Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Happy (Politially Correct Phrase Here) and Year End

I have been going with Saturnalia for a few years now.  It is, after all, the oldest version of the whole thing.  Buy presents, feast friends, family and workers; nine months later, population spike.  Oh, those Romans.  In Japan they do about the same thing, with the cake being strawberrys and cream instead of that humble ancestor of the pannettone or fruitcakes.  It's more like a third Valentines day when you have a special dinner with your family or best beloved and god help you if you don't show up, because it seriously is another Valentines day.  Protests are currently being held by disgruntled men in Tokyo who have no one to give chocolates to and eat cake with.  Holidays.  

After what looked like an omg moment, we're okay again.  I still have to argue about my self employment income with the Government to continue My health insurance, but Hubby is just fine, despite it being based on MY self employment, too.  Go figure!

 I want to thank everyone who has been so nice to us this year and the years before.  Seriously, we would be in such a bad place without the doll community.  I can't say much right now, but a wonderful person made the whole two years go away with a present that was better than a ferrari or a diamond necklace.  I keep tearing up with emotion, and it's hard on the handkerchiefs.  I have been in a state since Monday morning when it arrived.  I actually took it out of the box this afternoon and just touched it a bit, LOL!  No, it did not disappear.  The cat has gotten used to random squealing. 

Every year, I try to plow some money back into the business and was able to purchase (thanks to the horrible exchange rate for the Yen to the USD) another doll sewing book.  This one is for the super small dollies.  I was debating it, but with everything going well, got the thing for less than 17 bucks (including shipping!) from CDJapan (birthday points!).  Seriously, this thing is going used for 30$ in country.  I still need to make up my mind about the smaller doll work, but it is coming slowly along.  The main problem seems to be the fabric poking down into the machine's feed dogs and work arounds for that.  So the book is very much looked forward to, and on back order, because there has been a real run on it!  And it is a reprint of an out of date book, just like the Beginning Dolly Coordinate I got mid-year.

So, with this wonderful wonderful new thingie, (SQUEAL) I am hoping that my little business will expand in the coming year, and it would not be anywhere without the people who have had faith in me to sew their doll clothing, put up with delays and I hope, really love the clothing I made for them.  Thank you, so very much!  

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Commission for R.P. 1/6 Action Figure Military One-Zero Vest

Post Moved Up to On Work Table.

This is going to be an interesting one for me, because of the realism factor involved.  This is for a military recreation figure and I'm going for as accurate a detailed garment as possible, to the point where we are stripping other miniature items for the zippers and so forth. R.P. has already done this in advance.  This is exciting to me, to learn the history behind this particular garment as well as see the final result of the over all project.  Deposit paid, now I just need to match fabric, etc.  Project time, undetermined due to the logistics and detail factors.

Customer provided photo of real garment

Customer provided photo
The patterning is the easy part.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Tutorial: Making Knitting Patterns

I recently started the season's knitting, this time for dolls.  A customer requested an Aran sweater, and I took the challenge, along with knitting a 1960s Chanel-esque suit for my SID medium bust Karen.  This lead to a tutorial.  It's really quite easy to make knitting patterns and avoid charts altogether.  It also points out how zoftig the Iplehouse girls are.

Tutorial is on this page on BJDCollectasy.
Karen hates her sneakers and is now the subject of the NEXT tutorial as well: How to make shoes.
This is going to lead to something horrible I just know it:
 "I want shoes for every outfit.  Perhaps 2 or 3 pairs.  Don't just sit there staring at me, get busy!' 
  For now, I'm still fighting with the collar for the Aran sweater, (always, always no matter what, three times I have to unravel and try again) but this is a busy week and when I have time to sit down, I'm usually exhausted and rather numb from nearly being killed in traffic by people who are now not only on their phones, but stressed out over the holidays.  Yesterday ONCE AGAIN I was nearly plowed down in the cross walk by a fool on a phone.  He had the unmitigated gall to grin at me as he nearly killed me while running the red light while making a left turn!   No one follows the rules any more because no one enforces them.

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Review for Customer: Skello's Teeny Body Doll

Okay so I'm late on this, and shame on me, but it's that time of year!

Read this part real fast like a radio commercial!
Skello owns these dolls and they are just temporarily at my place along with his other dolls, for their custom clothing orders.  All the dolls and their accessories are bought and paid for by Skello and are his sole property, should there ever be a question   They will be stored in a separate bin marked properly.   The only 1/6 girl doll of this type I have and own is a Volks 1/6 Dollfie for reference.

 The package showed up a week ago and I've been putting it off until I had the sweater finished, but the sweater collar has to be re-done, darn it!  So I got the box down today and opened it.  I must say, I was surprised after the plastic hang bag gals had shown up to see 1/6 dolls in their own boxes.  

After shaking the well packaged box to get the boxes to slide out:

Commission for DVD: Venitu and David Western Coats

For David and Venitu, one buffalo coat, one range duster without cape, one gambler's vest, and one pair of dk blue jeans.  Deposit paid.

I've never seen buffalo coats before, so this was a surprise to me.  I always knew about leather and blanket coats, but never buffalo.  What the heck history books, fail much?! O_o   I should imagine they came in quite handy! They were everything from neatly sheered to all out hairy, using different parts of the fur to create different effects.

Center of the West collection

Friday, November 20, 2015

Commission: LilsGirl, an SID Fur Jacket

Paid in full with credit for next item.  Customer sending faux fur, lining included in cost.

This is to be a short fur coat/jacket, with slot pockets, double breasted for that full lapel along the lines shown.  Customer concept photo from Pin It:

The whole teddy theme, the only word you can use is 'kawaii'. 'Cute' just doesn't have the emotive impact implied by the 'relax and fun' aesthetics Japanese culture pioneered.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Another Year Almost Gone!

With the cool weather making it much easier to live, I've been working on a few personal projects lately that I haven't been able to find time for since my hubby had his hemorrhagic stroke.  A 1950s dress from yukata fabric for summer that's been in and out of the box for 2.5 years now.  I might actually have it for next summer! I've also been working on the projects for the December BJDCollectasy tutorial.

Just to be on the safe side, I'm taking Tama down to the Animal Shelter today for the free chipping clinic.  He's not going to be happy.  Cars will be pulling over thinking a fire engine is going by or something.  Yow-yow-myow! for a mile in his little stroller, all the way up and back, and my possible death from embarrassment.  You'd think he'd enjoy getting out for a ride when he hasn't had one for so long, but he's forgotten what it's like to sit and be chauffeured.  We'd just feel better knowing that if for any reason he were to be let loose outside, we'd have some hope of getting him back.  He's not an outside cat.  I'm convinced he's agoraphobic, really.  Bad enough when we got a new carpet four years ago he would do anything but walk on it for a whole week.  I'd put him down and he'd just go 'SPRONG!' right off it again.

I've two long term projects, the aran sweater and the one-zero vest, and other than that, I'm waiting on two promised projects.  And while I've had to decline another 1/6 non-BJD project, December and January and anything after that are wide open.  I'm also going to mark down items on the Etsy shop to as low as I can sanely go. SD one size fits most cotton dresses and tops with a tie string belt for 15$, and the denim shirt dress for 20$, plus shipping.   Please consider commissioning something special for your ball joint doll.

