Crafty Wednesday – another thank-you card and a history lesson

Sorry it’s been a couple of weeks since I’ve done a crafty post. In my last couple of Crafty Wednesdays I showed you some of the thank-you cards that I made for the Manitoba Writers’ Guild‘s fundraising event Words In The Flesh. If you’d like to see photos of our celebrity readers, head over to the Writer’s Guild Facebook page, here. And here is a taste of what the readings were like:

If you liked Don’ Percy’s rendition of ‘The Cremation of Sam Magee’, you might also like to see Chris Reid (a local radio personality), who read from ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, and a local writer’s reading of the children’s book ‘Jelly Belly’ (my favourite Canadian poetry book for kids).

I still have one more of my thank-you cards that I haven’t shown you, yet, so I will do that today. I chose this one to give to the Riel Gentlemen’s Choir, our musical portion of the evening. If you ever have the chance to hear these incredibly talented young men sing a capella, please do so. Since Riel was a leader in the Métis ‘rebellion’, I thought this was the most appropriate thank-you card to give to them.

thank-you red sash

A Red River cart and teepee with the Métis flag.

This card has a plain white card stock base (half a sheet of 8-1/2″ x 11″). I brushed the edges with navy blue ink using a rough sponge. The next layer is navy blue card stock, cut 1/2″ smaller than the base. The next layer is a blue flower print paper cut 1/2″ smaller than the navy layer. I cut out a rectangle that was about 1/4″ larger than the photo. I attached the photo to the base with Sookwang double-sided tape. As a final touch, I added the piece of ribbon after fraying one edge. I added the ‘buckle’ to make it look like a belt, because the Métis Voyageurs wore colourful red sashes. While my ribbon doesn’t exactly have the arrow pattern, I thought it was the closest I had at hand to represent the ‘Ceinture Fléchée’ or arrow-patterned belt.

Ceinture Fléchée

The photo on the card was taken last September at the ‘Arrival Ceremony’ celebrating the 200th anniversary of the arrival of the first settlers to the Red River area. The current Earl of Douglas was present to commemorate this historic event.

The settlers were poor crofters brought over from Scotland by Lord Selkirk when their land was taken from them. Thomas Douglas, the fifth Earl of Selkirk, had already arranged for a group of settlers to create a colony on Prince Edward Island and established another colony at Baldoon near Lake St. Clair in Upper Canada. When he and his brother-in-law acquired controlling interest in the Hudson’s Bay Company, he set his sights on establishing a colony in the Red River area. He received a grant of 116,000 acres of land along the Red River valley to which he distributed among the settlers. This created harsh feelings among members of the rival Northwest Trading Company, which resulted in a bit of sabotage, culminating in the conflict known as the Battle at Seven Oaks.

In other news, here in Winnipeg is the annual Festival du Voyageur, a week-long series of events celebrating the city’s history, particularly the Métis culture. Many of the events are held at our historic Fort Gibralter, which pre-dates my favourite locale, Lower Fort Garry. The existing fort is a recreation of the one that stood on the east side of the Red River, a trading post for the Northwest Company, the original post for hunters and traders in the Red River area.

Although today’s Crafty Wednesday is more of a history lesson than a crafty post, I hope you enjoyed it. 🙂