Who do you think you are?

30-something mother, wife, lawyer, writer, design junkie, craftaholic, cook

likes: clever tools, snazzy colors, working for justice, kid wrangling, Meyer lemons

dislikes: inefficiency, civil discovery, most shades of purple, Tori Amos

What? You want my life story?

My Shop


The Twitter


 In Your Reader

 In Your Email

Entries in pirate (3)


Aaargh! It's the thought that counts, me hardies.

So, this year I almost didn't do a Valentine set. Preoccupied with other things, like watching my kiddo learn to read, training for a marathon, and watching all the mindless television I missed over the last year, I just didn't feel inspired. Not to mention the fact that when asked what he'd like to have his Valentines be about, my son gave the same answer he gives to nearly all questions at the moment: Star Wars. In explaining why I couldn't—and wouldn't—be honoring that request, I launched into a complex discourse on copyright and creativity. And then I remembered he's five.

So I pulled out my tried-and-true, Jedi-tested mind trick: change the subject.

Finally, a few nights ago, having already started to mock something up, I asked him what he thought about a pirate valentine. See, for nearly two years I wondered if my son would ever go more than five minutes without a pirate related thought. I once even set a timer for five minutes and told him he could not talk about pirates until the timer went off. Really. But now? Now, I look at my tall, skinny, Lucasfilms-addled kindergartner and pine for my pudgy, preschool buccaneer. So. Pirates.

"Oh, yeah, it could have swords and two bad guys fighting, but with heart swords, and..." 

I never pictured myself as the kind of parent who would allow her child to be entertained by swords and jolly rogers and villains and light sabers. Because I am a hard-core pacifist. But kids love what they love, and while he has a finely tuned appreciation for Donald O'Connor and Gene Kelly, he is also a true connoisseur of swashbuckling frenetic fighting action. That said, I didn't feel comfortable sending cards to school that might offend other parents' delicate sensibilities, thus the swordlessness of this little guy. I also didn't want to go overly gender-differentiated, but my son insisted that there had to be a girl version, thus the batty eyelashes on the red version.

If, like me, you waited until the last possible minute to get this stuff done, I offer these up for your use. For most people, these will be too late to use this year, but you can file them away for next year. Or something. (If you have had your kid's valentines addressed since New Year's, well, I think you're missing out on the pirate ethos.)

The envelopes don't have a space for writing names. Instead, I gave my son a page of labels to write his friends' names on. That way, if he messed up, I wouldn't have to cut out a new envelope. Jedi, I tell you, Jedi.

As always, while I embrace pirates as a design motif, I don't embrace piracy. Print these for ye personal use only, or else, landlubber.


Aargh Humbug!

Little did I know when I planned my little boy's 4th pirate birthday party that I was ushering in what has become a full-blown pirate obsession. In the last six months, he has devoured every single pirate book our library has to offer. He has become distressingly well-versed in the weaponry of 17th century swashbucklers. After he broke his leg this fall, his only consolation was that he would be more convincing as Long John Silver.

Truly, at this point I feel like I live in a pirate ship. So it's no surprise that as I was doodling last week, I started drawing a holiday pirate snowman. You know, Christmas and pirates, a match made in heaven. And to set my little doodle off, I put it on a stocking shape. Big mistake. Because at exactly that moment, my son looked over my shoulder and said, "Mommy! You're making me a new pirate snowman stocking! I love it!" Uhhhh. Hm.

How could I say no? So, after enlisting the help of my personal Craft Fairy Godfriend (buy her awesome, recycled holiday ornaments here!), I think I am going to tackle this guy in wool felt. My husband is afraid. Very (justifiably) afraid.

In the meantime, while exhibiting my peerless fabric-cutting-avoidance-skills, I thought I'd spread the wealth— er, booty—in a little holiday printable: giftcards!

You can download the file here. There are two versions of the cards, which print 8-up to a page and have cut lines clearly marked. Print on heavy card stock, or use Avery pre-cut card sheets (look for products 5881, 8373, 8869) to avoid cutting altogether (my fave!).

As always, you can use this template as much as you like for personal, non-commercial use.

Oh, and if you like these printables, how about keep my poor husband in your thoughts as I undertake this and other absurd last-minute sewing projects in the coming weeks. It could get ugly in here.


Aaargh! Pirate Birthday Party & Free Printables

Updated on Thursday, June 21, 2012 at 8:19AM by Registered CommenterCameron Blazer

Pirate Ship Cupcakes © 2010 Cameron Blazer // Cottage Industrialist 

Pirates are kind of a big thing with my son, and he's lucky—he lives in a town by the water where real pirates once docked.

A few weeks ago, when my son had spring break, I took the day off from work, and he and I spent the morning at Charles Towne Landing, which has a working replica of a 17th century cargo vessel docked in the marshy edges of the Ashley River. At first, fearful that real pirates might be aboard, my son was hesitant to climb aboard, but after assurances that there were no Blackbeards or Captain Hooks in sight, he had a blast, steering the ship, pumping the bilge, and ordering me to "up anchor!" I had a great time, too, and I took a boatload of pictures. The beautiful ship against the brilliant blue spring sky planted the seed for a pirate birthday party.

Continue reading if you dare, matey...loads of free pirate printable booty await!

Click to read more ...