20$ on Etsy

Shirt or Shirt dresses 15$ on Etsy

Monday, October 26, 2015

D.V.D's Cowboys

D.V.D. sent me the photos of his David and Venitu (DollShe Craft) in their full cowboy outfits and they are so CUTE!  (Okay, manly men and very handsome.)  D.V.D. took all the photos and I'm just the seamstress, kay?  I'm so impressed with the layout and staging.  The sheepskin jacket is D.V.D.'s work along with the tooled leather pieces and omg the proportions of the guns and riffles and everything!  So perfect!  And I'm in love with that bench.  So a tribute to the Old West, complete with foamy beer and fancy town going duds!  ('Duds' being old slang for clothing.)

So, if both dolls are modeled from Roman statuary, does that make this a 'spaghetti western'? ^_^  I love how David out Pauls Paul Newman.  The amazing wigs are from Chewingallapa.com.

Customer quote: "What's best about the jeans are they do not ride down when sitting and they fit the waist perfectly. I have spent way too much money on crap jeans but your ride just right I wish you had a tiny label that says Raj ...."       I'll have to try that!   

Also, Customer sent the photos to DollShe's Gallery!  ^_^ 

More photos under the Cut!  Original order post here.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

The "I'm Too Busy Sewing To Update" Update

The things you find on the internet by accident!  This is an industrial quilting machine from the looks of it.

I'm just about ready to wrap up a pile of sewing and update posts on orders.  Cooler weather, lots less thyroid problems, more sewing.  And at some point this month, we have to get the hubby up to the "vampire shop" for another tap of his veins.  I hate the days they do his cholesterol draw. NO breakfast, no coffee, it's like dealing with a lion with a splinter in his--ahem, well, anyway.  I'm taking a thermos this time.  Yes, the hubby is a Leo. Crazy cat lady much?

Edit: Nearly forgot!  BJDCollectasy has posted the first of my two tutorials on Greco/Roman costumes.  The owner is doing her dolls up as Demeter, Persephone and Hades.  It's the time of year that exemplifies the story behind the myth, as we're at the end of the agricultural cycle.  Everything you think you know about Bridal Traditions comes from Demeter and Persephone.  Also if you want to just toga up for Halloween, here's how to do it right! 

Friday, October 2, 2015

My Laptop Has Died

It is an ex-laptop, it has met it's maker, it is no longer even nailed to the perch.  Sort of sucks because I had the tutorial for October mostly bashed into place, and I believe I have all the photos I wanted saved, because it's been acting senile for a week now, and I had backed everything up, but damn.  Ah well, it was dying for YEARS, which is why we have the desk top, but still OMG SCREAM!  I'll have to remember everything and get the tutorial done in time for the post!  

Anyway, now it's just a  matter of true love (hubby shares the desk top despite his TV show addiction) or else.

Right over my first cup of coffee, too, darn it.  Anyway, I'm going to get the tutorial work done and in the snail mail to BJDCollectasy and then get back on track with the sewing that's been so interfered with this past hot miserable month.


Monday, September 28, 2015

Den of Angels is Moving Their Forum to a New Thingie!

For those of us who sort of blip over the forum most of the time lately due to that thing called "Reality" which I try to avoid but keeps biting me for attention (hey I play with dolls for a living, get over it!) let us remember that not all site migrations, web site moves, server changes or whatever go smoothly.  Frankly I doubt there has EVER been a smooth move in HTML, and I dare you to prove it!  I've been keeping an eye on this for months now and it looks like time's up!

SAVE YOUR DEN OF ANGELS PAGES!  Download copies of all your important Den of Angels stuff, and PHOTOS, because as the post on Migrating shows, they are dropping things right and left due to formatting differences in the forums, AND as we all know, when you move, a box of stuff is always sacrificed to the gods of moving!  Also if you're like me and locked out of half the old photo sites you used to post photos from, Den of Angels might be the only way to get those back.

Just go read the post!

Oct 18 Edit: I like the looks of it so far, too!  But I saw it when it was just beginning to get itself together.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Well, Our Super Moon was a Dud.

So pretty much everyone on our block was going to go out and look, because we usually have the moon so bright it keeps people up nights even without the super part.  The minute the sun was going down and the eclipse was going to be in full swing, huge black clouds rolled in.  Despite the fact that it was 95 today and is going to be 95 tomorrow with no chance of rain.  I'm going to check after posting and see if San Bernardino or Riverside is on fire or something, because wow, we couldn't see a thing, when last night the moon was this huge silver glow thing lighting up the yards around here.

Dinner is late, hubby is irked and yeah, we're going to look it up on YouTube tomorrow.   But I did find out some interesting things about my little cheap Sony camera that will come in handy later.  It has all these settings I had no idea were there (no instruction book ANYWHERE for this camera).  The weird thing is, when I aimed it at my dolls with the automatic AI setting or whatever, it only picked out Jiji's face as being that of a human.  I tried aiming it at the other dolls, including my visiting Soom big guy (he's sort of rooming here, but he's not a dead beat, he's paid his rent more than once!) and the camera didn't focus on a face, but Jiji is a 'human face' every time.  How weird.  She's sitting with the Soom idealian guy, and the lovely Karen SID (forgot her sculpt name) Fishcake sent me, and my little MSD Kiki, and it only thinks Jiji is the human, even when I move her around.  I'd take a photo but it doesn't capture the little square in the picture, and I can't take a picture of the back of the camera. O_o  And my camera can do Bokuh, I had NO idea.  It has frames in it, too, apparently.  This after 4 years.  

Blame it on the Moon.  

Saturday, September 19, 2015

Is Ohio the New Bermuda Triangle?

September 9th, I ordered .000 knitting needles.  They were shipped the next day.  Whoo-hoo! right?

Apparently NOT.  I contacted the sender to let them know that poo was happening and was told wait one more day and they would make a call.  Two days later, the package moved again.  To another place in Ohio.   We shall see! (ominous music).
I had to make this smaller and take off HTML to make it fit the screen.  Starts at the bottom.

Service Type: USPS Tracking™

Departed USPS Facility

AKRON, OH 44309

September 18, 2015 10:05 am

Arrived at USPS Facility

AKRON, OH 44309

September 17, 2015 9:10 pm

Arrived at USPS Origin Facility


September 14, 2015 7:14 pm

Departed Post Office


September 10, 2015 3:10 pm

Picked Up


September 10, 2015 3:01 pm

Shipping Label Created

XENIA, OH 45385

September 9, 2015 5:57 pm

In the mean time, I was trying to close the new garage door, one of those roll top desk types with panels, and having pulled on the rope a few times, decided to say screw it and reach up to grab the top of a panel and give it a good pull, which usually works because I yank and pull the cord at the same time.  This total CREEP, looked like homeless, drugged, or drunk (at 9 am mind you) comes around the corner just in time to nearly smack into me, startles the hell out of me and I smash my fingertips.  Creep looks at me like I'M the crazy one for swearing, and staggers off.  Four hours later, my fingers are fine on top, but then I turn my hand over and my ring finger looks like a black grape and it's all numb and I didn't even notice because I was busy. Lost four hours in the ER, it's not broken or crushed, just soft tissue damage and I'm supposed to watch it for tissue death.  Two days later, it's still swollen and purple, but I'm pretty sure it's just bruised as I can still feel the tip of my finger and type. Not even going to lose my nails, from the looks of it, but it did put a dent in my dignity and in my plans to do a lot of the sewing I had cut out while my hand was in Ice water.  Much better today, back to work!

