Die-hard designers know that theirs is a pursuit driven as much by innovative fervor as aesthetic pleasure. Perhaps no place in Houston is that synergy more clearly on display than at the Lawndale Art Center’s annual Design Fair, where vintage booksellers get to rub shoulders with 3D printer geeks, all in the spirit of collaboration, celebration and, yes, shopping.

Now in its 4th year, the fair features vintage modern design and the latest in design-related technology. An extra $60 ($75 for non-members) will get you access to a preview party chaired by Martha Claire Tompkins and Pepper Paratore, where you’ll have first dibs on that lizard Birkin bag before the masses arrive. 

Organizers say a varied selection of curated items will be up for grabs during the fair, including furniture, glass, ceramics, lighting, books, and metalwork.

This year’s event will also feature an on-site laboratory for 3D printing and CNC technology demonstrations. Design Fair 2013 curators—Scott Cartwright & Jenny Lynn Weitz-Amaré Cartwright—will bring designers together during the event to connect, collaborate and develop new ideas on-site, organizers say.

Christine West, executive director of the Lawndale Art Center, says she expects around 2,000 people to turn up for this year’s event, noting that it’s the only fair of its kind in the region.

"If you like to shop, it's great,” she added. “If you want to learn about cutting-edge design, it's great. Or if you're a midcentury modern design collector or enthusiast it's a great place to find amazing pieces.”

We’ll see you there, Christine.

What: Lawndale Design Fair 2013 Preview Party & Sale

When: Friday, April 26, 6–9 pm. Tickets $60 for Lawndale members, $75 nonmembers; purchase at door or through 713.528.5858.

Attire: Contemporary cocktail

Fair Days: Saturday and Sunday, April 27–28, 10am–5 pm

Where: Lawndale Art Center

Cost: general admission $5

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