Friday, November 27, 2009

Ties that Bind

"Wombat loved Christmas. He loved the carols and the candles, the presents and the pudding, but most of all he loved the Nativity Play."
Wombat Divine by Mem Fox (probably the sweetest Christmas story, EVER, by the best children's author, EVER, if you want my opinion)

I am a bit like wombat in many ways and I REALLY love Christmas and always have. One of the things that I love the best are the traditions which pepper the way my family celebrates this time of year.

This is a tradition from Nanny Button's side of the family. I've told you about Nanny Button and her family before....Nin (my maternal Grandma) was the consumate crafter. She had seven girls, one of whom is Nanny Button (my Mum) who is crafty to her core and always finding ways to help me in my little projects. There is a good bit of craftiness running through the veins of the rest of those sisters and also through the squillions of cousins they've gone on to produce.

A number of years back, the family decided that present giving for the mob was requiring a small loan or petty thievery which was not really in keeping with the season. The collective wisdom was that Santa would bring a small gift to any of the wee folk who still went to primary school. The rest of the families would exchange cards and a decoration. Thus, a family legacy was born!

The craftiness takes on a life of it's own in the lead up to Christmas. I think Nanny Button may be the most secretive of all, going to great lengths to keep her decoration a mystery until the party date. People do all kinds of things. Sometimes they are simple - card and glitter in a tree shape with family names printed on it. Sometimes they are exquisite and elaborate - like the beaded angels, sometimes it is Christmas baking. Always they are precious and uniquely beautiful. I love, love, love this part of Christmas and I love, love, love my Christmas tree and it's treasures.

Due to a not entirely explained delay receiving shirts from our supplier, there is a bit of a lull in the Cute as Buttons market restocking department. In the space, my mind turned to the decoration we are going to give this year and I have been having a lovely time playing with some ideas today. My efforts over the last few years have been less handmade and more mass produced. This year I am going to redeem myself! Using pinking shears, I cut two of the birds I designed for Cute as Buttons a while ago, and added the wing heart from Sharon's bird. I running stitched the wing to each side of the body and then running stitched the two bodies together, leaving an opening to stuff the bird and adding a ric rac loop for hanging. I then stitched a button on each side for an eye. I was pretty pleased with the results so I didn't stop there.

I made a heart:

Then our 2008 Christmas tree:

Next a star:

Finishing with this year's Christmas tree.

I can't wait to give them to the clan and you never know, they might even pop up around the place if you think you'd like some for your tree.


  1. What a lovely tradition!
    Your decorations are very cute!

  2. what a lovely post, I like hearing about other peoples little christmas traditions, I'm the only person in my family who crafts and I am often not sure how they will take my christmas crafts... ha ha... but I like to think my little bits of crazy christmas craft do everyone good.

  3. I started making a new decoration each year many years ago , I really wouldn't be game to stop now as they expect them !