However the garage door is now a suspicious object.  Inanimate objects are out to get me, this I've always known.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Organizing: I Has It

So despite the heat, and it's POURING today, I've been trying to keep up with my "let's finally move in" plan.  We've reached the storage room that is our Bedroom.  Every Sunday, we pick a task and Marie Kondo'd the dresser drawers this Sunday.  This left space in the closet that pretty much sent us into shock. Wow, we can SEE the back of the closet.  That can't be right.  I put a rod on camping rope and made a quickly removable double hanging area in the middle for the folded pants and things, and was organizing that when Mr. Curiosity woke up from his post breakfast food/play like mad coma and saw "Le GASP!  OMG OPEN CLOSET!" and jumped the 10 feet from the bed top to the top shelf in the closet, scrambled and achieved self insertion into yet another place he should not be and could then not get out of of.

Now you too can understand what your cat has been typing: http://speaklolcat.com

Note my saved stacks of boxes in the top right corner that are going for drawer organizers and fabric covered shelf drawers.  We let the little devil sniff around for a while then ignored his plaintive mews for a while longer just to teach him a lesson.  Finally I got the step ladder and extricated him, only to get my palm clawed because naturally, having nursed him from two weeks old and covered in more fleas than fur, to a strapping healthy 7 year old, 15 pound cat with never a day of no food in the dish or the box not cleaned, and letting him know every time I leave the house that I will obey all his mewed complaining (he has a fit, I get a lecture every time!)  the total spoiled little prince, I would like--drop him on his head or something?  I don't know, but let's just say, he has trust issues.

Did he learn anything?

No.  This morning I opened the closet to get my clothes out for the day and BAM!  Launch!  I left him in there for half an hour with the cheap plastic sliding doors closed this time.  Tough love.  Was he repentant? Not a bit.

And then there's making sure he's not buried in the basket of 'too far gone for even thrifty make and mend clothing' pile before I throw it out.  (We have enough cleaning rags now, I have to just let it go! but--but--it's a SOCK!  Men's white cotton socks are awesome for cleaning cloths! and Gardening mitts!  And car dusting, house dusting, window cleaning, mirror polishing, silver polishing (who has silver any more? *sulks*) but yeah, I have a sock problem, okay I get it!)

So, it's freaking pouring today and I have to go shopping.  Have to.  On a bike.  Hello flash flood warnings.  Sure beats blacking out from 100 plus heat, though.  The good thing is, as one friend pointed out: No gators.  But I must have thread and out into the storm I must go.  Good thing I can swim!  O_o  We live 6 blocks from the hospital and the sirens have been going all morning.  Small whispered voice: "Californians can't drive in rain."  Lucky for me, I'll be on the sidewalks! 

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Is It Fall Yet?

We're suffering through another high heat warning yet again.  I've spent the past week patterning for all my current customers, and am just about ready to put paper to fabric and get the cutting started.  Then I have to sort out what thread colors to buy and how much of what I have in stock to get started.  It's just damned difficult to even think of going outside shopping in this heat.  It's 80 Fahr by 8 am.  And being a BJD owner, I keep obsessively checking for any signs of heat discoloration on my gang.  Kyou being the one I worry about most, because he's the shiny white (now ivory) one with the weird sparkly resin. It's like highly compressed styrofoam or something, and feels nice.  I don't know what kind of resin it is, but Dream Realm has probably changed since using it.  Funny how his changeable sets of ears are still super shiny white but the rest of him has yellowed.

I had to order some .000 knitting needles (sock set of four double pointed) to make the Aran knit sweater for the Obitsu girl.  'Dolls House' just came out with an issue for October and they had a pattern for a 1/12 aran knit sweater and my mind just went "Oh Hail no!"  However, the needle size made me look again.  Because the last time I went small knitting needle hunting, I got a set of Size 1 USA sock needles last year from Hob/Lobs (2.75 mm) and was told they didn't go any smaller.  Which is obviously Hob/Lob's manufacturing problem, they didn't have them any smaller, not the rest of the world.  So yeah, funny how things happen like that just in time to answer a pressing question.  They go down to .0000 !  So yeah, you don't have to knit with sewing pins for something this small.  Thankfully the sweater I'm making is twice as big.

Sweet Crafty Tools has the very fine sock needle sets of four in varying sizes for a very low price compared to some places, unless you want to throw money at Amazon. Which I don't.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Commision: Skello, Obitsu 27 cm girl Aran Sweater

So this is a real challenge!  An Irish (or Aran) knit tunic small enough to look right on a 1/6 doll.  Just finding the yarn gave me fits, because is it pink or is it white? O_o it looks very very very pale pink to me, but since I can finish the tunic before any dye is put in, the customer can decide.  Not even fan art of the character shows the back as having cables, but I learned to knit starting with Aran knitting, so I'm doing the back and the sleeves as well for authenticity.

Note: this has been changed from Obitsu to Very Cool and back again, if you were interested in the Very Cool.
I'm still seeing crystal pink. O_o 
Usually a natural yarn, even a blend, for this size would be in the superfine, super expensive sock yarn range or equally not too cheap, but not happy acrylic. So I went looking on Etsy and found some gorgeous ICE brand silk/Kashmir blend; and the person is selling it one skein at a time, rather than the 10 pack the ICE company in Turkey sells it for!  It says about Sept 12 or so, on the receipt, so I hope it shows up in good time, what with the troubles in Greece.  And for ONLY under $5!  with 7 for shipping!  

I was shocked to see the economy is tanked with the Euro, too.  It used to be just figure 2 to 1 for anything Euro to dollar, now it's less than 0.86?  So if you're going to buy anything from a Euro based shop, buy now!  It will help the company, plus be half the US price in the end! 

I'll have to do some swatch tests and figure the correct gauge and how to spread out the cables and so forth before I can get the tunic actually going.  Usually I take about three false starts even on my own sweaters (pattern, what pattern--that's like reading instructions! Pfft! Who needs instructions!)  I have a tutorial planned for BDJCollectasy on knitting to a paper pattern for December or so.  Maybe January, can't remember, but this will be a two-fer that way.  

Friday, August 14, 2015

Commission: Cadmuss22, an Azone 50 Girl outfit

This is an Etsy order, half deposit paid.  Hoping for a finish target of 10 weeks or less.  The original outfit is for a Dollfie Dream, so it wouldn't fit the Azone girl (5 cm shorter and some width difference as well.)  Customer is loaning a perfectly fitting outfit as well as measurements, and I have Dollfie Dream patterns to alter down to Azone size.  ^_^

I'll go shopping for the fabrics next week when the hellish heat is off.  >.<;;

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

What the heck! And OMG Perfect CAT Face for a Doll!

