Pachyderms!

The next in the collection of plushie patterns is a “flopsie” elephant — or in this incarnation, a mastodon. The embroidered face on this one comes from the cartoon mascot for the Mastodon social-network software, and its ears are smaller than the elephant version. At least, one ear is smaller… somehow the one on the other side is the large one.

The mastodon was supposed to have a yarn topknot that matched its braided tail, but I forgot to sew it into the seam. If and when I fix the oversized ear I’ll sew it on top.

I’ve also been experimenting with “puffy” embroidery. I don’t think the tusk is big enough to justify it, and the height of it gets lost in the minky pile. I’ll probably run another version with the black satin outline just to see how it looks.

It also makes alignment more difficult (I goofed this one up, which is why I didn’t finish it) so it’s time to work on a more foolproof system to line things up.

Orcas!

I’ve been learning my way around Etsy, and have made a couple of sales (two plush dragons). I still think my future there is mostly in pattern downloads.

This one was another spur-of-the-moment: I made a black and white dragon (er, one of each), put a piece of black minky down on top of a piece of white minky, and for some reason it said “killer whale” to me.

As with the jumping spider, I had to do one in non-black to take instructional photographs.

Naturally, I made changes to the pattern while making the larger one, so I don’t actually have any useful instructional pictures yet. So it goes.

Monday shop drop?

Queen of Unfinished Projects embroidery design

Okay, I have a nearly-finished batch of tiny plush dragons (if I can just stop tweaking the pattern), the nearly-finished owlbear dice bags, a couple of embroidery patterns (look at those cleaned-up jump stitches — yes, I’m turning it into a whole alphabet), and quite a few samples (stash panda, jumping spiders) that, if the sunshine holds, I will take nice pictures of and get into the shop for a Monday morning drop. I’m shooting for 10am EST, wish me luck. Update: Make that 2pm, I forgot I won’t be home at 10 and Etsy doesn’t allow scheduling items as far as I know.

Once I get some of those smaller unfinished projects out of my queendom, I’m going to wrap up that crazy Mew project and put it in the shop, and then get back down to the more sculptural dragons. For real.

Revisiting the tiny beanie dragon

White, gold, and green tiny plush dragons.

Yesterday, I had the brilliant idea of finally getting around to installing the SSD drive in my machine, replacing the spinner. Turns out copying over a quarter-terabyte of data takes awhile, who knew? The Pi’s don’t run Inkstitch so the only stitch files I had were the ones already generated, and I was tired of owlbears (more on that later), wanted to tweak Queen of Unfinished Projects… and I had the tiny beanie dragons, the Pernese flavor (headknobs and applique eyes).

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Flower Bear kits are coming!

Partially sewn teddy bear pieces, joint hardware, and glass eyes.

For those of you who don’t have embroidery machines, or just don’t want to hunt down things like glass eyes and disc joints, I’m putting together some Flower Bear kits for the shop.

Teddy bear with flower ruff in front of flower arrangement
Swatches of upholstery velvet.

I’ve got three of the different greens out of my upholstery velvet stash, plus the chocolate brown that’s always been perfect for a sunflower center. I’m going to need some daylight or a better lighting setup to take the listing pictures, though – that middle color is a grayish green, not just gray, and the one on the left is the same one that shows up much brighter in the finished bear. I’m also going to need to find the tiny washers that go with those cotter pins — I scavenged enough loose ones to make the giveaway bear but I think I might need to order more.

Shoebox labeled "Joints" containing doll/bear joints.

I’ve organized a lot of sewing/art/craft supplies since moving and yes, I really do have a shoebox labeled “Joints.”

Owlbear dice bag

A tiny plush owlbear that is also a dice bag.

Having given the dragon dice bag by Vanessa to the kid, I guess I had dice bags on the brain and well, I went off on another rabbit trail. What would happen, I wondered, if the top of the owl[bear]‘s head was a drawstring?

The result is not quite as round a critter as the stuffed version (one of which is in the shop right now) even with a handful of polyhedrals, but overall it came out okay.

Back view of a tiny plush owlbear that is also a dice bag.

Most of it happens in the hoop, but this time I sewed the bottom dart on the conventional machine, and of course the paws and tail are hand-sewn on.

Looking into the drawstring opening of a tiny plush owlbear that is also a dice bag.

It’s a pretty conventional lined drawstring bag on the inside. I think I’d make it a little shorter if I did it again, so the top draws closed a little close to the face. Not sure I will do it again; I really need to get my “real” stuff in the shop. The silver dragon is very sad that I haven’t been paying it enough attention:

A silver dragon fabric sculpture work in progress.

Stash panda, guardian of the fabric

Did I work on the hand sewing yesterday? Nope. Did I work on Mew today? Nope.

Instead, I worked on getting some bookshelves cleared off and rearranged. And I thought to myself, “I’m going to take this tall one out of the living room where it doesn’t fit, and use it to store my active fabric stash so I’m not burrowing through tubs of fabric.

“Fabric… stash. STASH PANDA! I MUST MAKE A STASH PANDA!”

(Karen’s brain, ladies and gentlemen.)

The pattern needs a little fine-tuning (gonna make the hind feet more properly trash panda-ish) and then I’ll publish it, but this one will be the guardian of my fabric stash… as soon as I figure out where to put that shelf.

More impulsiveness

Saturday: I decided to sell off my faux fur stash because it was too bulky and I really wasn’t making big plush or costume items anymore.

Sunday: this happened.

In the course of trying to remember what it was I even bought the pink plush for, I did a DuckDuckGo image search for “pink plushie” and found nothing that jogged my memory but I did find some pretty cute (handmade) Mew plushies. I’m not a Pokémon player myself but when I found a promising pattern on DeviantArt, well, I’ve mentioned the way my brain works and here we are.

I haven’t started sewing because it has been years and years since I worked with a thick plush and I have no idea where my little box of binder clips have gone. Since that time, though, Clover has come out with Wonder Clips which are a more streamlined version of that hack, and I need some #11 sharps to sew the vinyl eyes, so it’s off to a fabric store for me.

Book bands

Although I keep telling myself I didn’t get the embroidery machine to do conventional embroidery, I keep finding myself doing conventional embroidery. In large part it’s learning how the thing behaves with different materials, and also yielding to the temptation to make cute stuff for my nieces.

It started when I sent my sister a link to a possible teacher gift and she sent back a link to a unicorn book band on that site, for one daughter’s school agenda.

I asked her what she wanted for her planner, and she said a heart, so I went all-in on hearts.

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