In case you wondered how the cat hair arrived

The upholstery velvet throws off tiny, tiny fiber particles when it’s cut, and for extremely coastline-paradox critters like the Purple Veil, there’s a lot of cutting. I’ve tried a dust mask, but even with that I will find myself trying to get rid of a tickle in my throat that I assume is fine purple fuzz.

So for the Crimson Veil version, I’m trying something different: a sort of sandblast cabinet approach. I grabbed one of the used Priority boxes, cut a couple of access flaps, and dropped a piece of acrylic out of an IKEA picture frame on top. It’s not airtight, but just having the clear barrier between my face and the velvet seems to do the trick.

But I left the assembly on my armchair while I was working on something else and, well, I should have seen that coming.

Olivia does love her cardboard boxes.

Scissors from my worktable

You might think I have too many scissors, but in fact I have not enough: all these and I’m missing the ones I really want.

Top to bottom:

  • A deadly little pair of Kai needlecraft scissors 📦. I got these to clip jump threads but they’re so pointy I end up only using them to clip loose threads.
  • A bent-tipped, misaligned pair of embroidery scissors only identified with a “KOREA” stamp that I use to hook and clip the first end of a jump thread.
  • Mom’s Gingher applique duckbills. I could link to them on Amazon but, um, I don’t like them.
  • An older pair of Fiskars 5″ micro-tips 📦. They’re not great but I have a little keychain sharpener 📦 so they’re always reliably sharpish.
  • A pair of thread scissors I got for Christmas, that are probably these 📦 since there’s also a stork pair that I haven’t unbagged yet. They’re decently sharp, and I should probably try them in place of the Kai/Korea pair.
  • The smaller of a set of Scotch scissors that I use for cutting paper.
  • My trusty, decades-old Ginger dressmaker’s shears📦, which have cut denim, faux fur, mohair, upholstery vinyl, you name it, and somehow I have never gotten them sharpened. Not that they don’t need it, just that I have never managed to get around to it, and they have a nick two-thirds of the way down the blade that I’ve worked around for years. I have a second, even older pair that were Mom’s, and that she and I used to cut lots and lots of polyester double-knit back in our Stretch-n-Sew days.
  • My backup shears, which I don’t think Fiskars makes anymore — they also get sharpened (honed, really) on the keychain sharpener but probably need professional attention too.
  • The other half of the trusty Scotch set. This one gets used to cut adhesive papers and other things.
  • A pretty little rainbow set of thread snips that are great for Instagram pictures but not much else. The fact that they’re barely showing any color in this picture shows that I am a bad Instagrammer.
  • A pair of Fiskars Softouch that Amazon only sells as “pruning shears” (and doesn’t allow direct linking to) and that I have a love-hate relationship with because the latch doesn’t hold them closed when it’s on the table, and keeps catching when the scissors are in use and why have I not just taken it off completely?

I went to sit down and cut out minky but of all these, the ones I want aren’t here: my other pair of duckbills. They’re finer than the Ginghers but still built like dressmaker shears — the tips won’t twist when snipping several layers of minky or felt. The two small Fiskars are a close second, and update: it’s possible to take the annoying latch off the Softouch in such a way that it could be put back on. A few passes with the keychain and new teal dragons should show up in the shop tomorrow.

Like/Follow Silver Seams on Facebook

I’ve somewhat reluctantly joined Facebook, since FB restricts what non-users can see and I’ve seen some referrals from there. If you’re also there, please like-and-follow me there at least temporarily so I can get rid of that crazy numeric URL. FB temptingly puts the “Create Page @username” link, but informs me I’m not eligible to actually create one after letting me select one. If it’s still like the olden days, that means I’m required to have a minimum number of likes and/or followers. Unlike the olden days, they don’t tell me what the requirements are, just that I’m ineligible. 🤷

A lot of my time this month will be taken up by housekeeping things like this – the WordPress account expires soon, and I’ll be shifting that to self-hosting. But I’m still getting some sewing in – check out the FB account for a preview of my current project.

My New Years' resolution…

… is not to start large December post series until I already have all the posts in the queue. Whew.

Things heated up in the shop in December, a lot. I had some great plans to not knock myself out restocking, but Etsy now allows non-premium accounts to set “allow restock requests” and, well, if people are asking for things I felt obligated to fulfill them. Even though it’s not the same as “pre-order” and only about half of restocks actually got bought by the person who requested them.

Post-Christmas didn’t slow down much, so obviously there’s a lot of “I got a Christmas bonus/an Etsy gift card” or just “I didn’t get what I wanted so I’ll just buy it myself” going on. The last Silver Apricot dragon went, with a camera dangle (that did not stay around its neck for shipping, no matter how much that amused me). Those are from a Designs By Little Bee design I’ve been meaning to use, but I used lightweight vinyl and some captured confetti in lieu of the applique.

The Greater Sea Dragon went on the last day of the year, which definitely improved the annual total and also made me feel a little better about the art-doll dragons, which hadn’t been moving for quite awhile. That order came in via advertisement, on what would have been the last day of my advertising experiment. I guess it was a success.

For 2020, my plan was to taper off the plushie-making (channeling that into selling the designs for other folks to make) and just stick with the bigger-ticket dragons – I’ve been a little concerned about whether those were really viable, but I think the real problem is just getting them in front of an audience. We’ll see.

Blog-wise, I still plan to get out the promised supplements to the interchangeable-flap bags even if not in the form of an Advent calendar. A mini-backpack is next, because I want one for myself.