Auntie, you rock! If I was counting on one Christmas miracle, I'm pretty sure that hearing those three little words at some point during the holiday might just have been it. But to get there, I pretty much had to pull off a miracle of sorts myself.
I've always been a bit over ambitious with the type of projects I tend to take on. I plan and plot, source and shop. I am an ardent collector of images meant to inspire and I am prone to amassing project materials to be used at some point, "someday". These little a-frame forts, well, they were one such project that sat and weedled away in my little brain for the better part of the last year. In more recent months, I had sketched several renditions, changing mock ups as new trends in fabric and accessories emerged. They were always intended to be made as Christmas gifts for my beloved nephews and nieces and I was set on awing them with individualized style and trimmings that would speak directly their very different personalities.
But timing really is everything. For all my planning, what might have otherwise been a fun and painless project snuck up on me in the end, snowballing along with the dozen or more other handmade goodies I decided to juggle in the last month before Christmas. I so badly want to look like a rockstar and tell you that pulling these three little forts together was a breeze. But I can't do so in good conscience. I ran short on fabric- twice... the hand-studded trim almost put me over the edge one particularly tiresome evening and I realized halfway into the last one that I had the wrong thread (note to self: I don't care how pretty the color is, heavyweight canvas should not be sewn with delicate viscose thread). Cut to said thread breaking mid-stitch on the machine 19 times per panel. For four evenings and a day I whined my way through the details, frustrated and sure none of the three would turn out half as good as I imagined.
|Hand-studded trim lined the opening to my nephew's striped canopy, while oversized poms and gold sequined trim fancied up the entrance to my niece's bohemian retreat.|
And then suddenly, the clouds parted and they were called finished.
In those final hours before the holiday, they stood around our tree and I felt accomplished. Hell, I was excited, even giddy. I couldn't wait to pack them up and deliver them to those smiling little faces on Christmas. There was no way they would not love them at first sight.
And so it all went to plan where my sister (unaware of these oversized gifts until they arrived Christmas day at her doorstep- surprise!) busied her children behind closed doors while their Uncle and I set these custom forts up in their respective bedrooms. I had butterflies in my stomach as we unveiled them one at a time and lo and behold if the first words out of their mouths were not "What is it?". I have to admit, I was a little deflated.
"Auntie, you rock!"
"Really? I rock?"
"Yeah. This is the greatest Christmas present ever."
I heard they slept there for two more nights.