in East Van for the holidays, offering fashionistas and gift-givers the opportunity to shop a selection of high-quality pre-loved threads from brands like Prada, Manolo Blahnik, and more. A portion of proceeds benefits Battered Women’s Support Services, a local nonprofit that aims to end violence against women.

      Price of admission: Free.


      Amanda Siebert

      Circle Craft Christmas Market

      From November 7 to 11 at the Vancouver Convention Centre’s West building (999 Canada Place)

      Big festive draw: One of the West Coast’s largest holiday markets, this well-attended affair offers an array of handmade goods crafted by 300-plus artisans from across Canada. This year’s edition, which will follow the quaint theme of “farmhouse Christmas”, features everything from pretty ceramics and stained-glass art to Métis-influenced womenswear and succulent-shaped candles.

      Price of admission: From $11 in advance online.


      Eastside Flea

      Eastside Flea Holiday Market

      November 16 and 17 and December 1 and 2, 8 and 9, 15 and 16 at Eastside Studios (550 Malkin Avenue)

      Big festive draw:  The Eastside Flea is breaking in its new expanded digs at Eastside Studios with its annual series of holiday shindigs. The long-running market carries vintage clothing, handmade décor, collectible items, and more, and will also welcome a fleet of food trucks and a live DJ.  

      Price of admission: $3 at the door.


      West Coast Christmas Show & Artisan Marketplace

      West Coast Christmas Show & Artisan Marketplace

      From November 16 to 18 at the Fraser Valley Trade and Exhibition Centre (1190 Cornell Street)

      Big festive draw: Get into the seasonal spirit at this holiday extravaganza, which will play host to more than 100 artists, metalsmiths, furniture designers, and more. Among the products available will be handmade Christmas stockings, rhubarb-and-bourbon jams, and laser-cut wood ornaments. Don’t miss the tree-decorating contest arts-and-crafts workshops, too.

      Price of admission: $9 in advance online and $10 at the door.


      Tourism Burnaby

      Deer Lake Craft Festival

      From November 16 to 18 at the Shadbolt Centre for the Arts (6450 Deer Lake Avenue, Burnaby)

      Big festive draw: Though it’s nearly 50 years in operation, the Deer Lake Craft Festival shows no signs of slowing with a lineup this year that spotlights more 60 glass blowers, sculptors, jewellery designers, and more. Returning participants include Violet Finvers, Jane’s Honey Bees, and Sable Shortbread—all of whom have been hand selected by the Burnaby Arts Council.

      Price of admission: Free.


      Refresh Market

      Refresh Market

      November 16 and 17 at West Coast Railway Heritage Park (39645 Government Road, Squamish)

      Big festive draw: Escape the city to Refresh Market’s 20th annual event, where you’ll find a whopping 100 artisans selling handmade clothing, ceramics, artisan foods, and everything in between from participants like Blackstrap Cloth & Co. and Devi Arts Collective. Fun on-site attractions, like crystal and tarot readings and a coffee and ice-cream bar, should make shopping a breeze.

      Price of admission: $3 in advance online and $5 at the door.


      Swedish Cultural Society

      Julmarknad: A Swedish Christmas Market

      November 17 and 18 at the Scandinavian Community Centre (6540 Thomas Street, Burnaby)

      Big festive draw: Hosted by the Swedish Cultural Society and entering its 40th year, this holiday event offers all sorts of goods for the home, wardrobe, and pantry—each of them related to Nordic Christmas traditions in some way. Other highlights include live entertainment, arts and crafts, and of course, plenty of Swedish glögg.

      Price of admission: Free.


      Julia Mior Rugs

      The Federal Store's Holiday Pop-up Series 

      November 24 and December 1, 8, 13, 15, and 20 at the Federal Store (2601 Quebec Street)

      Big festive draw: Mount Pleasant's favourite café and general store is opening its doors to a rotating lineup of local designers this holiday season. Every Thursday (from 5 to 9 p.m.) and Saturday evening (from 4 to 8 p.m.) beginning November 24, you'll find a smorgasbord of one-off clothing, ceramics, accessories, and other items at the shop from some of the city's most celebrated independent makers, including Lindsey Hampton, Kinda Sleepwear, Julia Mior Rugs, and Erica Leal Jewellery.

