Tis the season for holiday craft fairs.

No, they're not just for knitted chimney stockings and tree ornaments. Many talented craftspeople and artisans show cool wares good for year-round use that you won't find anywhere else.

I went to the Feria Urbana in Oakland, California last year and found lots of wonderful, small gifts: one-of-a-kind art prints for framing, hand-knit scarves, jewelry boxes and vases made from all types of materials, cute baby Onesies and fruitcakes that actually looked good enough to eat.

Wares probably won't be marked down as much as they are at Wal-Mart or even Nordstrom but most sellers are willing to lower more luck this time around. But the main reasons why I love craft fairs is because I can give unique gifts that my recipients can brag about, and I can support my local craftsperson, a dying breed in this technological age.

Craft fairs start up with a vengeance this weekend, and there's got to one in your area. Decorating blog Shelteriffic highlights a few well-known ones in urban settings like L.A, Minneapolis and Seattle, and IndieCraftsShows.com gives a list of more shows happening nationwide, starting today.

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