Do you like crafting, socializing with friends—perhaps with a beverage or two—in a casual, relaxed yet well-lit atmosphere, complete with pinball machines to take a break and try your game expertise? Then Drinking with Scissors is for you.
Allison Button and Chris Lloyd (her husband and now stay-at-home dad) needed balance for their “regular” daytime jobs—an opportunity to be creative. They are always making things. Ideas flow, yet somehow need to be accomplishable in a bar-style setting. The idea for having fun with craft designs, in a social setting, originally stemmed from their time in Ottawa. Allison really missed being able to do that after her move to the Yukon. She was apparently vocal enough about it that the owner of the former Social House contacted her and asked if she’d be interested in starting something similar in Whitehorse. October 2017 was her first monthly Drinking with Scissors event.
With the impending closure of the Social House, Allison looked for another venue and found the new North of Ordinary Experience Centre. It’s prominently located in the southwest corner of the old Canadian Tire building at Fourth Avenue and Ogilvie Street. She held her September and October events there, and the new space was even better than expected.
In October 2018, Allison and Chris celebrated the one-year anniversary of Drinking with Scissors, the result of their labours of love. All of their original designs are taken from the idea stage, through prototypes (sometimes resounding failures), to the refined final kit, complete with all the pieces and assembly instructions. Chris’s training in architectural digital design is coming in handy, now, as they often use a laser cutter to prepare the intricate pieces included in the kits, saving you time with scissors.
Each month, there are a variety of kits available, including one without any sewing needed to complete. There are also options to personalize your crafted items. Some previous kits, over the last year, include a wolf ribbon bookmark, a fleece sleep mask with several different template choices for eyes, and a wolf coffee sleeve.
My favourite creation of Allison’s is the slice-of-pie-shaped trinket box, complete with mini pie hair clips, available in blueberry, pumpkin or raspberry. She designed it for Pi Day in March 2017 (Pi is the mathematical number 3.14).
The most-requested kit is for colourful felt succulents, designed for a special event Allison held earlier this year. “Chris used photos of real plants to design the different leaf shapes, and putting together the different colours is lots of fun,” Allison said. “The succulents are currently sold out, but I will be making more soon … [we’ve] stocked up on lots of great felt colours.” A laser-cut wreath is a stunning optional add-on, in a choice of locally sourced woods. Their attention to detail is amazing; their products exude excellence.
The little but awesome kits often have a northern theme. Some of them have been so popular that Allison has even filled requests for special orders, to be made at private parties or businesses or at social and/or team-building and training events. Check out Facebook Drinking With Scissors for lots more pictures and details.
Tools and supplies are provided at the events, as well as individualized help as Allison circulates around crafters who are industriously working away as they chat with their tablemates.
Looking ahead, there are many other ideas in various stages. One of the projects for November (a favourite of Allison’s) is back by popular demand—an adorable faux-taxidermy bear-rug coaster. There will also be some other fun crafts that are perfect for winter nights in the Yukon. For December, Allison and Chris are having fun preparing for Funky Christmas Sweaters and a few more holiday surprises.
Previous kits are always available for sale, while quantities last. For those of you getting ready for Christmas, they make great stocking stuffers.
The next opportunity to experience this monthly adult craft party for yourself is on November 7 from 7 to 10 p.m. There is no cover charge and the North of Ordinary Experience Centre offers a no-host bar of locally sourced craft beers, specialty coffees and other treats (and lots of free parking). Kits are available for a nominal fee and you can buy as many as you’d like. For more info, go to the Facebook page, Drinking with Scissors. Seating is limited, so plan to come early if you want to guarantee a spot.