Crafts, Inspiration

Not Safe for Pinterest

Like the proverbial magpie drawn to shiny objects, my eyes first fell on the shimmering  cigarillo wrappers of Swisher Sweets during my daily dog-walking duties. Despite my neighborhood’s reputation as a historic haven for Warby Parker and Lululemon enthusiasts, someone was keeping it real. A stoner version of Hansel and Gretel left me a trail of these flat-as-a-bookmark packages on the hike and bike trail, discarded curbside, and even floating in a drainage ditch after a heavy rain, gleaming like a Faberge egg. I soon turned pro forager, easily identifying the trademark Swisher Sweets label from a distance with fragrant promises of Boozy Mango and Twisted Berry. However, I discovered the area had a competing brand in the form of a fluffy owl perched on a lit cigarillo, the White Owl.  Other economy-sized varieties followed, featuring names like City Life, the Four Kings, and Show, depicting a lady spiraling on a stripper pole.

As my collection grew, my mind turned to thoughts of crafting.  With Christmas around the corner, I envisioned a purely synthetic masterpiece, accented by ornaments fashioned from the wrappers. Hung from tiny gold safety pins, the upcycled ornaments would adorn a winter white, artificial tree topped with a Little Tree, the air freshener often seen hanging from dashboard mirrors in an effort to disguise the smell of what’s really in all those cigarillos. Keeping with the evergreen theme, I chose a simple tree pattern for my ornament-making and set to work, carefully cutting out the trees from the wrappers. Wrappers that still bore their fruity, funky vapors, leading me to take frequent breaks for fresh air. But nothing prepared me for the deodorizing punch of the Little Trees. As I opened the packages containing Cotton Candy and Black Forest aromas, the whole house was overtaken by the manufactured mashup of sweet and scary. After a quick photo shoot, the Little Trees, which had been acquired as a giveaway at a Lucha Libre match, were put in exile on the back patio.

I’ve never mastered Pinterest pinning or any of the picture perfect projects staring me down from my computer screen. But now, I had a contribution to make to the crafting community. A search of Swisher Sweets yielded modge-podged tabletops, an origami creation, and two Christmas wreaths. Underneath the photo of one wreath, hung on a front door, the cigarillo artisan added, “Life goals not gonna lie. Let’s make my family uneasy.” Welcome to the field of Stoner DIY. I think the Easter Bunny might need a new basket……







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