Jan 28, 2010

Beautiful British Columbia

Juggler Hat in Yellow and Taupe Brown - yoyohats

Juggler Hat with Dangling Tassles
Yoyo Hats - Vancouver

British Columbia officially became a province of Canada in 1871, but it remained almost completely isolated from the rest of the country until the completion of the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1885. Though the first major settlements in B.C. were Rocky Mountain House and Fort St. John - established by the Northwest Company in the far north- most of the population dotted the coast and major rivers like the Fraser and Columbia.

Valentine Handmade Sachet - brynnalex

Lavender Valentine Sachet Pouch
The Brynn Alexandra Fund - Sunshine Coast

In the late 1700’s and early 1800’s, British Columbia was visited by many infamous explorers, including James Cook, Alexander Mackenzie, Simon Fraser, and David Thompson. The discovery of gold drew the attention of the British Empire, and the United States, but it was Canada that would ultimately claim the lush lands for its own.

The provincial capital of Victoria, located on Vancouver Island, was originally known as Fort Albert. The name was changed to honor the British Queen in 1843. On August 2nd, 1862, the town of Victoria was officially incorporated. Two weeks later, the town elected it’s first mayor, Thomas Harris. Like many Canadian capitals, Victoria is now dwarfed by another nearby city which has been the hub of travel and trade in the province since the beginning of the gold rush.

Kimono Silk Purse with Cranes - momijistudio

Kimono Silk Slouch Purse
Momiji Studio - Vancouver

Vancouver began as tiny Fort Langley in 1827. It wasn’t until 1858 that local and British interest in the area would be truly sparked. In order to protect the valuable resources of the area from the rush of American gold seekers, mainland British Columbia was claimed as a colony of the Empire, and the production of roads and other amenities began. Each year new developments were made in the Delta area - first a church, then a newspaper, a hospital, and eventually a telegraph line. Today the Greater Vancouver area is home to over 2 million people.

Embroidered Wristlet Bag - thereandbackbags

Black and Teal Wristlet
There and Back Bags - Vancouver Island

Despite decades of human development and poor urban planning, British Columbia remains one of the most beautiful places in North America. It is a popular tourist and retirement destination, and draws many visitors for business and pleasure. Vancouver and the surrounding area - including Vancouver Island - are often hosts to crews from the Hollywood film industry. Whistler and Vancouver will soon enjoy the honor of hosting the 2010 Winter Olympic games.

Pink Feather Earrings - mountainmancreations

A Touch of Pink Earrings
Mountain Man Creations - Gabriola

Although very few Hollywood film characters ever visit Vancouver - apart from the famous ferry stand off in Shoot to Kill - there are hundreds of movies that feature landmarks recognizable to B.C. locals. Major movie and television titles filmed in British Columbia include:

The X-Files - The sci-fi series about a mysterious branch if the FBI.
Fantastic Four - An action film based on the popular comic books.
Twilight: New Moon - The second film based on Stephenie Meyer‘s teen vampire saga.
Battlestar Galactica - Glen Larson’s hit sci-fi series.
Legends of the Fall - Starring Brad Pitt and Anthony Hopkins.
Smallville - The adventures of young Superman.

Plenty of screen and stage stars have also made their way from B.C. to the halls and walks of fame. Some of our home-grown celebrities include:

Long Felt Scarf - mireilles

Medusa in the 80's Felt Scarf
Mireilles -Vernon

Michael J. Fox - Burnaby
Ryan Reynolds - Vancouver
Nelly Furtado - Victoria
Jason Priestley - Victoria
Pamela Anderson - Ladysmith
Seth Rogen - Vancouver
Coco Rocha - Richmond

Jimi Hendrix, the infamous guitar god of the 1960’s, grew up in Seattle, but often lived with his grandmother on East Georgia Street in Vancouver.

Happy Hearts Backpack - flyhighcreations

Happy Hearts Backpack
Fly High Creations - Keremeos

Although our contributions to popular media are notable in modern times, British Columbia has also been home to many other iconic Canadians. Our very rich history is dotted with some incredibly influential and inspiring personalities.

Mary Ellen Smith was the first female Cabinet Minister in Canada and the British Empire. She began her political career as the first female member of the B.C. Legislature in 1918. Emily Carr is considered one of the greatest female artists in North America, as well as a feminist role model and champion of First Nations history.

Grape Cluster Necklace - akane

Grape Cluster Necklace
Akane Designs - Vancouver

Although not as famous - yet! - many of our hard working Oh Canada Team members hail from Beautiful British Columbia. To see what their hands have been making for you, have a look at their unique shops:

Akane Designs - Handmade jewelry and Japanese crafts.
Bella Bijou Jewellery - Handmade jewelry with Heart & Soul
The Brynn Alexandra Fund - Stationary, jewelry and gifts for a good cause
Fly High Creations - Seasonal jewelry and gifts
Mireilles - Handmade Felt Scarves and Shawls
Momiji Studio - Kimono inspired scarves, purses and accessories
Mountain Man Creations - Handmade feather jewelry and gifts
Sushi Dragon - Original fantasy art and charms
There and Back Bags - Handmade bags and totes
The Sage’s Cupboard - Handmade metal-free jewelry
Yoyo Hats - Cheerful knitted hats and footwear

To see even more incredible creations by the Oh Canada team, include the tag “OhCanadaTeam” in your searches on Etsy.com.

Handmade Tourmaline Ring - bellabijoujewellery

Gemmy Dreams Tourmaline Ring
Bella Bijou Jewellery - Vancouver


West Coast Woman Necklace
The Sage's Cupboard - Nanaimo

Copyright 2010 Oh Canada Team Blog

Jan 19, 2010

Blue, Indigo, Violet

Whenever three consecutive shades from the color wheel are grouped together, something magical happens. Our eyes are drawn into these deep and layered combinations, seeing the connections, and marveling at how well they compliment each other.

“I’ve Got the Blues” - a treasury by SimpleSundries - has this magical quality. The blues and purples are all different, and yet they blend together beautifully. This pretty blue collection features many Oh Canada team members.

Etsy Picks: Blues and Purples

To see even more incredible creations by the Oh Canada team, include the tag “OhCanadaTeam” in your searches on Etsy.com.

Copyright 2010 Oh Canada Team Blog

Jan 14, 2010

Garnets and Valentines

The middle of January is a curious time of year. Just as we’re beginning to shake off our excesses from the holiday season, and trying to forget about all those resolutions that we’ve made, images of hearts and cupids seem to crop up everywhere. They’re bright and cheerful, like a foreshadowing of spring wrapped in pink and red cellophane. It’s probably only a coincidence, but January’s birthstone - which is enjoying a few weeks in the spotlight - is also red. They say that the color red can increase the appetite. Anyone trying to work off shortbread and eggnog may not be so crazy about all the chocolate hearts.

Nonetheless, during the last few weeks of January, red is the color that calls out to be seen. And it just so happens that Canada’s flag is a rich, proud red. To mark the middle of January, here is a collection of red-hot items from the Etsy Oh Canada team.

Etsy Picks: Garnets and Valentines

To cool things off a bit after a cinnamon flavored treasury, here is a beautiful selection by botanicaltheatre called “my! Oh my!”. This pretty collection features many Oh Canada members, with images that seem to hover somewhere between winter and spring.

Etsy Picks: My! OH! My!

To see even more incredible creations by the Oh Canada team, include the tag “OhCanadaTeam” in your searches on Etsy.com.

Copyright 2010 Oh Canada! Team Blog

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