Friday, July 31, 2020

When Projects Go Well

         I try not to get overly political on my blog, or in general, partially because arguing back and forth with people on the Internet holds no fascination for me. I will admit, way back in February I was one of the people that said foolish things like "the flu kills more people each year". However I am also one of those people who can gather new facts and have a change of opinion. Some people are so convinced of their one way of thinking that they can't even begin to consider any other options or ideas. That is really why I have no interest in fighting with people over the Internet. I might as well beat my head against the wall and hope for change. 
         A lot of people have seen one, or many, conspiracy theories and are convinced that COVID-19 is no big deal. Maybe they live in a state/county that has not been hit particularly hard (yet). Maybe they really have that attitude that the whole thing is made up because they don't personally know anyone who has had it or has died from it. I personally know people who have had it and people who have had loved ones die from it. Even before that though I knew it was a big deal. Because science. 
       That brings me to face masks and the urine test. I have seen this particular chart many times and while it is amusing (and gross) at the same time it does demonstrate the effectiveness of a cloth mask. Feel free to blow it up and have a closer look. I appreciate not being peed on. Just as I appreciate anyone who wears a mask so I don't get their spew on me. And I will continue to wear my mask (which I did when it was a recommendation and not a mandate) because of manners. My parents raised me to be polite. Sometimes I don't know why. 

      Anyway, we were out near Crystal's house the other day and I dropped off some things I had in the back of my car for her. I also modeled the new fitted (not pleated) face masks and she liked them. We got to have a video call later that night, which was a way longer visit than the 2 minutes (less I think) that I got to see her from her driveway. I made a variety of masks for Crystal and her mom. Being fully aware that these cloth masks are cute and will not stop anyone from getting COVID-19. They will stop the droplets from traveling as far from your body, which may or may not have virus. You just can't know. So wear a mask. If everyone does, no one gets wet. I'm into that. Anyway, masks have been a very polarizing subject among a world filled with many polarizing subjects. And really, wearing a mask is not about you protecting yourself, I know that. It is about protecting the people around you. It seems no matter how many times that is said a lot of people will focus on the fact that it does little to nothing for them. Step out of your bubble and think of the people around you. 
     I had a couple of hunt seat dolls I needed to make and it felt like it took forever for me to get to them. I don't think it actually did, but it felt like it for sure. I had bits and pieces of them done for awhile but never got back to even just picking away at them. Just lazy I guess. 
     I did eventually get this lady done. She has lighter breeches than I usually do, because I was asked for light breeches. Conveniently, I had this fabric hanging around for awhile. This was one of the ones I ordered from Spoonflower when I was in desperate need of fabric for breeches. I even already had the pieces cut to make this pair, not that it made me finish the doll any faster. 
     This lady also got finished. She is a duplicate of the doll that I thought was left after my live sale. And again, it seemed to take forever for me to finish her. She's a hunt seat doll, they are not that hard to do.
     I got some more miniatures in for the miniatures sale, and I'm pretty excited about them. I have more bottles of Jack Daniels, because I only had 4, and I have milk and paint sets. I need to bag these items and get them inventoried still, but I am excited they are here. I am still hoping all the other things will arrive on time as well. Though I have no idea if they will or not. 
     Ethan and I got some more important housework done. We still have a long way to go but we are making progress. The decision to just tear it all down and rebuild (parts, not the whole house, lol) has been a really great choice. It is so much easier, and less gross, than trying to patch up old stuff. So work continues. It seems never ending, but we are actually getting somewhere. 
     I have gotten a bunch of other small doll related things finished as well. I modified several more heads and got them painted. Black riders have become so popular! I love it! I also painted hands to match because at this point I am down to only have white dolls again. And they are not any healthy shade of white, lol. So my next trick is to figure out how to replicate pale skin tones and not have them look ghostly. I don't possess these skills. Grr. 

