Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Fred & Cissy

Fred and Cissy (actually Alfred & Gertrude) were my dad's maternal grandparents.  To the best of my knowledge they died before I was born, but I have the letters that Fred wrote to his sweetheart on the boat across from England in 1912-13.  He came to Australia ahead of her to find work and get settled before she made the trip and then they were married.  Dad also has a poem that his grandfather wrote (or appropriated) for their golden wedding anniversary so many years later and he was evidently as smitten then as he was on the boat across.  Since I inherited the letters from my Grandma I've been fascinated with them, charmed by their love for one another and aware of the sense of humour they must have had (one of the few photos dad has of them has Sissie and another lady on either side of Fred.  They're holding silverbeet and he's holding a teddy bear with a grin on his face!

Anyway, I decided that I'd label some of my craft stuff, so I've made labels tonight honouring them.  I hope that if you receive anything with a Fred & Cissy label it'll give you a smile to match Fred's in that photo!

If you want to make similar labels here's what I did:

  • I made the labels in Word.  I experimented with Word Art, and obviously you could use pictures if you like, but in the end I just used text in a table (no gridlines) - it was a lot less fiddly than trying to align multiple pictures/frames into neat rows.  I got 5 columns and 10 rows onto the page in landscape format using this method:  
  • The tricky bit is that you need to 'mirror image' / horizontally 'flip' the text and any image.  On the Mac I saved the Word document as a PDF, opened that in 'Preview', saved it as a JPEG, and then flipped that horizontally (for some reason it'll flip a photo but not a PDF).  I've had a look at our PC, and the most straight-forward way that I can find so far to flip the text is to make sure that it's inserted in Word as Word Art.  You can then click on the 'draw' tab and then 'flip horizontal' on the drawing toolbar.  I tried inserting it in an auto shape, but the shape mirrors and the text stays the same.  The other option would be to create your label in Paint, flip it there, then insert it multiple times as a picture in Word.  Both options are not particularly user friendly in my opinion, so if you come up with a better way let me know!
  • I printed a sample and checked it in the mirror just to be sure, then printed it onto some iron-on transfer paper from Lincraft (it comes in a pack of 5x A4 sheets).
  • Cut the labels, leaving as little blank paper around them as possible (I used a guillotine to cut them into strips, and then cut them into separate labels from there, so that I could put space between them on the tape - if you were less stingy with your use of the paper (eg. had 3 or 4 columns instead of 5, then you wouldn't need separate them out).
  • Iron them onto cotton tape following the instructions on the paper packet.


  1. What a delightful story! And a very appropriate name for your labels. As an aside, how did you make the labels?

  2. Lovely story and thanks for sharing how you make your labels.


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