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Thursday, 6 December 2012

Personalized Family Tree Paper Cut - Anniversary Gift

Last Tuesday, it was 19 years exactly since I sashayed down the aisle of Canford Magna Church, with my hair in angelic ringlets and sporting a beautiful princess dress.  19 years ago my cousin married her childhood sweetheart and gave me the privilege of being her bridesmaid.

Lisa is extremely family orientated, she home educates her children and is like no Mother I have ever met - her offspring are very lucky.  We lived together for a large part of my childhood and she is pretty much my big sister.  She is the one I turn to when life has hit me hard, the one I celebrate with when I have caught a break and the one who is always supportive and never afraid to give me her true opinion if she believes it is for my own good.

All of this means the pressure for me to show her how much she means to me is enormous!  Originally I had the soppy idea to buy them both the Now 1993 album - however this was a bit of a gamble.  They got married in 1993, but that doesn't necessarily mean that they loved the music of that year.  It was a no-brainer, I needed to find something meaningful and personal to them - A true reflection of just how wonderful they are.

Whilst researching ideas to make for the Christmas fete, I stumbled across the wonderful sentiment of a Family Tree paper-cut that was personalized with each of the family members names.  I won't link to any as it isn't really fair to the wonderful Artists for me to pick apart their work.  Needless to say I was smitten!

The prices of these online were £40+ for a framed piece, initially I couldn't understand why the price was so high, but after spending 4 hours designing just the tree, I soon realized why.  My first draft (from start to finish) took about 5 hours, and after initially being very positive, my heart sank once I finally had it framed.  Here is the first draft;

It just didn't look right :( I am a shrewd perfectionist, and to me this cut looked exactly like it was - someone saw the pricey ones online and made a bad attempt at replicating.  By now it was midnight and I had arranged to deliver the present first thing in the morning.  I could have cried, how could I possibly hand this over as a gift?

After a largely sleepless night (filled with frustrating dreams of digital design and cutting) I decided to give up on sleep and make a second attempt.  I knew that the problem with the first attempt was that my OCD for symmetry was being over-whelmed by this more 'organic' design.

My second attempt wielded this, and I am in love!

I am pleased to say that my cousin loved it!  One of the first things she said was; "you should try and sell these" - that's the plan!

I can't say too much now, but I have a few more in the design process for Christmas presents ;)

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