Nadyne Kasta refers to her path—to Nova Scotia, and to design—as a “zig-zaggy one.” The Ottawa/Montreal native, and former reporter/hairdresser, landed in PEI after a sudden and unexpected death in her family. Amidst her mourning she fell in love with the east coast.
“When you lose someone suddenly, everything that’s not absolutely essential to your life falls to the wayside,” says Kasta. “It helps you focus on things that are important, and it’s a great reminder that if you want to do something, you should do it.” Her something, it turns out, was The Girl From Away, a line of nostalgic totes, stationery, pencils, prints and clothing she sold from a pop-up store on PEI before heading back to Montreal. But because she knew her Maritime times weren’t over, she’s since moved her operation to Nova Scotia.
“I want to continue to be a shop inspired by where I am,” says Kasta of her business’ growth. Her newest piece—the pictured Sex, Drugs and Lobster Rolls tee ($28)—was born out of a Facebook comment from a friend, hilariously enough: “As soon as I saw it I thought that’d be a great shirt.”
You can find The Girl From Away at shops like Inkwell Modern Handmade Boutique and Letterpress Studio (1658 Market Street) and Lunenburg’s Dots and Loops (183 Lincoln Street), as well as online. But this Saturday she’ll be at Etsy: Made in Canada (Garrison Grounds, 5425 Sackville Street, 10am-7pm), a free, outdoor pop-up shop featuring 70-plus crafters, makers and vintage clothing collectors, local food and artsy workshops, bringing the internet marketplace offline.
“A lot of my customers online are people who miss it here,” she says. “I like knowing there are people all over Canada with this place in their hearts.”