Thursday, July 30, 2020

The Sims and First World Problems

      A while back I was bummed to find out that blogger had changed their format. I am OK with change, when it makes sense. Changing the blogger format didn't make any sense to me. It is supposed to be better for viewing on mobile, and maybe it is if you are just reading the posts. But when you are writing and scheduling posts, it does not appear to be easier on a mobile device. I was really happy to discover that it was possible to switch back to the Legacy format. It's the one I am used to and the one that makes sense to me. It shows with posts have been published, which are scheduled and which are in draft. Easy. A few days ago I went to work on a post and I saw that I had again been switched to the new format. Worse than that there was a note that said Legacy would be available until August 24th. Poop. We will not be allowed to keep the old format after all. That sucks. I still load most of the photos for the posts on my cell phone, because I take the photos with my cell phone and it is still easier to just load pics into a post from the phone instead of plugging the phone in and uploading photos to the computer. I know this is the ultimate in first world problems, but it is what I am choosing to complain about at the moment. 
     In general things have been going well and I don't have much that I choose to complain about. Ethan and I have been doing a lot more work on the house, and while it is hard work and leaves me very sore at times, most of the time things go very well. I like when things go well and when things get done. 
     I also have still been enjoying playing my Sims game. Recently, one of my elderly Sims died. The Grimm Reaper came to take her and he stayed to hang out and watch TV. The rest of the occupants of the house were really sad for awhile, mostly this guy that was with her when she died and, not surprisingly, her husband. 

      But she came to visit and they hung out and danced together. The Sims is a very interesting game full of a lot of very silly things. But I certainly enjoy it. 
      One of the hobby items is a woodworking table. I found out that the Sims can sculpt model horses. I had a smallish room that I built into the house design that I didn't quite know what to do with. Clearly, that meant I needed to make it into a model horse room. I have 2 other tables for horses, and I HAD more horses, but the game froze at one point (it does that once in awhile) and I had to do a hard restart and I lost my progress. Time to get back into making Sim model horses...
     I have not been just helping with work on the house and playing the Sims, though that is a lot of what I have done lately. I got back into bits and pieces of doll work. I painted the helmets I baked and I got several sets of hands painted for hunt seat gloves as well. I modified several faces so when I get them painted they will be African American dolls. The popularity of them has not waned and I get more orders for black riders than anything else at this point. Not tons more, but more than 50% for sure. I will keep on working on having other races of doll riders as well. Sooner or later the model horse show rings will be very diverse. Then perhaps life will learn to imitate art. That happens sometimes. 
        In my continued mask sewing I have been working on making Travis some more masks as well. He picked out this really cool skulls and roses fabric and he seems very pleased with this new mask. I don't blame him, it's a really cool mask! I have one in this fabric prepped for myself. I have a lot of masks because I keep finding more material I like. This design sews up pretty quickly and is incredibly comfortable. So I guess I will keep on making more. 
      I got in my new saddle made by Mandy Claussen. When I ordered it I asked if she could leave me open space so I could add swarovski crystals to it. She agreed and made me this beautiful saddle. Now I just need to wait for the crystals to come in that will match the bridle I got from Danielle Hart. Then I need to bling the saddle, make a doll and a saddle pad and Purdy Zippin Chick will be ready to show! I do own tack and could have shown her in something I already have. But that would not have been nearly as fun. Or labor intensive. 
     So anyway, we will be stuck with new blogger eventually so I am trying to see if I can get used to it. The good news is that drafts still show as draft when you are looking at your post list on a computer. Scheduled posts don't say scheduled anymore (*edit* after I scheduled this post I was looking at my post list and it DOES say scheduled on posts that are not live yet), but they have no page views so I guess that is something. I don't love the new blogger but I guess I have to learn to live with it. I'll keep posting, keep working on the house and dolls and eventually things will get finished and I will get used to the new format. Because it's not really that big of a deal I guess. 

