Our Favorite Island Event: Mackinac Island Lilac Festival

Every year for 10 fun-filled days, the island is buzzing with people from all over the world to celebrate and enjoy the Lilac Festival. This is the 70th year for the festival and our favorite island event. Read more to find out why.

Photo: Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau

The festival takes place June 8 through 17, 2018 and is packed with fun family-friendly events and activities. Including the coronation of the Lilac Festival Queen and Court, Lilac Festival 10K, horse drawn carriage tours, numerous concerts, wine tastings, A Taste of Mackinac Culinary Event, Mackinac Island Dog and Pony Show, the Lilac Festival Grand Parade and so much more. 

Our favorite event is hands down the parade. As numerous floats and people make their way down Main Street, it's such a fun attraction to witness and be a part of. Look for our "float" this year! We have the honor of having Miss Cadillac walk for our shops as she was a former employee at Canvas & Paddle.

Another great event is the A Taste of Mackinac Culinary Event. It is a very popular event and a very tasty one too! It's an Award Winning luncheon and is located at the Harbour View Inn. If you were able to get tickets we hope you enjoy the sold-out event!

For more details about the festival, head over to the Mackinac Island Tourism Bureau's website to get the full scoop of all the great lilac events.

We hope to see you at Lilac Festival this week! Below are some great events to attend at our sister stores, Little Luxuries and The Artists Market of Mackinac Island! 

Staff Selections | May Edition

Our staff is very well-versed in all of the unique products we carry, so we asked them to select two products that they feel like you should have in your home, in your closet or on your walls! Read on to hear what Team Member Lexy has to say about her favorites: one-of-a-kind faded flannels and the Himalayan Trading Post Candles.


STASH STYLE FADED FLANNELS

"These flannels are very comfortable and a great addition to your wardrobe. Whether you are camping, hiking or tending to your garden - these flannels will make sure you stay protected from the sun while also keeping you warm. The unique dye affect on each flannel are completely different than the next so you'll know you have a one-of-a-kind garment, which is pretty cool! They are also pre-washed which gives them an extremely soft feel. Even better, these are unisex so men and women can both enjoy this relaxed fit flannel." 

PRICE: $39.00


HIMALAYAN TRADING POST HANDMADE CANDLES

"The best smelling candles! The scents from these candles are long burning and even come in a wood base that you can keep even after the candle has burned through. The wood tray candle is the perfect home or cabin addition. It's such a great piece that it can serve as your main centerpiece on your coffee table on it's own. The scents we carry are grapefruit pine, bourbon vanilla, campfire, evergreen and tobacco bark. You will have a hard time deciding which to take home because they all smell so great."

PRICES: Tree bark pots  - small $32.00, large $58.00
Wooden Tray - $64.00


Thanks Lexy for your insight on these great products! Come find them at Canvas & Paddle. Candles can be found in store and online, Flannels available in store only. 

Canvas & Paddle Turns One!

Happy birthday to us! What a wonderful and adventurous first year it has been. Read on to see what our shop looked like as we began the journey to open Canvas & Paddle and the days leading to our first opening day. We would not be anywhere without our amazing team members and our customers! THANK YOU for one great year. Here's to many, many more. 

The beginning stages: Nicole worked closely with local vendor, Matelski Lumber Company, out of Boyne Falls, MI and couldn't have been more pleased with how the pine wood turned out on the walls. The floor are also original wood! The shelves are live edge wood planks for a more rustic feel. The cash wrap was custom built by Nicole and her husband Andrew, while the remaining shelves and displays were found all across the great state of Michigan. It was such a fun process hunting for pieces that made Canvas & Paddle come alive.

We started receiving products and transported them to the shop, the Mackinac way! We have always had an amazing support system. Pictured on left is Andrew, Nicole and Robert - one of our all-time favorite vendors from Peninsulas. On the right is Dori (Nicole's mom) - who always has a smile on and was (and still is!) the best at finding unique pieces for displays for the shop.

Finally we had product and displays in place and were ready for the new season to start! We chose products that felt:

...Rustic enough to survive outside but refined enough to bring in the house
...Elegant, like an elk-antler chandelier
...Comfortable enough to keep you in your pajamas all weekend
...Nostalgic, like your grandparents' cabin
...Tough when you need it to be, delicate when you want it to be
...A faithful companion for long walks in the woods
...The place you miss most

And on May 5, 2017 our doors opened and we never looked back. Thank you again for all the supporters out there! As we celebrate this milestone birthday, we hope you can join us this season. Let's explore together.

Q&A Time: Roo Kee Roo

Two of our absolute favorite artists to work with, brothers Forest and Michael Evashevski, the creative minds behind Roo Kee Roo, sat down and answered some fun questions of ours. Read below to get an insider view on who they are as a company and how they began creating their unique designs and illustrations. 

