Monday, December 21, 2009

I have the very best customers.

One of the many joys I've discovered running abbydid are the darling customers I meet. Sometimes a friend becomes a customer, sometimes a customer becomes a friend, but regardless, I have never have a negative transaction. I am extremely thankful for that, and am aware that not everyone is so lucky.

One of the glories of this little job of mine is the custom order. It is so much fun to make something with someone specific in mind. I piece the fabric together imagining the smile it will bring to that certain someone's face. It's totally hokey, I know, but this is my way of bringing a little more joy to the planet.

I have one custom order in particular I'd like to share with you. My dear friend Nancy has the most creative son Jack. He has created a super hero, complete with his own blog. She asked me to turn a drawing Jack had done of this super hero, Zebra Talker, into a plush to give him as a Christmas gift.

I finished him last night. What do you think?

The work I do is so much fun - I really enjoy it. But this piece was extra special. I can't wait to hear how Jack reacts!

If you have a drawing you'd like to see soft and squeezable, give me a shout. I LOVE a challenge!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

I've been busy busy busy with the plushmaking, and clearly I have not been blogging. Bad Abby. Anyway, I have a plethora of ideas rolling around in my head, and one of them was absolutely bursting to get out. So here it is:
Why, Abby, what is that? I'm so glad you asked! It is a MONSTER MUFF! I KNOW! So fun. Our gorgeous model (whom I also made, thank you very much) is sporting the latest style for the winter season. It is a large knucklebiter, fully lined in fur, filled with extra batting for warmth. You place one hand in its mouth, and the other hand, well, let's just say monster muff really doesn't mind.

The important thing here is you will be WARM and you will be having FUN and you will be the ENVY OF ALL YOUR FRIENDS! These come in adult (with the tail forming a wrist strap) and child (with a silky cord to wear around the neck to prevent muff loss). Look for them in my etsy shop after Christmas has passed or place a custom order for one now!

PS - I fully realize muff is a loaded term for some of you (you dirty, dirty birds) so here's the deal - come up with a better name for this sucker and I will gladly rename it and give you all the credit. Until then, snicker quietly to yourself. Sheesh.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Know where all the cool kids are going to be this Saturday? At the 5th annual Craftin' Outlaws alternative craft fair! And you know who's going to be selling their alternative crafts at this fancy shindig? ME! That's right! The hubs and I are packing up the van with all our furry, little friends and heading to Columbus, Ohio and we fully expect to see you there.
This ridiculously fun event will take place at a new location this year - the Lodge Bar located at 165 Vine Street in the Arena District. Admission is free, and it is open to all ages. There will be ridiculously fun activities throughout the day. A craft corner deathmatch? Seriously, who's going to miss that?
I've donated a Wibbly Woo to Craftin' Outlaws fundraiser for Rwanda Knits, an extremely deserving organization that provides American-made knitting machines, technical and business training to Rwandan women to enable them to increase their incomes through economically sustainable knitting cooperatives. Learn more at

Friday, October 2, 2009

PlushTeam wants to save the boobs!

These fleece-covered bouncy balls really do bounce, yes indeedy.
"She has a silk dress and healthy breasts that bounce on his Italian leather sofa."
- Italian Leather Sofa by Cake
October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and to raise funds and awareness about this insidious disease, the members of PlushTeam have created mammary-themed plush. They can be purchased at the PlushTeam shop, and 80% of every purchase goes to the Susan G. Komen Institute. Check out PlushTeam's blog to read more about all the fabulous creations.
Okay, now, kiddies, I know you're all going to be disappointed, but the bouncy boobies have already sold and are on their way to California. But! If you sweet talk me I may just make another pair:) It is for a good cause after all. Perhaps a different skin tone this time? Hmmm...

Saturday, September 26, 2009

I won't grow up...

There's a new craze circulating around the PlushTeam, and I've caught it. Seems the uber-adorable Pullip dolls and the less adorable Blythe dolls are being collected by lots of my sewing besties, so naturally I had to have one, too.

Not familiar? Find them here:

Right. So now you've checked out the link, and you, too, are in love with the fabulous Pullip. I mean, okay, I know people are gaga over Blythe, too, but I personally just don't get Blythe, at least not the way I do Pullip. So my apologies to the Blythe-lovers. I'm a Pullip girl.

Long story short, she arrived a few days ago and we instantly hit it off.
Isn't she sweet? She's the Kaela model, with short, purplish hair. Jason, the hubs, said she's the Pixar version of me, which was just the cutest compliment ever. I wasn't too fond of the outfit she came with so I tossed together this super quick frock and had her pose on my beloved sewing machine.

Her name is Maybe. She's the noncommittal, fly-by-the-seat of her pants, free spirit sort. My little noggin is swimming with ideas for furniture and outfits, so prepare yourself for pictures of her in fun little setting wearing fun little ensembles.

Feel like so...

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Feel a little naked...