      Price of admission: Free.


      Bloom Market

      November 24 and 25 at Fort Langley Community Hall (9167 Glover Road, Fort Langley)

      Big festive draw: Browse lovingly crafted items for the kitchen, vanity, and more at this seasonal fair, which will have more than 20 talented B.C. artisans on hand. Langley Gives, a group made up of nonprofits based in the area, will be conducting photos with Santa on-site by donation.

      Price of admission: $2 at the door.


      Getty Images / maudanros

      Italian Christmas Market

      November 30 at the Italian Cultural Centre (3075 Slocan Street)

      Big festive draw: Kick off the holiday season with a hearty Buon Natale! at East Van’s Italian Cultural Centre, where Italian food products like olive oil and panetton await alongside Christmas-dinner essentials such as sweets, wines, and spirits. More than 40 vendors will also be on-site with jewellery, pottery, candles, and more.

      Price of admission: $2 at the door.


      Western Front

      Toque Craft Fair

      From November 30 to December 2 at Western Front (303 East 8th Avenue)

      Big festive draw: A fundraiser for local art-and-music venue Western Front, Toque delivers one of the coolest and most well curated craft-market experiences in the city. Past years have featured beloved artisans like Maggie Boyd Ceramics and Erin Templeton, plus limited-edition goods that have been specially created for the fair by local artists.  

      Price of admission: By donation.


      West Coast Leslie Designs

      Portobello West Holiday Market

      From November 30 to December 2 at Roundhouse Community Arts & Recreation Centre (181 Roundhouse Mews)

      Big festive draw:  Vancouver’s answer to London’s funky Portobello Road Market features more than 70 vendors hawking handmade items like heirloom-quality knitwear, vintage jewellery, and even lime-pistachio-flavoured fortune cookies. Also part of the fun are live music, food trucks, and pics with St. Nick himself.  

      Price of admission: $5 at the door.


      Coquitlam Christmas Craft Fair

      Coquitlam Christmas Craft Fair

      From November 30 to December 2 at the Poirier Forum (618 Poirier Street, Coquitlam)

      Big festive draw: More than 100 makers will offer a slew of handmade delights at this Tri-Cities event. Expect mushroom and plant-based jewellery from Chaerea Jewellery, crochet accessories from Kitz Knitz, and edible items from vendors like Dundarave Olive Company and Solasta Chocolate.

      Price of admission: $3 at the door.



      Strathcona Winter Craft Fair

      December 1 at Strathcona Community Centre (601 Keefer Street)

      Big festive draw: Returning for its eighth iteration this year, this community-oriented market emphasizes talented makers from around East Van. Past events have stocked inclusive and very giftable items like fuzzy toques and scarves and braille greeting cards—all locally made, of course.

      Price of admission: $2 at the door.


      Getty Images / dmf87

      Kensington Holiday Craft Fair

      December 1 at Kensington Community Centre (5175 Dumfries Street)

      Big festive draw: Shop toys, art, greeting cards, and home décor from 60-plus makers at this neighbourhood event. Raffle prizes and refreshments will also be for sale, with proceeds benefiting youth and children’s programs at the Kensington Community Centre.

      Price of admission: Free.


      Mind the Minimal

      Etsy Vancouver Market

      December 1 and 2 at Wesbrook Community Centre (3335 Webber Lane)

      Big festive draw: Online DIY destination Etsy is partnering with UBC’s Wesbrook Village to host a holiday fair that will offer everything from handmade ties and bowties to one-off jewellery and ceramics. The event will also feature an outdoor tree display, Christmas carollers, photo opps with Santa, and more.

      Price of admission: $3 at the door.



      Port Moody Craft Fair

      December 8 at the Port Moody City Hall Galleria (100 Newport Drive, Port Moody)

      Big festive draw: Adorable ugly-sweater ornaments, flaky apricot Danishes, and watercolour greeting cards are just some of the delights you’ll find at the third annual Port Moody Craft Fair. Proceeds from admission will go toward the Coquitlam-based Share Family and Community Services Society, which provides childhood-development programs and newcomer-support resources for those in need.

