Festival of lights
Light the holidays with a menorah from ZYZYX!, the craft and jewelry store in Pikesville, where an annual menorah show is under way. More than 35 artists are represented, offering menorahs in cut class, polymer clay, enameled metal, painted porcelain and other materials.
Among them are fused-glass works by Tamara Baskin; polymer clay and gold-leaf designs from Urban Tribe (right), and glass and stone pieces combining traditional motifs with modern technology. Prices range from $60 to $2,000. Hours at the store, 1809 Reisters-town Road in the Festival at Woodholme, are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays to Saturdays (Thursday evenings until 8 p.m.), and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sundays. For more information, call 410-486-9785.
Weaving through carpet facts
The world's oldest-known knotted textile is the Payzryk carpet. Found in Siberia in 1947, it has been dated to the 5th century B.C. Hand-knotted carpets are still being made today, many of them in the same styles as the oldest of ground and floor coverings. All that comes between the oldest and the newest falls under the purview of Italian art historian Enza Milanesi in "The Carpet: Origins, Art, and History" (Firefly Books, 1999, $50). Besides being full of information about where and how carpets are made, the book has sumptuous pictures of carpets, from ancient Central Asian fragments to a carpet made in the Arts and Crafts style in 1899. This handsome book would make a great gift for anyone who knows, or would like to know, about "Oriental" carpets.
Looking for that really unusual holiday gift? How about a millennium tie for Dad, crab-shaped chocolates, a kit to make your own bubble gum, night-sky stencils with glow-in-the-dark paint? How about a B&O; wine set, with carafe and four glasses, or compact discs of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, or die-cut flashcards of U.S. presidents?
Those are just some of the items that will be available from Baltimore's museum gift shops at the second annual Museum Shop-Around this coming weekend at Evergreen Carriage House and Stables, 4545 N. Charles St. Twenty museum shops are participating, including those at the Maryland Historical Society, the Maryland Science Center, the B&O; Railroad Museum, the American Visionary Art Museum, the Babe Ruth Museum, the Great Blacks in Wax Museum and the new Port Discovery children's museum. Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $5.
There will be an Early Bird Shopper's Breakfast from 7:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. Saturday, featuring Continental breakfast and a 20 percent discount on shopping. For reservations to the breakfast ($20 per person) or more information about the event, call 410-685-3750, Ext. 305.
* The Potter's Guild of Baltimore is having its holiday show through Dec. 24, with vases, casseroles, teapots, bowls and all sorts of useful and decorative ceramic objects for sale. The guild is at 3600 Clipper Mill Road in the Meadow Mill complex. Hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday to Saturday and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. For more information, call 410-235-4884.
* More than 50 craft vendors will be offering their wares at a Christmas bazaar from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Maryvale Preparatory School, 11300 Falls Road in Brooklandville. The event, sponsored by the Maryvale mothers' club, also features entertainment by the Maryvale chorus, sales of poinsettias, greens and food, and a visit from Santa (noon to 2 p.m.). Admission is $2 for adults. For more information, call 410-252-3366.
* Quilting on the Line, a quilters' guild, is presenting a show called "The Last Hurrah -- 20th Century Quilts" Saturday and Sunday at Slate Ridge Presbyterian Church, Church and Chestnut streets in Cardiff, Harford County. Besides a display of quilts, there will be a silent auction, a raffle quilt and lunch. Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $2. For details, call 717-456-5725.
Home Front welcomes interesting home and garden news. Please send suggestions to Karol V. Menzie, Home Front, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278, or fax to 410-783-2519. Information must be received at least four weeks in advance to be considered.