So, I very recently participated in two swaps on Ravelry - one for the Malabrigo Swap group, and another for the Urban Outfitters Knits swap group. I have had to sit and keep all of the surprise secrets under wraps until the presents arrive at their destinations and are fully opened - and they're finally there! Kristen, the recipient of the package from the UO swap, has finally opened it, so now I can post all the delicious pictures you know I couldn't resist taking!
Now, you've all seen the strawberry basket I made for her - I couldn't resist showing it off in the last post. But you never would have known that it was the first of many fruit-themed items I sent her for the swap! Sometimes it's hardest to pick a theme for your package, simply because by nature, a swap is sending out presents to someone you've never met. Of course, you get to stalk them a bit via the internet, and learn a little bit about them through questionnaires and group threads - and that all helps. But still, you have to think of just the perfect thing that you'd send them to brighten up their day.
Kristen, for instance, seemed to really like Japanese culture. Most specifically, I felt like she draws a lot of inspiration from cutesy kawaii and manga, so I wanted to do something really adorable. Then I found these stitch markers at Dragon Lady Designs on Etsy, and knew exactly what my theme would be! So I set about finding other things to go in with it - and what present that has a fruit theme is complete without something tasty to eat while unwrapping it?
My first thought was to buy some of those Runt candies, you know, the ones that are shaped like little bananas and strawberries and oranges and are subsequently colored and sometimes don't have the correct flavor? I mean, who doesn't love candy that looks like what it's supposed to taste like? (Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of them before they went in the package.) While at the grocery buying the Runts, I couldn't walk past these most delicous-looking taffies:
I have personally sampled this kind to make sure they weren't the nasty, too-hard kind, or the delicious but dangerous very-sticky kind. And they were perfect. The flavors were even good! So I bought about a zillion of them and decided to pack them in both swap packages.
Of course, no swap package would be finished without adding yarn. And what swap package could I possibly send out that didn't contain at least one skein of Malabrigo? Although Malabrigo did offer me several options for fruit themed color (Strawberry Fields, for instance), I decided to jump off a bitty cliff and buy Citrus, even though Kristen said in her swap questionnaire that she didn't like orange. And we all know how I feel about orange!
(I'm pretty sure that if it had been you, you wouldn't be able to resist this yarn, either.)