Wednesday, October 19, 2011

2011 Grand Central Holiday Fair Nov. 14 to Dec. 24, 2011


Annual event brings variety of high-quality and exotic goods to historic Vanderbilt Hall for six weeks of shopping, dining and sightseeing.

New York, NY – October 17, 2011 – The 2011 Grand Central Terminal Holiday Fair takes over Vanderbilt Hall with 76 booths from artists and craftspeople making art, clothing, handbags, home goods, jewelry and bath and body products. Started in 1993, the Holiday Fair is a must-shop destination during the holiday season and the longest-running indoor holiday market in New York City. The Holiday Fair opens Monday, Nov. 14, runs through Saturday, Dec. 24, and is open every day except Thanksgiving Day.

Highly selective about the vendors chosen to participate, Holiday Fair planners spent the past year hand-picking designers, craftspeople and retailers who come from New York, the tri-state area, and from across the country and around the world. Among the unusual and exotic goods to be sold are enamel and pearl jewelry, African-crafted candles and body lotions, clothing designed and handmade in Brooklyn, a wide variety of Christmas and Hanukkah gifts such as hand-blown glass objects, and numerous creative products of recycled materials such as handbags made from recycled bus seats in Argentina. The range of products and price points guarantees that New Yorkers, commuters and tourists alike – about 1 million who pass through Grand Central Terminal each day of the holiday season – will find interesting gift items for others and some covet-worthy gifts for themselves.

The Holiday Fair is an indispensable resource for artisanal, quality merchandise and provides a luxurious shopping experience within the historic Terminal’s 12,000-square-foot Vanderbilt Hall.

Select 2011 Holiday Fair vendors include:

• Heart Art – Artist Wendy Isaacson creates unique heart-shaped art objects made of water putty and wood pulp (and a secret amount of NYC tap water). She has been commissioned by Lincoln Center to create hearts for special events, by the National Marfan Foundationawards, by Broadway producers for opening night gifts, and for collections by well-known public figures.

• Rain Created for Living – Rain is a small, rural factory near the southernmost tip of Africa specializing in handmade bath and body products manufactured with organic, wild-harvested African oils. The products include fair-trade artisan soaps, beaded and embroidered gift boxes, luxurious sleepwear, bathroom decor and accessories.

• Jon Wye – This Washington, D.C.-based design company focuses on leather accessories and apparel for men, women and children. The Jon Wye booth is unlike any other at Grand Central – the company is a Holiday Fair draw. For its leather belts, dog leashes, wallets and guitar straps, Wye embeds images on the leather using a process similar to tattooing, and fits products to customers onsite.

• Viva Zapata! – This handbag company stays true to its Argentinean roots by handcrafting bags from the colorful, recycled vinyl material that covers bus seats in Buenos Aires’ public transportation system.

• The Glass Haus – A group of international artists is selected each year by The Glass Haus to design and create its distinctive hand-blown glass ornaments.

• Chibekeni Global Treasures – This Fair Trade Federation company’s arts and crafts products are made by women’s groups in Africa who use the income to improve their communities and their families’ quality of life. The company was founded by Malawi-born Anna Msowoya-Keys, who began her work with refugees in Malawi and has expanded to groups in South Africa, Mozambique, and Kenya. A portion of Chibekeni’s proceeds benefits projects in Malawi through Msowoya-Keys American-based non-profit Maloto, including a model high school the group built last year in Mzuzu, and the Kwithu Women’s Group.

• Paradis Found Designs – This line of children’s accessories and clothing is handmadein New York from vintage fabrics and materials reused to make modern-style fashions.

• RebeckaFroberg Jewelry, Teresa Kahres Jewelry – Two designers, two backgrounds, two style aesthetics and one booth. Designers Froberg and Kahresshare a studio and store in Brooklynand will do the same at the Holiday Fair. Sweden-bornFroberg uses recycled materials and stones in her work; Kahres’ jewelry incorporates enameling, pearl, silver and organic materials.

• New York Transit Museum – The New York Transit Museum will highlight its popular transit-related gift items for children, including its line of Munipals wooden subway and railroad trains, New York City bus toys and models, Transit Museum and subway T-shirts and rompers, as well as books and exclusive Christmas ornaments.

Corrente – The label uses Italian leather and hand crafts all its handbags in Brooklyn. The label began a couple of years ago as an online store. After growing its fan base online and at various fairs, including the Holiday Fair, Corrente was able to open a storefront.

Deborah Armstrong & Company – The Connecticut-based designer of Celtic and Moorish-inspired gold and silver jewelry counts Halle Berry, Jennifer Connelly, Faith Hill, Diane Sawyer and Sharon Stone among her clients. 
Paradis Found Designs – A line of children’s accessories and clothing produced in New York from vintage materials.

This is probably one of the best holiday fair's in the city and a place to find that "one of a kind" gift for that special someone. A big thank you to the PR department at Grand Central Terminal for sending me these photos of some of the vendors items and also for the press release. Be sure to have this on your "to do" list if visiting the city during the 2011 holidays!! 

The Holiday Fair runs Nov. 14 – Dec. 24, 2011. Shopping hours are Monday to Saturday, from10am. to 8p.m., and Sunday, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

About Grand Central Terminal:

One of America’s greatest transportation hubs and one of New York City’s most iconic buildings, Grand Central Terminal is a national institution and an international example of giving new life to a historic building that otherwise would have been destroyed. Over the course of a colorful, tumultuous, and nearly 100-year history, Grand Central has become a destination for commuters, visitors and residents. Grand Central is home to restaurants, cocktail lounges, a gourmet market, and numerous specialty shops. Its storied Vanderbilt Hall, once the receiving area for travelers, is now a major public events space. For more information, visit

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