I had a custom order to list for Cadmuss22, and found out that almost all my Etsy shop listings had gone dead.  I don't get it, I always get a notice when things are a few days from going down and I had clicked the automatic renewal button on the multiple items listings!  I nearly had heart failure!  I immediately  thought, what!   Someone's stripped my shop because I did something wrong! O_o Is this one of those weird Etsy glitches?  Have the listings really been up there that long?  Gods, time goes fast!

I'm getting very tired of having to keep up with all the 'improvements' to web sites always being made.  Renshuu.com improved and now I can't use it on my Nook, even though the Nook is Android based.  Southern California Edison's web site is constantly down for improvements, and now I can't use it on my Nook either.  It only goes so far and then never loads. 

Etsy is driving me mad, because every time I finally catch up with how to do things, they 'improve' and I'm getting rather lost, because frankly all I want to do is bang up a listing and get back to work.  I'm not the kind of loony who sits there all day, immersed in the culture of Etsy.  I tried the forums when I first joined and was like Oh give me a damned break!  If I wanted to spend all day fretting my brains out on the computer, I'd go back and finish up with the whole I.T. thing, which is pretty much all stress all the time because CSS will suck the life out of you more than anything else known on the planet.  You want to torture someone, force them to do CSS coding cross platform.  

We're heading for the 100s again this weekend.  If at 86, the interior temp of this apartment goes up to 100, I'm not even going to look at what 100 will make it in here.  I'm going to be awfully selfish and postpone my animal shelter volunteer work until I won't be passing out just walking up there.  They have AC but 7 blocks in 90 degrees uphill in the early morning, not a good idea with the thyroid.  

Tama has discovered that the best spot in the house is on the glass table top directly across from the AC.  I read an article recently that said cats can be comfortable in higher temperatures.  How the heck do they know the cat is comfortable?  I've always had at least one cat in the house that found out how to take advantage of or actually turn on the AC unit.  Even lions will all line up in a stringy bit of shade.  

I want this girl's face for my holy grail cat girl doll.  You must be assimilated into Tracy Butler's art work and Lackadaisy Cats.  Click on or Open the image in a new tab or window (depends on your browser) for the wonderful details of her work to show better!

Full page of comic Here

If you read the pages she's on, her dress is the most awesome Art Deco Egyptian influenced beaded flapper era thing. I don't know what I love more about Tracy's art, her clothing, her cars, her architecture, her story telling, or her cats.

The possum invasion seems to have moved on, thank goodness, there really is nothing here for them to eat, unless people are leaving trash on their back yards, and once all the lizards are eaten, that's about it.  

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Volunteer Orientation at the Animal Shelter

So, this morning while hubby slept to his usual 8 am,  I went for orientation at the Upland Animal Shelter. (Blurry eyed and one cup of coffee.) Our shelter has been a no-kill shelter for years, and people keep taking swipes at it in the local newspaper op page, saying it's not profitable and things like that, and that it should be outsourced to a commercial company, and I'm wondering WHY?  What the hell is the interest of anyone who thinks an animal shelter which provides a good service (safety, anti-crime, health conditions) to any community should be profitable?  I can think of places where there is no service but the vultures and scavengers, seriously people, third world much?  Probably the same type of people who think it's a great idea to send out bills for attending church.  Now volunteering isn't going to pay the water and food bills, or the taxes for the property and all that, but surely there are people who can donate more to a no kill shelter than "kill 'em all to save them from us" places like PETA. There were over a dozen of us newbs this morning to sign up for volunteer work, people of all ages, guys and girls.  And finding out last week that the City cut so much out of the budget is not a happy.  

Before I had only been in the foyer of the two older locations, but the new shelter is the first one I've been in the guts of and I was very impressed. The shelter is obviously worth every penny of the money put into it.  My family has cattle.  Diary on one side, beef on the other.  The facilities were as clean as a dairy, not like some of the other shelters I have been in. It's rather military like in it's set up, very professional and the care is obvious.    All the facilities are meant to be easily cleaned, all the animals we saw (and we saw them all) were in comfy cages with blankets and toys and cleaning is 'as you go' in other words, don't let it pile up for a certain scheduled time.  I've been in commercial  shelters where it was once a day if the animals were lucky.

The shelter doesn't let out any adoptions without the animal being neutered.  It used to be you got a half off discount when you went to your own vet and had the op performed before the animal hit 6 months, but now, you get a "pet ready" pet for a most reasonable fee.  Shots, health care, socialized to people, and its little pants altered all for a price much lower than you would pay with the old cumulative vet visit process.  You can get your pet 'chipped' there, too for a low fee or I believe free on certain days, but that might have gone with the last budget.  The animals are cared for by veterinary students, which is awesome, these animals are all very well cared for and the students get to learn from live animals who need them. The shelter also allows for volunteers to foster care for animals that are not so healthy but need peace and quiet.

So, I'm trying not to be very upset and I do really want to do the volunteer work, but the idea of bonding with animals that might be headed for the gas chamber (which was not at all in the picture when I started this thing) is hurting.  But on the other hand, things can change for the better.  And if they do change for the better, I may come up with the 52$ for the background check to continue volunteering after my 20 hours are used up.  I seriously need to get out of the house for something besides sitting around doctor's appointments.  It's like a doll meet, only with cats, (and dogs, which I like just as well, but sort of blip over).  Frankly, I need to stop having long conversations with MY cat and go talk to other cats.  Yeah, that sounds sane.  Not.

Or, I may end up hording a hell of a lot of cats, but I'm trying not to think about that, because that's just crazy. *twitch*  Tama is tolerating this business of his helper monkey taking off only so far.  Then it's death to every power cord in the house!

Anyway, back to sewing doll clothes before it gets too hot in here.  We need to find a cooler place to live, this place is an oven by noon time, and the AC bills just can't cover it all.

Hubby's eyes are starting to look like people eyes again, btw.  But we did take lots of horror movie monster photos for the album.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Update On the Surgery

Hubby came through his surgery just fine.  It's just that now he needs audio books for a few days, is going nuts and yeah, a bit of a pain in the arse.  But he didn't 'stroke out' again on the anesthesia, which has been our main fear (and was not helped by the warning they gave us before the surgery.)  Plus, I had been told that I could wait at home, (it's only a 15 minute walk) but then was stuck for 6 hours sitting on my hands told not to go anywhere while they took forever just to take him in to surgery and 6 more while he recovered, but we had a book to read to him so he wouldn't go mad. I went insane trying to be all brave and not panic, which I would have indulged in at home to get over it, (and thrown myself in house cleaning or sewing to pass insane time.)  The poor cat was probably ready to hire new helper monkeys since we were away from home so long.

Now Hubby looks like Dracula after a night on the town and an attempted exorcism gone wrong.  The incredibly blood shot eyes and bloody tears are 'normal'.  I have to keep telling myself that.  Basically they stitched his eyes back in and sitting there while the doctor adjusted the sutures after 4 hours, and not being able to have a look at the sewing job drove me nuts. Let this be a lesson: wearing a helmet doesn't mean s**t when a car side swipes you on a motorcycle.  This is something that happened ages ago showing up now (progressively ruining his eye sight).  The accident literally knocked his eyes loose in his head.  He'd had a mild concussion at the time, but everything considered, this is from traumatic head injury.

