Not Your Grandma’s FRUITCAKE (It’s Way Gayer)

Photos: Courtesy FRUITCAKE.

The queerest Holiday Craft Fair in Los Angeles.

With Christmas just around the corner, perhaps you’ve begun thinking about gift shopping. But, have you considered making your dollars count? The Pride L.A. spoke with the founders of FRUITCAKE, a holiday craft fair where all the vendors are members of the LGBTQ+ community. Find out how supporting their business impacts and empowers the local fay community.

How/when did the concept begin?

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The idea of FRUITCAKE began in 2016 at holiday art fair when I looked around realized there wasn’t anything like that for queer artists.   Having shown work in nightclubs, at conventions, and pride events, it became clear we needed a space dedicated to the artists and focused on our work.

What can attendees expect this year?

We have over 40 vendors, a huge variety in artwork from clothing, candles, buttons, pins, paintings, drawings, tote bags and more. Plus snacks and refreshments and even a roaming Santa bear. We will have also tables from some local LGBTQ charities.

How do you find/select your vendors?

Artists submit to have a table at FRUITCAKE thru our word of mouth network.  There are so many talented queer makers in Los Angeles who are looking to be a part of our community and help create and event like this one.  Gathering 15 vendors for the first Fruitcake was really easy, and now we have over 40 vendors this year.

Why is it a good idea to buy gifts at Fruitcake, rather than at a shopping mall, for example?

Support local queer artists and their work. It feels great to meet the artists at their booth, talk about the work they made, and give them money directly.  Shopping online or in big box stores is so impersonal and corporate and mainstream; this is literally the opposite.  Queer art and artist have very little opportunity to showcase their work outside of the internet and this is a great opportunity to make a personal connection.

What is something that the LGBTQ+ community should remember as we move into the holiday season?

It’s important to support independent queer artists and shop locally. Our individualism and creative expression is threatened by the water-downed products of corporate America and the big box stores.  Engage with the community, meet create people, support queer art.

FRUITCAKE will take place Saturday, Dec. 15 from noon until  7 p.m. at 2234 W. Temple St., L.A. For more information, visit the Facebook event page.