What a dream it was… to one day open my own shop in the pretty Village of Gagetown, New Brunswick (Canada’s best kept secret, BTW!) Today, I shook hands on that dream and made 76 Front Street your destination for some brilliant activities:
- Buy an AppleTowne Design item directly from the maker (that’s me!), made from lovely upcycled textiles (Gagetown is more than a star, apple-producing region, it is also home to the highly regarded Loomcrofters – now a museum – known worldwide for quality weaving, and for gifting original tartan creations to British Royals over generations).
- Take a class, workshop or sewing retreat in a bucolic and replenishing locale on the mighty St. John River, where several B & B’s are waiting to host you.
- Browse the work of a dozen local artisans (River Ferry Crafts is upstairs to my shop) or walk a block to reach a selection of exquisite, locally-made pottery – both functional and sculptural.
My first visit to the Village of Gagetown was in 1993. I hold the distinct pleasure of being Robert’s only romantic interest to have accompanied him on the annual family visit. Now, these treasured New Brunswickers are my family too.
Looking back, I see the magical year I spent developing The Sewing Studio at 205 Sherbrooke Street in Peterborough served as training for this day. The experience led me to understand myself better and the possibilities that make my heart sing. I learned that sharing sewing skills with eager students is truly a joy, that seeing the satisfaction on someone’s face at wearing one of my garments is top of the heap, and that I can’t live without a working studio outside the home. It’s about connecting with the people ‘out there’. Goodness knows I do enjoy my solitude but I also need to be around happy people. And learning to create magic with a needle and thread makes people happy!
A special thank you goes to Marian Langus of Lang House B & B for nourishing my dream through this past winter, seeing beyond vacant buildings into opportinities, and for connecting me with Lisa Dawson, owner of Steamers B & B and my new landlady. You are a woman of vision, Marian, my friend.