Archive for the 'Manitoba' Category

Fashionably eco-friendly, Voilà!

Sometimes, I stumble across an artist that I think I really should have known about before.

Voila par/by Andréanne is one of those times. Hailed as one of Canada’s up and coming designers, and proudly representing her Aboriginal heritage, Andréanne Dandeneau’s eco-friendly and fair-trade clothing is beautiful in all the best ways. From start to finish, her clothing line is made in Winnipeg and the 2013 Spring/Summer collection is full of flowing fabrics, lace details and original screen printed artwork.

Some of my favourites…

Shadi Flow Dress

Shadi Flow Dress

William Lace Dress/Tunic

William Lace Dress/Tunic

And this one… the one that grabbed my attention in the first place. Oh, that jacket. I love the story behind the “Catherine’s Vine” pattern that wraps around the jacket as well. Andréanne was inspired by embroidery work done by one of her Métis ancestors in the Winnipeg area. Read more here and see an example of the original embroidery here.

Bamboo fleece riding jacket

Bamboo fleece riding jacket

I love the versatility of the 8-way Nova! Shawl – I think this “belt in front” is my favourite version, but being able to wear it as a shirt, shawl or even a skirt makes this a bargain 8-in-1. The ‘Northern Willow’ print also has a tie to Andréanne’s Aboriginal heritage and was created by a Métis artist.

8 for the price of 1! Bamboo Nova Shawl

8 for the price of 1! Bamboo Nova Shawl

Check out the rest of the Voilà par/by Andréanne collection online, in her Etsy shop or at one of a few select boutiques. If you don’t want to shop online, you can see her at one of the many shows around Western Canada that she will be attending in the coming months: Winnipeg Folk Fest, Edmonton Folk Fest and the Regina Christmas Signature Show to name a few. Those of us east of Manitoba will have to see her pieces in person at the Christmas One of a Kind Show in Toronto.

You can connect with the designer on her Facebook page and Twitter, too!

Leave us a note in the comments – we’d love to hear what your favourite piece is!


P.S. This Feather Skirt in Tangerine is ON SALE! Grab it now for a summer wardrobe boost!

Feather Skirt - fun and flirty for summer!

Feather Skirt – fun and flirty for summer!

Indulging an Obsession

It has been a while since I last wrote about pretty coloured glass.  I have made an “executive decision” (ha!) that this needs to change… today.  When I was away on my European Adventure, one of my favorite things was seeing so many incredible stained glass windows.  It seemed like everywhere we looked there was clear summer sun streaming through beautiful colours, throwing ever-changing patterns of light that danced on the floors.  So I think there is no better time to share some authentic and lovely *Canadian* stained glass with you, our lovely C+H readers!

Tara Sawchuk is a Winnipeg artist who designs and creates her own unique stained glass panels.   Art has always been a lifelong passion for Tara, and while she has produced works in several mediums (including designing tatoos!), her glass works have been her biggest calling since 2006.   Take a peek at some of Tara’s lovely panels:

I love the colour scheme, and the "lucky sevens" theme

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The graceful, clean lines of this panel really appeal to my eye!

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Maybe you don’t have a spot to hang a whole panel, but you still want a little piece to dress up a room?  Maybe something like this gorgeous music box would be just the ticket.

Pretty colours, and pretty music, a fabulous combination!

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My absolute favorite though, is this awesome celtic symbol with an abstract twist.  A little bit different, a whole lot fabulous!

Deep colours, but still light and airy feeling, it just begs for you to keep looking a little closer

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To see more of Tara’s work (including an adorable panda, and super-sweet fox), drop by the Etsy shop!

Have a great day, and go ahead and indulge *your* obsession,

Event Alert: C+H Birthday Edition!

As we celebrate our first year of spreading the handmade love here at C+H, we invite you to spread a little love to your local crafters and artisans this weekend.  Hunt down a market, show, or independent/handmade retailer near you, and let them know you appreciate all that they are doing to keep handmade alive and strong in Canada!   If you are in Vancouver, Winnipeg, or Toronto, look no further than these great gatherings of talent… they can’t wait to show you what they have to offer!

