Crafts

Momma Collective’s Fall Fair showcases the work of local artisans

Market initiative 'about business startup and having kids and fitting in the time'

Cassie Doucette makes handmade dreamcatchers from recycled materials.
Cassie Doucette’s handmade dreamcatchers on display at the Momma Collective’s Fall Fair.   Lexi Harrington

“Fuelling mom-powered pursuits coast to coast” – that’s the message on the Momma Collective’s website, and it bought together jewellers, knitters, sewers, bakers and painters on Sunday to showcase their work.

Vendors from all over the province assembled in narrow aisles inside the St. Mary’s Boat Club in Halifax for the collective’s Fall Fair. Founded in 2012, the Momma Collective is a network of Canadian artists and entrepreneurs.

This year’s market also had a craft area for children, and a cafe serving coffee and baked goods. Vendors ranged from baby clothes to succulents to jewelry made with sea glass.

“I usually sell out really quick and I have a big line up at the start of the day, so that’s really fun,” says Lindsay Cairns, whose Oodie Bums Cloth Diapers is one of the most popular tables at the market.  Some of her handmade diapers are styled in black and orange, for Halloween.

Cairns, who also sells online, says a friend recommended she join the Momma Collective.

“I was looking for markets to take my product … I didn’t really know that there was a great fair like this, and so I contacted them,” she says. “I had a great show so I’ve been coming to every single one ever since.”

Cassie Doucette was contacted by Sarah Dhooge, the collective’s founder, and asked if she would be interested in being a vendor. Doucette is the owner of Catcher in the Moon, where she makes intricate, handmade dreamcatchers, which vary in size, colour and material.

She began making the crafts with a friend on a rainy day a few years ago.

“Now, I love making them, just sitting down in the evening, putting them together,” Doucette says. “Most of the stuff is all recycled, all the doilies and driftwood’s from the shore up in Annapolis Valley.”

Jody Waugh owns Seahorse Sweets, which started as a sideline so she could stay at home with her two kids. Waugh says she originally reached out to Dhooge and the collective as a photographer.

Jody Waugh started Seahorse Sweets while staying home with her two children.
Jody Waugh started Seahorse Sweets while staying home with her two children.   Lexi Harrington

“I think I saw an ad from the first show, and contacted Sarah … to see if she needed a photographer, or someone to do cupcakes. And she already had someone doing cupcakes, so, she said: ‘why don’t you come and do cookies?’ … Now I do all kinds of cookies.”

Amy MacAulay is a birth doula  — someone who assists an expecting mother through her pregnancy. She has operated Embrace Doula for five years, and has been a part of the collective since the beginning.

“I’ve been to every one. If I don’t have a table I’m volunteering, because it’s such a wonderful fair to be a part of.”

MacAulay stresses the value of having a community of mothers working as a support system for one another.

“It’s all entrepreneurs and I can relate to them about business startup and having kids and fitting in the time and all that jazz, but also, they’re very talented,” MacAulay says.

“So it’s nice to be able to support local but also be able to talk with them and mingle with them … it’s nice to get out of the house and see other people that are going toward the same thing as you.”

The next east coast fair hasn’t been announced yet, but the Momma Collective lists contact information for all vendors on its website.