Wednesday 28 April 2010

Handmade Gift Exchange

Today was the day to exchange our gifts in the Handmade Gift Exchange organised by Mains restaurant in Suffolk.

I had been paired with Ann, a lovely lady who is a regular at the "sip and stitch" nights at the restaurant, and a knitter - one of the crafts I have never managed to master, so when discussing in our various emails what to make for each other, I was hopeful of something knitted :-)   I didn't want to know exactly what I would get, but sent a wedding photo to show my favourite colours and Ann mentioned that she liked to add beads to her knitting (beads in knitting, she must be some kind of magician.......)   And when I arrived home from work tonight there was a package sitting, smiling at me on the door mat, and inside was this beautiful creation.....

Teal is my favourite colour and makes up at least 50% of my wardrobe so this is going to go with so many of my outfits.  For once I am hoping for a cold weekend so I get the chance to try it out on Saturday night.  it looks like a lot of work to me and I really appreciate the time and effort it must have taken to make such a lovely handmade gift - thanks Ann!  :-)

For my part, I offered a variety of crafts and Ann was intrigued by the idea of a beaded watch and told me that she wears a lot of brown.  I lucked out and managed to find a lovely watch component with a brown pale face and took my inspiration and colour pallet from that.  The results are below - I decided to add a matching bracelet to make it more of a surprise and added a "surpriseabella" card to go with it.  I am really pleased with the way it turned out - the colours came out great and I got a lovely email from Ann who said she liked it very much which really made my day.
There was a bit of snag along the way though, as the brown pearls I'd bought to match the watch face did not have a wide enough hole for me to cross my beading thread through twice as the design requried, so I had to get out my trusty dremmel with a very fine drill bit, and with the aid of a lump of white-tac I had to re-drill every bead to make the hole a bit wider.......   

....there were a few hairy moments (luckily I bought more bead than I needed ;-)!) but much to my surprise it actually worked - phew - disaster averted and Ann could have a new watch!

This was my first gift exchange, but hopefully it won't be my last - it was a really interesting and worthwhile experience to be involved in - and gave me something to look forward to.  If you see another gift exchange - take part - it's like getting an extra birthday and the giving is great too...........

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