The Ultimate Mail Day

      The title of this post is slightly misleading. I had a really excellent mail day, but it was probably not the ultimate. But any day where you get more fun stuff than bills is a good day. I got 3 fun packages and only one bill. And the bill was lower than expected, so that was also fun. Anyway, I got the Fantasia Del C from Jennifer Buxton. I was room sales shopping "at the Clarion" and I saw one (different one, same mold) and I remembered how much I wanted to fix this mare and turn her into a fantastic performance horse. The one I saw was cheap, and said it was definitely body quality and they would take a lower price, make an offer. I made an offer and got back no. No counter offer or anything, just no. So I instantly lost interest in that deal. I remembered this had been the challenge horse at The Jennifer Show though, so I asked Jennifer if she happened to have any left. And I was in luck! I also received my horse skull and stickers I bought from Maggie Bennett. The horse skull is super cool and I kind of wish I had gotten more than one.Maybe next year. Oh, as you can see, I did also start putting stickers on my sewing machine. There will be stickers on ALL THE THINGS soon. 
     Jennifer included a little present with the horse. I absolutely love getting these little gift bags from Jennifer, and this in itself would have been enough (I still have every single one I have received from her). 
      Inside was a gorgeous collection of miniature horse books! Because dolls like to read (obviously). I absolutely love them! Now I also kind of want to send a random gift to a hobby friend. I don't know what to send. Or to who. Not that I don't have options.
     I also got in this awesome new bridle from Danielle Hart. This is the third braided bridle I have from her and it was specifically purchased for Purdy Zippin Chick. Mandy Claussen is making me a saddle, which I am going to bling out (I ordered the bling to match the bridle) and I need to make a doll. It's crazy how many projects I have made for myself by buying a new horse! And now apparently I need to customize a horse. What have I gotten myself into?
     I got started on sewing masks for school. These 3 are for Cathy, even though she can totally sew. I couldn't help myself. I also made another for Travis and one for my friend Angelique. I have 7 or 8 cut out that are not specifically for anyone yet. I will get the sewing done sooner or later.
     We did a bunch more deconstruction in preparation for more construction. We are getting there. Pretty soon the really bad parts will be done and the rest will just be upgrading or updating. I think. But things are going reasonably well as far as I can tell. And I have some cool model horse plans in my future. Which is definitely nice.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Baking Miniatures

      The work on the miniatures sale continues. I knew that I still had a lot I needed to do, including making miniatures, so I got into some more of that. Chocolate chip cookies and brownies got made, and a few dog treats. The dog treats are not perfect, and they definitely look like little homemade dog cookies. But they are kind of cute. I had saved the burgers and hot dogs until the baked goods were done. Then I put the finish on everything at the same time. 
      I have still been having a good time playing the Sims 4. I decided to build a fancy house, since one of the things I love in the game is building and buying outrageously expensive things. I bought a bath tub the other night that was $12,000 I think. But it was fun. I also made Abby in the game. This Sim Abby actually looks and acts a lot like my real Abby. You can tweak the dogs (and cats) when you create them so they look just how you want. I took my time making Abby. And then I gave her Abby's traits. This Sim dog is very energetic and silly, also a little fearful. Sim Abby is scared of some really strange things. Real Abby was afraid of some really strange things too. It's fun to have Sim Abby. I still miss the real Abby. It's been almost 5 years since she's been gone. 

      Part of getting all of the different food items packaged is deciding how exactly I want them to be. I want them to be useful right out of the bag. The last time I did cookies I did little parchment paper sleeves. This time around I decided to do small paper plates. So I made a big stacks of plates...
     And then sorted all of the food onto them. For anyone wondering, these are large cookies and brownies. The kind of big treat you would get at a fair. And they look really delicious.
      I started working some more on the printable PDF and I discovered something that both bummed me out and also will save me a lot of time, so I am learning to be OK with it. My original plan was to put a small photo of each item, with the price, and a blank space for the claim number. That is turning out to be a nightmare and I can't do it. Well, I CAN do it, but I would have to wait until I had all the items in and do it sort of last minute since I kind of want to have like items groups together. The problem with that is if I make anything new, or stuff comes in the mail, I have to redo the entire catalog to move things around. I have already restarted the thing 5 times and spent hours on it. I don't have that kind of time to waste. I could be making more miniatures. So I decided that I would just make a list, with the price and blank space for the claim number. If I need to change the order, or add something to a group, all I have to do is move the cursor and I can do it. Like magic. So much time will be saved. I am still planning on putting all of the photos and descriptions in a blog post. Though when I upload photos blogger likes to change the order. The order of the sale will be the same as the PDF, but it might be different in the post. 
       So plenty of sale prep is still happening and I am managing to take some time off from working on things to do fun things. It's sort of like balance. Almost.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Miniatures. Finally.

