More About Me (Let Me Reintroduce Myself)

A photo of a small brown foldable spinning wheel with black wool roving on a wooden deck over looking a landscape
A moment outside with my Louet Victoria travel spinning wheel and some black merino roving
A photo of a tan skinned mixed race woman with long black hair wearing a blue knitted hat and wide white and gold glasses. In the background is a artist painting of a man and woman

I’ve been putting in some much needed maintenance on the website, and I thought this would be a good time to reintroduce myself. I’m Leilani, a maker currently living in the beautiful Annapolis Valley in Nova Scotia, Canada. I’m a born and bred Valley gal, though I spent 20 years away before moving back “home”. I was raised in Hants County but now reside in Kings County.

I’ve been making and selling handmade jewelry for over 2 decades, and spinning /dyeing handspun yarn for 10 years. I also enjoy papercrafting & knitting/crocheting, as well as gardening albeit on a small scale.

I’m a mom above all else, and a wife. My husband is originally from Yarmouth, NS. We met 20 years ago, the same day I decided I would stay away from romantic relationships and enjoy being single. Fate is funny like that.

I have a huge family in the Philippines whom I’ve never met. I’m not really sure why I’ve never made the trip, especially back when I was young, single and working in the travel industry. I blame it on money, scheduling and distance, but I guess in many ways I’m overwhelmed at the prospect. I was raised in a completely different culture. As fond as I am of my Filipino roots, I’m not exactly sure how I would fit in. I didn’t get to know many of my family members until my mom passed in 2008.

A tanned skinned mixed race woman with long straight black hair and a purple shirt lays in the grass sporting black rimmed glasses and a white headset

I’m a high vibrational empath. What does that mean? For me, it means living more by what feels right rather than following the masses. It also means navigating the world as a highly sensitive individual. That can often leave me feeling emotionally and physically drained. Think of me as the energetic air filter. The global pause in 2020 afforded me the chance to get re-centered and moving in a positive direction again.

If you order any of my products typically they will ship via Canada Post within 1 business day. My packages will typically ship from 1 of 4 places: Canning, Kentville, New Minas or Windsor, Nova Scotia. It really depends on where I am on a given day. I ship with tracking when possible but please understand that it’s very costly (averaging $17 on small envelopes to most of Canada). It’s not something I can afford on my inexpensive items.

The good news is, if you reside in Nova Scotia, you’ll get your order in a matter of days, many times in just 2 days. It’s pretty quick to Maritime provinces in general, and I’d love to pick up more customers in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island. I ship throughout Canada and the USA. Unfortunately I cannot ship internationally anymore: too many lost or returned packages.

I used to offer wholesale and consignment, and would be open to do it again. I can picture my stitch marker sets being a great addition to a LYS (local yarn store). Handspun yarn is trickier as it is so labor intensive to produce. It’s difficult to come up with a cost that satisfies both me and the store owner.

I often thought my creations would be fantastic in a maker or souvenir shop here in the Maritimes. I can always come up with some beautiful and cost effective earrings or necklaces. Engraved letters for personalization, semi-precious gemstones or themed charms could be focal points.

If any of these options appeal to you as a business owner, I’d love to hear from you. If it feels like a good partnership, I can always tailor the products to match your business.

What else should you know about me? Other than being a mom to humans, I am also a cat mama. We currently have 3 Persian cats, two of which are Exotic Shorthair. A typical evening for me would probably be my latest knitting or spinning project while listening to an interesting podcast (probably health or spiritually themed) and a cup of tea or coffee.

I’m happy to chat or support you on your creative journey…I hope you feel inspired here! If you have any questions or comments on the topics and techniques discussed please don’t hesitate.

I look forward to hearing from you soon,

Baby it’s (getting) Cold Outside

Latest Creative Projects

Autumn is in full swing here in the Annapolis Valley which means change-of-season chores before the snow flies, and I’m in denial that it’s November! How can Christmas be next month? Weren’t we just swimming in the pool and picking veggies in the garden?

I know a lot of people like this time of year, but I feel sad that summer is over. Shorter, colder days are ahead. Plus, I find the adjustment to less natural vitamin D a struggle.

Handmade Birthday Cards

We’ve had 2 birthdays go by and I forgot to share the handmade elements from each. I figured I’d at least share the cards I made. I customarily do that on Instagram, but I’ve been enjoying my time off social media. More time to create & connect to people in real life, and less negativity and drama!