It's been a few weeks, and I was sort of bashful about it, but the show is up! I suppose it's hard for me to expose so much of myself to the world, as these pieces are extremely personal to me. It's like "Dear Diary, today I will let every stranger who happens by to open the little door to my soul and have a looksee." There's also the not-so-small issue of me not wanting to, well, toot my own horn.

Having said that, I am extremely proud of my work. The opening was a wonderful success, the kids behaved themselves, and I loved seeing my old piece I made back in college. It was like meeting an old friend again after a decade and a half. Seeing my former self hanging up there on the wall was quite surreal.

Here, for your enjoyment, is the rest of the artist statement giving you some idea of what the hell you are looking at:

When reading Moby-Dick, your average young woman may initially struggle in finding a character with whom she may relate. The novel is seriously lacking in anyone of the female persuasion. But it wasn’t long before I did find a character that spoke to me – Queequeg. This strong, mysterious figure, covered in tattoos and carrying shrunken heads, offering food to a small wooden idol in his room at the inn, well, I was smitten. What intrigued me most about this cannibal prince of the Pacific Islands were the tattoos covering his body. They were described as “a living parchment…a riddle to unfold.” In Chapter 110, Queequeg in his Coffin, they are further explained: “a departed prophet and seer of his island…had written out on his a complete theory of the heavens and the earth, and a mystical treatise on the art of attaining truth.”

This made me wonder, what would my coffin lid look like? What are my theories of heaven and earth, and how do I go about attaining my own truth? These questions led me to create a series of body casts, my own snug-fitting coffin lids, at different points of my life. “Queequeg in Her Coffin” is the first cast that was made. Here you see a sophomore in college, just starting out into adulthood, wondering who she is and what life has in store for her. Her arms are crossed in a slightly self-conscious manner, and the writing that covers her is barely legible, as if these truths and theories have only begun to take shape in this girl’s mind. The writing includes journaling, poetry, passages from Moby-Dick, as well as pieces from literature that made impressions on this artist.

“Life Buoy” is the most recent body cast in the series. The girl has grown up, has married, and is producing a child. Much as Queequeg’s coffin became a life saving vessel for Ishmael, my body served as a life-giving vessel for my daughter Kallisto. Her name originates in mythology; the nymph Kallisto is turned into a bear, and then is flung into the night sky, creating Ursa Major. Her constellation is depicted on the front of the cast. On the reverse is a collage of images, some of my daughter. I then covered it in writing. Some of it is journaling, where I recall the tumultuous ocean of a pregnancy this life buoy carried us through. I also include the retelling of her name, a passage from Moby Dick, the introduction from “Letter to My Daughter” by Maya Angelou, and other bits and pieces of my life as a mother of a very sassy little daughter.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Chasing the whale...

Well, took me a little longer than I thought to get back to this. And so it goes.

There's an exhibit opening this friday: "Chasing the Whale in Northern Kentucky: Local Artists Respond to Moby-Dick." The show runs August 14 through October 9, 2009 at Gallerie Zaum in Newport, Kentucky. I have three pieces on display, and I am awfully proud of them all. If you feel like swinging by the opening is from 6pm til 9pm and my old professor Dr. Wallace, the curator of this fine exhibit, will be giving a lecture.

Meet Yojo, he'll be one of the pieces on display. An excerpt from my artist's statement:

My final piece in this exhibit is Yojo. When I am not driving my son to soccer practice or assisting my daughter with a potty emergency, I am working as a plush artist. I always wanted to be a mother, but after a few years of being a full time parent I realized my creative juices had all but dried up. I was losing focus of who I was as an individual amidst the all-consuming responsibilities of rearing these two small individuals. But then I taught myself to sew. I have never felt so happy or at home in an art medium as I do with fabric, its fluidity has such sculptural qualities. This little talisman, in his way, represents this art that I worship and sacrifice towards, all in order to bring my ideas into this physical world.

I feel a little brain dead this morning, and I think after more coffee and a quick labotomy I'll be right as rain. I'll post pics of the other two pieces sometime this week. Now for that coffee...

Monday, August 10, 2009

Nice to meet you, thanks for coming.

My new year's resolution, one of them anyway, was to get off my arse and finally start a blog. Everyone, their brother, and their dog is writing a blog, so I'm a little late to the party, but better late than never, right? So, to all you invisible, possibly imaginary readers out there, welcome to the insight into the slightly off brain of yours truly. Bare with me, it's bound to be a little rough at first as I poke things with sticks to see how they work, and find my voice which is a little rusty with lack of use.

I'll start by posting my artist's statement for a show I'm a part of. Actually, I'm going to list it a little later today after I feed the kids their lunch. Here's the thing with kids - they require feeding THREE TIMES A DAY. Outrageous! High maintenance, these kids.

So, where was I? Oh, right. The show. I'm in an exhibition of artists responding to the novel Moby-Dick by Herman Melville. I have three pieces in the show, and I was asked to write an artist's statement and have it in by today. Know when I started the piece? This morning. But it's not too shabby, if I do say so myself, and I'd like to share it with you. But first, feeding time.