Pollock's Hardware Co-op

River City Herbals Soothe Winter Skin

We carry the full line of River City Herbals. They are locally-made, in small batches, and feature calendula, an herb long prized for its healing properties. We had a chance to talk to the creator of these fine products, Rand Smith.

Q: Tell us about how you first discovered the healing properties of calendula?

A: I first discovered the healing properties in the late 80s at the Wild Rose College of Natural Healing in Vancouver where I was studying herbal medicine.

Q: What are the healing properties of calendula?

A: Calendula is a highly versatile herb that has been used for centuries as a treatment for skin irritations and wounds. As an ointment, calendula has been shown to stimulate greater blood flow to the skin and to promote the granulation of tissue, making the skin more supple and resistant to physical and chemical irritants.

River City Herbals Calendula Ointment is an excellent topical ointment for eczema, rashes, stretch marks, chapped and cracked skin, boils, burns and scalds (to lessen scarring), venous congestion, varicose veins, bedsores, athlete’s foot and other fungal or bacterial infections, finger nail fungus, radiation injury/burns, ringworm, rosacea, scabies, sunburns and insect bites. It is also effective for diaper rash and other skin problems in small children.

Q: Where do you get your raw materials?

A: We have an organic grower in Manitoba that supplies us with calendula flowers. Other materials are sourced from Western Canada.

Q: Why did you decide to make the leap from home use to River City Herbals?

A: In 1994 I was inspired to develop the formula after returning to my roots—Winnipeg. My skin was spoiled in Vancouver and living in Winnipeg caused a painfully dry skin condition by the windy prairie city’s harsh, dry winters. Nothing on the market helped my skin so I created something that did.

Q: What was the first product you developed?

A: The one ounce of calendula ointment was the first product I developed. It worked so favourably that customers wanted a larger size so the next product was the four ounce organic calendula ointment.

Q: What are the uses for your calendula oil?

A: Everything calendula ointment is used for, calendula oil can also be used. It is better for harder to get at spots like eczema or dryness in the ear or on the scalp. Much better penetration. Calendula oil also makes a wonderful baby oil.

Q: Which product is your best seller?

A: Om lip balm is the best seller and has become the gateway drug to the rest of the River City Herbal line. OM Lip Balm is loaded with calendula, vitamins and essential fatty acids to nourish, condition and soften dry or chapped lips. Also good as a handy first aid the anti inflammatory action that stops dry itchy skin. And it stops itching from mosquitoes and spider bites. Handy as an antiseptic for cuts and scrapes.

Q: What’s next on your horizon? More calendula products?

A: I am working on a few products. Another moisturizer but in a cream format. Also a shampoo and conditioner.




Written by Shel Zolkewich — November 25, 2015

Decorate With Safety In Mind

The holiday season is here! Make sure it's festive and safe with these handy electrical tips.

  • Always use Canadian Standards Association (CSA) approved lights, cords, plugs and sockets and are properly marked for outdoor or indoor use.
  • Do not overload circuits. Have no more than 1,400 watts on a circuit. If other lights in the house dim when the holiday lighting is turned on or the plug is very hot after unplugging it, your circuit is overloaded. To figure out a circuit’s load, multiply the number of bulbs by the watts per bulb, and add any lamps, appliances or other equipment on the same circuit.
  • Before you put light strings on a shrub, tree or your house, check for breaks or signs of insulation deterioration. Frayed cords or loose connections indicate that the wiring is poor. Replace any defective sets.
  • Never install lights with the power on. Test lights first, then unplug to install.
  • Keep electrical connections off the ground. Use eave clips or insulated staples, rather than nails and tacks, to hold light strings in place.
  • Keep wiring clear of metal parts such as ornamental railings and drainpipes, to prevent any risk of shock from an electrical current. Do not leave any light sockets empty if you want sections in your light string unlit. This can create a fire hazard or could be fatal if someone touches the inside of the empty socket. Instead place a burned-out bulb in the socket. This will not affect the other lights on the string.

