Workshops give show attendees opportunities to get hands-on
Under a cloud of ongoing economic uncertainty, more Calgarians are bringing projects around the home … well, in house.
“There seems to be a resurgence of making. More and more people want to learn how to make things for their homes or as gifts,” said Calgary style-and-DIY-expert Lacey Haskell who will be among a handful of local experts on hand for a series of workshops at the 2016 edition of the Calgary Home + Design Show Sept. 22 to 25.
Haskell, who authors the blog Feathering My Nest, will be teaching four FAT Paint (a Canadian paint brand) workshops at this year’s show. Attendees will learn painting basics, as well as how to heirloom finish projects, work with vinyl stencils and finish with wax.
In two workshops, participants will apply these lessons to a wooden caddy. In the other two, they’ll paint wooden crates.
“This is not your grandma’s embroidery. It’s trendy and hip.”
Haskell will also be on hand throughout the show with a selection of chairs she has re-finished.
“I can talk people through ideas as to how they can revamp and re-finish pieces of furniture, as well as some ideas for decorating their homes based on what they love,” Haskell said, adding her first question always is, “What can you do with what you have?”
In addition to Haskell’s FAT Paint workshops, Maria Arseniuk of Femme.Broidery will be offering stitching workshops. Participants will learn embroidery basics while making a piece of home décor.
“This is not your grandma’s embroidery. It’s trendy and hip,” said Haskell.
Alison Martin of amartincreative will teach chalkboard hand lettering, where attendees will learn basic typography to create personalized chalkboards for their homes.
Sunny Barrett of Always Sunny Design will also show people how to assemble a Japanese moss ball plant called a kokedama.
“It’s a houseplant but not in your stereotypical container,” said Haskell, adding people can suspend this variant of bonsai from the ceiling or use it as a table centrepiece.
Meanwhile, floral and plant designer Cory Christopher will be holding terrarium workshops throughout this year’s show. (A terrarium is a mini ecosystem inside a glass container.) Visitors can stop by Christopher’s “terrarium bar” and, for $25, create a small terrarium on the spot.
“This little terrarium is going to be cute and adorable, and will give you a punch of freshness for your home,” said Christopher, adding these mini terrariums are also great for kids to make.
Like Haskell, Christopher will be at his booth throughout the entire show, educating attendees about the concept of “living design.”
“We typically think of design as concrete components like the sofa, the chair, the art. We want to show people how can you design with living elements and capture that organic feel,” he said, listing wreaths, succulent-filled wall pockets and terrariums as examples of living-design elements.
Christopher said he’s seen a resurgence of seasonality in the home.
“We are starting to realize there are seasons other than summer,” he said. “I love to bring in different centerpieces that celebrate those various seasons – things like bowls with pine cones or acorns.
Workshop costs, which include admission tickets to the Calgary Home + Design Show, vary. For more information, visit www.calgaryhds.com.