Summerside - Thousands of eager shoppers descend on the 32nd annual Three Oaks Christmas Craft Fair at the city school in Summerside, Saturday.
Lines extended into the parking spaces at both entrances, as shoppers waited patiently in the blustery cold to take in all the one of a kind gifts and crafts by the numerous artists and artisans from P.E.I., New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, inside.
Danielle Gaudry-MacFadyen, owner of Humina Humina in Augustine Cove, P.E.I., hooked many shoppers and casual browsers in the cafeteria location with her kaleidoscope of yarn inspirations.
“My grandmother tried to teach me how to knit, about three times, and I could never remember how to do it, so I decided to take an introduction crochet class in Halifax,” explained Gaudry. “But it never stuck, so I started watching online videos and ended up teaching myself.”
On display were a cozy hooded fox blanket, mermaid tails, stuffed animals, scarves, and toques for adults and kids, and shoppers reminded that the cold season is right around the corner were quickly plucking Gaudry’s pieces from the table.
“I can make a mermaid blanket in a day,” chimed Gaudry, who started selling her creations at the craft fair five years ago.
One of the 142 vendors, James Schurman, strategically placed his fine metal art and signs, located in the Bus Door Hallway, on a fluorescent yellow background to capture attention from the crowd.
“I’ve been making signs for four years now with my wife, Monica. It started as a hobby and then grew into a business,” said Schurman, who runs Island Metal Art from his home on Victoria Street, in Kensington.
“You draw the sign on the computer (using specialist software) and then the machine cuts the metal, there’s sanding, buffing and painting. It’s very dirty, and I thought it would be a nice clean hobby, but it’s very dusty and dirty,” he added.
The metal signs and art, made from stainless steel or aluminum, are used for multi-purposes.
“We do a lot of family signs (names or house numbers) with posts for outside the yard, and we make personalized signs that have included race cars and horses,” he said.
The two-day event, with an admission of $3, is a fun fundraiser that kicks off the spirit of the season.
Proceeds go towards a wide variety of student organizations within Three Oaks Senior High School, including student council activities, athletics, and the band program.