Canvas & Paddle: How was Roo Kee Roo created? And where did the name come from?
Forest & Michael (RKR): As brothers, both designers and living in New York at the time, we knew we wanted to create something together. We actually spent a few years exploring exactly what that could be. Ultimately we decided it was important for us to create work that we connected with on a personal level. Our strengths as designers and our intuition on subject matter led us to create prints that showcased the places and things that were central to our experience growing up on the Great Lakes and Michigan's Upper Peninsula. It was pretty special and just felt right to share it through our products and illustrations.

The name comes from a story our dad used to tell us growing up. It was about a monster called the Roo Kee Roo who would lurk around in the woods and eat children at night. It scared us, but it's lesson about sticking together is something we remember fondly. It made sense for what we were setting out to do with our company both thematically and tangibly.

C&P: What is your favorite part about your business?
RKR: With Roo Kee Roo we're so lucky to be doing what we love; there's not many parts to it that feel like work. We love it when designs come to life after hours and hours of meticulous work, but getting to meet and work with different people and companies around the world is really rewarding. It's a wonderful feeling when people connect with the products and lifestyle that are such a big part of who we are.

C&P: What do you remember most about spending time at your cottage?
RKR: Our time at the cottage was about engaging in the simple joys of life. Swimming, fishing, exploring, playing cards or doing absolutely nothing at all. It felt like time didn't exist. The more the world grows connected and cluttered with information, the more appealing this lifestyle becomes to us. We'd like to think others feel the same way we do.

C&P: What do you hope for Roo Kee Roo to become?
RKR: Products like prints and notecards are a great way for us to express the essence of Roo Kee Roo. They're simple, iconic, and things anyone can appreciate in their home. But eventually we'd like Roo Kee Roo to become a brand that expresses itself through an even wider variety of products that feel connected to this experience of growing up at the cottage and on the water. We don't think of ourselves as a print company, but rather a lifestyle brand.

C&P: You are brothers, and I'm sure you have differences; what are the pros and cons of working together and owning a business together?
RKR: Our relationship is the most crucial part of our company. The better it is, the better our work will be. Having grown up together and designing work so related to this, we often just find ourselves on the same page. We talk a lot about what inspires us, which helps before we even get into designing and illustrating.

But our company is an extension of who we are, so we pour so much of ourselves into our company and the work we create. Naturally we get passionate about every decision. We spend a lot of time debating, doing our best to balance our interests with the reality of what's possible. When there are disagreements (and there are!) it's about flexibility, honesty and discussion. If one of us feels strongly about something in particular, neither of us are afraid to take risks and try new things. It's how we grow, learn and continue to offer our customers more of what they love.

Thanks so much Forest and Michael for your continued support of Canvas and Paddle! Stay tuned for more Q&A's from your other favorite artists we carry. 

You can find Roo Kee Roo products in the shop by clicking the Shop tab above under "Paper" or clicking here.

Our Favorite Island Hidden Treasure: Sunset Rock

Sunset Rock, located on the backside of the island near The Inn at Stonecliffe is a breath-taking overlook of the Straits of Mackinac and St. Ignace. It's name gives away when the best time is to go there, because the sunsets are magnificent. 

Sunset Rock is hidden off a bike trail just to the left of the backside of The Inn at Stonecliffe and is usually never crowded with people, if you run into people at all. It has been known as a great engagement spot and, of course, for sunset viewing. (Fun fact: shop owner Nicole was proposed to on Sunset Rock, by Doud's grocery owner Andrew!) It is accessible by foot, bike or individual horseback. The view goes for miles and is a unique perspective of the Mackinac Bridge.

Next time you have a chance to explore the backside of the island, we recommend seeking out this pleasant spot.

Q&A Time: All Things Grow by Marcy Davy

We had a chance to catch up with one of our favorite artists, Marcy Davy who is the creator of All Things Grow. Her products include wood signs, cards and prints and we cannot get enough of them! Read below to find out the back story of how she chose the name of her business as well as her future goals for her business. 

Canvas and Paddle: How did All Things Grow begin?
Marcy Davy: In 2006 I moved to Ypsilanti and began working as a sign artist, which really pushed the skills I had practiced as an art student to the next level and made drawing and designing every day become second nature to me.  All of that practice gave me the confidence to be an artist in my own right.  At the same time I was studying to be an art teacher and was taking a few required studio classes.  I had taught low-fi screen printing to kids before, but it was printing in this class on canvas that really captured my attention.  The combination of all of those forces led me to start printing small editions in my kitchen on nights and weekends.  Printmaking by nature is a medium intended for sharing, so I began looking for opportunities to sell my prints online and at indie craft fairs.  In fall of 2008 I opened an online shop and began vending at shows.  A few years down the road I left my steady sign artist gig to focus on All Things Grow full time and focus on working with stores.

