We have been lucky in that some Christmas cards have been arriving in our mail box.
I sent a dozen this year, plus one for my sister and the family (enclosing a fiver to buy posh biscuits for the table on Boxing Day) and a special one for my Mum which was different from any other this year, that I included in Mum’s parcel.
All my cards are handmade as you know, and although an idea might develop into a theme, no two cards are ever identical.
Photos: Christmas card making sessions from 2015 and 2016
When I was working at the bank, I bought the bumper boxes as I interacted with so many people throughout the building, you were looking at between 40 and 50 cards in total.
Following redundancy, it wasn’t so many, but they were still shop bought, though one of the girls in my office made her own, and they were truly fabulous.
Buying my cards the previous year meant it was unlikely I would be giving the same as anyone else, but the quality seemed to deteriorate until eventually they weren’t Christmas cards at all, but folded Christmas greeting papers.
I was introduced to card making at a ladies group I joined in Lincolnshire, and I was surprised at how straightforward it all was to get some pretty nifty results.
Alas, I got very carried away and my frills and trimmings were actually quite grotesque, and some were more like Halloween ghouls and ghosts (meant to be snowmen) with dreadlocks (tinsel).
Eventually, I accepted that Less was More, and my cards now are simple in design, but made with love and considerable care, especially for special occasions of which there will be several next year. It can take ages if my hands are playing up, and it’s rare that anything goes on straight, but that could be my trademark sotospeak, afterall, nobody’s perfect. Now that we have a decent and reliable laser printer, I will be able to write and print off my own greetings to put inside.
Some of the kits you can buy are beautiful, but expensive to post because of layers or trimmings thereon nudging them into the next postal bracket. I have discovered though that with a little bit of jiggery pokery, I can make 2 cards from one kit, both of which can be sent by standard mail.
Out shopping for replacement carpet tiles on Thursday, I made a beeline for the card/craft department looking for something in particular for festive season card making that I had used in previous years but no longer seemed to be available.
I was really pleased to find an entire bargain bucket of them, though had to laugh as most were old stock from the last three years since we’ve been here, and probably years before that too!
Ferreting through the contents, I found ten different designs (not including the ones I’d dismissed in previous years that would be on sale again in twelve months) and now have the basics for 60 cards for the princely sum of £2.50. I already have blank cards in different colours, sizes and design, so I’m all set for 2017, which hasn’t even started yet!