Vancouver, BC: This month’s Portobello West market is happening on the 29th, and as always, it’s a great place to find a huge mix of handmade goodies.  Head to the Creekside Community Recreation Centre (1 Athlete’s Way, Vancouver) on this Sunday.  Become a member for only $15 and you get free admission every time you come back this year! And trust us, you *will* want to come back!

Winnipeg, MB: Aqua Books plays host to the awesomely-named Crafty Minions show and sale this Saturday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.   Featuring “guerrilla DIY craft” with funk and flair, and admission is free.   Aqua Books is at 274 Garry Street, so make sure you stop by and say “hi!”.

Toronto, ON: Fashionistas of any age will want to stop by The Clothing Show this Friday through Sunday in Toronto.  Showing a mix of handmade, independent, and vintage clothing, it is certain to be a feast for the eyes.   Avoid the lines and get tickets online here, then make your way to the show in the Queen Elizabeth Building at Exhibition Place.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Tin Man + TinHouse

Tyler Kilkenny of Russell, Manitoba is – piece by piece – rescuing bits of Canadian history and turning them into really stunning artwork. Inspired by his Grandfather’s general store and the crumbling farmhouses and barns around his home in rural Manitoba, he worked to find a way to preserve some of the stories of Canada’s settlers.

TinHouse Designs on www.canadianhandmade.caYears of oxidization have lent some amazing colour and texture to these reclaimed tin ceiling tiles. Found in abandoned stores, homes and businesses around Tyler’s hometown, these truly are little pieces of history. Including with each framed and matted piece is a chronology of the building where it was found, along with a limited edition designation.

From the TinHouse Designs website:

It’s a great way to have some art with a story that is relevant to the owner,” says Tyler. “We all have a stake in the stories of the men and women that settled this country. This is a small way to salute those that have made Canada what it is today.

TinHouse Designs on www.canadianhandmade.caTinHouse Designs on www.canadianhandmade.caTyler Kilkenny is not only a collector of ceiling tin, but a collector of stories as well. Each piece of TinHouse artwork includes a chronology of the building that it was salvaged from, some of which have suffered through fires and years of neglect, and giving you a great conversation piece for your home! Until you have your own TinHouse piece, you can visit the Stories section of his website for a glimpse into prairie history – did you know that many of the village communities along the Assiniboine River are 7 miles apart, because that’s as far as the ox-drawn carts could travel during daylight? Often when the convoy stopped for the day, someone would leave the wagons and put down roots on a homestead.

Thanks, Tyler, for choosing to preserve and share these wonderful, oft-forgotten stories from our Canadian past.


*All images from

Just Coasting Along

We use so many little things in our daily lives without even thinking about them.  But how much fun is it when something useful can be beautiful and even have some special meaning to you?  That’s why I love these coasters from Jonathon Wayne Design.  They have an old-school vintage feel, with plenty of opportunity to customize a set that really speaks to your personality.   You could capture the soundtrack to a special time in your life, or have a daily reminder of that incredible road trip with your best friend as you sip your morning coffee.

Available with Broadway favorites, Christmas carols, timeless Opera... or whatever music sings to your heart...

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There's just something about a map that makes me want to grab my keys and hit the road!

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Encyclopedia and Dictionary themed coasters could protect your tables while you are doing the Sunday crossword, reading a favorite novel, or engaging in a spirited game of Scrabble… (on that note, how DOES my husband get 62 points from the word “spell”… How??!!?)

Word nerds unite!

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John is a full-time student, activist, and artist, based in Winnipeg.   His coasters have a cork backing, and he is always open to custom orders and special requests.  Check out his Etsy shop for more details (and the scoop on whether or not he was really named after *that* John Wayne…)

Here’s hoping we can all infuse a little bit of individual flair into our daily lives!


Event Alert: Vancouver, Edmonton, Ottawa, London, and Winnipeg!

Are you looking for something to do this weekend?  Maybe you still have a few last minute gifts to pick up? Take a peek at some of the great events taking place this weekend!  If there’s one in your neck of the woods, be sure to stop by and see what your local elves have been busy creating in their workshops!

Vancouver, BC: You won’t want to miss the One of A Kind Show and Sale, taking over the New Vancouver Convention Centre this weekend.  Open daily at 10:00 am until Sunday (closing at 9:00 pm Friday & Saturday, 5:00pm on Sunday).  Tickets are $10.00 each, or $6.50 for seniors/students.  Click here to purchase & print your tickets online to save $2.00.  Sarah sent rave reviews after her first visit yesterday, and I know she’ll be heading back later this weekend to give her feet (and likely her wallet!) another workout.

