In keeping with my promise to myself that I will spend a great deal of time doing creative things, I've been surfing Pinterest, collecting ideas for paintings, Christmas gifts, home decor and renovations, gluten free recipes, and much more. In my pintravels I came across a number of posts showing ceramic items decorated with Sharpie permanent markers. I like things to be practical AND beautiful, so the idea of decorating dinnerware with something so accessible and easy to use as office supplies was hard to resist. I've been experimenting with this, and after hitting the local Goodwill for some white mugs, & Staples for a mixed pack of Sharpies, a couple of items for seasonal gift exchanges have resulted.
The ridges in this mug at first posed a challenge. Then I noticed that some sticker letters I had left over from some some other project fit rather nicely between the ridges. There weren't a lot of letters left to choose from, but one 'H', and one 'O' were all I needed. I traced them over and over, alternately, with a black pen, then colored them in, alternately, with red and green. Added a few golden bells and silver snowflakes, let everything dry and 'cure' for 24 hours, then 'fired' the mug for 30 minutes in my oven. I gave it a good rub as I washed it to be sure the color would stay put. It then went into a gift bag with some gourmet coffee, hot chocolate, home made gingerbread cookies and candy.
This one was for a gift exchange @ the library where I work part time. I drew the name of a lady who had recently lost her husband to cancer. My first thought when I saw I had got her name, was that what I wish for her, more than anything, is joy. The needful letters were on the aforementioned sticker letter gleanings, so I stuck them randomly in 3 places around the mug. Then I began to doodle - a circle around the word, another, larger circle outside that.... hmmm .... could be a flower..... and this is what grew from the first seeds. The photo was taken late at night in poor light, with a flash, so the colors are not as vivid as the original item, but it's a fair representation. It went, wrapped in tissue paper with 'joy' printed all over it, in a gift bag. I dumped a package of Werther's toffee and one of chocolate almonds over top, tucked a few packages of gourmet hot chocolate around it all, and tied a bright ribbon bow on the bag's handle.
Also found at Goodwill, a mess of little festive boxes and tins for home made cookies and truffles. The first batch of gingerbread is iced and ready for packaging. I found this best of all gingerbread recipes, which calls for fresh ginger and fresh lemon, in Canadian Living Magazine nearly 40 years ago and it's become a family seasonal mainstay.
It's beginning to feel like Christmas.