    It's always an exciting day when miniatures come in the mail! I got these tiny laptops in for the miniatures sale. I have some others coming as well, but these are the ones I have here for now. One of those pink ones might just end up being mine. Because it's pink. 
     The other day I gave some serious thought to working on a couple of hunt seat dolls. I have the bodies prepped and the clothes sewn already, so I am partway to finished with the dolls. But, the miniatures sale is coming up. Even though I do already have LOTS of miniatures, so far I have made very few of them. And I need to change that. So I got to work on some burgers, which are usually a popular item. The problem was it was very warm (it's summer, we don't have AC, you know the drill) and the clay was so soft and sticky. I finally had to start putting the pieces in the freezer for a few minutes between steps just so I could actually make things without just squashing them. 
     Eventually though the burgers progressed. I did still have struggles, but it was not as bad. 
     After a while I had a bunch of burgers and hot dogs and a few peanut butter sandwiches. I might make some more of each type of thing before the sale, but I really don't know if I will get around to it or not. I at least have some, which is more than I had. And it is a few things off of my list. I have a bunch more items to go and I thought of new things to add as well. I am also still hoping that the rest of the miniatures I ordered show up in time. But you just never can tell. 
    So as a reminder, the miniatures sale is coming up on August 15th at 2:00 EDT. I have lost count of how many different types of miniature items I have, but it's a lot. Some things I have a good amount of and some things I have only in extremely limited quantities. Before the sale I am planning on doing a blog post with a full catalog of what I will have to offer, and hopefully I will have a link to a PDF copy that can be printed to pre-shop for things you are interested in trying for. But I still have a lot of work to do. On everything. 

Monday, July 27, 2020

Helmets and Hunt Seat Dolls

     I have had a lot of problems with helmets breaking recently. I don't really know what it is, but I suspect it is the brand of polymer clay I have been using. Not all clay is created equally. I found 2 broken helmets while I was unwrapping and tagging dolls for my live sale. I broke a helmet on camera. I sent a couple of dolls to Jennifer and the helmet on that doll broke. To be fair she said the box was pretty mangled and the cowboy hat was also broken. I think I have only had one cowboy hat break in 14 years. So anyway, helmets keep on breaking and I just can't have that. Continuing on with the theme from yesterday's post (maximum effort) I decided I had to go back to helmets that I know for a fact are more durable. They just take longer to make. 
    Super sculpy is amazing. I have dropped these little helmets (not these in particular) and they are usually just fine. Other types of sculpy are definitely more brittle. Making the helmets in black is definitely faster, but if they aren't as sturdy I just have to go the long route. Since I have been making a lot of hunt seat dolls lately, I decided I would make a good batch of helmets. I feel like somewhere down the road this will save me some time. 
     Once the helmets are baked and cooled I paint them and then add a coating of matte nail polish. Not as quick as just making them black to start with, but it works out nicely in the end. I also managed to finish up another hunt seat doll. 
     And my Breyerfest continues. I hear Breyerfest isn't over until all of your loot is home. I got in a bunch more of the stickers I ordered. I think I just have a couple more coming now. They will probably go on my laptop. Or my sewing machine, or my order book. Or all of the things. Stickers are so much fun! I am still hoping for a Mares In Black one. 
     Some days are not super exciting, but I am glad I am still getting things done. And I am still managing to come up with things to talk about. Good times. I really need to hurry up and get moving on making some more miniatures.

