Skates are an iconic Canadian symbol.
For Winterlude in Canada's capital, I am publishing this post from 2019.
Although I don’t have statistics to prove my argument, I am certain that if you are a Canadian, you probably have had skates on your feet at some point in your life.
Why skates are a Canadian symbol...
Boys and girls have skates on their feet almost from the time they can walk. All bundled up, they head to the local rink to play hockey even on the coldest winter nights. Sometimes, hockey players and figure skaters share the ice. Speed skaters practice their technique in the crisp air. Rinks are very busy places in Canada.
Every now and then, when the streets are sufficiently slick after a bout of freezing rain, someone will lace up a pair of skates, and an impromptu hockey game will be the main attraction on a suburb side street.
So, it is no wonder that we all have skates or have had them at one time, in our home.
What do skates represent?
Canadians are resilient. We celebrate the cold and make the best of those long winter months. We learn to accept and adapt: after all, we are at the mercy of the vagaries of our weather. Some days are meant for skating while others are more suitable for rubber rain boots.
Purple skates with unicorns
The purple skates in this post were commissioned by a mother for her daughter who wants to display her first pair of skates in her purple bedroom. She asked for a unicorn theme.
I painted two unicorns, each a little different, and added lots of sparkle paint to the manes, and Swarovski crystals for the eyes and the nostrils of each unicorn. Then I sprayed silver on the blades, and added more glitter on top of the spray. When it comes to skates, more glitter is better! The ribbon also has sparkles and it left a mess everywhere!
I photographed the skates before the snow disappeared under a crust of ice. We had freezing rain off and on as 2018 came to an end.
Skates with meaning
Do you have a special pair of skates that could be made meaningful with a unique theme? I painted my mother’s skates in 2017 and gave them to my sister who proudly displays them each year in her home. Mom loved anything red so I painted our favourite bird, a cardinal, one male, one female on each skate.
If you live in the Ottawa area, (or in my hometown in northern Ontario) and would like me to paint your skates, contact me by personal email.
Winter Wonderland Workshop
Or, if you want to paint your own skates, here is a half day workshop that you might like: Winter Wonderland Workshop. Bring your own skates and leave the mess in my home while I help you paint your skates that you will display in your home or gift to as a special memento.
A participant in one of my November workshops sent me a photo of her painted skates. They are displayed on the hearth in her home for Christmas, They can be left as a winter decoration by removing the poinsettia and adding greenery instead. She did a great job, don’t you think? The snowmen patterns were designed by me for this workshop. They are one of several easy patterns that can be painted on skates in an afternoon.
What are your favourite winter memories? Maybe you live in a land without snow...tell us how you celebrate winter! Leave a comment in the "Leave a Reply" box below in January and your name will be entered to win a print. Comments are reviewed by Louise before being published. I am away on holidays until January13 and will publish your comments when I return to Canada.