Canadian Hand Made Gifts & Souvenirs From Coast to Coast
Greetings! :

I have just returned home from a lovely weekend in northern Ontario where my BFF's daughter, Kelsey, was married to an awesome guy named Greg. My friend Laurie & I have been friends for 30 years and during that time I have adopted her parents and other family members into my own family. Like any family, sometimes you don't see people for a long time and life happens to each of us. As I sat and observed all these lovely people beaming from ear to ear with love and well wishes for the happy couple, I was overcome with emotion. I was thankful and grateful to have these people in my life and was deeply honoured to be included in this small gathering of intimate friends and family. It will soon be Thanksgiving weekend marking a date on the calendar for us to stop and actually be just that... thankful and grateful. Thanksgiving has many different meanings to many different people. Thanksgiving has been generally regarded as a "celebration" of when the Americas were discovered (even though our indigenous peoples had been calling Canada home way before Christopher Columbus made his way here). There is also the component of being thankful and grateful to our farmers for the crops they grow and the deliciousness we get to eat. I am good with that part! But watching the celebration of love today at this wedding I saw things differently. We should just be thankful and grateful to all the family and friends whom support, love and include us in their special moments in day to day life. My family is also the lovely ladies at Cornerstone. I am thankful and grateful to them everyday not just because they are so amazing at their jobs and keep the store going, but because they have allowed me to be a part of their lives and have included me in their triumphs and sorrows. From the artists who make such wonderful things and to the customers who come to our little shop on the corner, today made me realize all the more, that it's great to have a day marked on the calendar that tells us it's time to be grateful, but it's something that perhaps we should maybe practice a little more frequently ... like DAILY!!! For some reason I have gotten out of my daily morning ritual where I recite 10 things that I am truly grateful for. It's time for me to re-start that ritual. It really puts you in the right frame of mind and head space to be more loving and kind and accepting of others. And folks, from where I stand, that's what life and love are all about.

From our heart you yours,
Penny & the wonderful staff at Cornerstone

P.S. In honour of the long weekend, the store will be closed on Thanksgiving Monday (October 8, 2018) so that our lovely staff can be with their loved ones.

ZIA piece
Featured Artist - Penny Knapp
Since you already know who I am, I will simply say that when I have time, I like to be out and about taking photographs. My favourite subject matter are architectural details and sculpture. I also love taking pictures of landscapes and just catching moments of "joie de vivre". My other passion is Zentangle, a meditative art form. I am very much looking forward to going on a retreat this month where I can learn new techniques that I can bring back to everyone via a Sunday morning class! So please come over to the shop and take a look... I hope you find a piece that connects with your spirit.
Join us for the first Ever...
Great Pumpkin Search

Set Saturday October 27 from 10:00 AM until 4:00 PM aside so you and the kids can hunt for the GREAT PUMPKIN!!! Each of the 11 participating stores will have the same "GREAT PUMPKIN" hidden somewhere on their space. Your job is to locate all 11 pumpkins to be entered into a draw for a gift basket. This is a family friendly event! Feel free to where a costume but prepared to be photographed... you just might end up on Instagram or FB! You can also use this opportunity to scope out some great host/hostess gifts for Thanksgiving :)

The 11 participating retailers are:

All Good Things Home
Amanda's House of Elegance
Bagot Leather Goods, Luggage Plus
Cloth
Cooke's Fine Foods
Cornerstone Canadian Art & Craft
General Brock's Commissary
Kingston Olive Oil company
Martello Alley
Metaphysics
Send In The Clowns

Stay tuned to FB for up to the minute information regarding the GREAT PUMPKIN search
In Celebration of the Cape Dorset print Release......

