Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Birthday banner

I love to make things, especially to things give away, but I don't want to make junk and I don't want to give people junk.

As a member of a very crafty family, I have made lots of stuff over the years: picture frames, jewelry, pictures, clothes, blankets, etc. The list gets even bigger for the rest of my family: birdhouses, crosses, halloween costumes, bunny rabbit dolls, paintings of all varieties with many mediums on all kinds of surfaces, murals, prints, clothing, quilts, furniture, rugs, and more.

Some of the stuff I have made has been great, but a lot of it has been junk. I mean, sure, it was a great thought at the time, it's special that it was homemade, and I'm sure it was appreciated on some level. But most of the time I really didn't consider the item's longevity, functionality/usefulness, or whether its recipient would like it as much as I did.

If those gifts ended up in a Goodwill box, I am not disappointed or all too surprised. I am all about reducing the clutter.

That is exactly why I am trying to give more thoughtful, useful gifts.

Not everything has to serve some grand purpose. It's okay to have a few things that are purely decorative, like a bedskirt or my favorite silver leaf knick-knack from the CSU bookstore. I don't like to dust though, so -for me- I would rather have useful things that are also decorative. Multi-purpose is also awesome.

As such, I made this banner for my sister's birthday. I made a similar one with different fabrics for my Mom's birthday in April. Sorry, Mom, that yours was the test model and has a few stitching defects. I learned a lot about banner-making from that project!

I also "made" her these towels. I actually bought the towels from Target, then I appliqued the circles. I love it because they match the style of decor in her home perfectly.

The use for the towels is obvious. For the banner though, I have high hopes that it will be something to use for years to come for all kinds of family celebrations, be them birthdays, holidays, or work promotion parties!

I've tried to make them match the tastes of the recipient so that they will be a joy to look at, really make your heart happy, a reflection of the receiver, something you'll want to keep on display not just the day of the party, but perhaps a week or so just to keep the celebration going.

This picture of the banner totally made me laugh because it kind of looks like a bunch of thong underwear hanging on the line!

Happy birthday, Lisa! Yes, Marcy, yours is soon to come:)

The dog

He goes by many names: Chuck, Charles, Pooper, Little Dog, Shadow, Dog, No, Fluffy Ears, Curly, Pup, Little One, and most recently Micro (because of his new microchip, but the name was just so fitting for this little guy).

That paw out in front and the way he paws the air with hopeful anticipation is Charlie's way of saying, "Play with me!"

So play we do...with the reindeer costume. What was once a funny costume is now a jingling tug-of-war toy.

I'm surprised only the velcro has fallen off so far.

The most durable sqeaker ball Ever, and Charlie's favorite. Yes, the green ball with the polka dots is still a close second.

I bet you can't catch me...

Pooped from play, he claims the couch, unless we move somewhere else. Then he'll snuggle up right next to us wherever that may be. Loyal to a fault.

And a friend for all times. When a birthday package arrived a few weeks ago, and it was just Charlie and I at home, he immediately helped me unwrap it. At first, I almost scolded him for digging in, but then I realized he was just remembering the fun of Christmasses past.

Little Dog will be tagging along on our journey to South Korea this winter. Perhaps we will even rename him Big Expense. We truly considered a new home for Charlie, but the truth is we would really miss this little ball of energy and love. Sure, we'll have to board him during some of our travels, and we do have to pay $125 each way to fly him across the ocean. But when Husband is working late or I am feeling homesick, I know Charlie will come on over with his head down low and his tail wagging high, ready to bring up my spirits.
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