Shirley Chan
This is writing…

A happy place

by Shirley Chan
(ThermalAir, Rotorua Daily Post)

No matter how uninspired you may be, this shop will fill you with ideas and get the creative juices flowing.  Cottage Flair, a happy place to be

You must be warned that when you visit Cottage Flair you risk catching a bug – the Happiness Bug! You are instantly embraced by warm, friendly and helpful people, all exuding love and joy. You can’t help but catch the infection. It is like visiting a favourite aunt.

As owner Jill Brake says, “It is a place of happiness and great fun.” She radiates enthusiasm. With her team of similarly cheery-faced women, they fill the shop with felicity and bliss. What paradise amongst the merry colours of stunning materials, quilts, threads, beads, ribbons, laces, buttons, sewing machines, gifts and things.

Classes are inspirational and cater to all levels of skill, including those of us who think we may have two left thumbs. Ingenious combinations bring a wonderful craft to all skill levels. They are sociable sessions, often forging great friendships amongst similar-minded souls.

Regular workshops are held on bags, doll-making, embroidery, beginner’s patchwork, Sunday Sampler plus patchwork and machine-quilting. These are just a few of the many classes offered in an extensive catalogue which is updated regularly.

Classes are held every week during the day and evening and weekend classes are with out-of-town specialist tutors. Students of all ages come to learn, share a passion with material and enjoy an encouraging, positive, creative environment where they get an exquisite, tangible piece of work at the end of their efforts.

Sewing machines are often an important item in creating beautiful pieces. The shop offers Pfaff and Husqvana Viking. Cottage Flair doesn’t stop at selling the sewing machine. They will teach you how to use every feature of the machine to fully maximise its potential – and yours.

Being a student at Cottage Flair means you become a “life-long member”. As long as you want to learn, Jill and the girls are always willing to show you how, with on-going help and education, specials, tips and further classes.

Cottage Flair is an inspiration to all; a positive place of hope and satisfaction which stems from creativity. Enrol in a class and you risk discovering that you may not have two left thumbs after all. It is no wonder folk are mesmerised when visiting the store.