      Price of admission: By donation.


      Got Craft?

      Got Craft?

      December 8 and 9 at Maritime Labour Centre (1880 Triumph Street)

      Big festive draw: Minimalist jewellery crafted from wood offcuts, waxed-canvas lunch bags, and charcoal-and-rose face masks, are just some of the items you can expect at this quirky and well-edited fair. DIY workshops and food trucks are part of the deal, too, and the first 50 shoppers on each day will nab a swag bag loaded with handmade goods.

      Price of admission: $3 in advance online and $5 at the door.


      Bianca Barr Designs

      Shiny Fuzzy Muddy

      December 8 and 9 at Heritage Hall (3102 Main Street)

      Big festive draw: An artist-curated lineup of more than 40 makers—this year includes vintage upcycler and jewellery designer Bianca Barr, ceramist Cathy Terepocki, and print studio Banquet Workshop—makes this long-running market a local fave. Shopping for tots or young at heart? Look for Him Creations’ adorable wool ornaments and Diana Watters Handmade’s DIY cross-stitch kits.

      Price of admission: $4 in advance online and at the door.


      Shiny Happy Leaf

      Weirdos Holiday Market

      December 8 and 9 at The Hall (1739 Venables Street)

      Big festive draw: Hosted by local curio shop This Monkey’s Gone to Heaven, this artisan market was made for the wacky, most eccentric characters on your gift list. Expect outlandish but functional items, like taxidermy figures and mushroom jewellery, plus tarot card readings, food, a fully licensed bar, and more.

      Price of admission: $2 at the door.



      Fall For Local Holiday Market

      December 8 and 9 at The Pipe Shop Building (115 Victory Ship Way, North Vancouver)

      Big festive draw:  This local market prides itself on offering a platform for emerging small-business owners and entrepreneurs, offering attendees a chance to shop up-and-coming brands before they hit it big. This year’s holiday edition features names like ethical-clothing manufacturer Friends Made, cannabis-infused wellness label Deew, and traditional Chinese soup and tea blend makers Kyth + Kyn. The first 50 guests on each day will receive a free swag bag.

      Price of admission: $4 in advance online or $5 at the door.


      Mother of Pearl Handmade


      From December 11 to 24 at Little Mountain Shop (4386 Main Street)

      Big festive draw: Cutest name in the local craft-market game? Check. A lengthy list of the city’s best makers offering a range of gift-able goods? Double check—in fact, this expertly curated pop-up promises to have something for everyone. Last year’s market featured items like dreamy rope vessels, wool sweaters, and beautifully illustrated greeting cards.

      Price of admission: Free.


      Salt Spring Tweed

      Make It! Vancouver

      From December 12 to 16 at the PNE Forum (2901 East Hastings Street)

      Big festive draw: Nearly 200 artisans from B.C. and beyond are descending upon East Van for this down-to-Earth shopping affair, which shines a spotlight on emerging “makies”. Expect everything from concrete planters and period-proof undergarments to handcrafted wood vessels and all-natural dog treats, plus food trucks and a fully licensed beer garden.  

      Price of admission: $4 in advance online or $8 at the door.


      Jones General Store

      Jones General Store Holiday Market

      December 15 at Cambrian Hall (215 East 17th Avenue)

      Big festive draw: The folks behind Jones General Store, a U.K.–founded vintage-hunting collective, have made Vancouver their new home, and they’ve brought with them plenty of antique décor, apothecary objects, and fashion and art items to share. The group will be hosting their first pop-up in the city this holiday, which will feature additional vendors, a handy gift-wrapping station, and other highlights that aim to make last-minute shopping a little less painful.

      Price of admission: Free.


      Getty Images / Gorfer

      Women’s Winter Faire

      December 15 and 16 at Heritage Hall (3102 Main Street)

      Big festive draw: Support a badass lineup of all-women makers at the 25th annual Women’s Winter Faire, which will sell everything from toys and trinkets to handcrafted jewellery and pottery pieces. Partial proceeds from admission go toward a nonprofit or grassroots organization.

      Price of admission: By a suggested donation of $3 to $5.

      Follow Lucy Lau on Twitter @lucylau.