Over 250 vendors with a variety of stories were present at the Patchwork Show on Oct. 29 in Long Beach.
Families brought their kids and pets to witness a performance from the Americana rock band, The Fallen Stars, and vendors sold handmade products like mugs, dolls and decorative maps. Food trucks selling coffee, vegan food, burgers and Mexican dishes were also available for attendees to enjoy.
Heather Baker, one of the vendors, creates baby and toddler clothes with animal print styles such as cheetahs and tigers. As a visual effects artist, Baker has worked on projects like “Thor: Love and Thunder” and the Sphere in Las Vegas.
Years ago, when her industry got slow, she started making hats for her kids, who were babies at the time. Baker found success and was able to sell her animal print hats and boots in stores around the country.
As the years went by and her kids got older, she decided to go back to her visual effects job, but continued designing clothing as a side business. The wide variety of local and non-local artists is what Baker said draws people’s attention to the Patchwork Show.
“It brings everyone in the community out and gets them together. I like it because it’s fun, everybody’s happy and it shows that there’s much talent out there,” Baker said.
Heavy creative thinking is what makes this festival special to Sarah Serbin, who was hosting a booth selling freeze dried candy called The Moxie Freeze.
“There’s all this creative energy. People spend so much time creating and the energy is just contagious,” Serbin said.
Various artists began their craft for financial reasons, such as needing a side job to support their family or because of a divorce, but for others their business started unexpectedly. Surprises can often occur in the process of creating art, which is how Aleysha Anthony started their journey in making black light paintings.
“I’m attracted to very bright colors, and somebody who bought my art actually pointed out to me what my art can do with a black light flashlight,” Anthony said.
Anthony, along with her boyfriend Mark, also make sculptures and rolling trays.
The Patchwork show occurs twice a year at Marine Stadium in Long Beach but has shows in various cities in Southern California throughout the year.