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March 14, 2023
Last month, my aunt sent me a link to a crafty project that was due to start at the beginning of March. Anita, a lovely crochet designer based in the U.K., was commissioned by a yarn shop to design a blanket for the upcoming coronation of King Charles III. When this was announced everyone was quick to snag the yarn kit which included balls of pretty yarn and a commemorative label to add to your finished project. We found out about this project well after the fact so yarn kits were sold out however, we were able to piece together our yarn needs from a couple of different stockists from London. We couldn't use Canadian yarn for a project like this right? lol
Here is the finished blanket - I mean, the colours are simply beautiful.
Now, my crochet skills are very VERY basic only knowing the two main stitches, single and double crochet, so I was a little nervous about starting a project that looked way out of my league. However, being a Royalist and having an excuse to buy pretty yarn threw logic right out the window.
This is my first official Crochet a Long (CAL) and so far, I am LOVING it! Each week, a new part of the pattern is released which is great for a beginner. It means we only have to focus on small parts of the project at a time instead of feeling overwhelmed by staring at the entire pattern. The weekly release also includes how-to videos by the designer which helps those of us who are visual learners. Lastly, I'm part of a group on FB of lovely folks who are working on the same project and are at the ready with answers to questions that come up.
I have a feeling that this will be the first of many CAL's I take part in...and I'm currently taking wagers on how close to finished product I will get :)
If you want to make your own coronation keepsake, then follow the link below for more info.
CAL Link: https://sirdar.com/coronation-blanket-crochet-along
February 06, 2023
I recently joined a 6 week sewing class. A friend of mine was going to sign up and I thought it would be a great way to stay occupied over the dreary winter months. In this class, we met a woman who signs up for a new class/hobby every year to try it out. So far she has done painting, crocheting and is now in this sewing class. I thought it was such a great way to try new things without having to "buy all the stuff" unless you want to keep up with your new hobby.
One thing I have found within my business is that anything DIY is where the party is at. For the last few years, my card making kits have proven to be a big hit for those who are new to card making or, who love to make and give handmade cards. I decided to expand my kit offerings and send everyone to the sewing machine to make quilted coaster sets. Sewing and fabric are two of my favourite things so I'm trying to convince others to join the dark side - lol!
Many have shared with me how they have purchased my kits as an excuse to to get together with friends for some crafty fun and I mean, this sounds like a perfect afternoon to me!
If you want to dabble in something new, you can find my available Craft Kits through the link below: https://thecraftshoppecanada.com/collections/craft-kits
December 30, 2022
I hope everyone is still basking in the festive "what day is it and can we still eat baked goods for breakfast with our coffee" time period. There have been quite a few times over the last week where one of us has asked "what day is it?" lol!
In chatting with a friend today, we were lamenting on how Christmas has shifted now that our kids are getting older. With 2 teens and 1 who is freshly in his 20's, gone are the days when we were woken up every 2 hours on Christmas Eve to run down and open presents. While Christmas looks a little different these days, most of our traditions have remained even if they are met with epic eye rolls. Although, I tried to switch things up a bit this year and it was met with "What? How and why are you changing this?" (Note for next year, don't mess with traditions lol). We did have a blast checking out a few Christmas shows, gathering with family and eating our weight in treats.
As we inch closer to 2023, I can’t help but look back on the past couple of years. I remember a meme going around during "that" year where it said "While we may be in a rush to get back to life, be a little more choosy with which parts of life we rush back to". That really stuck with me as I felt the lockdown periods during Covid gave us a chance to press pause and reevaluate life a little bit. Now that we’re somewhat back to normal, I still hit the pause button every so often to take a step back and reflect on where things are at and if I need to distance myself from certain people and/or things that weigh me down.
So, when a friend of mine shared this list for 2023 it was a great reminder to keep pressing pause when needed. I hope it resonates with you as well. Happy New Year and I wish you only the good things for 2023....Xo
July 26, 2022
My love for Christmas far exceeds any other time of the year. Don't get me wrong, I love Spring where everything comes back to life and I absolutely love Fall with cooler weather and Thanksgiving. However, Christmas is just the best. (Notice how I didn't mention summer? That's because summer is absolutely rotten with heat waves and brown/dead grass - lol)
I love everything about the festive time of year. The sound of Bing Crosby's velvety voice coming through my speaker, tearing up at the old classic Christmas movies, groaning (and secretly loving) the cheesy Hallmark movies, putting up our Christmas tree (s), making gifts or shopping for that perfect gift, festive lattes, falling snow and reading a book under the glow of Christmas lights.
