My girlfriend, Julie, jump started a Father’s Day tradition for us back in 2001. She attended church in a small town in the White Mountains of Arizona. A great wife and mother in her congregation would make ties for her husband every year. The kids decorated it and presented it to their father on Father’s Day, after which he wore the tie to his church meetings the whole day. No matter how cheesy or gaudy the tie. Julie took the idea and for a co-op preschool lesson before the end of the year, she made a blank canvas tie for each child’s family to decorate and give to their dad. We did it. The girls helped me think of funny phrases and memories from the year with their dad. I painted bold colored stripes and wrote all over it. I sewed on little hard laminated pictures that corresponded to memories or books they read together, along with a miniture hose to remind them of Matt hosing them down in the front yard and the small baseball glove charm reminding him of the many games of catch they played at Dilworth Elementary on summer nights. There was a miniature sled, a tennis racket, a bike and a few other little 3-D trickets stitched on. I loved the whole idea of the Father’s Day tie. It honors Dads in a very personal and memorable way. Thus, the very first Ferre Father’s Day Tie 2001 edition.
And I’ve never missed a year since. Ten ties down. Many more to go. Matt is the simplest man around. A no frills kind of guy. That is why this tradition sounded so intriguing. Every year he complains that he can’t possibly wear this year’s tie. It’s too funky. It’s too colorful. It’s too weird. And every year I tell him he must. He smiles and then puts it on. He wears it all day, even to the Father’s Day picnic at the park. And I am never more excited or proud to see it on his tall 6′ 6″ frame with his handsome face. Seriously never more proud of the dad he is to my daughters. And every year, I get more and more free with my creative concept. Last year was my favorite so far. But I think this year’s will win the new favorite title. Some years I buy a tie to decorate and some years I start from scratch.
This week I’ll be posting a couple pictures every day of ties I’ve made in the past. Today I’ll begin with the 2001 & 2002 editions. Then on Monday, I will post the 2011 edition. I’ve been dreaming it up for a couple weeks. I usually end up staying up half the night finishing it. I’m such a procrastinator.