Meet Dutes Dutheil
Dutes Dutheil has travelled all over the world and says that no other place he’s been to has the same kind of energy about it that Haida Gwaii has. “I wish I could market that part of it!” he says. Instead, he got close to the earth, and began gathering gemstones and carving them into jewellery and decorative items. He started out selling his designs at festivals and events, and did so well that he needed a permanent place to house and sell his creations. So he built a small cabin on his property which now serves as the Crystal Cabin Gallery. Throughout the years he has added more inventory and expanded into a full-fledged gift shop with everything from souvenir mugs to traditional Haida artwork.
Dutes came to Haida Gwaii in 1970 and raised three children here. He laughs at his off-island friends who sometimes ask him, “What in the world do you do way up there?” But Dutes loves Haida Gwaii and is very involved and active in island life. “There’s so much going on here,” he notes. He takes regular walks on the beach enjoying the scenery and hunting for new stones for his craft. He also likes going out to eat and going dancing and staying active and grounded through yoga practice.
Dutes has seen many changes in the business scene over his four decades on Haida Gwaii. Though it’s not always easy doing business here, he is proud of his fellow islanders who make the best of every situation and have found some very creative ways to make money and to be self-sustaining. One of the things that he appreciates about being in business for himself is being able to change along with the times and adapt his business to the needs of the local marketplace. He plans to continue doing that for many more years.
Creative. Eclectic Relaxing.
Cap off your visit to Haida Gwaii with a stop at the Crystal Cabin Gallery where you’ll find an extensive selection of gifts and souvenirs. Crystal Cabin carries an array of stunning hand-crafted gemstone jewellery with many stones that come from right here on Haida Gwaii and authentic Haida carvings made from materials like argillite, silver and wood. Fossil and mineral specimens, crystals and stone carvings will also commemorate your visit to these historical and remote islands.
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