A few years ago, Dawn was editor of Teddy Bear Times magazine and I helped a bit by proof-reading, editing the odd article etc. I also wrote a couple of articles about the perils of living with a bear artist. There is the constant danger of spilt pins - if you walk around the house barefoot, you can often end up with an unintentional - and to be honest, unwelcome - acupuncture session. Or at the very least, have your feet covered in discarded bits of masking tape (I suspect that if I rolled around for a few minutes on the workroom floor I'd end up looking like an Egyptian mummy). It's also sometimes difficult to find clothes to wear that don't have bits of woodwool attached!
I would frequently come downstairs in the morning to find heads displayed in jars or limbs scattered all over the sofa. One memorable night I came downstairs and in the darkness put my foot in an empty plastic box. Unfortunately, said box was on a laminate floor, and I only just managed to avoid a high-speed collision with the opposite wall.
Over the years, I've learned to (mostly) avoid life-threatening situations like this, and steered clear of the arcane mysteries of the crafting world. Until now!
When I left my job in IT in April, it was with the intention of joining Dawn in Hugs Unlimited full-time. So here I am being initiated gradually into those arcane mysteries. I've been doing some work for HU for a while - a few years ago, Dawn broke her elbow and since then I've been tightening the cotter pin joints (or rolling joints as Dawn tells everyone) - but now I'm getting to grips with a Scan N Cut machine, a die-cutting machine and an embroidery machine. I knew that there was a lot more to machine embroidery than just putting a piece of fabric in and getting a picture out, but I can tell you that if you've never used an embroidery machine before, there is a lot to learn and a lot of practice needed. That said, I've been making a nice little selection of made-in-the-hoop zipped bags with embroidered designs on the front and flowery linings, so I think I'm doing OK. And I don't stab myself with a sewing needle all that often these days either - although I did manage to push a needle about half an inch into my little finger the other day. I don't recommend it!
The plan is to come up with a whole range of new and original designs over the winter, so watch this space and we'll show them off as they happen.
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