Now that I have a breeding pair, getting the shop stocked with these should go much faster.
All the new colors of beanie dragons have been eating up my time, but hopefully I’ll get the conventional machine out this weekend. I’ll sew the larger version of these and see what needs tweaked in that pattern.
As promised, I tried out a hybrid between the beanie dragons and the art dolls. It’s pretty hard to optimize these for mass production; the beanies I can at least group heads to minimize thread change overhead. I can fit two wing pieces at the same time for this one but that’s it. I’ll try assembly-lining them and see how efficient I can get.
After battling with a longhorn version (like the Stargazer) and getting the minky bound up in one horn such that I can neither turn nor un-turn it (the perils of stretchy fabric), I decided to do a Pernese “headknobs” version.
“Y’know,” N’ton began, frowning slightly as he folded his arms across his damp-spattered tunic, “Ruth isn’t really white.” Jaxom stared incredulously at his dragon. “He’s not?” “No. See how his hide has shadows of brown and gold, and ripples of blue or green on the near flank.”
Anne McCaffrey, The White Dragon
I tried out a couple of variegated metallic threads for the wing stitching. I should do that on some beanies too.
I’m not adding any new listings, but I’m adding a half-dozen new colors for a total of fifteen. Or seventeen, if you count the original “bronze” and blues, which I could always make again (though that bronze is pretty close to the new brown, and is in less-fluffy and now discontinued JoAnn minky).
Now that Etsy allows specific pictures to be matched with variations, I’m going to put the four new hatchling colors in with the mint-green ones (the white dragon gets to keep his own listing), and there’s a new “mocha” brown and new “mallard” green in the 6″ listings.
Aside from finishing up the rest of these batches, that pretty much catches me up for awhile on beanie dragons, and the art dragons sell more slowly so those *should* be caught up for a little while. I’m going to make a few hybrid dragons and see if I can’t streamline the process of making minky standing dragons enough to make them profitable. I’m thinking something like this test dragon I made, but with wings like the beanies.
I was looking for the right thread to finish a few dragons, alternate greens and bronzes, when I realized one of the ones I’d picked up had my childhood initials on it. Hmm, what would I have made that was… oh.
In junior high home ec, we made two projects. Despite having taken a bunch of Stretch’n’Sew classes with my mother and regularly sewing in polyester knits (it was the 70’s, okay?) the teacher required us to all sew in non-stretch fabrics, so I made a skirt that I had outgrown by the time it was finished.
The second project we had more freedom on, and I sewed a pillow. Couldn’t just be round or square, oh no. Then as now, I had to make something *slightly* beyond my abilities, so I decided to sew a doughnut-shaped pillow. Out of avocado-green shag faux fur (it was the 70’s, okay?).
I learned two things out of that: one, you can’t machine-sew the inside of a doughnut if you expect to be able to turn it (at least, not without some weird tricks I didn’t know then). Two, there is not enough stretch in shag faux fur to sew it as a simple flat shape. Stuffing it will pull the outer seam in (fine) and the inner seam “out” (not fine), so the taut seam in the middle made for a less-comfortable pillow than I had imagined.
In other news, I’ve been working on more colors of hatchlings, ordered more gold minky and yet another green (not avocado; it is not the 70’s) to try out.
I tried something new yesterday: I made something and put it on Etsy right away. This probably doesn’t seem like much of an accomplishment, but “the perfect is the enemy of the good” a lot around here. I need to find a more appropriate fabric for the wing membranes, but I liked the way the floral fabric (which has a metallic gold accent) came out anyway, so I finished the dragon and put her up on Etsy.
Tomorrow I have an errand that will take me to the big JoAnn’s again. I’ll take snippets of all my relevant velvets and find some fabrics that coordinate with a little less contrast (and less literal patterns).
Continuing my attempts to do Stupid Things With Embroidery Machines, I’ve been trying to get some of the fancy dancewear/cosplay fabrics involved, with limited success. I keep poking through them with my scissors.
I sold the last of the Pernese dragons in the Etsy shop this weekend; there are still a couple of non-Pernese ones left. I’ll restock a little when I make the instructional photos for the design, but that’ll probably be it (though the kid has expressed a little interest in piecework, and presumably they’ll be available from other sellers using the design).
In any event, it was to a repeat buyer so since she already had a Renegades of Pern key fob, I needed a second. This one’s the primary dragon of the cover of Dragonquest so he’s a little more detailed (more than the stitching can capture at this size). I’ve put up all four variations on the Dragonrider Snap Tab page.
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).