I really like the Christmas swaps, but I try to choose small ones that are easy on the wallet and do not cost much to send through the mail, especially during the holidays. Christmas ATC's fit this criteria perfectly! My assigned partner has beach and seahorses listed as her favorite things. The design is actually senders choice, but if their profile is specific enough I try to send some thing they will really enjoy receiving. We were given two months to finish up our projects and get them sent.
I found this free pattern of a seahorse through searching the net...I liked the shape and the option of using a solid color, but how to make it Christmasy??? At first, I thought a Christmas seahorse was sorta laughable, but then that is what will make it unique just for her. I started making a mental list of things that say "Christmas" to me. The most obvious was the colors...the most basic holiday colors are red & green. So, my original plan was to make the body metallic red and the mane and accents metallic green. The shiny colors reminded me of tinsel. I wish it would have shown up more in the pictures , but the whole thing twinkles!
Later, when I was looking at the pattern ...I thought candy cane! That's definitely Christmasy ...no question. I'm always "tweeking" patterns, but I wasn't sure this idea would work. I started playing with the pattern to make the stripes and after goofing it up at least five times, it finally worked out.Yeah! After I got the ATC card stitched, I thought of adding a border, but with all the shiny threads I thought it would look to gaudy.
I added ribbon to the top so she has the option of hanging it on the tree for the holidays or adding it to an ATC book.
Colors I used : DMC
* 5270 Metallic Red
* 4210 Variegated Red
(for the reds I used one strand of each, together for my two strands of floss)
* 5269 Metallic Green
* 272 Blanc Metallic White (on a spool)
* 310 Black
* free pattern: http://crochet.about.com/library/nseahorse1.htm by Sandi Marshall.
* free alphabet (lower case): http://crossstitch.about.com/od/patternsfromyourguide/ig/Alphabets-/Lowercase-BStitch-Alphabet.htm
* free alphabet (upper case): http://crossstitch.about.com/od/patternsfromyourguide/ig/Alphabets-/Uppercase-Cursive-Alphabet.htm