Almonte, Ontario has the reputation of being "The Friendly Town" (ok, and also home to the inventor of basketball, Dr. James Naismith), and it lives up to its name. If you pop your head into any store on Mill Street, you'll be greeted with a big smile and lots of small town charm and chatter. This includes owner Emily Arbour and her shop full of cheerfully handmade goods, Hello Yellow. The shop carries only handmade goods, from paper products to bath & body, fashion accessories, and home decor made by artisans from across North America. There's no "Made in China" to be found here. Keep reading to see more of the charming space and its cheerfully made goods.
Name/Title: Emily Arbour, Owner
Launch date: July, 2013
Inspiration for opening: Emily is also the co-creator and organizer of a local craft show called Handmade Harvest. After 4 years and 10 shows of encouraging local makers to make their passion into a business, she decided to take her own advice and open the shop.
Merchandise source: The main sources, beyond local craft shows, are Etsy Wholesale and The One of a Kind Show.
Best selling item: Emily McDowell (L.A. based) prints & cards and Moonlight for Violet (Toronto based) earrings.
Your favorite item: Locally made terrariums.
Favorite store (other than your own): Anthropologie because of the inspiring and creative window displays and how well curated and interesting the product selection is.
What's so great about Hello Yellow is that because it's all handmade, you never know what you're going to see, and it may be the only one so you have to scoop it up if you love it. My favourite item in the store is definitely these animal head portrait plates. It's fun to have a few quirky pieces in your home.
Not only is the merchandise unique, but so are the store's furniture and displays. There are lots of freshened up antique pieces used in displays, as well as super cute custom made house shaped display units.
How about that big roof over the cash desk, isn't it so inviting? The cask desk was cheerfully (for the first couple hours anyway) handmade by Emily herself using about a billion buttons.
It really is the best store if you're looking for a gift for someone special. Ok, who are we kidding, maybe something for yourself while you're there. Emily has thoughtfully filled her store with items that anyone would love to give or receive.
The store is always changing, and Emily always has something new and creative up her sleeve. If you're anywhere in the Ottawa area, it's worth it to make the trip to friendly Almonte and say hello. If you're jealous that you're not close by, you can also find a selection of Hello Yellow's cheerfully made goods in their online shop.
(Image credits: Melissa DiRenzo)