Sunday, July 26, 2020

Maximum Effort

     I share a lot of information about doll making. Over the years I have said exactly what I use for this or that and sometimes exactly how I do things (sometimes with photos). There are some things that I do not share and that might make people mad. But honestly, the best way to learn something is to do it. And that includes figuring out what doesn't work. And something that doesn't work for me might very well work for someone else. I don't want to be limiting. 
    Today I am going to talk about things that didn't work, time wasting, money spent and what I finally figured out. In making miniatures, including dolls, we often end up using things in ways they were originally not intended to be used. For today's post on maximum effort (which is also a movie reference for people who think I am complaining instead of being funny, lol) I am going to talk about putting a logo on a sweatshirt. There are a lot of ways to do this in miniature. But the first step is checking the size. Iron on transfer paper is not cheap. So I put the design into Publisher and make a bunch of copies in slightly different sizes until I find one that works. This is not hard. Also, I do have to flip the imagine since when you use transfer paper it goes imagine side down. Anyway, I had a good size, the first step was complete. I should note I did also have to add a black background to the image (which is awesome and transparent!) because my printer could not apparently "see" what it was supposed to see.
     Next I took out the transfer paper and made a row of logo transfers. I always like to have more than one because you never know when you will mess up or what else you might want a logo on. I got out the doll iron and out it on... and it disappeared. Now I understand why they make dark t-shirt transfer paper. I did not have any so I had to put this doll on hold and order some. 
     When I got back to the doll I was excited. I was going to have a perfect logo on the shirt, it was going to look super professional and everything would be great! I was wrong. For one, the instructions on dark t-shirt transfer paper are extensive. There are a lot of rules on how to use it and there are 3 layers (instead of 2) on the transfer stuff and you need to do such-and-such to the thing and then so-and-so... OK. I was ready. I made my tiny logos again, got out the doll iron and put it on. I was not going to fiddle with it until it was completely cooled off. But a quick check on the edges showed that the logo was not totally affixed to the shirt. So I ironed again. That seemed better. I put it aside to cool, semi-confident that it was going to be awesome. I was wrong again. 
     The logo didn't adhere to the shirt at all. I don't know if it was because the transfer was so small or if it just didn't like the material (which I don't remember exactly what it is but it is not plain cotton, but all the knit I can get at the moment). So I was a little concerned that I wouldn't be able to pull off a logo on a sweatshirt. That bothered me. I can make a knight in full armor but not a logo on a sweatshirt? I am way too stubborn to give up. I was starting to be afraid though that I would be left having to put the logo on printer paper and gluing it on that way. Being on a doll, this wouldn't be the end of the world and would look just fine. It still bothered me. 
     So I went back to thinking about this. There HAD to be a way to do this that didn't look cheesy and that I would not hate every time I thought about it. Silk is the answer. I have printed fabric lots of time for lots of different dolls. I prefer printable cotton (my printer does not) for actually making doll clothes. Years ago I went through a phase where I made all sorts of western dolls with things like feathers, flowers and leaves or butterflies and birds on them. These were all printed in miniature, on silk, and I cut out and used the pieces to make designs. It was actually a lot of fun. And now that I am thinking of it, I might again make a peacock feather doll. I have a project I am working on that that would be perfect for. Anyway, back to topic. There is (of course) another step to using very tiny pieces of printed silk for anything. When you cut the silk it will start to fray immediately and your tiny pieces will look shabby and horrible in no time. So first you need to remove the silk sheet from the paper backing and coat the back with glue. I use Alene's jewel-it glue for this. I imagine a lot of thin glues that dry clear would work, this is just what I have always used. Spread it out thin and try to make sure the fabric is not wrinkled while it dries. This holds the fabric together so you can cut out teeny tiny pieces. Or just small ones. I did all of the things and I cut out the logo. I win. 
    Putting a logo on a sweatshirt should never have taken me this long to figure out. It is not even a new concept to me. The dark material messed with me though. I have made tiny t-shirts, with ironed on logos, and they have worked out perfectly. I have made tote bags and other things with logos. All of them were light colored. Light colored transfer paper is super simple to use. Because I was thinking about transfer paper I didn't think about my old printed silk tricks. That would have saved me a ton of time and a lot of money. Now I have a package of dark transfer paper that I need to figure out how to use. But at least I defeated the logo problem. 
     The next thing that I had to figure out was making the hood for the hoodie. Originally I thought the logo was going to be the easy part. How funny. Because of course it was never as simple as putting a hood on something and calling it a hoodie. Anyway, I made a hood and I made a shirt, but then I had to hand sew them together because there was no chance this was happening on the machine. No worries, I have been hand sewing forever (I also have boring ugly nails now and I should fix that).
      In the end I defeated the hood problem as well. 
     Which likely would not have been a problem at all if I had been OK with just sticking a hood on the thing. But no, it's a hoodie, I wanted it to also be functional. Because if you are going to do a thing you might as well do it right. It was why I struggled to put a logo on the shirt with transfer paper. I do like the cool details. I will admit, I skip details that won't show. It saves time. There are people who LOVE all of the tiny details on miniatures. Even ones that never show. Knowing they are there is enough. But I have found that if I was to do that it would take a lot more time, and that would have to raise the prices on the dolls. There has to be a balance. But there was no question in my mind that this hoodie had to work. That was not a detail I was willing to skip. 
      When I was dressing the doll I realized that I didn't actually like how the hood was laying so I took in a couple of stitches more at the throat. It made the hood lay correctly and fixed the way the strings we laying as well. I have said before that there are a lot of ugly stages in doll making. Some of the ugly stages are not even all that ugly, they are just those little things that are not quite right that bug you. It was definitely worth it to work out the issues with this doll. I think she looks great (and yes, we drink a ton of seltzer).
      I really should be working on miniatures for my sale. But this doll in particular was weighing on my brain. When I have a doll issue I need to work out I can't just put it aside. I have to solve the problem. If it was a standard hunt seat doll I might have been able to just step back and tell myself I would get to her in a week or two. But I didn't really know if I could make a hoodie. And I had to figure it out. I was happy when it was done and I didn't have any desire to make another one. But all of a sudden I want a doll with a logo hoodie. I don't actually have a logo though. I'll have to see what I can come up with. 