Vancouver, BC, part deux: It may be smaller, but no less awesome, don’t forget about Shiny Fuzzy Muddy.  The 11th annual Holiday sale is happening at Heritage Hall (3102 Main Street, Vancouver) this Saturday and Sunday.  Hours are from 11:00 am to 9:00 on Saturday, and 11:00 am to 7:00 pm on Sunday.  Take a sneak peek at the blog, then visit the show, admission is free!

Edmonton, AB: The University of Alberta’s Butterdome hosts their Christmas Craft Sale.  Doors will be open from 11:00 am to 10:00pm today, 10:00 am to 6:00 pm on Saturday, and 10:00 am to 5:00 pm on Sunday.  Directions, transportation, and parking details can be found here.

Ottawa, ON: Visit the Originals Ottawa Christmas Craft Show and Sale.  The 36th annual show is being held at Lansdowne Park from now until December 19th (but closed this coming monday -dec 13th).  Stop in on weekdays from 11:00 am to 9:00 pm, or on the weekends from 10:00 am  to 6:00 pm.  Adult tickets are $7.00, Seniors and Youth are $4.00.  Lansdowne is at the intersection of Bank Street and the Rideau Canal (onsite parking is $5.00).

London, ON: Dig yourself out from all that crazy snow, and stop by An Artists Affair at the Convergence Centre (999 Collip Circle, Western Research Park).    Running on Saturday only from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm.  Admission is $5.00, but if you bring a non-perishable food item for the food bank (and we suggest you do!), it’s only $3.00.

Winnipeg, MB: It’s the Last Chance Christmas Craft Sale, coming to the Canad Inns (Club Regent Casino Hotel).   This event is running on Sunday only, from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.  Click here for a map to the location.  Admission is only $2.00 with half going to support Cancercare MB.

As always, happy shopping!  And thank you for continuing to support Canadian artists and crafters!


Event Alert: Vancouver, Montreal, Calgary, Toronto, London & Winnipeg

Now that it is officially December, even the Grinch-y-est among us starts to feel a little bit festive.  The air smells like gingerbread, the lights are twinkling, and the dusting of snow is still new and light enough to be pretty (at least around my neck of the woods!).  So why not bundle up a bit, and make some time this weekend to check out one of these exciting events?  Hopefully there’s one near you!

Vancouver, BC: See 50 local artists at the annual Got Craft? Holiday Show.  It is being held at the Royal Canadian Legion 2205 Commercial Drive (@ E.6th Ave),  on Sunday only. Cost is only $3.00, and the show runs from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm.  As a special bonus, the first 45 guests get a free swag bag!  There is also a do it yourself table if you feel like getting in on the crafty action.

Montreal, QC: Join Team EtsyQ (the official Quebec Etsy Team), as they kick off their very first craft show and sale!  Creations & Cocoa will run from Dec 3rd to Dec 5th, at Galerie Rye.  Sip some delicious organic hot chocolate, and get to know some of the fantastic crafters from La Belle Province!   Doors will be open from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm on Friday, and from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday.   You can even win while you shop!  With every purchase of $25 or more, get a ticket to win one of the gift draws donated by the participants.  Galerie Rye is located at 1331a Ste. Catherine East, close to Metro Beaudry.

Calgary, AB: This weekend the Our Best To You show comes to the BMO Centre at Stampede Park.  With over 260 exhibitors, there is sure to be something for everyone on your list.  Doors open at 10:00 am daily, and close at 9:30 on Friday, 6:00 on Saturday, and 5:00 on Sunday.  Admission is $7.00, Seniors and Youth are $5.00.  Re-entry passes are available, so you can come and go all weekend long.  Click here for a map to the BMO Centre (formerly the Roundup Centre).

Toronto, ON: Don’t forget, this is your last chance to catch the One Of A Kind show at the Direct Energy Centre.  I was there on Monday, and it was fantastic!  Doors open daily at 10:00 am, and you can find more details here.