Now I'm wondering what else they'll find wrong with him, this insurance thing is 50/50 good/bad; with full coverage, the doc's always finding something else wrong with Hubby that needs to be done RIGHT NOW, OMG! .  Me on the other hand, "You need anti-depressants!"  GRRRRRRR!

And there is SOMETHING scrabbling at the wall between us and the garage this morning, I woke up at 4 am with the cat fussing and I thought he was chewing the cords to the computer or something, but he was on one side of the room and the usual "i'm chewing cords, get up and feed me" noise was on the other side.  SOMETHING is in the garage scrabbling at the wall board, a mere two feet from our pillows, and I'm expecting it to work it's way through if this keeps up. It's either a lizard, a mouse or a bird that's got stuck in there, which they do.  It's small and scrabbly and not making vocal noises.

We saw the most fabulous full sized and immaculately clipped and groomed poodles yesterday being socialize to the hospital as service dogs, they looked so LUX!  A full size poodle (they used to be stag hunting dogs!) is a beautiful animal, they move like a ballet dancer.  But the super poofy head pompom sort of spoils that, *snicker*   Fashion wise, yes, Style, I'm conflicted.  The dogs, they don't care!

Enough babble, more coffee and back to work. O_o Finally, I can get BACK TO WORK!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Busy Week Coming Up

Just a quick notice, I'm sort of dropping off the planet this week, web wise.  My husband is having his surgery this week and I'm not sure what the complications will be.  I'm hoping that they don't do anything to make his condition worse, but frankly, I'm terrified.

I'm still working on orders, the Sukeban project is down to the line today, actually, and will be ready to ship tomorrow Monday, but when I can get to the post office this week if the customer is ready to have it sent is another matter.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Commission: Lils Girl's EID Girl Wardrobe

Lils Girl has commissioned a wardrobe for her gorgeous EID girl.  I have a deposit, her fitting shell, and will be working on sorting out all these really neat fabrics and going through her idea for clothing in the next month or so.  The Liberty Prints are just wonderful.  We'll be looking at fashions inspired by the 70's, (which were informed by the 30s and 60s,) but are definitely in the 20-teens modern line up.

 Lils Girl has plans for a BJD blog more fashion than fantasy style, so when she's ready to promote that, I'll be listing her blog here.  

I think it's true that a lot of fashion centric BJD fans get sidelined by the dominant Fantasy BJD trend.  Even the more realistic fashions of the Iplehouse and Freedom Teller lines are still sexist fantasy more than utile fashion. Fashion BJD fans, in my opinion, want the style of Fashion Dolls but are put off by the frozen faces and lack of poseability, while the majority of BJD still are deeply rooted in Fantasy.  Iplehouse and a few other companies are filling the need for more realism in Dolls while Soom's fantastic creatures are more 'realisitic' in their own right, but damned difficult to dress until you get the hang of their alien proportions.  Personally, I like to set my marker in the fine line between realism, and the fashion style manga artist use.  And I do like a well dressed kitty cat.  

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Slowly Slowly Getting Ready for the Eye Surgery

I don't know what the heck is up with our Doctor's office, but last week when I went for MY check up, I confirmed my hubby's pre-op physical.  So yesterday after hiking up there (omg my leg muscles hurt) they say "What appointment?"  So we had to sit there from 9 am to 1 pm.  >.<;;  Waiting to be fitted in.  So much for having an appointment.  Second problem.  "We can do the EKG and Xray here"  "You're sure? O_o" "Oh yes!"  "You'll do the EKG AND the XRay there?"  "Yes!"

Guess what?  No, they can't.  *SCREAM!*

So I sat there and called the hospital where he's got a Pre op check up tomorrow as well, THEY will do the EKG and Xray.  Thank goodness!  I didn't want to push 230 pounds another 2 miles to sit around and wait for the work at the lab.  Starving much!

So yeah, I'm slowly catching up with customer projects, but working like a pack mule drains me big time.  It's no use taking a bus, it's the same distance to the bus stop as it is to the hospital, and the bus doesn't go to the labs we have to go to without more hiking, so why bother.

Saturday morning around 3:30 am I got woke up by neighbors drunk or drugged being too loud.  After asking them to STFU I get hauled out of bed again by YOW YOW YOW.  Stray cat.  So from 3:30 am on, I had to listen to this sweet little barely 2 month old tortoiseshell/calico tell me all about how she wanted to get out of the carry case and take over my house, terrorizing my little guy, and me worried about fleas and finally got to walk up to the animal shelter (down the street from the hospital) with her to turn her in at 10 am which left me dead for the day.  We can't afford the big bucks she would have ended up costing with vet bills, additional apartment pet deposit, etc., but damn, I wanted to keep her, because she reminded me so much of our Meimei, who was in agony from arthritis in her spine and had to be let go in 2011 after only 13 years.  But she had a very good life for a kitten thrown out of a car in the crappy gang ridden area of Santa Ana.

Our Meimei, much missed.

So I decided that since I couldn't donate much of anything (though I am going to make an X-mas basket of cleaning supplies according to a needs list they have over the next few months) I decided to volunteer for the shelter and got my "show up for orientation" email today.  ^_^  It's the first weekend of the month, which puts it well after the hubby's eye surgery, so we'll see.  I'll post more on that later.  It's an all volunteer run no kill shelter and they just skid past being outsourced to some evil corporation or worse, PETA the animal genocide people, and doing such good work.  

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Commission: For JRyu an AOD 1/4 girl Sukeban Outfit.

NOTE: Post moved up to make it easier to find.

Slated for starting very soon, but with a deadline of May 30 or less, (Yeah that worked out >.<;;)  a ganguro outfit based on being a very tough young lady.  Sukeban girls insist on being treated like a lady, or you'll pay the consequences.  The odd thing is, I was contacted about this order just after having read "Japanese Schoolgirl Inferno", a book on the various gang girl 'tribes' and their outfits.   So yes, this IS traditional Japanese clothing, in that the skirts were popular in the early 1900s, and again in the 1970s when maxi length was 'in'.

Deposit paid, awaiting measurements etc.  ^_^  The company ones look as usual, totally Whack.  The customer sent me the big three, and the hips are 1 cm bigger then the company page says.  That could have caused a huge problem if I weren't such a fuss budget about 'clean' measures from the actual doll. >.<;;

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Commission: For Eric, David and Venitu, Cowboys

NOTE: Post moved up to make it easier to find.  July 4, 2015

This is going to be brilliant!  First of all, gorgeous dolls, classic works of art, and then the awesomeness of cowboys.  If you've seen the David I made a classical Japanese outfit before, this is the guy.  Working with a fellow doll artist is pretty much a major high for me.  It's better than working with some actor in theater. >.>;;  Anyway, I've got the fabric photos and a deposit to start on, and we're looking at the last two week of May, plus. I'm going to have to make muslins for the jeans and test fit on this one.  With the dolls involved, we want those jeans to fit just right.  Two shirts, one with piping, pearl buttons snaps, one pair of new blue jeans, one pair of old blue jeans.  I can't wait to see the custom boots and things being made for the dolls!

EH? It's July? O_o

I've kind of fallen off the planet the past few days.  The humidity and heat are destroying my mind along with the thyroid thing.  