C&P: Where did the name All Things Grow come from? 
MD: All Things Grow is a line in a Sufjan Stevens song called Chicago.  I chose it because I loved the way the words sounded together and thought it would be a perfect umbrella for my work to exist under.  That songs speaks to an impermanence in life that I find enchanting and have chased in various designs ever since.  I have always been happy I chose it and it is an easy touchstone to come back to when trying to decide if an idea would be the right fit for the rest of my work. 

C&P: What do you enjoy most about your business? 
MD: This is a challenging question because I have a few favorite parts.  I love planning, researching, and drawing out ideas.  There are so many ah-ha moments along the journey of creating any composition, and I live for them.  I like the process of making decisions about my designs, it feels like traveling in a way.  You never end up quite where you thought you would.  I also love printmaking.  It keeps you on your toes by rarely going quite as planned.  It gives me a chance to do something physical and repetitive and let my mind wander.  I also love when people share with me what my work means to them.  When someone connects with your work, they will often share an incredibly personal story or talk about the things they are most passionate about.  This kind of connection has enriched my life beyond measure and has pushed me to keep going.

C&P: What are your future goals for ATG? 
MD: My goals are to offer a larger variety of work while maintaining my commitment to ethically made and environmentally responsible goods, and want to sit deeper into making prints that are personal to me.  Mostly, I want to be able to look back and be proud of what I made and how I made it.  I try not to make plans or goals that are too specific so it is easier to shift direction (plus, I change my mind a lot!)

C&P: What is your favorite quote? 
MD: My favorite quote changes constantly but is usually a song lyric.  Music is my favorite medicine.

Thanks so much Marcy for your continued support of Canvas and Paddle! Stay tuned for more Q&A's from your other favorite artists we carry. 

You can find All Things Grow products in the shop by clicking the tab above or clicking here.

Top 3 Camping Spots in Northern Michigan

The outdoors, some may argue, is best experienced while camping! We've picked three sites that are a must visit in Northern Michigan. Let us know if you've been to any and what your experience was like! 

WILDERNESS STATE PARK
Mackinaw City, Michigan

Wilderness State Park offers some of the best views in the northern lower peninsula of Michigan. The white sandy beach stretches as far as the eye can see and the water is perfect for swimming. This campground offers multiple camp sites right on the lake, so you can wake up and lake! There are numerous hiking/biking trails at the park that go for miles. A short drive from Mackinaw City or to the quant town of Cross Village where the historic Legs Inn restaurant is for a night away. A hidden treasure that is about a mile west of the park is a small party store that serves fresh made doughnuts every morning. Ride your bike from the park and enjoy the best doughnut in the north!

Get more information about Wilderness by clicking here.
Reserve your campsite for your next camping excursion by clicking here

Images credit: www.michigandnr.com/parksandtrails/Details.aspx?id=509&type=SPRK


SLEEPING BEAR DUNES
Beulah, Michigan

Another gorgeous scenery site in the lower peninsula of Michigan, Sleeping Bear Dunes is located just south of Traverse City. This site is open year round and offers many different types of sites, (RV, tent, walk-in sites and group sites). There is something for everyone here. Hike the dunes one day, and enjoy Fishtown the next. This location really has it all. Sites here go quickly, so if you are looking for a summer escape, book early.

Get more information about Sleeping Bear Dunes by clicking here.
Reserve your campsite by clicking here

Images credit: www.leelanau.com and www.nps.gov/slbe


TAHQUAMENON FALLS STATE PARK
Paradise, Michigan

One of the best the upper peninsula of Michigan has to offer. Tahquamenon Falls is a Michigan Must See and what better way to do that, than to camp! The falls feature both a lower and upper falls lookout, giving you a lot of site seeing in a day. The park itself has many trails but also includes it's own brewery on site! If you love fishing, this is a perfect spot for you. This site features both electricity units and non-electricity units for a more rustic and classic take on camping. Whichever you choose, it will not disappoint - you are in Paradise remember! 

Get more information about Tahquamenon Falls by clicking here.
Reserve your campsite by clicking here

Welcome to our blog!

The blog is here! 2018 has started off great with many new and exciting changes for Canvas and Paddle. This coming season, we will have even more great outdoors and "up north" products available both in store and online. Be sure to keep up with our blog and social media sites to see updates about our new products. (Of course we are bringing back our favorites as well!)

The Canvas and Paddle blog will keep you in the loop about upcoming sales and new products, as well as helpful insights to Mackinac Island and travels beyond. Useful tips for camping, the best hiking and canoeing spots in the Midwest, and more will be featured here, so stay tuned!