Saturday, July 25, 2020

The Mystery in the Mail and Other Stories

     I love getting packages in the mail. It doesn't even much matter what they are, I just love packages. They are way more fun than bills, that's for sure. Recently, I got a mystery in the mail and I have not solved it yet. The package came with a sort of generic business mailing label. I thought that it might be some more of the miniatures I had coming. But when I opened it up there was this pretty blue ring box inside. 
      Hmm, that was odd. I didn't order a ring, though I have had miniatures ship in jewelry boxes before, so I was still thinking maybe miniatures. 
     Except... nope. That is clearly a slim gold ring. That I certainly did not order. And while the tag says 128$ and 1.6g, I feel like the tag is a lie. I may be wrong, but I am fairly certain that fine jewelry comes with a stamp to say what the metal is. I have never heard of there not being a mark. But as I was typing that I got to thinking, I had not actually googled that specific question, so I just did. And apparently there are a lot of reasons a ring might not have a stamp on it. Not a lot of them could apply here. One would be the mark wore away, but that takes 10-40 years of daily use and this ring is new. Another could be it was resized and the jeweler either cut or added to that section to resize and forgot to put the mark back in. The more likely option is it's not from here and came from a place that does not have super strict standards on jewelry markings. Or it could be fake, which is actually what I think. The box is really pretty. 

