Friday, November 20, 2009

Horse Brass Mounts

Dating as far back as 527 - 565 AD in Emperor Justinian - a roman emperor - horse brasses were prevalent. They were used as harness straps on horses.

It wasn't until Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee in 1887 did the horse or pub brass straps come into popularity. It was Mr. Crawford, who was a robe maker and designer of coats of arms and heraldic banners, that made this possible.

Being married to a history enthusiast and Englishman made me familiar with horse brasses. Nary a pub or fireplace in England would you find without a horse brass mounted.
Over the years I acquired some beautiful horse brasses but couldn't find the leather strap to house them. Luckily for me and John we worked with leather. Our first project was that of a 5 tiered strap from a buyer at our local farmers market. Once we designed and created it there was no stopping us. I had a china cabinet full of these wonderful treasures and nowhere to put them. It is often the desires of others that compels us to make these things for ourselves. With the pattern we created I made several other straps for our brasses. My personal favourite is the Prince Charles and lady Diana collection. I was her age and back in 1981 when the fairy tale romance began. I, like many other girls that age, wanted the dream. I got my prince in shining armor. How about you?

If you find yourself in a quandary about where to have a custom horse brass strap made - look no further. We can accommodate your very needs. Contact us or visit our sites.
Anne ^i^

Sunday, November 15, 2009


About this time twelve years ago I was happy with three young children, a wonderful husband and a thriving career in law enforcement. Having a double income lifestyle made everything comfortable for us. I was preparing to return to duty after my maternity leave when life presented a unexpected change. My career ended and my husband and I found ourselves with half the income we had previously enjoyed for several years.

I was devastated. The commitments that we easily met before were difficult to fulfill. Things like coffees, take-out and buying clothes became luxuries to us. There came a day that buying milk for my youngest daughter, approaching her 1st Christmas with us, was non-existent.
Worried for the welfare of our children we did the only thing we could. We visited our local food bank sponsored by the Salvation Army and received a box of food and a $25.00 food voucher.

It was a humbling experience, but we were grateful it was available to us. Christmas wasn't as elaborate as we had wanted and our children were confused because it was so lean. We explained to them, in a way a child could understand, our circumstances.

Miraculously, our situation worked out in the long run. It was a long, tough road ahead but we survived. The following Christmas we saw a Christmas wish tree in the mall. It was then that we decided to pass it forward. We picked two names from the tree, a boy and a girl, to buy gifts for. It filled our hearts knowing that some child, like ours, would have a Christmas.
Last year I started selling glass ornament earrings at our local farmers market and donated the proceeds to Adopt-A-family. The results were overwhelming. With every $50.00 we raised, our money provided a turkey with all the fixings and a small gift for the children in the house.

As I write this I feel overjoyed about the recipient families. This is a time to help one another and what better way than purchasing a gift box that includes 2 sets of ornament earrings and helping to give a Christmas to another family.

You can either contact me (type "Adopt-a-family" in the subject box and I will invoice you) OR click on the title link to purchase this set Or visit our shop at Catch A Shining Star.
Please note that the earrings will vary in design (glitter and pattern) so when you order please advise what colour you want.

I will post the amount raised each week on this blog. 50% of the proceeds (the rest to cover the cost of materials) will be delivered to the Town of Cobourg Women's services via the LCBO drop off.

Thank you and God bless,

From our family to yours!!

Anne & John