My incoming had some regifting (not that anything is wrong with regifting if it's appropriate to the recipient--this wasn't) and many of the items were decidedly the worse for wear. Then, my outgoing partner completely disappeared from Ravelry for several weeks. I had literally reached the point of checking the crime section of her local newspaper to make sure she was okay. Eventually, she finally resurfaced with only the most cursory of thank you posts. Sigh.
Still, I've had a good run of swaps, so a few mildly disappointing ones are bound to crop up.
For my outgoing package, I chose the theme of the American Civil War (shocking, I know) and wrote a long letter in first person, explaining the contents of the package as if I were writing to an 1800s school friend. I've really come to like writing first-person letters; it takes a bit of practice, but fortunately I have plenty of experience reading epistolary novels. I tried to make it relevant to events in my state and underlined some unfamiliar terms (like "Jayhawker" or "sanitary fair") in case she wanted to google them. I'm guessing she didn't bother.
The big pic (going roughly clockwise from upper left):
I included an afghan block using a historic stitch, some currency, a newspaper from 150 years ago, some soap, a pin cushion, some sport weight yarn in 100% wool, some patriotic envelopes, some CDVs, a box of matches, a shawl pin, friendship and reward-of-merit cards, steamboat tickets, and a knitted sleeping cap.
All of the paper goods were reproductions, of course, but I had fun gathering them, especially given the name of this blog. Naturally, when shopping for my swap partner, I picked up a few things for myself. The envelopes, in particular, were really exciting.
I also included a CD of Missouri Civil War songs, which was really hard to give away. It had a great booklet inside with tons of history.
My swap partner collects a block from each of her partners and is making an afghan. I chose an 1840s scarf pattern and went ahead and used an acrylic blend so that she could wash it. Go ahead, call me a farb.
For the hat, I drew inspiration from this photo:
Writing up this post has reminded me that I did have fun gathering the swap and I'm pretty pleased with how the package turned out. I've got one more swap this year, then I'll need to decide whether or not to take a swapping break.
But then there's next year's Mardi Gras swap. After that, I'll need to decide whether or not to take a swapping break.