Dec 30, 2011

Paper Christmas

It started, as so many things in my life do, with something I found on Twitter. A man I follow decided to organize a Secret Santa with his Internet friends. To keep it simple, he limited it to handmade gifts.

This was going to be great. I was going to get extra presents! I love extra presents! All I had to do was figure out what to make

So began several days of fretting. I tried googling my recipient, but she didn’t have any sort of web presence that I could find. Not even on Facebook. So, instead of being able to look for clues as to what she would like, I had protracted text brainstorming sessions with friends before I finally sort of settled on a sort of winter diorama. I wanted to give my Secret Santaee a box of winter. I thought it would be a fairly cheap, simple project.

I can be so silly sometimes.

After many trips to my local paper purveyor, a few lost Xacto knives, and lots and lots of glittter, I ended up with something close to my original idea.

I didn’t want this post to be just photo overload, so I condensed the making-of process into one photo. Oh, and I dumped an entire cup of coffee onto my real camera, so this is my attempt at gussying up my iPhone photos.
Box of winter

What I wanted to do was send my recipient a box of winter. I, as I’ve said before, have really missed the cold and the snow this year, so I was trying to send my Secret Santa person something of that feeling. So, they got this box:

And when they opened it, it looked like this:

The best part of this whole Secret Santa thing, though, was what I got in return. Uh-this:


If you don’t recognize this, you’re obviously not spending enough time reading the archives of this fine blog. Seriously, what are you doing between my posts? Anyway, that right there is a drawing of my desk, copied from a photo I posted here about a year back. I squealed. I’m going to frame it. And also sleep with it under my pillow. This is the perfect personal but not too personal Secret Santa gift. And it makes me wish that my Secret Santaee was easier to Google. Oh well. I love it. Oh, there’s also a drawing of the Hancock Building on the second notebook (which I also love, since I used to go to school within sight of it and also worked in the building for a few months), but I forgot to take a photo of that one because I was squealing and calling my mom.

So. That’s the first part of my Paper Christmas. The second part came from a desire to find something really custom and interesting for my sisters for Christmas. I wanted to do some Etsy shopping, but we exchanged gifts two weeks early and I ran out of time. It occurred to me about two days before Christmas (Observed) that if I can make gifts for strangers, than I can make gifts for sisters. And so I did.

Melissa really loves Alice in Wonderland (and is a lot like Alice in all sorts of good ways) so I made her a paper Alice with her classic blue dress and some tiny mushrooms. And beefy arms. I’m sorry about that, Alice dear.

This last one is what I believe to be my greatest achievement in things I have cut out of paper. It’s my favorite thing I’ve made in a long time. Elizabeth and I have both (separately) been watching Doctor Who this year. It really is a wonderful show. I will evangelize you if you stand still long enough. Anyways. The Doctor flies through space and time in his little blue box of a spaceship. It looks like a 1940s* police call box, but do not be decieved, his ship, the TARDIS, is bigger on the inside.

I made Elizabeth a paper TARDIS. Behold:


I considered stealing it but I did not. It looked really cute in my living room, though.

Did you make any of your gifts this year? Tell me about ’em!

I wish you a very happy new year, and I’m going to leave you with this, because in an Internet that contains sleeping kittens and sneezing pandas and babies who recite poetry, this is the cutest thing that exists right now:



*Edit: I am ashamed. It’s actually a 1963 police box. Thanks Marc, for pointing that out to me.



  • Um, you are amazing. πŸ™‚ I don’t know what else to say about it besides that, because all of these things are so beautiful!

    Also, for extra credit, I totally recognized your desk. πŸ™‚

    And then, for the record, I am giggling about starting a sentence with “A man I follow…” Probably because I spent a long time yesterday choosing ridiculous quotations from random blog posts over the past five-ish years and making a blog page of them. I’m all about out-of-context these days. πŸ™‚

  • WOW….your paper creations are amazing!! I’m so impressed & I’m sure your sisters loved those gifts! I would also want to be your Secret Santa just because you dressed the gift up in such a nice box. I love this post. πŸ™‚

  • Jesse, you are so, so darling.

  • I’m really impressed w your knife skills. πŸ˜‰ All these gifts turned out so well.

    Pretty cool post to discover on my first visit to your blog!

  • I’m the man she follows. I’m just glad she didn’t think the drawing of her desk was creepy. Like I was a stalker or something. Cheers! πŸ™‚

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