Looking to save energy this holiday season? Make the switch to Light Emitting Diode (LED) holiday lights and enjoy significant energy and cost savings this winter. According to Natural Resources Canada, LEDs use 80% less energy than their incandescent counterparts, so now is the time to upgrade your old incandescent strings.

If you're still not sure, consider this: incandescent bulbs waste a lot of energy - 90% of the energy they consume is used to heat the bulb, while only 10% is used for lighting. LEDs, by contrast, directly convert electricity to light without the use of a filament or glass bulb, resulting in less energy loss through heat.

LED light strings also last up to 10 times longer than incandescent light strings. And because they don't have moving parts, filaments or glass, they're much more durable and shock-resistant than other light strings.

Written by Shel Zolkewich — November 04, 2015

For Serious Cooks

As the weather cools down, our thoughts turn to slow stews simmering on the cooktop and hearty roasts braising in the oven. Serious cooks know it's time to  take inventory of pots, pans, utensils and gadgets—and maybe invest in a new piece or two. Pollock's stocks some of the finest items for the kitchen, and you won't easily find these pieces elsewhere.

Take, for example, the iconic Mason Cash bowls pictured above. Just as at home in a modern kitchen as in a rustic one, this design has endured the test of time to become a classic. Made in England, the bowls range in size from a cute 12 cm to a serious 35 cm.

Every kitchen needs a good roasting pan, and this extra large, non-stock version from Paderno does the trick. It easily holds a turkey, ham or brisket. Send out the dinner invitations now! 

Stay safe with heat-absorbing trivets. These silicone ones from kitchen basics come in a variety of colours. Throw them on the table and start taking those casseroles out of the oven.


If you've ever tried to mash potatoes with something less than a quality utensil, you'll appreciate this metal version. The wooden handle gives it a vintage touch. 

Have a little fun at the table with these tin shakers. They sport a carnival feel with easy-to-grab handles.

A delicious meal starts with quality ingredients and that includes seasonings. Pollock's stocks a huge selections of Watkins products including the popular pure ground black pepper and cinnamon.


Written by Shel Zolkewich — October 19, 2015

Colour of the Year 2016 is Simply Beautiful

Benjamin Moore, North America’s favourite paint, colour and coatings brand, today announced its highly anticipated 2016 Colour of the Year – Simply White OC-117. The company also unveiled Colour Trends 2016, a corresponding palette of 23 colours to illustrate how white works within the colour spectrum.


“The colour white is transcendent, powerful and polarizing – it is either taken for granted or obsessed over,” said Ellen O’Neill, Benjamin Moore Creative Director. “White is not just a design trend, it is a design essential. The popularity of white, the necessity of white, the mystique of white is quantifiable in our industry. Of the top ten best-selling Benjamin Moore colours, variants of white occupy five spots. It was inevitable that we would ultimately recognize white as our Colour of the Year.”


The Benjamin Moore Colour Studio forecasts colour trends after a year of research attending major industry shows around the world, while also taking cues from standouts in architecture, fashion, textiles, home furnishings and the arts. White transcends style, and is seen in traditional, transitional and modern interiors. The colour also presents attractive exterior looks for the home, from colonial to contemporary and virtually everything in between.


The Colour Studio arrived at Simply White OC-117 after careful review of the company’s more than 250 white selections. According to the Colour Studio, it was the most neutral, level and constant in the various light sources used in today’s design environments. The 23 colours of the Colour Trends 2016 palette include the following:


Paper White OC-55

Ice Mist OC-67

Mascarpone AF-20

Ballet White OC-9

White Heaven 2068-70

Morning Sky Blue 2053-70

Gray Owl OC-52

Lemonade 2024-60

Cream Puff 2174-70

Enchanted 2070-50

White Satin 2067-70

Kittery Point Green HC-119

Banana Yellow 2022-40

Ravishing Red 2008-10

Gentle Violet 2071-20

Luxe AF-580

Blue Echo AF-505

Weimaraner AF-155

Royal Flush 2076-20

Patriot Blue 2064-20

Black Ink 2127-20

French Press AF-170


Benjamin Moore Colour of the Year & Colour Trends 2016 can only be achieved with Benjamin Moore paints. Offering residential paints for any project, the Benjamin Moore portfolio includes Aura®, Aura® Bath & Spa, Regal® Select, Natura®, ben®, ADVANCE®, ARBORCOAT® and Aura Grand Entrance®.


