I almost dropped out of the Favorite Historical Era Swap, because I started getting really nervous about it. In most swaps (like Hello Kitty or Mardi Gras, say), you select things from that theme (like Hello Kitty or Mardi Gras, obviously). Presumably everyone in the swap is fond of the same stuff (like Hello Kitty or Mardi Gras)
In "favorites" swaps, however, the theme isn't always clear. Do I send you things that I like? Do I send you things I think you would like?
The trouble is, when I am passionate about something, I tend to do a lot of research about it. I know about it in depth. If most people tried to send me a Civil War-themed package, I probably wouldn't be able to use 90% of it. Most of what's available at a typical Civil War reenactment is crap, frankly, with almost no relation to historic artifacts.
Plus, when I am passionate about something, I tend to collect obsessively. I already own a lot of stuff.
As far as sending out, some people said their favorite periods were an Egyptian dynasty, or ancient Japan, or who knows what. I wouldn't mind learning about those eras, but the thought of constructing a competent package freaked me out.
I'm glad I didn't drop out and hope my partner likes her package (more on that when it arrives).
In the meantime, my incoming swap arrived.
My partner chose Tudor England, which I actually haven't studied overmuch. My literary interests were medieval, then skipped to Shakespeare's era (just after Henry VIII), then settled firmly on the Victorians.
Here's the big haul.
ScrapingD included some crocheted mitts (which I am artfully modeling while trying to avoid showing my dirty fingernails) as well as a pattern to make some rose-themed mitts.
For knitting, she included some bamboo needles, a floral scissors fob, a variety of cases for needles and notions, and some stitch markers. A skein of Berroco Seduce paid tribute to Henry VII and his wicked ways. There was also a felted yarn bowl designed to sit next to my chair and hold my working yarn.
For pampering, I got a nail file, a lavender candle, a silken rose hair clip, and rose lip gloss.
There were some Christmas postcards of 1840s Baltimore Album quilts, which I have long loved and collected images of.
The cutest thing was this little thumb pin-cushion (again, notice the nail-free hand modeling!) made from a bottle cap and some bias tape. I might have to figure out how to make some of these.
Finally, a copy of The Wild Irish, a novel about Queen Elizabeth and a pirate, which sounds like a hoot. Earlier this semester, I showed Shakespeare in Love, which has a long-running gag about Romeo and Ethel the Pirate's Daughter. Plus, we just finished reading Acts III & IV of Hamlet, with that most ridiculous literary device: pirates, who rescue Hamlet and return him to Denmark.