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Rough Seams

When the great shaman Cryptic Stitches led the Moon-Stuffing Clan to their new homeland, the clan found itself in a dilemma. This was certainly the homeland provided for them by Great Plushthanga—when Great Plushthanga appeared, clans miles away knew about it. You couldn’t fake a visitation from Great Plushthanga. He was a demonstrative and mostly polyester god.

But man, the new homeland was not a nice place.

The gentle Moon-Stuffing Clan were not warriors, which is why they had fled their old homeland as it fell under the shadow of the cannibalistic Eaters-of-Plush. This new land was full of ravening stuffed beasts, woolly monsters dozens of feet high, and suspicious clans who were not entirely sure that they welcomed new neighbors. And it was cold. Chill winds whipped from the north, when they weren’t whipping from the east or sauntering in from the southwest. You had to make fires all the time, which is just asking for trouble when you’re made out of cloth. And the stuffing of the woolly creatures was tough and unpalatable and had to be boiled or stewed, sometimes for hours, before it was anything worth eating.

Fortunately for the fate of Moon-Stuffing, they fell in with the last remnants of the Sun-Stitch Clan, fierce warriors who had themselves been almost wiped out by the Eaters-of-Plush. Descended from heroic teddy-bears of old, the warriors of Sun-Stitch joined with Moon-Stuffing to forge a new life together in this strange and inhospitable land.

Great Plushthanga sanctified this union of clans by appearing in the distance and giving his mighty yawp of approval as he drifted over the horizon. So there was that, too.

Rough Seams, one of the warriors of Sun-Stitch, was one of the last two surviving members of the Bonebraid moiety, which wove yarn from defeated foes into their manes, partly as a gesture of respect and partly to keep from freezing their plush butts off in the rather chilly new homeland.


A whole lotta mixed media.

I cannot adequately express how fun this was to do.


You know how I always say that nothing is ever creatively wasted? Yeah. I was so damn right I want to go back and time and high-five myself. The sewing I learned in 7th grade home ec, the very half-assed jewelry making I did in my twenties (which previously had only been useful in providing me with a fabulous set of pliers) all that acrylic painting, the vegetable-tanned leather that was too thin a gauge that I had shoved in a corner of the studio, and of course, my buddy Miss Monster’s very very patient e-mails telling me how to do a cast off a Sculpey piece…dude.



Anyway, he’s about 7 inches tall sitting, although he tends to slouch. The head is cast plastic, from a mold of a Sculpey original, and in retrospect, I’m glad I did that because he’s a little top heavy as it is–I can’t imagine if I’d tried to make the face actually out of Sculpey! The ears, hands and feet are all Sculpey, though, and I weighted the butt with dried rice, which may explain some cryptic tweets last night. (Honestly, you haven’t lived until you’ve shoved a funnel into a stuff-animal’s ass and started trying to pour rice into it.) He’s soft-bodied and stuffed with whatever polyester stuffing crap they sell at Jo-Ann’s fabric. And the rice, of course.

This is the first thing I have sewed in over two decades, and I am so damn proud of the fact I managed to do it. Sewing is weirdly miraculous. Sharp thing + thread + turning fabric inside out = BLACK MAGIC. I tore into the bedroom in mad delight when all I had was a body with no limbs, waving my fingers through the leg-holes, and yelling “LOOK! IT IS A THING! I sewed it together and it didn’t explode and it exists in, like, THE REAL WORLD!”

Kevin slid a few inches away from me and said something noncommittal. I made a rude gesture through the leg-holes and went back to the studio. (He was much more impressed when I’d actually attached the Sculpey limbs and all.) I am not saying it was GOOD sewing, but fleece fabric hides a multitude of sins, and anyway the stuffing didn’t squirt out all over its torso. And for everything else, there’s E-6000 glue.

So I’m very proud. And will clearly have to do another one, because I’ve got the face mold and plenty of fleece left, and I wanna try it with fake fur to see how that looks, too and dude, I MADE A THING!

(It is hard to explain how cool it is to make a 3-d thing when you normally do 2-d, and digital 2-d at that.)

Originally published at Tea with the Squash God. You can comment here or there.


that is one of the cooler Things I've seen in a very long time
I think I love him/her!

Looking forward to seeing what you come up with next

I love him. And I love his backstory.

The only think I don't love is how you make the rest of us look second rate. Couldn't you be satisfied with being a brilliant writer and a great artist? No, you have make us look even smaller by being brilliant at doll monster making.

Oh well, we will just have to put up with it. It is worth it to see and read your creations.

Believe me, my singing, cooking and sense of direction make up for any skills I may have in another arena.

You made a THING and I *love* that Thing. OMG. I love it! <3

I'm impressed and I've made my share of quilts and overalls. All I saw at first was just the ears and leather bit, and I thought "What's she doing with an Ewok?" I'm very glad I was wrong. He/she looks like a lion up top with Digger's feet.

He is a Brave and Mighty Warrior of Plush. I approve.

Oh man, that is just FREAKIN adorable! I want one now!

That was my first thought too; this is better than Feral Cheryl!

One of the most wonderful discoveries I made, when I started messing with costume pieces, is how well the pile of fake fur hides sloppy seams. Which is fortunate, since you can't exactly iron in a sharp crease before you sew it.

Is full of Squee and Win!


(showers Ursula with buttons and expired coupons - being an Urusual-herd does not pay well)

Sewing really is magic!

Man, I need to get back into sewing frilly mini-hats. I wish my camera still worked; I'd post pictures of the ones I'd already made.

I like the story you included! But then, I pretty much like all your stories.

That is awesome!

(Sewing is far more fun when one is an adult and can use cool fabrics and make what you want, than it was when one was a child and was instructed in how to make a needlebook or sew on nametapes.)

He is absolutely adorable!



I've been drooling over Miss Monsters doll since she's been posting them on Tumblr.
Now I'll drool over your too.

Good heavens. I wouldn't want to cross him.