You’d be surprised how much Muskoka shares in common with Banff National Park. Both are Canadian icons, both define Canadiana, both are places revered by Yoho & Co.. Jessy Robertson is a graphic designer and lover of the outdoors — her Yoho & Co. studio is situated just outside the gates of Banff National Park. Two years ago she spun her love for travel, design, and nostalgia into an Instagram-friendly business. Yoho & Co crafts felt pennants that make us long for the past. Muskoka. Georgian Bay. Banff. Pointe au Baril. Yellowstone. Glacier National Park. These pennants bring back memories of travelling across country in a camper van as kids — pulling up at dusk to find a spot, slapping mosquitoes, burning marshmallows, howling at the moon, and skinny dipping in the lake. Oh, and of buying pennants at the general store to mark our visit, let’s not forget that. MuskokaStyle stopped for a moment to look back. We asked Jessy how she came up with the idea of hand-making (and selling) travel pennants from the past. Here’s what she said:
MuskokaStyle: Pennants are a neat and nostalgic idea, how’d you get started?
Jessy: Yoho & Co. started two years ago at my graphic design studio, which is located just at the gates of Banff National Park. The pennants started with a few sketches, a little bit of felt and a passion for Canadian-made art.
MuskokaStyle: Why pennants?
Jessy: As a designer, pennants have always fascinated me. They are these little pieces of history that were brought back as souvenirs from epic road trips of a by-gone era – often from a time when many of the roads that led to Banff National Park were dirt. Creating a hand-sewn pennant in the modern-day is a way for people to continue to celebrate their favourite places, but with a nostalgic spin.
MuskokaStyle: What’s your inspiration?
Jessy: Road trips, teal Rockies lakes, desert landscapes, artisan coffee shops, and vintage hand-carved signs are just a few of the places and things that inspire me. At the Yoho & Co. studio, every day we are introduced to someone’s favourite cabin, lake, or mountain, and it’s always a joy and adventure to hear the stories behind those special spots.
MuskokaStyle: How much do they cost?
Jessy: Each felt pennant is 100% hand sewn and is approximately 19” wide by 7.5” high, but come in other sizes as well. They are priced anywhere from $54 to $175. They’re available in different colour combinations, or can be made custom, too. We have huge super pennants as well.
MuskokaStyle: Where can we purchase your pennants?
Jessy: In Muskoka the pennants are available at Huckleberry’s in Parry Sound. They’re also sold at The Georgian Artisan Shop (Thornbury), The Tiny Art Shack (Elmvale), The McMichael Gallery Shop (Kleinburg), Barn & Bunkie (Kawartha Lakes), and Up River (Minden & Haliburton). Or you can purchase online HERE.
Lead photo by Allison Milne (@allisonmilne). All other images by Josh Robertson courtesy of Yoho & Co.