San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

San Diego State University’s Independent Student Newspaper Since 1913

The Daily Aztec

APIDA Maker’s Market showcases students’ creative passions

San Diego State University students promote their art and gain valuable business experience at the semi-annual Maker’s Market
Felicity Desuasido
Yaya Khatib (’24) sold handmade rugs from her store Yassuck at the Maker’s Market in the Aztec Student Union on Oct. 18.

The Asian Pacific Islander Desi-American (APIDA) center hosted its fourth semi-annual Maker’s Market on Oct. 18 in the Student Union courtyard. 

Located on the third floor of the student union, the APIDA center (founded by Virgina Loh-Hagan in 2020) is a resource center for San Diego State University students that provides a safe space and feeling of representation for AAPI and Desi individuals, though all are welcome. 

Students filled the courtyard to marvel at the vibrant display of handmade items, including products such as crocheted flowers, jewelry, canvas paintings, tote bags and more. 

There is a feeling of intimacy and connection that comes with shopping from a small business that can’t be replicated by chain stores, and Maker’s Market is all about vendors making those meaningful connections.

“The Maker’s Market is an opportunity to showcase the talents and passions of members of our SDSU community,” Loh-Hagan said. 

Loh-Hagen also noted that the market beautifully showcases “the products of people’s hands, hearts and minds.” 

“Supporting this event means supporting the creative community at SDSU,” she said.

Dani Judilla (’24) and Len Fedalizo (’25) enjoyed shopping at the Maker’s Market. (Felicity Desuasido)

Loh-Hagan also added that making a career out of artistic passions can sometimes be challenging due to fears that it may not be a consistent, profitable job. However, according to her, the Maker’s Market serves as a space for creators to share their art and get a taste of what it’s like to turn their passions into a business.

Not only does the market help vendors build entrepreneurial acumen and gain financial support, but it’s also a great opportunity for individuals to meet new people.

“It’s all about the connections,” said Yaya Khatib, a senior economics major and returning vendor at the market. “A lot of people just happen to be walking by and have no idea this event is happening, and I get to talk to them.”

Khatib sold her colorful and trendy rugs out of her store called Yassuck, and says she has been making rugs for three years now. She noted that the market is a great opportunity to connect with other students, even if they don’t end up buying anything. Khatib was glad to see familiar faces of people she met at last semester’s market.

Kawachi Crafts, owned by Krissen Kawachi-Mercer and her mother, Davette Kawachi, were first-time sellers at the market. 

Their store was a frequent visit for visitors as they sold more than half of what they brought, even selling out of a few items. Some popular items at Kawachi Crafts included crocheted sunflowers, lavenders, chickens and spam musubi.

Shoppers at the market were in awe of the diverse collection of handmade products being sold and admired the quality and artistry of the vendors.

Dani Judilla, a senior liberal studies major, and Len Fedalizo, a junior sociology major, said their favorite items at the market were all the crocheted products.

Krissen Kawachi-Mercer and her mother Davette Mercer sold crocheted products from their store Kawachi Crafts. (Felicity Desuasido)

“All of the stuff here takes a lot of time and dedication, and it’s so cool how they can crochet anything they want,” Judilla said.

Fedalizo also loved the variety of crochet products; her favorite purchase being a crocheted chicken.

The Maker’s Market is an event that supports all parties, helping vendors get their businesses out there while also connecting students to personal and highly creative art made by other members of their community. 

By uniting small businesses at events like these, vendors are able to make meaningful connections to those around them and students are able to support fellow peers in keeping their artistic passions alive.

For more information, follow the APIDA center’s Instagram and website.