What’s the story behind your shop’s name?
We never had an official name, but had worked on various custom jobs over numerous years before our first bow tie was born. Once we decided to enter the world of Manitoba Handmade, we thought we better call ourselves something. We were struggling with our name and throwing around different ones, with no success. Charlie, our female Havanese walked into the room and with one look, Charlie's Charm was born.
We strive to use vintage suiting fabrics on our bow ties. We love how it can add another level of true vintage uniqueness to a very modern concept. We do everything by hand from start to finish and it can be a lengthy process to create. On average 40-50 bow ties can take us upwards to 170 hours to complete. We have a workshop in our basement where our creative energy flows and sometimes laugh when we think about our table saw around the corner from our sewing stations
What inspired you to start making Charlie’s Charmed Creations?
Every year for our wedding anniversary we try to adhere to the “traditional gift” (as outlined on Google – haha) giving with unique and fun gifts. On our fifth anniversary, the traditional gift was wood and our first wooden bow tie was created. Once we began wearing it, we started to get custom orders and were pushed into the festival and market direction. We were very well received by the organizers and handmade community that we just grew from there. As our business grows, we always strive to add unique items to stay current, keep it fresh and exciting.
What’s the most difficult part about what you make?
As many would agree time restraints are always difficult. We both work full time jobs and we hand make our line. We build in bulk stages and sometimes underestimate the time it takes to get our products to our high standards. Another major challenge we had was choosing the right type of wood. We tried all kinds of wood, but found they felt too heavy, didn’t take to the stains or became really difficult to work with. We found our match with the light weight and versatile white cedar.
What are some of the most asked questions that you get at a market and what are your typical answers?
Q: Are these made of wood?
A: Yes, our bow ties and cufflinks are made of Cedar and our lapel pins and hair pieces are made of Birch.
Q: Do you make these? How long do they take?
A: Yes, we make everything by hand. We build in batches and to get approx 25 sellable bow ties, it take around 180 hours.
Q: Who does your sewing?
A: We actually do all of our own fabric cutting, sewing, and hardware attachments. This is always a surprise being two males.
Q: Are there differences in the ties?
A: Yes, we have three separate bow tie lines. We offer our standard line, a fire burnt line and a true vintage line (built from 1970's Christian Dior, Gucci, Yves St. Laurent silk neck ties).
Q: Do you take custom orders?
A: Absolutely we do!