GUELPH -- Hanna Best-Lethangue is using one of her favourite hobbies and her love of memes to help make people smile.

The Guelph resident started leaning into cross stitching when the pandemic hit, but is giving it a modern feel.

“I think when people think of cross stitch they thing of their grandmother and these very elaborate things,” said Best-Lethangue. “I just wanted to keep it simple and kind of funny but cute.”

She decided to stick to stitching the memes and motivational phrases that frequent social media timelines.

Requests came pouring in for savvy sayings like “but first, coffee”, “positive vibes only”, and the very popular “bless this mess”, so she upgraded her hobby to a side hustle in order to share a little joy.

“I just think it’s kind of what people like,” said Best-Lethangue. “Those quiry home décor, but also kind of vintage feel.”

She adds that leaning into the hobby has been a great escape during the pandemic as well as a fun way to connect with her community.

“It makes people so happy and they’re always so jacked up,” said Best-Lethangue. “It makes me so excited that they’re excited to have something that I’ve made in their home.”

Meag Stock and Haley Gill are just two customers who received custom cross stiches and say they bring the elements of connection people are all missing right now.

“I just feel like it was a personal way of transforming something I love into a piece of art,” said Gill. “I think that she’s being tapping into things that make them happy, especially during COVID-19.”

One cross-stitch Best-Lethangue made helped a young man asks a special person in his life ‘will you be my girlfriend?’, to which she said yes.