Arlene Howard shows off one of the festive nests she’ll be selling at A Christmas Faire with Vintage Flair’s fourth annual event this weekend.

Arlene Howard shows off one of the festive nests she’ll be selling at A Christmas Faire with Vintage Flair’s fourth annual event this weekend.

Going back in time with Christmas gifts

Vintage crafts for sale Sunday Dec. 7 at Eaglecrest Golf Club

Christmas means a lot of different things to people, but for many it’s all about tradition. This weekend, you can start to get into that old-fashioned spirit with A Christmas Faire with Vintage Flair.

“I feel Christmas is so commercialized, so I like to go back in time,” said organizer Mirella Trozzo. “I think Christmas has a vintage feel.”

This is the fourth year for the event and it promises to be better than ever. Underneath a classic black and white holiday film projected on the wall, Trozzo said there will be vendors selling vintage-inspired jewellery, crafts, Christmas cards, soap, candies and baked goods. “Homemade things are so precious … they’re made with love,” she said. “You can’t find that in a big box store.”

For one of the artisans participating in this year’s fair, the event also allows her to bring out what she feels is the meaning of Christmas.

Arlene Howard, who believes that Christmas is about Christ, makes festive nests.

Using repurposed bowls, candleholders and pots as bases, she arranges hand-collected moss, ornamental birds, feathers, berries and plenty of glitter to create the nests. Other pieces are made in hollow silvered vintage glass Christmas ornaments.

Howard got her inspiration from a famous Gospel hymnal written by Civilla D. Martin titled His Eye is on the Sparrow. That’s why she also included a handwritten card, inscribed with “His eye is on the sparrow and I know he watches me,” on each nest.

She started making the nests a couple of months ago to sell at her home studio for the Central Island Artisans Studio Tour in early November. They were so popular that the dozen she made sold out quickly, she said. So, she’s been busy the last few weeks making more. Howard now has around 60 pieces, all of which are different.

Looking at the nests, you can tell crafting isn’t new to Howard. She has years of experience making jewelry, masks, paintings, multi-media works at her home studio in Qualicum Beach. “God gave us all a gift and my gift was creating,” she said. “I’m always doing something different.”

This will be her first time participating in A Christmas Faire with Vintage Flair, however, and she said she’s looking forward to the event. A Christmas Faire with Vintage Flair will be at the Eaglecrest Golf Club on Sunday, Dec. 7 from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Admission is by donation and all proceeds will go to the Salvation Army Food Bank.