Entrepreneurship is a hot topic these days. Countless books and articles have been written about it, success stories hitting the headlines touting billionaires who went from “zero-to-hero” plug up our news-feeds.
Furthermore, entrepreneurship is no longer reserved for those with primary inventions and enough courage to risk their entire savings on an innovative idea. Rather, it is often a side project or passion that hopefully will lead to something full-time.
Vintage and country – two subjects that make our ears ring and that is why we love Tracy. No stranger to the artisan scene here in Ottawa we wanted to introduce you to – My Vintage Retreat.
My Vintage Retreat is a handmade haven, where Tracy’s adoration for vintage aesthetic and love of re-purposing collide in creative bliss. Working from home in Mont Cascades, Quebec, she finds herself inspired by the natural beauty of the wooded surroundings, wild antics of her three sons, and the thrill of creatively re-purposing.
Tracy has always been a creative ‘weirdo’ but gained the confidence to start selling home décor in 2011 as a way to make some extra money when expecting her second baby.
Since then, My Vintage Retreat has grown into her full-time obsession and a therapeutic retreat that keeps her grounded amidst the demands of being an at-home-mom to her active sons.
Loving the entire process of re-purposing – the hunt for material, the creative brainstorming, the trial and error of experimenting with techniques, and the satisfaction of seeing something she created being enjoyed and appreciated is her greatest satisfaction, whether it is meeting with craft show customers and enthusiasts or connecting with other creative spirits.
Tracy’s products are all handmade by herself with a conscious nod to quirk and kitsch and with the goal of turning unused goods into functional treasures. With her mediums and technique constantly changing and evolving as she tries to creatively re-purpose various materials.
Tracy started-off re-purposing bone china tea cups into eco-friendly, hand-poured soy wax candles. Shortly after, she inherited some wonderfully aged barn board and turned it into wall hangings that feature cute images on burlap. From there she branched out into hand-painted burlap pillow covers.
More recently Tracy has been experimenting with ways to salvage the pretty and impressively detailed patterns on cracked or chipped antique dishes. Teaching herself how to use some new tools and techniques through major trial and error and started forming these dishes into jewellery. She cuts each shape by hand, sands the edges to a smooth finish, and seals all porous surfaces herself. The result is a growing collection of jewellery that is unique, completely one of a kind, and a wearable piece of nostalgia.
Tracy is one of the most honest, selfless, authentic people we have had to opportunity to meet and ‘work’ with. Please take a minute and check out her constantly changing and updating pieces on:
Mt Vintage Retreat will be at several markets over the holiday season including:
Foire Atisanale / Christmas Craft Fair
Vorlage Ski Hill, Wakefield, Quebec
Saturday, November 5 – 10AM to 4PM
Sunday November 6 – 10AM to 4PM
Horticulture Building @ Lansdowne Park
Fun. Fabulous. Free – Presented by 613flea
Saturday, November 12 – 10AM to 5PM
Hintonburg Annual Holiday Craft Fair
Hintonburg Community Centre
Saturday, November 17 – 10AM to 4PM
Mistletoe & Ivy
Saturday, November 26 – 10AM to 4PM
Shop Your Local Talent Holiday Craft Show
Old Ottawa South Firehall Community Centre
Sunday, November 27 – 10AM to 4PM
Knox Church, Elgin Street
Saturday, December 3 – 10AM to 4PM
Photo Credit – Willow Lamoureux Photography
-Country meet City