My visit to the doctor Tuesday was interesting.  Apparently my labs finally showed up the thyroid thingie to the point where they believed something MIGHT JUST BE WRONG, oh wow much! I insisted on the goal of having the rest of the useless junk out and being able to take medication and got her to admit that Anti depressants were dangerous to thyroid patients!  You CAN NOT take Levothy-whatsits and Anti-depression meds at the same time.  I want OFF this roller coaster! More blood work. >.<;; And a promise of finding yet another endocrinologist.  Mind you this was just the nurse practitioner, the doc's still convinced all I need is anti-depressants.

The Hubby's visit to the eye doc Wednesday has us all messed up appointment-wise again. I'm still trying to get the other surgeon to settle his appointments so we know when to get all his pre-op tests and NOW we are told he needs another surgery to scrap some junk off his retina from the last surgery.  OMG, GROSS!  But yeah, we're now running in two different directions and everything is up in the air until we get it sorted.  I can't even make my own appointments this month because of his or I'd be at a doctor's office more than I'd be home! And I don't think it's such a great idea to do so many surgeries on the same eye so close together, I mean, he should heal from the internal before they pop his eye out of the socket and do the external.  Odd how much he has in common with the dolls now.  O_o

Project wise, I'm catching up.  The detail work I've taken on is not easy with the heat and the thyroid bs going on, but I've been working each day and making progress, I just don't want to photo update until I've got something 'pretty' to show for it.  I'm also having a hard time finding the fabric I had put away for the 1/6 projects. This is what I get for 'organizing'. I remember distinctly seeing it and now can't remember where I organized it off to. I'm giving myself until Sunday to find it, then buying more.  (only to have it turn up after I spend the money).

Nearly forgot, I finished the July tutorial right on time yesterday!  Go me!  Now for the next month.  It'll turn up on BJDCollectasy soon.  

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Commission for Skello: 1/6 Action Figure Misaka Mikoto

NOTE: Post moved up to make it easier to find.  July 4, 2015

Misaka Mikoto, from season 2 of A Certain Scientific Railgun ( Toaru Kagaku no Rērugan )

It's been a long time since I've worked with 1/6 range action figures, so we're starting with a simple commission of 1 t-shirt with a false under layer and painted on hearts, and 2 pairs of cuffed shorts (khaki green, denim blue) with working pockets.  This project has a 'work on in between' timing on it, because we're waiting on the doll to be delivered, and I have to adjust to the tiny details in the patterns.  

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Aernath Sent Me The Head of The Doctor!

I'm mostly incoherent right now.  Short of a video of me jumping up and down and pointing going Looky looky looky looky ad infinitum, yeah.  OMG YEAH!

Edit: So, um, this is dean winchester.  Well, not any more.  >.>  Just goes to show you how BJDs can be so versatile!  (resumes squealing now)

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Once Again, Life Has Interfered With My Reality

After over a week of ongoing problems we now resume a still slightly shaky attempt to keep up with things.  Hypothyroid and heat waves do not mix.  I get so nauseous it's either like being pregnant or seasick, take your pick, fainty, and so tired I can't keep awake even after 10 hours of sleep at night. Also over sensitive ear drums, inability to focus on thinking (they call it cloudy brain) cracking headaches and itchy dry skin.  It has leveled out now and I'm trying to get back on track.  I'm going to do my best this doctor's appointment to convince them that it would be better to just take out the miserable remaining half full of nodules and crud and just put me on the medication so it will be stable, rather than the up-down-up-down of having my mostly useless thyroid under and over achieving.

We did have rain last week (always when I have to go shopping on my bike with my carry cart!) but it was warm and annoying. I basically didn't even bother with more than a t-shirt and thin summer jeans, but yeah, drowned rat much?  All the flowers are in bloom and it was lovely otherwise.

The hubby has had some good luck finally.  Apparently Social Security has given up trying to locate our secret island in the Bahamas and vast wealth in overseas accounts (dear IRS/FBI/SS--oh my bad, I mean Social Security <---previous statement is sarcasm!  Sarcasm, an attempt at humorous snark.  Oh, just Google it! ) and has decided he actually IS handicapped.  So he got a half price bus pass good for the next 4.5 years from the one company that serves our area, and we're waiting on the one that serves where we actually need to go.  He's also back on track for his remaining eye surgery next month.  That's remaining surgery, not 'eye'.  And yeah, I'm a bit worried sick about them putting him completely under.  People who have had strokes can have some pretty awful things happen under anesthesia, but his was a brain bleed, not a heart, so yeah.  But I'm still worried, so there! 

So, back to sewing.  I'm hoping to get my current projects cleared by month's end, because next month (July) starts the seemingly endless round of hauling 230 pounds of man (175 lb) and wheel chair (55 lb) all over, up and down hill, to catch buses and go to doctor's appointments and a clinic appointment where we have been reminded to bring a lunch and water because "you know now how long is takes!" and me being even more exhausted and slowing things down.  However, my legs are now insanely muscular and I'm getting 'abs' for heaven's sake.

My next tutorial for BJDCollectasy is going to be a rather fun one, too.  

Monday, June 8, 2015

Have You Checked out Aernath's Shirt Shack?

It's positively Tiki-lishious!

Aernath's Shirt Shack

All photos belong to Aernath and are items available in her shop!

I love these because they are so surfer dude!  Having spent the better part of my youth on the beach (and the other part in a pool hall, but hey) these are pretty darned authentic clothes for that retro look!  The proportions are perfect! (check the beachy hair!)  All these guys need is some sand and a board on a cord and they would be right there.  I'd date 'em.  In fact I married one, but hey....

This one reminds me of the sunset and the boards stacked on the beach.  

Very Tahitian bark cloth type print.
Someone's been lifting weights on Venice Beach
I think I used to work with this guy at Tower.
  Sort of scary how he looks so much like Mike. 

SRSLY!  I mean, you got to have this one or it's just not right.
  How awesome is this print in that proportion?  

And she does board shorts!  
So what the hell are you waiting for?  SURFS UP!  
Take the convertible!  

Sunday, June 7, 2015

New Tutorial and Stuff

The monthly tutorial thing is on track again and my latest how to is on BJDCollectasy, how to make a bath/beach robe. 

Look how nice and relaxed and natural the dolls look in the finished photos, thanks to M and her photography skills!  My photos are hours of angst and tears and omg, and basically nailing the dolls to the wall or carpet, and thanks to the manufacturers for how nice their art makes my sewing look. I think my dolls must get very frustrated with ME, judging by how at the end of our photo sessions they are just ready to quit before I am. It's probably just the elastic cords getting too warm from stretching or something, I'm sure there's some perfectly good scientific reason, but there's always a point where I look through the viewer and they are most definitely giving me the stink eye.

I have a series of tutorials planned now, for the first time in a year and a half, I have plans I'm pretty sure I can full-fill.  This is scary.  I've been off balance so long, it's weird to just stand still and not be wary of falling over on just one little thing in life. One little sense of security.

And now for something gruesome.  I've been trying to clean out my old laptop before it dies (I bought a desk top in 2012, no great problem) and found this photo I took a few years ago.  I was on my way out the door to work and this was on the wall beside our front door.

