In lieu of the holiday season, the Recycling Club hosted its first ever Sustainable Craft Fair on Tuesday, Dec. 7 from 4 to 8 p.m. in the Student Union’s Multi-Purpose Room.
The event offered an array of crafts made from recycled materials, including duct tape wallets, bowls made from records and jewelry made with everything from scrap metal and cardboard to bottle caps and cut up cans. The goal was to support local businesses and artists, encouraging shoppers to stay away from malls and mass corporations this holdiay season.
“It’s a really awesome turnout,” said fourth-year English major Alexandra Fisher, who’s the Recycling Club’s secretary. “I’m very satisfied.”
The idea came to Fisher after attending a craft fair back home in Long Beach, where she was struck by a vendor selling bamboo T-shirts printed with biodegradable ink. She wanted to bring something like this to campus, but wanted to spotlight the efforts of individual artists.
“I wanted to honor the students who were doing something good for not only themselves, but also the environment,” she said.
A number of campus organizations, such as Students for Fresh Water, Hooked on Stitches and the National Art Education Association, set up shop at the fair, adding to the collective effort. For Hooked on Stitches, the campus’s knitting and crocheting club, this meant selling products made with biodegradable yarn.
With the vendors’ tables circling almost the entire room, a space was reserved for a stage where performances were held by Epic Glee, Godchilla, The Alligators and Upgrade. A collection of over 1,000 plastic bags were laid across the floor to form a maze, and a plinko board of recycled bottles and scrap board was established in the back of the room where any guest could give it a shot, hoping to win a Recycling Club bracelet, also made sustainably from recycled products.
“[People will] at least think about making smart decisions,” Recycling Club President Lauren Brois said in regard to the event’s mission and student perception.
Every purchase earned patrons an entry into a raffle for T-shirts, and free tote bags were also provided, aiding everyone in minimizing their carbon footprints. All of the pizza scraps and plates were also being composted. Ten percent of each table’s profit went to the Recycling Club so that similar events could be planned for the future.