On Thursday, Nov. 2, 2023, Berkeley High School hosted its first Fall Craft Fair on the campus green during lunch, providing a platform for students to showcase their artistic talent. The fair featured a diverse range of creative works, from vibrant jewelry to realistic ceramic pieces.
The development and planning of the fair were relatively recent.
“The art department started planning to do fall festival events about a month ago,” said art teacher Candiss Youngblood. The department gathered once a week from that point on to organize the fair functions.
While the fair was conceived with a fall theme, Youngblood and her collaborators remained open to any concept the students were enthusiastic about.
“The theme was open to the artist’s discretion, but due to the time of year, the fair had to be called the Fall Craft Fair,” Youngblood said. Despite the initial supposition that it was mainly for students enrolled in the BHS’s art classes, the Fall Craft Fair evolved into an event open to everyone.
The art department extended the invitation to all BHS students, ensuring that every student had the opportunity to participate and showcase their artwork for sale. “I put out a call on the announcements and bulletin to look out if there were any BHS artists who wanted to create artworks to sell at the craft fair,” Youngblood said. Although this craft fair is accessible to all students, Youngblood is also open to the idea of staff members participating in the future.
Students created a wide variety of art pieces from a variety of mediums. Art included items such as baked goods, stickers, prints, lino block prints, crocheted pieces, embroideries, jewelry, ceramic pottery, bowls, T-shirts, patches, candles, and keychains. Students have dedicated several weeks to crafting these art pieces and have gone the extra mile independently to ensure their artwork has commercial appeal.
Ashley Alducin Munoz, a BHS junior, had been inspired in her artistic interest by one of her role models, her after-school teacher. Since the teacher had left, Alducin Munoz wanted to commemorate her. “My after-school teacher introduced me to how to make earrings, so when she left, I made earrings in memory of her,” Munoz said.
Adalilly Chu, a BHS sophomore, was influenced to make jewelry by her mother, who also enjoys making jewelry. “Most of the beads I buy are actually from my mom because (her mom) was really into making jewelry,” said Chu.
Noa Brysk, a BHS senior, had been motivated to make crochets as it helped keep her occupied. “Crocheting is really fun and it gives me things to do in my free time, keeping me busy,” said Brysk.
The price range for craft pieces was from five to 10 dollars. Artworks with greater complexity or size naturally commanded higher prices compared to smaller, more modestly crafted pieces.
“The price range is an average of seven dollars … The size and effort put in could make it more expensive,” Youngblood said.