It was about 6 inches across as it stood, going by holding my hand over it, and the colors were mostly browns and greys a bit darker than the photo, but this was in morning sun with a cell phone.  And while this was taken with my cell phone, and it's very flat, in reality, that little alligator head mark at the top was enhanced by a sort of lizard shape in the body of the moth.  The alligator head was very detailed, right down to two little rounds where the 'eyes' were.  I wanted to go back in and get my real camera, but work was work, and I had to snap and go.  I've never been able to find out what the heck this was, and working at a college, I asked around the biology department and no one had seen anything like it before.  I think his final wingspread must have been at least a foot.  Basically, this moth looked like a flying lizard.  

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Etsy Summer Dresses Part 2

I finally got all the snaps on in the right places and this pattern is definitely a 'big' girl pattern.  This is meant to be a hot weather summer dress to start with, baggy and comfortable to let the air move around the upper torso.  I designed it during a heat wave here in California.  It's a simple shift top, with a full skirt, suitable for under corsets, over t-shirts with sleeves and blouses.  It needs either the contrasting belt or something fancier to control the fabric at the waist, but would not be suitable for an SD, SID, or EID girl with out 'substantial lung capacity' as a cousin of mine calls it.

I'm letting Fishcake have first pick of two of the dresses, (OMG I owe her so much in return gifting!)  then listing the remaining on Etsy.  ^_^

Next I'll be putting together the 1950s 'housewife' dresses we got cut out in early spring.  You know, the June Cleaver, Lucile Ball look stuff.  Pearl chokers, high heels and a vacuum cleaner; though Lucy always dressed a little more for 'battle' with head scarves and loose blouses and capries.  June was the over achiever.  Possibly had a bottle in the bottom drawer where the flour bin used to be.  

Monday, June 1, 2015

Lilsgirl's Lovely EID In Her New Set

Lilsgirl's send me a photo of her gorgeous EID girl in her faux fur fashion set.  Love the purse!  Lilsgirl is planning a blog for her dolls but for now she gave me permission to post her photo of her lovely lady!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Commission: Fishcake's Granado SD 1760s Naval Britches

Three pairs of 'modernized' for BJDs navy uniform britches.  Something to this effect.  My computer crashed (power outage, battery out of laptop to spare the charger) after I got the images from Pinterest (finally) and I lost the links.  A bit tired, so I'll try to find the links again later this weekend (if I don't completely forget).  Paid in full.

Edited: Links up to Micheal Well's 18 Century Pinterest, very informative and fun!

Wig: Check; Face Powder: Check;  Poofy shirt: Check; Silk stockings: Check.
Now, off to conquer the world!
  Oh, how far we've come from Alexander the Great's kicky little miniskirts, no?
Fashion: It has a LOT to answer for.
Link To the original poster.

I'm going to get the spirit of the originals into the design.
Link to the original poster

She sent along a pair of pants in her boy's size to pattern from, so this should be up and running by the end of next week.  I have to get the gentleman's pants back to him.  It's cold back there. 

Friday, May 15, 2015

Skello's 1/6 Doll Comparison

I wanted to keep this separate from the commission order for two reasons. All in the first photo is Skello's property.  My Obitsu guy and my Volks/Obitsu Faux-moko are for comparison.  This way we have a record that's published on the internet and everything is accounted for.  And in case Canadian customs does something.  I've heard stories.  Like if you get too many packages in one week, they send their version of the FBI out to question you.
Gees, they'd be driven mad down here in the uncivilized boonies of California, with everyone ordering from Amazon (and the poor man's Amazon, Walmart >.<;; who actually--do a better job of it) almost every day.

Thursday, May 14, 2015

And Now Back To Dolls!

Happy to say I seem to be done with the people sewing projects.  I don't know what's more nerve wracking.  Waiting for someone to get their doll outfit and see if it fits and looks the way they expected or waiting while someone is putting on the dress or something I made for them to find out if it's fitting correctly and they are happy with it.  Both!

I'm always so tense, so nervous when I'm waiting to find out if the customer is happy.  Mainly because I'm very picky and sometimes, very, very hard on myself.  Plus the drought seems to be progressing here in California (Sarcasm).  We've had pouring rain today but none of the threatened thunderstorms, although Google and all things Google have been messing up all day.  And I'm the type who gets cracking headaches when it's going to thunder or the atmospheric what ever is acting up.

So, now I'm back to dolls for the next four plus weeks or so, with the Cowboys project, the Japanese Schoolgirl Gangster project and the 1/6 anime character projects.  I've spent the past two weeks online searching for rivets and things for more realism. I'm looking forward to getting the flat round studs in hopes of making them work for military buttons and so forth.  Where do those Asian companies get their military buttons.  I always see the most amazing buttons on stuff from China and Korea.  They are boggarting the buttons, man, not cool!  I'll have to start playing around with the soldering iron that came in the hubby's wood burning kit.  (When I'm not using the little iron like point for--guess it!--an iron.

Aileens glue and a bit of water and a good stiff brush and very fine comb seem to be the only way to get 1/6 Action/Fashion type doll's hair to stay in a style.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Faux-moko, AKA Hikari-chan 1/6 Obitsu/Volks Hybred

I've been getting used to working with the very small dolls again and recently decided to get a head for my Volks old style Beauty B body (3 parts not the 2 part torso) so she could show off her clothes.

Faux-moko, my Hikari-chan

Real Momoko: Beach Angel edition
Momoko is a gorgeous little doll, but as I've mentioned before, with just the heads going for 50$, nope.  I haven't painted anything this tiny in a long time, but I decided what the heck, I can always scrape it off again, because now, I use scribbles to paint the vinyl dolls.  No bleeding. At all.  It's awful to work with and you have to work fast, plan on throwing out tiny brushes (or steal the cat's whiskers like I do, mwhahahahaaa)  and use an Xacto knife to clean off mistakes, but it works.   Still, smaller than a postage stamp.  And all my patterns are still coming out 1/8 to 1/4 inch too big, but if I make them smaller, they end up too tight to go on over her head, which is small for her body so I'm all flustered.  I seriously hate having to put openings in the back of a t-shirt.  

Obitsu W-02 has a very nice profile.

I also prefer the more normal (well, to a bjd person) ankles of a Volks doll to the Momoko's oddly fetlock-like-in-high-heels ankles.  While I would still consider buying the Momoko heads (you know, after I win a million in the lottery) I'd probably put them on Volks bodies.  For now, I seriously like the Obitsu head.  It's got a natural looking bone structure for one thing.  Momoko is killer-kawaii, but I have a feeling she's also like potato chips, or worse kittens!  If I fall and buy just one, I'll turn into a crazy collector with every edition or something.  She has so many variations in face, age from new teen to mature teen and OMG the clothing, so yeah.  Hence: Faux-moko.  

Her t-shirt is the first one I made ages ago.  I believe I got her tights from Junkyspot and they are like spun steel.  Years and still not a run.  I wish they made them in my size.  It's the same fabric we used in theater for 'nude' sections in costumes and cost something like 20-30 plus a yard ten years ago.  

She stands quite well without a stand, but I'm awfully shaky lately for some reason.  Hypothyroid, gotta love it, and can't pose any of my dolls.  Even Jiji was falling over and she has the balance of the gods normally.  Hikari's high heels are from Obitsu and fit nicely compared to the lack of fit from Volks shoes.  Every time I ordered shoes from them, I got ones that were WAY too small, and at the time I was ordering from Volks Japan, not USA.  The boy's shoes on the other hand run WAY tooo big!  I have a pair of lovely boots that ended up on my YoSD kiddo that were supposed to be for the 1/6 'boyfriend' doll'.  