As a handmade business owner, one of the best parts about my job is that I usually starting playing with Christmas products in June. I spend the summer getting all of the festive stuff up and ready for the Christmas shopping rush so I absolutely love it.
It's only July but people are starting to think ahead to Christmas with some of the orders that have come through as of late. Better to be organized than not right? Follow the link below to find my Christmas collection and check back often as I will continue to add festive things as they are made!
May 26, 2022
Let's take this back a little bit. We're going back to September of 1993 to be precise. I had just moved 1500km to attend University and as you can imagine, I was nervous and unsure of how to manage all of that. This was before the days of social media where you could "meet" fellow university students and pick out your courses and access your schedule online. Back in my day (as the older folks would say), I stood in different lines for an entire day just to pick out and register for my courses. Of course, there were a couple of times where I picked the wrong line which further delayed the process but I live to tell my story!
The program I was in (Honours Bachelor of Arts, Music) was in a separate building on campus and consisted of a smaller group of students. On the first day of classes, I remember it being a rainy, grey day. I walked in but I wasn't sure where my first class was located so, I sat in the common area and watched as other students walked in. As I stood up to follow the crowd, I heard a voice behind me ask "Do you know where we are supposed to go"? I turned around and was met with a friendly face who probably looked like I did - confused and unsure. My new friend and I figured it out and we made our way into our first class and over time, a couple other zany gals joined our friend crew.
These proved to be the best years of my life. We bumbled our way through the program, tried to figure out what post University life would look like, developed friendships, met our future husbands, and leaned on our Prof's for advice along the way - making them our unofficial "University Dad's".
After University we moved to different cities, started working, got engaged, planned weddings, and started having babies. Some of us moved again and settled in other towns but through all of the changes that life brought us, we kept in touch and got together where we could. Over the years, the bond grew deeper and what started out as great friendships has grown into a closer, sisterly bond. We chat, we laugh, we cry, and we open ourselves up to each other to share the good, the bad and the downright ugly.
Next year, we'll be celebrating 30 years of our crazy friendship and we decided to book the trip of a lifetime - we're heading to Scotland! In addition to being tourists, we will be walking the West Highland Way over an 8 day period. The sights and sounds are something my Scottish ancestry is craving and, it will give me a solid year to whip my behind into shape to accomplish this without dying (lol).
If you have friends like this, never let them go! Hold on to them for dear life and book the damn trip.
April 01, 2022
The first scrapbook (s) I made were for my bridesmaids as part of their gift packages I made for them. All of us met in University so I had A LOT of incriminating photos to add to their albums.
A few years later, I attended a Creative Memories party where we played with pretty paper and cool scrapbooking tools. My son had just turned 1 so I bought all the things to start working on his album. However, a move across the province and adding 2 more kiddos to the pile turned my scrapbook ambitions into the dust that my books were collecting (raise your hand if you have been there lol).
Lo and behold, I finally dove back into it all about 6-7 years ago when a friend said "hey, I'm hosting a few gals at my house for a scrapbooking day, do you want to come"? Ever since then, paper scraps and photos have been flying and albums were slowly getting filled.
In February 2020, I was at a scrap weekend with my friends. Covid was dominating the headlines with the virus spreading all over Europe. I think we were naive in thinking the virus would stay over there. Then March came along and well, we know what happened there.
I tried to work on my albums during lockdowns. It was a perfect isolation activity but my business took off so I had to put the albums aside for a bit. This past weekend, we were finally able to gather and honestly, it felt good to laugh, pig out and be with friends again. I even managed to get some pages done although, I did spend 4 hours on one page lol!
If you are looking to get into scrapbooking, connect with a local Creative Memories consultant. They may have inside scoop on scrap events happening in your local area. Grab a friend, and your scissors and grab some much needed "me" time!