Useful info & random thoughts!

About custom handmade stuffed animals, crafted with love

« Blog
Monday 31 August 2020

Adding “new” patterns to the zoo

I was asked if I manage to ‘nail’ patterns the first time I make them (I wish!)… and I thought it’d be a good subject for a blog entry.

The short answer is: no, I don’t. Depending on the pattern and the maker, I usually manage to make something that looks decent and sometimes they even look really good ;). But I always find bits that are fiddly or things I prefer to do in another order, or in another way, to help me make my custom orders just that much better-looking.

The first lion I’ve made. So far I’m pretty happy with how he’s turning out!

The creations I make for the first time are usually available for purchase at a discount, because they’re usually not entirely up to my standards. Most of the time I don’t add any additional cost for the scrap I’ve used and just sell it at the regular price that’s listed in my custom order price list. Sometimes, if I find ‘flaws’, they’ll be further discounted… or I let my children have it, because they are always demanding dibs whenever I finish one!

Sometimes, if a pattern appeals to me but doesn’t give me the exact outcome I’d prefer, I make some changes to the pattern pieces. I never try to ‘take credit’ for the patterns though, I know how much time and effort actually goes into creating a new pattern, so I always try to remember to credit the original maker. Occasionally I leave out a few details, like the belly ‘striping’ on the fat dragons, because I find that the often busy patterns on the fabric I work with are enough and adding the extra details doesn’t add anything to the final creation. One of my most heavily edited patterns would be the horse/unicorn pattern. It was a bit of a pain to edit the pattern, but I absolutely believe it was worth it!

The lion pattern featured above is from Funky Friends Factory. These patterns are so very well written and include very helpful diagrams and pictures, that I never hesitate when I’m asked to add a new animal to the zoo if it’s from Pauline. But I’ve been asked to add others and sometimes I end up not adding them. I will re-create one when I’m specifically asked to do so, but usually at a higher-than-normal cost because they’re more complicated to make and take up a considerable chunk of time to do. And very rarely, I just don’t really like what I’ve made, and don’t fancy doing it again. Especially when there are so many other creations I can make that ARE fun to do!