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Filtering by Tag: Vancouver

The Vancouver Collection - Dan's Garage

Dana Reed

This is my first jewellery collection and so far, I’ve just got the pendants going. It will eventually have bracelets, earrings and other types of jewellery as well. The collection features etched images of original photographs, mostly botanical, taken in Vancouver’s parks and gardens. The photographs are etched into copper and silver, and the metal is formed into jewellery using traditional goldsmithing techniques. I’ve been fortunate to come up with a way to combine my two passions, photography and metalsmithing and make something lovely and unique.

Johnson pendant in copper and silver

Johnson pendant in copper and silver

Each piece is named for a person or feature of Vancouver and her fascinating history, and has a story to go with it. For instance, the Johnson pendant is named for Pauline Johnson, one of Canada’s most famous poets. The image on the pendant is of a tree overlooking Lost Lagoon, in Stanley Park, etched in copper and silver.

A poet, performer and of mixed Mohawk and English heritage, Pauline Johnson was an important figure in Canada’s history, both as a woman poet and as a First Nations writer and performer. Daughter of a Mohawk chief, born on the Six Nations reserve, she lived in Vancouver, in the West End, during her retirement from performing. She loved Stanley Park and like to paddle her canoe in Coal Harbour. and the tidal basin in the park, where the water vanished upon the low tide, naming it Lost Lagoon. Her poem, The Lost Lagoon, was published in her Legends of Vancouver collection, back in 1911. When she died, her ashes were buried in her beloved park and a monument was erected in her honour.

On the back of each piece, a design from Japanese Sashiko embroidery is etched, providing a nice patterned detail. My studio is in the former Japantown, now the Downtown Eastside in Vancouver. This design feature is a way to acknowledge the area’s history. In fact the studio is in a building that’s over one hundred years old, housing at on point Ebata Japanese Goods in 1906 and Tsuruda Sewing in 1941. Now it’s home to the Octopus Artist Studios and Soigné Studio (where I work out of).

Stanley Park, the gem in Vancouver's West End

Dana Reed

I'm incredibly lucky to live only two blocks away from what is considered one of the most beautiful urban parks in the world, Stanley Park, right in the heart of Vancouver's West End. With 400 hectares of west coast rain forest, beaches, gardens and kilometres of walking paths, its a true urban oasis. Surrounding the outside of the park is the Seawall, over 5km of a pedestrian and bicycle pathway, providing a wonderful stroll with amazing views of Burrard Inlet, Vancouver and the North Shore. Officially opened in 1888, and named for Lord Stanley, the Governor General at the time, the city recently held celebrations for the 125th anniversary of the parks creation.

Originally traditional land shared by the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations, there were settlements scattered within the park including the largest, XwayXway, where Lumbermen's Arch now stands. Potlatches were held there up until 1875. During the 1880s, when the park was created, this was the largest settlement left on the peninsula, and it was raised when the road was put through the park. The inhabitants of the park, including Chinese workers and a Hawaiian settlement, Kanaka Ranch, were all eventually removed from the park., most by 1930. You can learn more about First Nations culture in the summer with a visit to Klahowya Village.

Now home only to wildlife and a small population of rough sleepers, the park is fantastic to walk through as often as I can. The list of attractions also includes the Rose Garden, The Greig Rhododendron Garden, Vancouver Aquarium, tennis courts, Lost Lagoon, a pitch and putt green and even a couple of restaurants such as The Fish House. The wild inhabitants include a variety of waterfowl, geese, swans, several species of ducks, and herons. You'll also see turtles, racoons and even possibly the odd coyote. And lots and lots of tourists and fellow Vancouverites. Go early in the day though as the Seawall can become quite congested, especially during summer weekends.

If you want to read further about the park, check out these resources.

City of Vancouver pages on Stanley Park

Stanley Park's Secret by Jean Barman (available from the Vancouver library as well)

A Tyee article on history of the park

Tourism Vancouver's guide to the park

The Stanley Park Ecology Society

Stanley Park articles on Illustrated Vancouver