When my Canadian Originals box arrived at my front door last week, I admit, I was excited to open it. I was eager to peel off the tape, rip apart the paper and see what goodies were inside that were meant just for me. Subscription boxes differ from my usual online shopping booty. I have full knowledge of what lay inside those parcels. I am the one that, with near maniacal behavior, has clicked through when those discount codes beckon from my inbox. Being presented with a subscription box is like being a child again and being handed a birthday present. You have an idea, after all even great-aunt Gertrude isn’t going to gift you mittens in the sweltering heat of July but, other than a general sense, the surprise is genuine. How many pleasant surprises are there once you become an adult?
Canadian Originals is a new Canada subscription box. They curate a monthly selection of 3-5 lifestyle, handmade, artisan Canadian goods. Their debut box, Canada150, is launching this July, to coincide with Canada’s historic anniversary and with the tagline “the best of handmade Canada”, they include a variety of lifestyle items aimed at women, ranging from jewelry, home décor, natural bath and beauty items and stationery, to glass and ceramics, art and accessories.
When I asked how the founders of Canadian Originals arrived at the concept of creating and curating a subscription service like this, their answer was quite simple. They loved receiving delightful surprises too! They also wanted to create a box that reflected the local Canadian artist and the conscientious Canadian consumer – no small feat when you are tasked with sourcing high quality items that people actually want, month after month. When I asked about how they select their artisans, I was not at all surprised to learn it’s a complex process that involves scheduling logistics (because all items are handmade) and potential vendors are thoroughly screened to ensure that they are in fact Canadian, and their overall product is up to Canadian Originals top standards. It’s as though they have scoured the best of the high-end craft markets and presented their finds to you each month!
Through Plenty I have had the opportunity to meet many artists and entrepreneurs. I love hearing their stories – some of them stand out and have stayed with me through the years. The founders of Canadian Originals are finding that they are meeting special Canadians along their journey too. Reading Kylee’s story I am reminded by something Carol shared with me years ago: you have power with your dollar. You may not think so but you do. When you buy local, you are helping a small business own put food on their table, pay for ballet lessons, buy a baseball glove. It really is that simple.
Kylee of Kylee’s Keepsakes is the one whose story I would like to share. Her Home wall decor was included in our July box and we have gotten great feedback on the rustic sign, everyone loved the exclusive design she created for us. She is a young entrepreneur, in her twenties, and she is just handy and talented and can make anything. But she originally didn’t plan on having a business, it was borne out of necessity when her young son was born with severe heart defects. Liam needed not only repeated surgeries and long hospital stays but also after coming home, it required Kylee to stay home with him. She decided that she had to come up with a home based business so she could earn a living, but also be home with him, and she is doing a great job of both. I have so much respect and admiration for her maturity and fierce determination and her indomitable spirit. The one thing she said to me when I asked to profile her on the blog was “I don’t want anyone to feel sorry for me”. I assured her that her story is inspirational and moving, and not in the least sorry inducing. Liam is the happiest little boy you’ll meet and the love and care with which he is being raised is evident. We are thrilled to collaborate with Kylee and promote her work – we are working together to come up with a line of further exclusive designs for the store, so watch out for more Kylee’s Keepsakes staring in August.
It’s easy to order and gift from our website; Currently accepting subscriptions and the first box to ship is the Canada150 July debut box. It will be mailed out on July 5-7th. Once the July box sells out, new subscribers will receive August as their first box. For those who like flexibility, they can easily skip a month straight from their account screen.
Currently Canadian Originals is running a contest to win a three month subscription – full details on their blog!
Read Plenty more! A craft subscription box (below) for kids is perfect for the summer. Read more here.
*Plenty did not receive paid compensation for this post. Canadian Originals did send over a box for review. All opinions are our own . . . . and everyone knows by now that we don’t write about things that we don’t like.