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Need a new activity to fill your Saturday with? Why not attend a festival full of food, fashion and art, right here in the 303. FARMCAD is a farmers market on steroids that you can attend this Saturday, September 12.

Located at 1600 Pierce Street in Denver, the event is hosted by the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design. Admission is free to the public and starts at 10 a.m. We spoke to Karina Marconi, FARMCAD business development and outreach coordinator, on why this event is so unique to Colorado.

FARMCAD: Much More than a Farmers Market303 Magazine: Can you tell our readers a bit more about FARMCAD and why it was created?

Marconi: FARMCAD is a summer art, food and craft market – it’s like a farmers market for art lovers! We’ve created a fun place where people can get in touch with local artisanal food, art and fashion. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to visit our lush, historic, 23-acre campus, learn a little more about our college, and get to know our local community of artists and crafters. Part of RMCAD ‘s mission is to be a cultural beacon for our community. It’s a pleasure to serve as a key constituent in the Denver art + design community, as well as be a key player in the vibrant 40W arts district.

303: How has FARMCAD played a role in the development of Denver as a city to watch? 

Marconi: Denver is a city that has a rich heritage in the arts and RMCAD has helped supply Denver with some of its preeminent artists and designers for the last 53 years. FARMCAD is a way for students, faculty and alumni to share their works of art with the community.


“In many ways, FARMCAD embodies all the best that Denver has to offer in terms of its artisanal culture.”

FARMCAD vendors2303: What makes FARMCAD unique from any other farmers market?

Marconi: ​The grounds of RMCAD offer a beautiful landscape to host a farmers market. We offer a sculpture garden, tours of our historical buildings and gorgeous grounds to picnic and relax. We are a flourishing campus on an oasis in Lakewood! As a group of creatives, we wanted to give back to the community through this unique event. Our faculty, staff and students work as a family to offer hands-on activities, tutorials and lots of other fun activities, such as Clay Experience for children (hosted by faculty and local artist Theresa Clowes), Portraits (Artist/Faculty -Julie Puma), Caricatures (Alumni,​ John​ Varvir​), Face Painting (Buddy Bravo – Artist/Alumni), and Letterpress Experience ​(Rob​b​ Fladry – Dean​, Alicia McKim and Rob Evans​).

 FARMCAD seems to be a great place for local designers to showcase their works. Can you speak to us a bit more about the current retailers and designers you have on board? 

Marconi: We’re very excited to be providing a place for Denver-based designers to showcase their lines and gain new audiences for their wearable art. It’s so important to create that space for up-and-coming, creative entrepreneurs. Here are a few of them:

Whorl Shop– Whorl Shop is a premier boutique specializing in innovative style and inviting fashion, unlike anything the Denver community has seen before. Working from RMCAD’s new fashion lab, Whorl has been curating their new line, Imprints, that is set to launch this fall.

Fig & Fawn – Fig & Fawn is an online children’s boutique and pop-up shop concept created by two moms in Colorado (who have four children under four between them). They’ve handpicked a selection of independent brands to create a one-stop shop for everything from clothing & decor to dishes & partywear for children sizes newborn to 4T.

Bold Babe SPF Clothing – A company invested in offering health conscious UV-protective clothing for women, they are a pro-active business, constantly creating new looks that can naturally shield you from the sun, all hand made in Denver.

Cake + Whiskey Leather Feathers – This shop make handmade jewelry and accessories using unique, top-shelf materials to create exceptional items – perfect for banging one’s head and looking damn good.

Originate Clothing – Originate was founded on the belief that we are all originators and what we do defines us, no matter what that is. They have some empowering pieces that we are really excited about showcasing.

KimonoDragons creates unique clothing for men and women that combines Asian flare, retro sense and modern twists.

FARMCAD303: Give us three reasons why 303 readers should visit the last FARMCAD festival September 12. 

Marconi: We can give you many reasons; there is truly something for everyone at FARMCAD.

1: Affordable art and fashion! FARMCAD is a great way to engage with local, up-and-coming artists and fashion designers. RMCAD recently launched a new Fashion Design degree program to help these entrepreneurs harness their talents and make their incredible vision a reality. This is your chance to see them early in their career! Plus, we’ll have affordable art for sale, crafted by local artists. You cannot find much of these items anywhere else.

2: ​It’s free! There is no charge for many of the activities at FARMCAD, including music, yoga, a fun Kids Zone and dog stations.

3: It’s eclectic! We have a vriety of food vendors with all sorts of taste. This month, we’re celebrating our finale with a wine + beer tent.