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Spend a Sunday with SOWA

By Danielle Cutillo

Every Sunday from May to October, artists come together for the SOWA festival, also known as Boston’s Original Art and Indie Design Market, to celebrate all types of art. It is an all-day event that runs from 10:00 AM until 4:00 PM, for families and friends or anyone who has an interest in art. SOWA takes over the South End with its white tents surrounded by art galleries, studios, and shops, with a variety of merchandise. Anyone can spend an entire day at SOWA, strolling through the art and food tents or deciding what to eat for lunch from the local food trucks. There is also plenty of shopping at an enormous indoor vintage market that is open year round.

When you are walking towards SOWA, the entire neighborhood is filled with art. Bread and Fiber, Bobby from Boston, and Casa Design Boston are just a few of the shops near SOWA. First, take a walk through the art tents and check out all the unique and interesting pieces. At the Deborah MacFail Designs jewelry booth Deborah displays beautiful necklaces, earrings, and more; she loves working with color. Deborah makes simple designs to allow gorgeous stones to be the focal point of her pieces. Her motto is “From the small and delicate to the large and dramatic.”

Sarah Kingsley Designs is another unique art booth. Sarah always wanted to open her own knit store, and her wish is now coming true. Her colorful, hand-knit wool bags are very fashionable and perfect as a fall accessory. There are a variety of colors to go with anyone’s outfit. The bags are big enough to fit all your items for the day, or small enough to fit a few necessities. The appealing styles include across-the-body bags, mini envelope purses, and hobo bags, Sarah’s favorite. You can find her merchandise for sale online at

Dasken Designs displays merchandise designed and handmade by Liza Abelson. The name Dasken Designs was created to honor her parents Hadassah and Ken. Her booth has beautiful stained glass pieces, including colorful peace signs, cupcakes, and mermaid-like people. Liza earned a degree in fine arts from Brandeis University. Today, she paints, makes jewelry, and creates stained glass at her studio in Abington, Massachusetts. Her work has been featured in Cape Cod Life Magazine, Artscope Magazine, and many other publications. Looking at Liza’s work, you can tell she has put a lot of time and effort into each piece, and she loves what she does. To find out more, go to her website Liza and all the other artists represented at SOWA are extremely talented, and it is exciting to see the variety of showcased art. There is everything from clothing, handbags, and jewelry, to stained glass, greeting cards, and wall pieces.

Next, walk down to the food trucks for lunch. Open from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM, you can find The Dining Car, Lobsta Love, Taco Truck, and so many more. For dessert, there is Kickass Cupcakes and the Froyo Truck. Each truck is unique and has delicious food, including pizza, sandwiches, and tacos. Food trucks have been a recent trend in the past few years, and SOWA is helping spread their popularity. There is a section of SOWA that also has food tents. Different companies from all over come to the festival to show off their treats. One booth, Cakeology, also seen on the Food Network, has a table of delicious, colorful macaroons. Other tables have homemade brownies, cookies, fruits and vegetables, and even pure Vermont maple syrup.

Before you leave for the day, make sure to check out the indoor vintage market that is filled with everything you can think of from several different eras. Walking in, you pass by a pile of vintage objects, such as a giant Kodak Film 620 metal box. There are rooms piled with antiques to buy, while oldies music is playing in the background. Old books, pins, postcards, art work, records…anything that you want, you can find. There are also many rooms of old clothes, shoes, and jewelry from different periods. Toys such as the TV Guide board game and a Blondie paint set are for sale, among other fun knick-knacks from the past.

Right by SOWA, at 450 Harrison Avenue, you can find SOWA Artists Guild, which takes place in a huge brick building housing art studios. The first Friday of every month from 5:00 PM to 9:00 PM, you can see art galleries, talk to the artists, and buy some interesting art! It is a fun way to spend an evening. Make sure to check out SOWA and experience the original, exciting art work and delicious food for yourself!

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