Monday, February 20, 2012

Handmade Sympathy Card offers love and comfort

Well, friends, I'm still playing with my watercolors today ...

I made this card for the family of a baby who passed over the Rainbow Bridge. The baby technically died months before I got to know her.

She was a wee one, less than 6 months old, and she was co-bedding with Mom while Dad worked overnights in Security. One night as the exhausted Mom slept, the baby tragically slipped between the mattress and the wall, and suffocated. Dad came home, found the missing baby; he and the EMTs worked frantically to bring the baby back ... and they did, but not before the baby had been without oxygen for too long to survive without mechanical ventilation.

This family made the very difficult decision to allow the baby to pass on her own terms and in her own time. She stayed long enough for many to love her deeply, and to offer solace and prayers for self-forgiveness to the grief-stricken parents.

When the baby came to PSC for what turned out to be just a few days, Mom asked me to take some pictures of the darling baby for a keepsake. I had only my cell phone with me, and the pictures are beautiful.  (I wish I could share them, but privacy laws prevent it without explicit permission.)  This card is the holder of the photo prints that I am sending to the Mom tomorrow.

Card Recipe:
To make the card, I first used a Cheery Lynn Designs butterfly to remove the butterfly from a piece of watercolor paper.  Then I used mask to cover places for the little butterflies and for the path-to-heaven dots underneath the main butterfly.  Once the mask was dry, I used a sponge to wash the rainbow sky over the paper.

Then, because I'm always anxious to get to the next step, I dried the paper with my heat gun, and removed the masking glue with an eraser. I opted to edge the outline of the little butterflies ... I'm not sure I like how that came out .. and Stickle the heavenly path's dots. (I do like that).  I had the little butterflies cut in my stash (I have a boxful from other projects!). I cut them using Cricut Cake Basics cartridge (my favorite).  The sentiment is a wood-mounted stamp that I believe is from Hero Arts; I bought it at Michael's.

I mounted the watercolor paper to Bazzill lilac cardstock, trimming the paper to 8" wide by 12" long.  The card has a pocket inside that I lined with a piece of Anastasia border trim in lacy white, similar to the purple border trim on the front cover.  I wrapped the wire-trimmed ribbon around the card, adhering it to the card front and back so the bow serves to close the gift packet. 

In my opinion, sympathy cards are some of the very hardest to make ... but also among the most appreciated. I hope you never have occasion to need one, but if you do, please consider the message and the love when making it for the individual. You'll be glad you touch and care.


Star said...

You're right---sympathy cards are the most difficult to make, yet the most appreciated. thanks for sharing.

Unknown said...

This is lovely Ellen, I love the watery look of the colours you are right sympathy cards are always difficult but this is perfect.

Shawnee said...

I am sorry to hear of this family's loss. I will keep them in my prayers. This is a beautiful card and I agree the hardest to make. You did a great job!