     The mystery was getting to me a bit. Who sent me that ring? It was clearly addressed to me, so I didn't accidentally open someone else's mail. The name of the sender was cut off so I decided to google the address. And the mystery got weirder. The building is up for sale! So not only do I have a random ring sent to me in the mail, but it is from an address that is for sale. I didn't look into it more to see if I could figure out what type of business it had been. Super weird. I was mentioning the ring to someone and they said maybe I have a secret admirer. If that was the case, they don't know me at all. I don't like yellow gold.

      At some point in the last few days I mentioned my TARDIS bag that I made. I love this bag. I dug it out of the closet so it can be for my doll stuff that I use often (ribbons, crystals, boot making stuff, etc) and it can be organized nicely. This is an incredibly useful bag and I will most likely never make one like this again. Not just the print (I can't get this fabric anymore) but the bag itself. It took a long time to finish. And I just don't like sewing all that much. 
     This bag is technically a medium sized tote bag but it sure does seem bigger on the inside. It has both inner and outer pockets all the way around so should be the ultimate in organization. After it gets washed. It was at the bottom of the closet for awhile and got a bit grubby. 
      The pink handled bag has been my doll bag for a long time. There is absolutely nothing special about it. It's just a cheapy tote bag with pink handles that I can't even remember where I bought it. And soon it will be a completely extra tote bag that will maybe go and live in the back of my car with my other reusable bags. We are still currently not allowed to use reusable bags in Massachusetts. I saw a guy using them at Stop and Shop the other day and I was simultaneously appalled and amused. Some people just don't get it. 
      So there you have it, the mystery in the mail and the story of my TARDIS bag. In case anyone was curious the exploding TARDIS print is about my all time favorite. I made Elecktra a dress out of it. My apron is made out of it. The lining of one of my pencil cases is made out of it. I have a T-shirt with that print on it. Anyway, time to think some more about making dolls. 

Friday, July 24, 2020

It's Good to Have Options

     Over the past year or two Travis has really advanced quite a bit. He is using his words more often and has more of them as well. He will think about what he wants and not just say yes to everything. He has been coming out of his room to hang out with Ethan and asking to go out to different places. At night, most nights, he calls us in to say "I love you". That one is really new. It only took 20 years for him to say it. I still get a little teary eyed every time I hear it. 
     The other day Travis asked for something completely different. Instead of asking to go to any number of random places we have been he asked to go hiking. He came up with an idea of an activity he wanted to do and he verbalized the desire to do it. It didn't matter that it was 90+ degrees and more humid than it had been, he wanted to go hiking. So we went hiking. And yes, Travis wears long pants all summer long. I have bought him shorts and once in a great while I can get him to wear them. But usually he's a pants kind of guy. 
      I still have days where I struggle to get things done, but the day of the hiking I did actually get a lot done, I just didn't finish any dolls. I prepped a bunch of doll bodies. Both black and white dolls, it's good to have options. 

     I got my loot from Breyer. I bought a bunch of things but Kelpie was the only thing I really wanted. I did also get some stablemate sets, but those were for the gray Django. I got some things for my friend and I got some things thinking maybe I might want to keep them. It turns out I want Kelpie and a gray Django. And the Django is in danger of me changing my mind on him at any time. I am sort of brutal with OFs. We have very limited space here so I need to be very particular about what I keep. So currently, I have a bunch of the stablemates from the sets available. I think someone said they might be interested in some of them but I can't remember who said it. I also have Jersey and Orkney available. And another Kelpie. The celebration horse is up for grabs as well. 
     So choices. I was ordering doll hair the other day and I got myself stocked up on all of the colors I was low on that I usually get. And then I saw all of the fun colors. And I could not resist! So I have some really excellent colors of viscose doll hair. No pink, I was sad about that, but maybe I can get that as a custom color. The aqua and the teal are gorgeous! I am really glad I decided to get some fun colors of doll hair. I may start putting on some highlights. Eventually I might even go further than that. It depends what I feel like and what people want. 
     I thought about taking a proper Breyerfest loot photo, but not all of my Breyerfest purchases are here yet and I didn't want to keep things unwrapped which are technically not mine. I opened things up to make sure all their limbs were on, but that was as far as it went. I am happy with what I have decided to keep from Breyer and I am pleased with the things I have coming. It should be a pretty good mail week I think. 