London, ON: You won’t want to miss the 2010 Christmas Craft Festival at the Western Fairgrounds (Progress Building).  The show is open from 11:00 am daily, and runs until 9:00 on Friday, 6:00 on Saturday, and 5:00 on Sunday.  Tickets are $6.00 each, or you can click here to print a pdf coupon for $1.00 off.

Winnipeg, MB: Aqua Books will host another Crafty Minions show on Saturday from 11:00 am to 5:00 pm.  Admission is free, so head over and check out all the unique handmade items.  Shop for gifts, or just spoil yourself with something special!  Not sure exactly where to find Aqua Books?  We’ve got you covered: click here for a map.

There are, of course, many other events taking place across the country this weekend.  Kitchener/Waterloo welcomes the Christkindl Market, or there’s the This Aint Your Grandma’s Craft Sale taking place on Sunday in Winnipeg.  Here’s hoping that you find something near you to satisfy your crafty side!


New works by

I’m not sure why it is, but it seems to me (through very unscientific observational methods) that many woman return to their creative roots after they become mothers. Maybe these days it’s the desire to stay with our babies and not go back to the office grind, or maybe it’s simply a function of those maternal instincts kicking in. Whatever it is, I think it’s pretty amazing that so many women are running their own businesses and pursuing their creative talents – Stacey from is one of those women. After the birth of her daughter, she revived her childhood sewing skills and turned a hobby into a growing business.

From her home in Brandon, Manitoba, Stacey creates lovely little bags and pouches, all with a touch of hand embroidery and sweet details – perfect stocking stuffers, or gift bags for a small token of love (boys, if you’re buying your lady something sparkly, these would make a cute package!)

Pouch by -

White pouch by -

For the sewing enthusiast, these little needlebooks and pincushion pairs are pretty adorable!

Embroidered needlebook by Nisse.Works -

Pincushion pair by -

Stacey’s graphic design roots are showing up in her shop, too – she has some animal alphabet and desk calendar printable files that you can download and print out yourself. No excuse to be without a calendar when she makes it this easy. I think I like the “Leavings” design the best, and each month is slightly different.

Leavings printable by -

You can find Stacey’s work on Cargoh, Artfire, her own website, Facebook and Twitter!


P.S. In the interest of full disclosure, I’ve already purchased one of Stacey’s little tote bags for my daughter for Christmas and it is really adorable!

Event Alert:

Needles are flying, kilns are firing, lathes are spinning, and kitchens are heating up all over the country.  We are definitely in prime time for holiday craft shows, and we here at C + H couldn’t be happier!  For your shopping pleasure, here are some of the great crafty events taking place this weekend:

Vancouver, BC: Vancouverites can join the Handmade Revolution this weekend as the Make It! show comes to town.  Visitors will recognize several of our wonderful C+ H vendors as you browse the aisles at the Croatian Cultural Centre (3250 Commercial Dr).  Doors will open at 4:00 pm today, and 11:00 am on Saturday and Sunday.  Admission is $5.00.  Print off the flyer found here and save $2.00!
p.s. I’ve heard that “Make It is like a mullet;  Craft show in the front, party in the back”… sounds like my kind of place!

Vancouver, BC: Once you lucky folks are done at the Make It! show, head on over to the Vancouver Convention and Exhibition Center for the Circle Craft Christmas Market.  Doors open at 10:00 am daily for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  Admission is $10.00 for adults, $8.00 for seniors and students.

Mississauga, ON: The International Centre in Mississauga will host the 2010 Seasons Christmas Show, beginning today and running until Sunday.  Adult tickets are $10.00 each if you buy online, or $12.00 at the door, $10.00 for seniors & youth.   Or, take advantage of 2 for 1 admission after 5:00 pm today (at the door only).  A map and directions are available here.   Hours of operation are 10:00 – 8:00 on Friday, 10:00 – 6:00 on Saturday, and 10:00 – 5:00 on Sunday.   You can also drop off a package of diapers in support of Peel Children’s Aid, to help out some “tiny humans” in need of extra support right now.

Winnipeg, MB: The Signatures Craft Show and Sale has taken over the Winnipeg Convention Centre (3rd floor, Hall A).  The show opened yesterday, and runs from 11:00 – 9:00 today, 10:00 – 6:00 on Saturday, and 10:00 – 5:00 on Sunday.  Admission is free, and directions can be found here.    Don’t miss the Children’s Christmas Craft Centre, where the little ones can create their very own handmade holiday item to take home.

