While it may not be anything as fancy as my blogging anniversary, though I think that’s more like a birthday, it is my wedding anniversary today. This year, I wanted to give Husband a flask. He has always wanted one, an to be honest, I’m not sure why he hasn’t already received one. I must be forgetful.
So I ordered Husband a flask online, and then got to work. Have I confused you yet? Sorry. I didn’t want to give Husband just any old flask, I wanted to engrave it, but being the designer that I am, I couldn’t just get it engraved, no I had to break out the Adobe Illustrator, xacto blades, and media blaster, and do it myself. I don’t know why, it’s just a problem I have.
I realized that I have made every anniversary gift,with the exception of one, since we got married. We’ve only been married four years, so thats not too many, but I was still amazed. The first year, I made a photo montage-y thing of our wedding and framed it. The next year, I made him a hand woven necklace so he could wear his wedding ring while at work – his line of work makes it dangerous to wear it on his hand, and this year, I made this.
Now I know that some of you have already seen this, I was just so happy with it, that I couldn’t wait to share. In fact, I gave Husband his present to unwrap at breakfast this morning. Now, I can tell you how I did it.
After the flask arrived, I took some measurements, and opened my favorite layout program. I then came up with three ideas that I wasn’t crazy about, but didn’t quite know what else to do. I posted my “sketches” online, and asked some advise. A graphic designer I know fussed at me for stretching the text, as I knew she would, and told me to find fonts that were already in the proportion that I wanted them in. I went back to the drawing board, and came up with a new, and better design. I then printed it onto sticky-back (clear, printable, sticker paper), and stuck that onto a sheet of contact paper – I wanted the added strength of the vinyl. I then cut out the middle date, and stuck the whole sheet of contact paper onto the flask; then I put the 2 year old to bed, and set out to do the more detailed work. I cut out the bands around the letters and numbers, leaving them in place. I then wrapped everything I didn’t want blasted in tape, and headed to the garage. After finding the plugs for the light, and turning on the compressor, I put the flask into the blasting cabinet, stuck my arms into the gloves – which is always the worst part, you never know what could be in there! – and blasted away.
When I was finished, I removed all the tape and contact paper to reveal the protected stainless beneath. I washed everything – blasting is a very messy thing – and wrapped it up with a bow.
It may seem like a lot of trouble, but in the end I got a personalized flask for less than 20 bucks, and that includes the over night shipping. It took me less than two hours to cut and blast it, and Husband loves it. I guess what I’m saying, is that with a bit of thought, you can turn an inexpensive present into a priceless gift; you just have to look around.