Thursday, July 23, 2020

More Sewing

     As some of you are well aware, I don't really like sewing. I like that I can sew, it is just not one of those things that I am every dying to do. I don't find myself bored and think, I should do some sewing to relax. I am extremely grateful that I can sew, but I like quick projects. I once made a TARDIS tote bag (had TARDIS print fabric and really seemed to be bigger on the inside) and it took 10 and a half hours just for the sewing part. I was glad when it was done. Come to think of that bag, I think it might be a great replacement for my plain pink handled tote that I keep doll stuff in. It may need to be washed first. 
    Anyway, off topic, we are talking about sewing. Some days I am highly motivated and I get a lot of stuff done. Some days I think about doing a lot of stuff and I get some things done. The other day was sort of a mix of those things. I did work on some sewing.
     I have been trying out the shaped masks to see how I like them. Turns out, I like them a lot. I make mine with elastic that goes behind your head, so they don't pull on your ears at all. They don't poke me in the eyes when I have them properly up over my nose. They tuck nicely under my chin and are really the most comfortable masks I have worn. 
     So I made a bunch in this style. Including this hot pink leopard print one, I was looking for doll clothes fabric and found it. I have done saddle pads from this fabric even though it is technically a bit too big. It's perfect for a very pink mask though! Would you believe this is the only pink mask I own?
     I went to Joann's on a mission. Again. I was still looking for Batman fabric. Or any fabric that Travis might like for masks. He borrowed one of Ethan's bandanna masks (not the folded ones, an actual mask I made out of a bandanna) and while he was fine wearing it and even said he liked matching Daddy's mask when they went out, he has been requesting his Toy Story mask. So Travis came with me to pick some fabric. The little skulls mask was fabric Travis chose. I made a fitted style mask for him, but so far he has only worn the pleated style for any length of time. 
     Part of why I was sewing masks again, and looking for mask material, was because we will need them for school. So then I got to thinking about all my teacher friends. I have made masks for several of them just because masks are mandatory for going out in public. But most of them got one, maybe 2 from me. For a full week of school I feel like everyone needs more. We should have probably at least 2 each day. What if you sneeze in your mask? I know I would want to change mine if that happened. Anyway, I was thinking about school and teachers and masks and I was at Joann's looking at their empty shelves. I was thinking about Cathy (my sister) and I texted her some fabrics to see if she liked them. Cathy can sew. Cathy, I am sure, learned to sew before I was even born (I am pretty sure Mom taught her when she was really little as well). But I was thinking about teachers, and Cathy is a teacher, so I started texting her pictures of fabrics I thought she would like. She asked if I needed an intervention and I sent her this photo. 
       Clearly that level of fabric buying is not intervention worthy. I also modeled one of the shaped masks for her. I also have a pleated Hello Kitty one. This one is more comfortable. I am into comfortable stuff. And pretty much no makeup in the summer because I just melt. It was about 100 the day this photo was taken. 
     In the end I got a small variety of new fabrics to make masks with. Travis picked out the skulls and Mandalorian print. The girl cutting my fabric schooled me on the fact that it was not in fact Boba Fett (like I said), but the guy (or some guy) from The Mandalorian. She said Boba Fett is a bad guy and the other guy is not. I then said that Boba Fett is a bounty hunter, that doesn't necessarily make him a bad guy. She then admitted the other guy was a bounty hunter as well, but so far seemed to be a good guy. These are important issues that are discussed at the cutting counter at Joann's. Also, I only buy 1/4 of a yard of fabric for masks, since I end up wanting to make so many different ones, so my purchase was not that big of a deal. And I remembered to buy the sewing machine needles I needed. 
     During this particular sewing day I got some doll clothes cut out, but did not get as far as sewing anything. I need to do that. And I need to prep some dolls and work on miniatures. So many things that need to happen. So many things I am not currently interested in doing.