I've been thinking about Christmas. I blame the radio, starting to play Christmas songs already. Terry Wogan and Aled Jones, I hold you fully responsible for this, putting your Bandaged CD out already. Not that I can complain at all, the crisp air tells me it's December, the music is quite fabulous, there's an air of generosity that seems to swell at this time of year and it's nearly my birthday. No, I can't complain at all.
I'm making stockings for Christmas. I have an urge to relive my youth this Christmas, and even with our now reduced family of me, my sister and the dog, I think we can have a good time. I want to make it something different and a bit special this year, because it's been pretty tough as years go.
The stockings are quite cool. I found a stocking shape on the internet, printed it and blew it up on the photocopier to make a pattern for the stocking, and found some fabulous material for them too. The material is white and fluffy with black splotches on it so it looks a bit like ermine. I did think about doing a nice patchwork one but the fun, fluffy material seemed more festive and a bit ridiculous. Just perfect. Sewing them is simple enough, just turn over the tops and hem them, turn the stockings, fluffy side to fluffy side and tack them together and stitch the edges. Remove the tacking and decorate. (EDIT: Pictures now available)
I'm getting some suitably silly things to go in them too, little mirrors and bath salts, bubbles, wonky pens, silly games, chocolate coins, jelly tots, tutti fruttis, blackjacks ... you get the general idea.
Christmas these days isn't so much about the gifts but about the getting together and making an effort for each other's sake. It's, for us anyway, a chance to break away from the normal mad rush and spend a bit of time together enjoying ourselves and getting back to the things that matter, like family and catching up, and walking the dog, drinking hot chocolate in overstuffed chairs by the fire and not needing to make an impression because we're what we are and we're family and that'll be enough.
In the meantime, interestingly, I have two photo shoots going on. The first was a prize I put up for a charity auction last year and a colleague bought for a family portrait. I think either sepia or black and white to really soften it and give it a feel of old-fashioned family values with nice angles to make some of them really striking. I think it might be a one where you've really got to think on your feet and work with what you've got and do some substantial photoshopping afterwards as I haven't seen the family yet and I can't imagine that small children are going to put up with being photographed for long! The second is possibly not quite as exciting as I've been wrangled into being the official photographer for the work xmas do. There's a Hollywood glamour thing going on, so hopefully it'll just be low-light, soft focus stuff to bring out the glamour of the outfits. I have a feeling that half the challenge will be getting everyone to live up to the potential of their outfits. I don't know what it was about women of the fifties, but they had a way about them, a confidence, a glamour that we just don't have any more.
INCIDENTALLY - I have an internal barometer, which is infallible for picking up impending snowfall in the local area. Without fail, I get a headache. Something to do with the atmospheric pressure, I'm told. But for those of you in the local area - no headache yet. I'll let you know if things change.
Anyhoo, that'll be all for now ... Tremendous Tuesdays to you all.