Written by Shel Zolkewich — October 08, 2015

Five Fabulous Finds

Five Fabulous Finds

The change of season means it’s time to do a few projects around the house. Stop by the store today to stock up on everything you need to get the items in your job jar completed.

Do the Can Can: Food in jars has skyrocketed in popularity. And Pollock’s has everything you need to get started if you’re a beginner or to do one more batch if you’re already on your way. We have a huge selection of quality Bernardin jars in a variety of sizes plus wide mouth lids, pectin, jar lifters and even the hard to find Vicorey brand of red rubber fruit jar rings. Starting at $2.99

Sow Some Seeds: Did your lawn take a beating this summer? It’s time to reseed. Fall’s cooler temperatures prevent grass seeds from drying out, but there’s still enough sun and rain to help them germinate before going into hibernation for the winter. Grab a bag of Eco-Lawn low maintenance seed. It grows in sun or shade and the bag will cover 1000 square feet. $35.99

Bag Those Leaves: We’re blessed to live in a city with an abundance of big, beautiful trees. Trees that drop their leaves when fall rolls in. Do the eco thing and gather your leaves into paper Green Bags. Check the City of Winnipeg website for lawn waste pick-up days in your neighbourhood.

When the Winds Blow: Stop them! Weatherproofing your home means increased comfort and lower heating bills. One of the biggest areas of heat loss is your windows. Keep them in good condition with a fresh coat of glazing to stop the wind from seeping in. Dap 33 is the market leader. A small investment and a little bit of handiwork means you’ll stay toasty through the chilly season. 946 ml $19.99, 237 ml $4.99

Change That Filter: Furnace filters quietly do the important work of removing particles form the air. These include lint, pollen, mold spores, dust, animal dander, bacteria and smoke. Nasty stuff. A clean filter also protects your furnace and keeps it in top working condition. After a windy, hot and dusty summer, now is the perfect time to treat your furnace to a new filter. Starting at $2.49.



Written by Shel Zolkewich — October 02, 2015

Bird Houses by Local Artist Lillian Taylor

Now at Pollock's Hardware Co-op Bird Houses hand crafted by Winnipeg artist Lillian Taylor.
Born in 1934 in Tisdale, Saskatchewan Liallian grew a love for the "outdoors and country atmosphere of the rugged farmlands, rivers and wildlife".  With a natural talent in painting with oils she now has "devoted her time to her career as an artist".  We are so happy to be carrying her work here at Pollock's Hardware Co-op and hope you stop in to check it out!  The details in these pieces are amazing!!
Here is one of our favorites!

Written by Allie Slessor — April 06, 2015

Welcome To Pollock's Hardware Co-op

Pollock's Hardware Co-op is one of Winnipeg's oldest and coolest hardware stores! Established in 1922 we are one of the few independent hardware stores to make it through the boom of big box stores. While thriving in the North End we are committed to staying true to our community, our members and Winnipeg. To add to that we partnered with Build and MGR and with that are now proud owners Winnipeg's first Social Enterprise Centre. The S.E.C. is making a huge impact on Winnipeg as it is promoting and providing space for many of Winnipeg's social enterprises. Pollock's Hardware Co-op is all about community, tradition, and staying true to the word of small independent businesses. Big box stores have nothing on the little hardware store that could! We now have a 3rd location in South Osborne as well! You would be amazed at how much product we squeezed in to that place! Like a mini version of our North End store you would think it was there forever! A must see! A big giant thank you to all our members, share holders, our awesome board and devoted employees.... we wouldn't be here with out you!

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