They say when women are ready to give birth they get the ‘nesting instinct’. They start reaarranging things at home, cleaning up etc. I’m showing no such signs, but clearing up was never my strong point. Maybe if I started messing things up…
However, this pregnancy has upped my desire for doing crafty, handmade things. Like knitting.
It all started when Curly asked me for a photograph of my wedding dress. I remember having an online album of my wedding photographs so I tried to find that. Well, thanks to yahoo photos being taken over by some company which was supposed to transfer the photos, or which did but then deleted them. Bottom line – the online album had disappeared.
So, I started to look for the photos on my laptop. And realised they weren’t there. At some point, when we changed laptops, our wedding photos went missing.
Now, this would be cause for panic among most people, but I wasn’t too concerned. I was never too fond of my wedding, or any memories of it. Also, I had a set of prints stashed away in a plastic bag somewhere. And I knew there must be a CD floating about somewhere, if not with us, with someone.
However, Curly having got me started on the quest, I decided I should try and track them down. Rooting around in the boxes in our storeroom, I found a number of CDs and innocuously among them was our wedding album. Ta da!
Looking through the photos, I realised my antipathy towards them had dimmed somewhat. Also, around that time I started thinking about what I should give V for his birthday. And that’s when the idea of doing a wedding album for him struck me.
Now, this might seem like a weird gift. But V is a hard person to gift stuff for. He’s annoyingly non-materialistic, I can barely remember the last time he bought something for himself. He just doesn’t want… stuff. And when he does, it’s probably a gadget he’s better off researching and buying himself. He appreciates gifts that involve some thought and trouble, which are the harder kind.
And I know he feels bad that we don’t have a wedding album. We even had a slight argument over it at a shop in an airport somewhere where we saw some beautiful albums but I said he would have to put it together himself. I think the idea that I wanted to disassociate myself from the process hurt him, though I’ve repeated my reasons.
But five years after my wedding, I’m getting over it.Or rather, I feel that getting over it would be an excellent gift.
Thus, began my quest for an album. Which proved surprisingly hard. I decided I would embark on the project the week V was travelling. But I hadn’t counted on being pregnant and super-tired. And how hard finding a decent album would be.
Because most Hong Kongers tend to get their wedding album professionally done, finding an empty album fancy enough to work as a wedding album was tough. The options readily available were off the Hello Kitty variety. Running around the city trying to find a decent album was proving exhausting.
That’s when I stumbled upon the concept of scrapbooking. I realised that instead of just inserting selected photographs into plastic jackets I could do more.
The problem is I’m not particularly good at craft. I tend to be clumsy and although I’m confident in my aesthetic sense, I’m not so confident about executing my aesthetic vision myself. Then I came upon the idea of a scrapbooking class where they help you put your stuff together.
So that’s what I did. I signed up for a three-hour session, and the girl got me the album and also had a range of scrapbooking stuff at her studio. I went through the photos, selected some to blow up, enlisted dear MinCat to help me colour-correct them and got them printed before my scrapbooking session.
At first, I was all at sea and I wasn’t super happy with the girl’s suggestions because they looked too crafty for a wedding album. Much as I would like to go wild, I knew I had to keep it sort of classy to appeal to V. Moreover, I only had photos to work with, none of the other souvenir type stuff that should ideally go into a scrapbook.
Anyway, after about an hour, I got a concept and theme worked out. And then I was hooked. I didn’t finish the album but when V came home that week, I was so excited I had to show it to him even though it wasn’t his birthday for another two days.
He was super-pleased and supportive, even of the pages that looked messy. For the past month, I’ve been working on it, and only just finished it yesterday. I even spent some money buying my own scrapbooking supplies, like curly scissors and special punches.
Now that it’s done, I feel a bit bereft. I have another album that I’m saving for the baby. But I can’t get started on that once he’s born. And then I doubt I’ll have time. I’m regretting not buying an album to do my Italy trip or something. But I don’t want to start on something and not finish before the baby comes either. So now I’m just sitting here fingers twitching.
Oh god. Maybe I should just knit something.