Happy Thanksgiving!

Etsy pushed the Cyber Week sale so I jumped on the bandwagon. I relisted Silver Sparkle and Silver Shield, so hopefully some of the art dragons will finally sell.

And of course the logical thing to do, when things aren’t selling, is make more of them.

This is Draco Splendens, the Purple Crowntail (its scallops really aren’t deep enough but Purple Combtail sounded silly, so I’m just ruling that dragon standards are different than betta standards).

It has a lot going on.

Its wings are the most significant departure from the usual dragons: more bird than bat. From some angles it looks very bird-like, and I’ll probably do a phoenix at some point here (I have the red velvet for it).

I also have a darker red velvet for more betta dragons. I decided to try a different head on the red one, and since it was a fish-based dragon, what if it had a fish-based head?

… yeah, that’s not happening. But it will still end up with a separately-sewn head, and stumpwork feet like the poor neglected Celestial.

It’s still autumn

I know I made a couple snowflake dragons this week, and we did have some snow happening at the time, but it’s still autumn daggonit.

A recurring theme for me has been “what happens if I put THIS in the embroidery machine?” and silk flowers/leaves has been on my list of things to try for quite awhile. This is just the usual embroidery for my tiny plush dragons, minus the subsequent “add another piece of minky rst, sew, and turn” bit.

The real question here was whether the wings would support their own weight (answer: barely, I should have extended the “wing bones” to meet up with the spine), and whether the leaves would hold up to embroidery (answer: pick sturdy ones and, if necessary, space the stitches out so they don’t cut the leaves apart). I used colored bobbin thread, and I should have busted out the black tearaway stabilizer 📦 but the undersides don’t really show anyway.

I’m still trying to decide if I should trim the leading edges of the wings.

Back to notebooks

I’ve been putting together some sample mini composition book covers with professional “crests” on them, with the notion that they’d make good gift card holders for holiday tipping and whatnot. These will go into the shop tomorrow, with options for made-to-order ones.

I’ve been kind of tempted to mix them up: engine block with Framing hammers. Running shoe with shovels. Hair dryer with wrenches. Probably the most adventurous I’ll get is replacing the hair dryer with a barber pole.

South Jersey represent!

I made a Lots of Pockets crossbody purse awhile back, with some KAMsnaps to let me put on different flaps. I decided I needed to make one for my upcoming Disney trip. I have plenty of ways to rep Philly, but I’m actually over on the South Jersey side and, it turns out, Philadelphians are particular about whether you’re really from Philly. New Jersey is emphatically not Philly. New Jersey is, I have been informed, “what you drive through to get to NYC.” Well alrighty then.

Nobody agrees enough on what the Jersey Devil looks like to use that, so pork roll it is.

More work on the Celestial

A little light on the updates because I haven’t had much to show. I did wrap up the four little beanies that match this, but I’m holding off on the final photoshoot until I have the Celestial Dragon (a/k/a Space Noodle) done. At that point I’ll lock the cats in the bathroom for the several hours it’ll take to de-hair everything.

In any event, the alignment was off on this wing but it was enough to play around with armature wire and determine that yes, this will do nicely.

I found a remnant of charmeuse that I decided to use for the backs of the wings. Yes, that was entirely inspired by the minky dragons, but I like how it came out. And unlike the minkies, the underside of the Celestial’s wings will show quite a bit.

I will definitely have to clean my worktable, nay, my entire house to have space to photograph this critter when he’s assembled and standing up.

Busy weekend!

I thought I might take the weekend off; I spend most of my “free” time playing with the embroidery machine either for the business or for fun, and I don’t want to burn out. But Friday night I had an idea, and I knew the way my brain works there was nothing to do but get it done.

I was playing around with a little bat pattern and was trying to decide how to most easily make quilting-cotton inner wings for it when suddenly my brain yelled “DO THAT ON THE PLUSH DRAGON” and here we are.

And then Mastodon yelled (well, politely suggested) “do that on the beanie dragons” and here *those* are.

And then my computer locked up and while I was fixing it I realized I had some stuff already cued up on USB.

I bought the Hogwarts-letter pouch from String Theory awhile back and converted it into a notebook cover. Showed it to my teenager who immediately pointed out that Kids These Days preferred a different envelope.

That’s the Super Smash Brothers Ultimate invitation (and a Smash Ball dangle), in case you don’t recognize it.

And then I finally got the last couple of plush dragons in the Pern colors done today.

And then, since I had cut a bunch of white, black, and ivory vinyls for notebook covers, decided to make a companion to the Dragonquest notebook. You can make them too, via the dragon snap tabs (just drop the final, outline thread) and the notebook cover files. If you list them on Etsy, let me know and I’ll link to them since I really should stop making notebooks and get back to that Celestial.

Delivery trucks

It’s been a little while since I did an embroidery design freebie, so I started working on one I should have finalized by Friday.

This one is inspired by goofing up a USPS scheduled pickup and making my mailman make a special trip to the door. I realized I owe all my delivery folks a nice Christmas gift.

Although it seems like I live at JoAnn these days, I still get a lot of stuff from Amazon (witness all the 📦 icons next to referral links here) and [Amazon-owned] Fabric.com. On which note: if you aren’t buying enough to meet the free shipping there but have Prime, go to Amazon and find the fabric, and check the other sellers: Amazon usually lists it itself but also with Fabric.com as a secondary seller so you get Prime shipping but Fabric.com’s cheaper price. Why does it work this way? I dunno.

So my UPS person has had to lug a couple of long, skinny rolls of marine vinyl (ironically, not that brown which was a JoAnn remnant) and all four of them have brought me an endless parade of things, including the embroidery machine itself (though I forget who got saddled with that; probably UPS again).

Anyway, the first draft came out medium-okay. The Amazon Logistics van was first, okay other than the fact that I didn’t run the truck outline itself in bean stitch. With that fixed, the UPS truck came out better, but the logo definitely needs more pull correction (especially on the softer walnut non-marine). The USPS truck is fine except I decided to run the truck outline in the same blue as the logo and I don’t think it looks as nice. I went with a medium gray for FedEx, and that’s better but next time I’ll go even lighter. That logo also needs just a little more pull correction.

Now I need the UPS guy to bring me a roll of brown vinyl so I can make him a proper one, because that was the last little scrap. Once that happens, I’ll run more of these and publish the design.

Playing catch-up

I upgraded my PC (Debian jessie to stretch to buster) and had some struggles with the video card, culminating in completely breaking it yesterday. I took a break from the frustration by stitching out a bunch of the designs that I already had on a USB stick, came back to it, uninstalled all the drivers and… somehow it fixed itself on a reboot. I’m not sure what happened but I’ll take the win.

Today’s plan is to take pictures of these (other than this one on my scarred, stained cutting table) so I can list them on Etsy and then run off to JoAnn to pick up enough of the metallic mini dots fabric to make the new, larger wings for the Celestial Dragon.