Growing up in a family with parents who were from a generation that appreciated and needed the benefits of being frugal, Daria's innate creativity reflects the simplicity of using materials that were available to her as a child growing up.
"At the age of 7 my grandmother taught me to knit, but I was never given enough yarn to create anything of substance. By the age of 9, I was allowed to use the "scraps" of yarn that were collected from friends, neighbors and relatives and the first thing I knit was a scarf for my father. From the perspective of a 9 year old it was absolutely beautiful. I remember thinking of my Dad the whole time I was knitting this scarf for him. My mother encouraged the scarf and said Dad would really appreciate wearing it when he walked to and from work on those cold and snowy and very windy Saskatchewan winter nights. I was beaming the whole time I was knitting. My Dad would love it! I am making something very special for him and something he will really appreciate. And it was true. He loved the finished garment.
In hindsight the scarf was very simple, just a garter stitch, and as an adult I marvel at my father’s ability to accept (and use) my wee gift of an erratically coloured, very long, very wide, and very much hand-made scarf. The edges of the scarf were uneven, almost ragged, the ends of the bits of yarn that were joined together were not woven in, and the colours were not exciting by my adult standards. But from a child’s perspective it was a “Joseph scarf” of many colours, knit with love and joy.
This was the first creative project I remember making. It was functional, practical and colourful. And this is the basis for Handworks Gifts and Gallery – Functional, and practical with very beautiful hand-made items, though much better finished than that first scarf but everything is still made with joy and colour.
At the age of 12 and after much pleading and begging, Mom relented and allowed me to use her bag of scrap fabrics to sew anything I wanted. How thrilling. What would I make? The pieces were quite small but I did find the odd scrap that was larger and I was sure it could be used for something….hmmmm… Not enough fabric for a dress or a skirt, not enough fabric for anything really. But wait what if I pieced it together…..hmmm….4 hours later I finished a dress! It was glorious – I loved it. (My mother didn’t) It had one purple sleeve -- the other was red and blue polka-dotted . The left side of the dress was a swirl of blues and greens, the right something totally different. Nothing matched but simply because nothing matched everything matched. It was a beautiful dress. I wore it with one green knee-high sock and one red knee-high sock. Though I had to sneak out of the house dressed liked this since my Mother thought it was just too much!!
This “mis-matching” of colours within any given object is a theme in many of Daria’s artful creations. Practicality is always at the forefront as well: a reflection of her frugal but colourful upbringing. The wine glasses she creates are beautiful, functional, and colourful. No two are ever the same. You can purchase a “set” of wine glasses – they go together, but they are never identical.
Handworks Gifts and Galleries and the creations that are inside reflect this collaborative exploration of colour, functionality and design. It’s a store that’s as creative on the inside as it is on the outside and all the items that are available for purchase seem to meet this criterion as well.
I hope you enjoy and appreciate the products that are presented in our website and that you will have the opportunity to visit our store.