Supporting Small Scotland: No. 10 ‘A Wee Piece of Scotland’ – the caber!

We are proud to bring you our July ‘All the fun of the Highland Games’ WeeBox and this month, we are featuring Scottish Maker, Gaynor of ‘A Wee Piece of Scotland’ who has created a unique and very special gift … we caught up with Gaynor to tell us more.

Tell us all about this unique gift and your inspiration.

I worked with WeeBox last year making Scottish Sea Glass pendants for the May Outlander Inspired WeeBox, it was a fantastic experience.  Through chats with Amy and making my product for WeeBox my eyes were opened to the importance of the little things and uplifting feelings they capture which our beautiful, historic and passionate country may take for granted…because it’s right on our doorstep.  When that doorstep becomes inaccessible, whether it be due to a world pandemic, distance or less overwhelming reasons, the importance of the little things in life often becomes even more significant to what makes life ‘keep smiling’  during times of struggles.

During lockdown here in Scotland, I had more time to be with my family and to reflect and appreciate the little things which I have access to which bring me joy, inspiration, strength and happiness.  I wanted to capture some of these little things in a bottle with the aim ‘When you can’t come to Scotland….A Wee Piece of Scotland can come to you’  I know you can’t capture a feeling…but I truly hope my wee bottles carry within them the Scottish heart, history and humour which can inspire positivity for the holder.

As Covid has made not just Scotland, but the entire world have to find strength, togetherness and ingenuity to help find balance and solutions in this chaotic time,  I felt the iconic event of the Highland Games caber toss captured so many of these qualities. 

The caber toss represents:

Strength:  just to lift the staggeringly heavy tree trunk…never mind toss it!Togetherness:  as the clans coming together for the yearly Highland Games. 

Ingenuity:  originally tossing a tree trunk over an freezing stream to make a temporary bridge.  Not just ingenuity …  but totally necessary if you’ve ever tested the temperature of Scotland’s wild waters!

You are using an actual caber from the Highland Games?! Wow tell us more about it!

My husband reached out to The Highland Games Association, here in Scotland and Charlie Murray (Vice – President)  kindly offered me some broken cabers which would otherwise have been used for firewood.  I was more than a wee bit excited at the thought of working with an actually caber which had been used throughout Scotland at the Highland Games over many years.  The stories the caber could tell if it could talk?!

Using an actual caber has been such a gift for me in creating one of the contents for July’s ‘All the fun of the Highland Games’ WeeBox.  As I worked with the caber wood, I pictured the men and women who have lifted and tossed it…..the hours of practice and dedication they must have put in to become strong enough.  It’s really quite humbling – as I could hardly move the tree trunk…never mind lift and throw it!

The smell, texture, unique grain and strength of the wood whilst carving each little caber  made me appreciate just how incredibly beautiful the tree trunk wood is and yet so strong.  I have always had an appreciation of nature and what it provides us to live….but the sheer beauty, strength and power of nature, was something I was so inspired by when working with the caber.

My husband, Magnus enjoyed cutting the cabers into strips and then into little bottle sized pieces and I have spent many a happy hour during lockdown carving each one into a mini cabers for each bottle.

I’m having great fun researching and collecting meaningful and uplifting contents for future bottles and I’m learning so much more about the Scotland which is on my doorstep.  I love our country…but I’ve never felt more inspired, proud and amused by our colourful history than I do today.

What do you love most about the Highland Games in Scotland?

I remember my grandparents and parents taking me, my brother and sister to various Highland Games when I was a wee girl.  I loved the freedom of the outdoor event…the fresh air, sitting in the sunshine (or with a cagoule on under an umbrella when it rained!!), relaxing watching the events participants and looking at the other spectators.  I loved just listening to the chatter of the crowds, the yells of the participants as they threw all their strength and determination into doing their very best and the voice coming over the tannoy telling of the results of each event.   We enjoyed a picnic and visiting the stalls to get a wee treat whilst the games carried on in the background.

Really beautiful memories which still make me smile today.

I remember watching the men pick this massive tree trunk up and throw it…I don’t think I fully appreciated the strength these sportsmen possessed at the time…but I certainly do now!

What does it mean to you to have the global WeeBox Clan receive your caber in a bottle?

It means more than words!  If I can capture a fraction of the hardiness the cabers have had, the strength the throwers have shown and the joy making them has brought me and this is delivered to the Global WeeBox Clan….. it makes me smile inside.  If the content of the wee bottles manages to capture, hold and deliver even a tiny piece of hope, inspiration, joy and strength…that makes me so happy and humbled that it can reach so many wonderful people.

How have you enjoyed working with Amy to create this special gift? 

I’ve really enjoyed so much working with Amy in the past and presently. I love that Amy shares my enthusiasm and excitement  towards the little meaningful things Scotland has to offer as well as the bigger more awesome inspirations.

I love our country and I’m so proud and inspired by many of Scotland’s achievements throughout history and in present day.  Despite being very small in size we are a nation with strong hearts and big dreams and working with Amy as part of July’s WeeBox content has only proved this to me more.

Thank you Amy for believing in all of us ‘Scottish small business owners’ and promoting our work in your beautiful WeeBoxes all over the globe.


If you love Gaynor’s ‘Caber’ in a bottle – look out for her new website launching soon

Caber in a bottle RRP £15.00