Friday, 4 May 2018

The Mystic Market Ferny Creek.

We have some wonderful events up where I live.
One fine day late January 2018.
It was great to drive up the mountain on such a warm day, lucky for us the event we were headed for was on Saturday as Sunday was forecast to be up near the 40 degree mark and I just don’t leave the house on days that hot. I was looking forward to the Mystic Market, as it had been rescheduled to January 27 after being cancelled due to extreme weather in the form of the torrential rainfall we had in early December. I couldn’t help but think if it was held a day later this time, we would see the same thing happen.
The Mystic Market is a celebration of all things magical, fantastical and whimsical. A collection of stalls displaying and selling such diverse crafts as jewellery, clothing, pottery, sculpture and highlighting cosplay, faeries, steampunk and fantasy worlds and creatures. All with a good mixture of fun and participation.
Held at the Ferny Creek recreational reserve, a perfect setting for such an event with the tall gums surrounding the grass oval giving plenty of shade as well as open space. I have soft spot for the old hall on the reserve and today it housed some of the displays and stalls. It’s a lovely old building and I most point out it is also the venue of one of the best collector’s fairs held in the area every weekend prior to Melbourne Cup day and a great one to mark on your calendar. As well the hall the market spread out with many marquees and tents of stall holders which also helped give the whole event a medieval feel.
The stalls, inside and out, were an amazing mixture of wares.Among there were two ladies selling fairy Skeleton's in glass top wooden boxes, a table full of multi-coloured skulls. Another with steampunk style hats complete with goggles, as well as various fantasy swords and knives all with foam blades. One of my favourite stalls was selling detailed sculptures of scenes from Jim Henson’s movies such as Labyrinth and the Dark Crystal.
I bought my wife a mechanical dragonfly from a lady who made steampunk jewellery. There was one lady with lots of facial piercings and an interesting hairstyle that created and sold all manners of horns, the type you stick to the side of your head. I had no idea there were so many variations, most from myth, movies and novels. One stall was selling all manner of wizard staffs, decorated with polished stones and dragon heads.
Many people got into the atmosphere of the market, many dressing as fairies, I saw more wings on grownups than children and though I haven’t been to a tattoo convention, I don’t think I have seen as many tattooed ladies in my life assembled in one place. There was lots of colour and unique designs.
Despite the hot weather people also wore heavier gear, one fellow was ion a suit of armour. Another group of gents were dressed in their swash buckling best including heavy coats. I left early but as the late afternoon settled in a lot more serious cosplay patrons started to arrive and there were some seriously well made up fairies and sprites in the crowd.
All up a fun day and was surprised at the variety of product at very good prices, I already looking forward to the next one.
For more information on where to find the next market and more pictures of the amazing costumes and make up go to

originally published in The BBCN Issue 264 March 2018