In conjunction with the release of the new prints from Cape Dorset, cornerstone with be offering a 15% discount on all Cape Dorset sculpture over $500.00. We have just received a whole new selection so we invite you to come and join in the celebration! The pieces are stunning and will definitely be a conversation piece in your home!
New artists
Paula Bund Photography
"The fun with marching through life is being able to take advantage of all sorts of opportunities and experiences. But where I find the most joy, where I am most centred, is photographing pets and nature. 
I guess genetics wins out in the end. My father, grandfather and great grandfather were all professional photographers. Some of my earliest memories are of being in the dark room, standing on a stool helping my Dad develop black and white prints in his photo studio."

I met Paula at an ArtFest in Pickering this past summer. She has taken her love of photography and placed the images on a variety of items including pillows and travel bags (that are perfect for makeup, toiletries or pens/pencils etc. She is also an amazing pet photographer so if anyone is looking for a pic with their pet, let us know and we can put you in touch with Paula for a photo session! If Paula is looking a little familiar to you... she went to Queens and had a chocolate shop called Chocolate & Cream located above Murphy's Seafood!
Brenda Taylor
Brenda Taylor

Brenda is a Brockville, Ontario designer/maker of embroidered wall art and luxury knit and embroidered hats, scarves and accessories. She works primarily with natural fibres and vintage or up-cycled beads and buttons. Brenda has been involved in embroidery, knitting and other fibre arts since she was very young – her first primary school memories are of learning to stitch a simple apple outline on a small apron and of working a multicoloured band of Swedish huck embroidery on a dishtowel. 

Brenda was born in Montreal, grew up in southern California, and through her adult years has lived on both Canadian coasts and many places in between. Her design inspirations come from beautiful natural fibre yarns, from the natural environment in the places she has lived, and from a wealth of international embroidery and knitting traditions. She studied haute couture and hat-making in Ottawa in the mid-1990s, taking several millinery courses taught by Eva Ferguson at Richard Robinson's Academy of Fashion Design.
“Wearing one of my knitted hats or cuffs should bring a smile to your face and a lift to your day – that's my goal!”

Note: Some of Brenda's winter cuffs and scarves are made from Qiviut yarn. Qiviut is a rare fine yarn, made from the undercoat of the musk ox, and is the ultimate in warmth and softness – it is said to be 8 times warmer than wool, and softer than cashmere. Musk oxen live in the very cold conditions of the arctic tundra of northern Canada & Alaska, and they shed their undercoats each spring or midsummer. At this time the fibre can be combed from domesticated musk oxen or gathered from objects wild musk oxen have rubbed against.

Just an FYI.... the Qiviut yarn is soooooo soft I know you are going to love it as much as we do!
Marta Mouka Textile Artist

Marta Mouka is a textile artist who creates collages using a unique approach to needle felting. She works with woven silk, often contact-printed with plant material, to make finished textiles with a smooth texture and soft-focus colour transitions. She experiments with centuries-old techniques of dyeing with natural dyes and combines them with the more contemporary method of botanical monoprinting. 
Marta studied graphic design and visual arts at the College of Applied Arts in Brno, Czech Republic. She ran a graphic design studio in Toronto for 14 years, specializing in magazine art direction. Her extensive graphic design experience brings a strong sense of composition to her work.
Marta has been creating art for over 30 years. Since 2008 she has been a full-time textile artist, living and working in Tweed, Ontario. She has held solo shows and participated in juried group exhibitions, and she has received a number of awards. Her art is held in private collections across Canada.

Here she describes the eco-printing process.
Eco-printing or contact printing is a fascinating process of creating botanical mono prints. 
Dyeing and printing fabrics with native plants is a relatively new technique which builds on 
traditional natural-dyeing.

The contact printing method draws out pigments from plants and makes imprints on cellulose 
or protein fibres. Textiles have to be prepared or mordanted with naturally occurring metal salts, 
to be able to receive pigments from plants and to assure lightfastness.

Plant material is positioned on textiles, bundled by rolling over a wooden dowel or metal rod, 
secured tightly with twine and then steamed or boiled in hot water to extract the pigment and produce 
a botanical print. 

Leaves, stems, flowers, buds, roots, and bark are used in combination with 
traditional plant extract dye-baths to create the final artwork.
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