This is the card I made for my youngest’s birthday. She loves cats and it seems every birthday has a cat theme. I used a stencil to lay color with a sponge ink tool (I love Ranger Distress Ink). Then I added flower decals and sticky rhinestones to add some 3-dimensional texture. The little cat holding the “Happy Purrthday” sign was stamped, then colored in with watercolor pencils. I also made him a little party hat, and I think the different sized googly eyes really make the image.

I wasn’t happy with how this card turned out. I’ll admit I left it too late and was rushing, but I knew my youngest would love it, just the same.
I was much happier with how this card turned out, for my oldest who is into sloths. These sloth images are from 3 different stamp sets. I love how they are just hangin’ out on the front of the card. I colored them with watercolor pencils, and a stencil formed the white leaf pattern in the negative space. The sayings “Hang in There”, “You’re my favorite to hang with” and “take it sloth” round out the card beautifully on a brown paper background. The textured green leaves and white/pink flower were cut out using a die cutter

What’s New on the Home Front

I pulled these carrots out of my garden this week, now that we officially have frost. I love that it’s November and my garden is still giving! I hope to expand on the gardening next season. The kiddos helped me get the garlic cloves in the ground last week. Hubs expanded the garden plot for me, hopefully we’ll have double the garlic next year.
We had a couple of nights with light frost so I had my kiddos pick the garden huckleberry. They are the perfect dark purple color, and it’s my first time growing them. I hear that when cooked they taste like blackberries. High in antioxidants, I can’t wait to make a sauce out of them. I
We are learning first aid, and it seems the cats want in on the action too! Do you think we could teach Osuna how to do 30 compressions, followed by 2 breaths? He looks ready to learn! This is more of a refresher for me. I have taken first aid before, but many things have changed so it’s nice to get caught up.

Here’s the latest new products

I’m trying to clear up the back log of products, but it’s slow going. Currently there is 13 new skeins or yarn sets to get listed, and numerous pieces of jewelry. I’ve decided to put spinning on hold until I sell more skeins and use the time to get back into knitting and crocheting again. Maybe this year, I’ll get more Christmas projects made!

This is a revamp of the “Survivor” awareness ribbon and boxing glove necklace. I am officially out of the ribbon charms, and won’t be stocking them. So I decided to re-work this piece to spotlight mental health, though I think the words could be meaningful for many reasons to the owner.

These are trying times, and this customizable necklace comes with choice of inspirational word charm (Live, Power, Honor, Health), and letter charm, that I will engrave at time of order.

Funny story, the day I took the photos for this piece, I could not get a great shot. I was perplexed, as it was shot under the same lighting conditions as any other piece of jewelry. All photos looked far away, with not the greatest detail. So after editing and putting up the listing, it dawned on me: the macro lens was not on my camera!

When I take photos of my yarn I use a regular lens, because macro tends to show too much detail and it doesn’t fairly represent the yarn. But macro is an absolute must for jewelry shots, to get nice close ups and show greater detail. It’s certainly not perfect. I’m an amateur so my photos aren’t the greatest, but I think they are adequate and showcase the pieces with the vibe I want. I may retake these photos, but for now, onwards…

I have offered this necklace with just the silver charm and back engraving for a few years now, and it was…well, boring me. To freshen it up I decided to nix the back engraving and pair it with a letter charm in my fave font, Curlz (engraved for you at time of order). I also decided to ditch the Swarovski crystal accent. While it was pretty and blingy, I felt that something more natural matched the vibe of the piece better. There is a choice of 4 colored pearls: white, peach, grey and dark iris. I also engrave the butterfly charm by way of template.

Much like the engraved butterfly necklace, I decided to refresh the lotus necklace in the same manner. I manually engrave the lotus flower symbol on a sterling silver blank, that I then hand punch into a charm. Instead of back engraving I’ve paired it with a Curlz font letter charm. I chose 4 freshwater pearls that I thought best represented the lotus: choice of white, pink, magenta purple or pale blue iris.

I’m off to work on my current sweater and try out some new dish cloth patterns. My hubs mostly does the dishes (lucky me) and he prefers my handmade ones over the store bought ones.

Until next time…

Leilani signature
Maker, Mom, Empath.
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