To The Holiday Market We Go!

Okay, so maybe you're making a holiday gift list and checking it twice. But you won't have to take a second look anywhere else when it comes to finding unique presents for the loved ones in your life when you shop at the Peoples Gas Holiday Market in Market Square.  In case you missed the grand opening this past weekend, the Holiday Market is open every day through December 23. That's plenty of time left, even for last-minute shoppers.

With an Old World accent, our Holiday Market brings a centuries-old European tradition to Pittsburgh for what we hope will become a holiday favorite around here for years to come. Even in its first few days, the Market is proving to be a big hit with shoppers and the local, national and international vendors bringing their special brand of holiday cheer to the Square. Starting every day at 11:00 a.m., holiday shoppers can visit the market until 8:00 p.m. Monday-Friday, 9:00 p.m. on Saturday and 6:00 p.m. on Sunday. And just what will you find in the Market? Well, here's a look at the many talented people from far and near who are helping the Square look a lot like Christmas:

Adar & Mimi: These hometown ladies custom make playful clothing and accessories for the little ones. From frilly tutus to sassy shirts for tykes, these hand-embroidered goodies are perfect for anyone looking for a gift that's pure Pittsburghese.

Alpine Heritage: The eastern European traditions come alive here with colorful, delicate hand-blown ornaments, festive ceramic holiday dishes and oh so intricately carved Nativity scenes inside tiny little wooden tabernacles on stone bases.

Artel: Mother Russia shares her blessings in the shape of Faberge-style eggs created by craftsmen from their homeland. These delicate pendants and lockets pay homage to Peter Faberge, the favorite designer of the Czars. By the way, Artel is the name Faberge gave to work stations in his shop.

Euro Haus: Travel to the heart of Europe and nearly to Asia itself at Euro Haus, the home of tapestries, jewelry, scarves and Moravian stars from Turkey, Austria, Germany and Russia. Plus, you'll find Santas, snowmen, nesting dolls, holiday platters and more.

European Folk Art: The everyday holiday traditions and flavors of Poland and Slovakia come alive here in the shape of handmade chess sets, Santas, cookbooks and other crafts that display ethnic pride in home-style portions.

The Glass Haus: With a stable of five artists from America and Europe, the Glass Haus brings to the ’Burgh a bevy of wacky, creative and elegant glass ornaments that redefine the spirit of the season.

Gorilla Dust Designs: This vendor's name comes from a phrase her grandmother used to describe the glitter her granddaughter liked to sprinkle around. These truly one-of-a-kind gifts are crafted from old-time souvenir spoons found in thrift stores, garage sales and flea markets.

Ivana's Igloo: You'll warm up to the cool stuff at this stop where the owner creates "faux fur" animal hoods and mittens and sells her own brand of handmade scented soaps and decorative candles.

Linda Barnicott's Art & Gifts: Just one look and you'll recognize the sights of familiars places that make Pittsburgh even more special during the holidays. One of the area's most talented painters, Linda's been creating holiday magic on canvas, coffee cups and other media for years.

Little Bavaria: Here's one place where you can actually enjoy a taste of the Old Country as Little Bavaria serves delicious hot pretzels, bratwurst, fruit strudels and Greek pastries. Once your belly's full, wash it all down with a cup of hot cider.

Little Europe: A big favorite with Holiday Market shoppers, Little Europe is a delight with its selection of nesting dolls, hand-painted eggs, wooden toys and ornaments from Poland, Russia, Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

Old German Christmas: You don't have to be a senior citizen from Berlin to shop here for ageless authentic, hand-blown and hand-painted ornaments and other collectibles based on German holiday items nearly 150 years old.

Style Truck: Parked in the Square for the next month, the Style Truck delivers chic hats, mittens, scarves and other women's accessories made in the U.S.A or by fair-trade firms in India and Nepal.

Wagman Designs: Inspired by nature, these handcrafted earrings, bracelets and bracelets are made from real maple leafs and other items you can find right outside your door to add a bit of the "green" to the season.

In addition, several other vendors will join the Holiday Market as the season unfolds, including:

Cha Ching Coin Jewelry: Distinctive jewelry made from only the most interesting rare and exotic coins from across the globe provide some holiday bling in this collection of unusual items from Dec. 10-13.

Fabulous Homemade Cookies: Just like your Grandma made them, these delicious gift packages of treats will make for the perfect way to tell that sweet someone in your life how much you care about them. Pick up these goodies Dec. 17-20.

Vessel Glass: Form and color are the hallmarks of Drew Hime's glassblowing artistry in a collection of vivid created ornaments in traditional and contemporary style. Visit Vessel glass from Dec. 3-6. 

Lest we forget, kids also can take care of the holiday wishes at the market. Because the Big Man himself is taking up residence in the Square too.  While the grownups are shopping, the little ones can visit Santa in his own specially built home almost up to Christmas Eve. And to keep you entertained, local performers with an ethnic focus will grace the Cultural Showcase Stage on weekends. So, bring the entire family to the Square  to all the festivities and fun of Pittsburgh first Holiday Market.

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