Calgary, AB: This is the second (and final) weekend of the Spruce Meadows Christmas Market.  All the same fun, running from 12:00 – 9:00 today, and 10:00 – 5:00 on Saturday and Sunday.  Adult admission is $8.00.

Halifax, NS: The Nova Scotia Designer Crafts Council presents their annual Christmas Craft Market at the Cunard Event Centre.  The Cunard Event Centre is at Pier 23 on the waterfront, what a lovely setting for a fantastic show.  Opening at 10:00 am daily on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and parking is free.   A weekend pass is available for $9.00.  Daily passes are $7.00 for adults, $5.00 for seniors and students, or $20 for a family of four.  Print this coupon for a $1.oo discount.

Guelph, ON: The University Centre (aka: the UC) at the University of Guelph will be a busy handmade marketplace this weekend, as Fair November comes to town.   Admission is free, and booths will open at 10:00 am today and Saturday, and 11:00 am on Sunday.  Click the link above for parking instructions and campus shuttle bus details.

Edmonton, AB: If there are little ones on your list, you may want to check out WeeStock, a show designed to bring baby-centered boutiques and family owned businesses together with discerning parents and kids!  This event runs on Saturday only from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm at the Mayfield Trade Centre.  Adult admission is $7.00 and wee ones are free (of course!).  You may also bring clothing to donate in support of Basically Babies.

Vancouver Island, BC: Check out the Yellow Point and Cedar Country Christmas Tour from the 18th to the 21st.  Almost thirty local artisans put together this lovely holiday tradition that you won’t want to miss.  Each stop on the tour is open from 10:00 to 5:00 daily.

You can also find events in Nanaimo, Coburg ON (sunday only), Chilliwack BC, Ottawa ON (sunday only), and many, many more.


p.s. If you will be attending or participating in a show coming up, let us know!  We’d love to help spread the word.  Just send the details to


Chic Gamine

I discovered a new musical love the other day, and since it’s currently on repeat in my ears and they are quintessentially Canadian, it’s only fitting that I share Chic Gamine with you.

Chic Gamine is a gorgeous-sounding quintet, consisting of singers Ariane Jean, Andrina Turenne, Alexa Dirks, Annick Brémault and drummer Sacha Daoud. Some of the members hail from Winnipeg, and the rest from Montreal. When they’re working on new material or getting ready for a tour they meet in one city for a week or two and put in long hours to polish their sound. I love that about them – so Canadian ;) They describe themselves as “impishly charming”, and have been performing together since 2007. I’m a little bummed that I didn’t find out about them until this week, but the good news is that I won’t have to wait long for more Chic Gamine music… their second independent album is ready to launch mid-October. If you’re in Winnipeg or Montreal, you’re in luck because they’re selling tickets for the CD release parties right now.

photo by : niki trosky -- found on their FB page!

From their website, which I think describes them better than I ever could:

With a solo percussionist as their main musical support, Chic Gamine use their voices as instruments, effortlessly launching into intricate string arrangements, bass-heavy rhythm sections and lush harmonies.  These multifariously talented songwriters create a sound that resonates with soul, passion and an unabashedly random and sometimes downright peculiar brand of humour that reels audiences in and leaves them begging for more. Gospel, Soul, R’n’B, 50’s Doo-Wop, Brazilian forro and French Chanson are infused into the voices and rhythms of these 5 schemers and effervescent songmakers. And the whole is liberally doused with the happy-go-lucky impulsiveness unique to Chic Gamine.

Here’s a taste of their sound…

You can find them on iTunes, and I humbly suggest that you listen to Butterfly Woman and Days and Days – the preview clips for those 2 sold me on the whole album :) With their first Juno award under their belts already (a 2009 Juno for Roots & Traditional Album of the Year), I think it’s safe to say that we’ll all be hearing more from them in the future!

You can find the ladies (and one gent) of Chic Gamine on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and probably elsewhere! For a giggle, check out the video of their Juno acceptance speech, post-celebration in Hamilton, Montana where they were performing that night.

Happy listening!

P.S. Chic Gamine, if you’re reading this… when are you coming to Edmonton?!