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Knysna market

Now in its second year, Knysna's quarterly Local Design and Food Market is providing a platform for the region's artisans and artists. The project was developed by a team of passionate young creatives from Knysna, who wanted a space where talented designers and foodies along the Garden Route could promote and sell their goods in a beautifully styled, buzzing environment. The focus is on handmade and vintage goods, all produced locally. Founder Sarah Barnhoorn, said the concept grew from a gap in the market. 'Every time I visited Cape Town I felt so inspired by the beautiful handmade products and fabulous design that I saw everywhere I went. I always felt a bit disheartened returning to Knysna, because there never seemed to be much happening here in terms of contemporary design, or creatively styled, vibrant events. I approached my favourite young designer in Knysna, Stefni Muller, and asked if she'd like to join me in starting a market.' Stefni jumped at the idea, and the concept flowed from there. 'The team has grown a little since then, and our main aim is to put Knysna on the map in terms of its original creativity and talent in design (both handmade products and food). We want to give the public of Knysna and its visitors an event to look forward to and to be proud of, and to give the local designer and foodies a platform to gain more exposure for themselves.' A variety of fresh food, from gourmet burgers to organic vegetarian platters and Mexican munches, is prepared and served at the market. There is ample seating, so shoppers can tuck in to a delicious casual dinner and a glass of wine, all while enjoying live entertainment from local musicians. 'The Garden Route, particularly in the past, has been known for its creative people,' says Sarah. 'The Local Design and Food Market is not only about getting us back on the map, it's also about promoting design which has more of a fresh, contemporary feel. Many creatives who live here look to cities like Cape Town for inspiration when it comes to design, but this platform offers a chance to meet local makers. There are so many inspiring people right on our doorstep.' The next Local Design and Food Market will take place in Knysna on 5 April 2012. For more information about the market and upcoming events, visit the Local Design and Food Market's blog (www.localdesignmarket.wordpress.com) or follow them on Facebook. Text: Roberta Coci Images: Tamara Claire