In June, 2017, we opened our retail shop, the Quirkshop (an art gallery of sorts).

Things are definitely slowing down around here at the Quirkshop, but it has been an incredible first season. We have learned so much, met a lot of interesting and friendly people, and got to see our dream become a reality. It took over 100 people's help (through our Kickstarter as well as physical/skilled help). Here is a little glimpse of the transformation:

The photo below is the before. It is taken from the vantage point of where the wall will be built to separate the studio from the Quirkshop:

Before

Before

We took out the wood stove, had our electrician friend remove the overhead fluorescent lighting to allow for these oversized Ikea Hektar pendant lamps. They fit nicely into our little budget and add to the industrial-whimsy look we were going for.

View from behind the sales desk

View from behind the sales desk

This beautiful wood wall was already here, but we had to flip it from the other side (our bathroom and kitchen) to the Quirkshop side.

Starting renovations.

Starting renovations.

We knew our walls were going to take a beating from hanging and rehanging our artwork, so we had Ray from RBM Construction build us our huge (and budget friendly), 13 feet high x 22 feet wide OSB wall dividing the studio from the Quirkshop and to cover the other two exposed walls. We colour matched the green from old salvaged windows in our sales desk, for our floor colour: "Relentless Olive" from Sherwin-Williams. The wall colour is "Queen Anne's Lace".

Covering that fuse box was listed as "make the fight right" on our renovation to-do list. No reason to get into it here, but let's just say we disagreed on how to resolve that little issue...

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Now we have this beautiful space to showcase our Birdmouse and Birdmouse Jewellery designs, as well as the work of other talented makers, such as: Bad Mouth Soap, Quarrelsome Yeti, Ally Oaks felted designs, Lamplight Studio, Nova Scotia Oatcakes, Shiny PaintTNT Candles, Lucus Craft, The Black Spruce Live Edge Ladles, and more to come.

And notice that prize wheel?! Lenny made that and it is hanging from that 10 foot tall barn door. Our visitors can make a donation to either a people/nature based organization for a spin to win one of Lenny's art pieces. We had two lucky winners this summer. Stay tuned for a Christmas Spin-to-Win special edition! We are planning on hosting some festive night shopping events.

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If you had a chance to visit this summer, this was a common sight: Timber posing for instagram.

Timber the shop dog

Timber the shop dog

We look forward to sprucing up the exterior next year. It's looking a little haphazard at the moment, but it's cool, we'll make it happen. We do have a pretty slick little parking lot, thanks to the hard working folks at Kings County Construction.

Would it hurt you to plant a friggin tulip?!

Would it hurt you to plant a friggin tulip?!

I think there was only one major blooper for our first season: we open at 10am and I was usually ready to greet the public by that point in the day. One particular day, however, I was still in my pyjay-jays when a camera crew showed up at the door at 10am, ready for us to open to shoot part of this promo video. Of course.

I'll wrap it up by thanking our Kickstarter backers once again for making this happen. It was so exciting to watch that sales graph climbing to make our dream come true. As they say, it takes a village. And we definitely got a little boost when this CBC article was published. We do still owe a coffee table, a couple of art pieces, and birdhouses, but they're coming!! It feels so much better to be in art debt than bank debt, so thank you, thank you, thank you!

A still from our Kickstarter promo video

A still from our Kickstarter promo video

And thank you to everyone who has visited us. Being a homebody is so much easier and enjoyable when people come to you! We are so grateful for your continued support that allows us to keep making art!

As for what is next? We have 7 acres here and are open to collaborations and ideas. Get in touch if you have an idea on how we can work together!

- Heather

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