I'm still working on the hair do on the guy doll.  He'll be up soon, though.  ^_^  

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Round of Of Minor News Around Here

Thanks to Fishcake and her splendiferous presie bomb, I will attempt to get my glasses frames laser welded this coming Tuesday.  No more postal tape in my peripheral vision.  Why do people always use band aids to fix their glasses temporarily anyway?  They look like hell and never hold.  I can understand using it to get home, but then Postal tape is clear and holds tighter.  However, neither of which, I might add, hold up to rain.  I will learn to wear my hat under my rain coat hood from now on, IN THIS DROUGHT. <---Sarcasm.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Lackadaisy Cats is 'Going Public'!

Help Tracy Butler focus her life on her fabulous artwork!  Support a wonderful artist with a great imagination and determination to keep the little details of an era in her work.  It's not just a cartoon, it's a well researched 'memoir' of an era in American history; the backgrounds, the cars, the buildings, the scenes and language from a past time when America was on its feet, and doing the Charleston.  

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Sunday, April 19, 2015

Car Dead as Nails

We replaced the starter, and took the core refund to buy a starter relay.  Car cranks but doesn't start.  We have problems.  We need a new battery.  And after that, it might be the fuel injection system.

Basically, I'm going to end up registering the car as non-running this July when the registration runs out.  That means a lot of my energy is going to go into getting to and from.  Work loads will slow down until I get a hold on my schedule   I've been riding my bike for months now and believe me, it doesn't mean I'm getting any healthier or more muscular or faster.  It just means I spend more time sucking up car fumes, using my asthma inhaler and having one hell of a sore bum.  However, I do have orders and if we take it slow and I don't lose my mind and go all global red alert fail misery on it, we have nothing to do BUT work on it ourselves until it's running again.

So yeah.  Whoopie skip.

When did stores develop this annoying habit of instantly ringing up the part they think you need and then standing there expecting you to just fork over the money.  This is so annoying.  First of all, they ring up the highest price part they can, then when you ask them what's the cheapest part, they argue with you, then cave in and while answering you, ring that part up before you can say "I'll be back later".  I guess that's the next best thing to knocking you on the head, taking your money and putting the item in your hand and leaving you on the kerb?

I have a load of snaps to move (bust gap on the big girls and I was like woah, did not see that coming..O_o) and then 7 sleeveless dresses to list on Etsy for the SD size girls.  Snaps, tiny little pop out of your fingers and go flying to never be found again snaps.  I'd rather be working on the car sometimes. LOL *sob*

Friday, April 17, 2015

Piles of Updates Will Happen Later

It's been a perfect storm of things going wrong the past few weeks.  I can't believe how the doctor's offices don't get phone messages and everything gets screwed up.  How do they run a business that way?

So I fell off my bike grocery shopping and wrecked my knee and shoulder. I'm going to try and get my car's starter changed out this weekend and see if that will get it running again. But yeah, with out transport you can rely on, unless you want to throw away 110$ a month for bus passes (no gain in time) or pay hundreds more for Taxis (even Uber) it's a slow grinding down of missing time and exhaustion.

I'll update everything later.  I have three more little sleeveless summer dresses to go before I list them on Etsy, probably this weekend. And at the beginning of this week, I thought I had plenty of time to get the next tutorial ready for BJDCollectasy, but once again, it's going to be a last minute race thing.  

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Etsy Project Plateau

There comes a time when you realize you've bitten off too much.  When we were cutting out all these dresses and tops, I thought, Oh, I can finish these in one day.  Nope.  I just hit the part where the ironing begins and decided enh, there's always tomorrow.

I stood on my very tippy toe and reached way up to get almost all of the loaded board in the camera, and one dress is still in the box because I didn't have any 'rust' color thread.  I've got sleeveless scoop neck dresses, and 50s rock-a-billy dresses, and one more top in the pink floral print.  (And STILL my remnant stash drawer has to be beaten down to be able to close it!)  I have to go shopping for that thread tomorrow.  And my tiny snaps order should be in the mail box today.

Thank goodness for Designs by Jude.  Always prompt, always the right size, and I've never gone to find them out of snaps, though I should have checked the Etsy shop first for the hooks and eyes their dot com was out of.  But I hope they are going to keep up with restocking, because I'm depending on them, and I hope that others do too.  The zippers and buttons are very nice, and the snaps aren't all mashed like the store on a card ones can be sometimes.  I have maybe one of their patterns I've used at a customer's request and it was very nice.

I forgot I got this shot Tuesday when this all started.  I had a few more dresses I wanted to cut bits and pieces for, and everything was on the table.  I went to get a coffee and when I came back, the project box was full again.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Let 'Em Eat CAKE!

April Fool's Day is a day I've always made it a rule not to set foot outside the door.  This comes from cousins who often acted as if their parents were never churched.  I've called in sick from work, ditched school and flat out refused to answer the phone or open email.  The search site Bing was terrifically cute this morning, but we all knew all along that the internet ran on Kittens.

So rather than make a 4 mile bike ride to buy bread if it's even in the store, when I have piles of dresses to make and a coat to finish, I made cake.  It's a rule around here we've been following for over a year now.  Eggs in the back of the fridge, flour, various stuffs, and on no bread days, we have cake for lunch.

This mess (my no stick pan LIES!) is ginger pinapple upside down cake, glazed with marmalade to make up for the lack of brown sugar.

Even before everything went blooey, I was looking up healthy recipes and found a treasure trove of 1940s stuff online that (gasp!) used less butter, less eggs and a LOT less sugar.  

Basic One Egg Yellow Cake

In one bowl put: 

Dry Stuff

1 1/2 Cups flour (regular)
1/3 cup of sugar
2 to 3 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teas salt (which we don't use but it makes no diff at all in the taste!)

Wet Stuff

3/4 cup of milk
1/3 cup butter or margerine (blue bonnet is great stuff!) cut into small pieces
1 egg
2 teaspoons of vanilla if you've got it. 

And I subs soy sauce for salt, and put in a sprinkle of ginger.  Yes Soy Sauce.  It makes a difference, everything tastes better, not like salt, which I can't even taste!  This makes a cake with a nice crust that stands up (unless you have a no-none stick pan, grrr!) to frosting and has a nice crumb. Something like a muffin from heaven.  In fact, make muffins with it, too.  

Mix it all up, bang it in a no stick pan, (or a pan that lies about being no stick) and bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.  

Now with that, you can serve fruit, double it and frost it, what ever.  Mix up the spices, change the flavorings, switch out some of the flour for powdered nuts, what ever!  Cheap, easy, home made, stands up to ice cream, canned fruits, stuff fruit in it for a cobbler (half the milk and throw in the fruit juice or what ever the heck you want to do to it, it's bound to come out tasting great!  

So yeah, let 'em eat cake.  Remembering that Marie Antoinette was originally from Austria where they freaking invented pastry (bet those panniers hid some serious hips, no?).  That and a cake takes less flour than making bread.