Getting Crafty In Santa Cruz

As someone who spent two school terms making a clay ash tray that looked like an offensive weapon I’m pretty impressed by those with the skills to fashion a pipe from a tree branch or make a coffee table using only their finger nail clippings. Thankfully these skills were not used by any of the 200 exhibitors at this years Feria de Artesania (craft fair) at the Recinto Ferial in Santa Cruz.

I expected a bit of a scrum down to get in as it was free but the mid afternoon concourse was empty and the aisles inside were almost clear with just a smattering of people browsing. Never mind, with a cheery good day stout yeoman to the doorman I went inside the modernish designed show hall, I still refer to it as the squashed pastie. The fair had attracted artesans from all seven islands, one of the first I gravitated to had traditional costumes but the holder had gone walkabout. One of the dummies held a basket full of individually wrapped chunky almond biscuits so I took a couple to road test, very nice, all crunchy on the outside with a softer centre.

There was a real mixed bag of stalls with very well made and imaginative toys, soaps, perfumes, glass ware, clothes and furniture. What was missing was customers, some exhibitors looked bored rigid, two old chaps as wrinkly as Canarian potatoes were selling home made musical instruments but I thought it odd that they had some retro Take That blaring out from their radio. The 80’s pop conspiracy grew as I headed up the stairs to the balcony cafe to be greeted by Tears For Fears wafting down the steps. As I ordered my coffee and roll I noticed that the serving ladies uniforms bore the word Faster with the additional word Catering in small letters beneath. A thousand innuendos crossed my mind but I was strong and just gave them one of my winning smiles.

Nosing around again downstairs I found the cakes, jams and biscuits stalls and tried a few samples, very tastey, I could have had a meal at the restaurant below the bar. There were some lovely toys and dolls on the nearby stalls, good early christmas shopping I would think. The reconditioned furniture looked very stylish and the bed looked very bouncy, dare I test it for sqeaky springs? maybe not, apparently I’m supposed to be a grown up. It was all a bit of a shame, hopefully the evenings and weekend will pick up as people finish work, a lot of people were hoping for a much needed business boost. The fair is on until close of play on Sunday 6 November and opens from 11 am to 9 pm.