Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Panda Express Fortune Cookies:


I know with fortunes and horoscopes one usually just takes what's relevant, but seriously, every single time I eat a panda express fortune, they always apply to that time in my life.

  • December 22: "Your present plans are going to succeed"
The past month I have been contemplating a lot on the direction of my creations and business. On December 20th, I officially opened up leesasaur.etsy.com, then on December 21st jsalvadordesign offered my recruitment to his gallery to sell my gamer merchandise. So I thought this was perfect to begin the transition of marketing foma as cartoon/nintendo inspired amigurumi only by leesasaur, then having leesasaur.etsy.com as my original work and characters. I am excited for this change and will probably be doing specials and giveaways!

  • December 24: "You will soon change your present line of work"
I took this in regards to foma/leesasaur, because I also wanted to cut down my hours at my current job so I could focus on my work. But now I just received a call from a business that I left my contact info to in July.


Saturday, December 25, 2010

Santa's Little Dogs

The holidays always have a way of sneaking up on people, but this year, they really snuck up on me quickly due to all the foma labor! I didn't realize till about a week or so prior, that I needed to get presents for my sister and her boyfriend ASAP! I had some things to buy in mind, but the core of my gifts were items hidden in my drawer of unfinished projects.

Earlier this year I had this great idea to do replicas of my sister's dogs in amigurumi form. I ended up crocheting their heads and one body, but I never got around to finishing them. Since then, they bought a puppy, but because she is still changing, I decided to wait till she's fully grown before I crochet her. I knew gifting these would be such a treat and I was determined to finish them on time. Two of the dogs have varying colors of fur, so it was tricky to match up. The interchanging of the yarn colors causes their bodies to twist, but I thought the angles it made them mode into were a bit endearing. I did run into the obstacle of using up all my black yarn, and after nagging my sister that I needed to get more, a couple nights till christmas, she pushed a wrapped box in my hands and said, "Here! Since you wanted it so bad!" She had bought me black yarn as part of my christmas gift! Little (or maybe a little more since she peeked) did she know, the black yarn was benefiting the both of us!

Rather than wrapping the dogs, I decided to exhibit them in the glass case shelfing where her boyfriend puts some of his figurines in. The best christmas moment of my life was when I finally finished at 5am and while standing atop the couch stretching to place the dogs behind the glass, my sister comes out with eyes half open, "Santa, is that you?"

"You're dreaming, go back to bed!"

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

My Last Stitch

2010 is coming to its demise and so are my final sweatshop days for now. After all the enduring nights and spare time of finishing custom and holiday orders, Stitch was the last request I crocheted (it was to be an xmas present for a friend's mom, so I of course had a heart to do it).

I knew Stitch's details would be tough, but switching colors into the shapes I wanted was the tricky part. Although I don't like to use felt too much, I ended up using more than I planned, and luckily I had the matching colors for them. Initiating him was a hassle and then the more daunting task was figuring out his ears. His ears took too many attempts to not realize felt was not only an easier, but better option.

Rather than embroidering the dark patches on his back like I did with Sully, I decided to use felt as well!

Due to the malleable characteristic of yarn, Stitch's legs can be easily manipulated into sitting or standing position.

He turned into an adorable alien and cute end to this year's project requests. Now I can finally focus on my projects :D !

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

The Zelda Warrior

After two requests on my facebook to crochet Link, I finally decided to do it. I was reluctant at first because I don't usually make human forms, but I also didn't want to pass up at least trying. At first I was just going to make him only, but after finishing, I realized he didn't make sense without his sword and shield! I personally only ever played A Link to the Past on Super Nintendo but that is all well enough to make me fall in love with the Legend of Zelda. In fact, when the emulator version on my laptop wasn't doing it for me in college, I had to bring up the SNES the next time I went home, which was one of my best decisions. Regardless, the second person who dished me the request sent me a photo of a Link doll from the Phantom Hourglass version. I quickly noticed that the Wind Waker version was similar because they both use the "Toon Link" character, so this gave me a variety of images to work from.

In the end, I came out with a simplified, yet elaborate, Link, that I am very proud of.

I actually had this post created on November 11th at 11am, but got distracted because while I was writing it, I checked my shop and the hits were coming in nonstop. Usually when I post an item I get around 50 views after a couple days, but every time I refreshed this listing, there were 10-25 more views. Here's a documentation via tweets:
whoa... did someone repost my link or is he really that popular? i got 175 views in an hour..
11:45 AM Nov 11th via web

ok, now 225 views? either someone is fucking with me or this link should be sold soon...
11:58 AM Nov 11th via web

at this point, i think i might be scammed cause every time i refresh there's 10 more views, it's already at 500 and not even any hearts...
12:33 PM Nov 11th via web
For the fact that there were no "hearts" I ruled out that these people were from etsy, so I figured they had to be from some geeky community. Instinctively, I checked reddit searching "zelda" because I thought "link" wouldn't work. When I didn't come across my etsy listing there, I went onto an etsy chat room and asked other members if something could be wrong. The only person who listened wrote me, "congratulations, YOU HAVE A WINNER!" I didn't believe her, so I instead gave up and decided to take a nap before I had to leave for work. When I awoke, my friends on my facebook commented:
"I put a link on reddit for you. I'm not sure if that's why you're getting more traffic. It's gotten 30 upvotes so far."
November 11 at 1:23pm

"Hey Lisa! I signed on to tell you I saw a link to this on reddit! haha! Hope you get a lot of sales! :)"
November 11 at 2:03pm
I managed to check the listing right before it sold, and the total views were:

Pretty unbelievable. I generated five sales of my other shop items (all of which I had only partially completed) after Link sold out that day and six requests to make more Links. I made 23 sales this month and that's only because I don't have enough time to finish everyone's requests yet. I write now because after that and my holiday rush, I have finally caught a breather. I'm glad I was able to create something that became high in demand, but making the same thing over and over again is torturous.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Squidbillified Christmas.

I was commissioned to turn some 2d hillbilly squids into amigurumi christmas ornaments! Last year, the buyer wrote me:

"We are huge fans of the show and wanted to get an ornament(s) for our first tree together. These are awesome! We found your shop by Google'ing "Aqua Teen Hunger Force ornaments. Yours are by far the best. :)"
This year, she wrote:
"We really loved the "Aqua Teen Hunger Force" ornaments we bought from you last year. I was just wondering if you think you could make us a set of "Squidbillies" for this year?"

With a sweet and doable-looking request like that, I gladly accepted. I figured the Squidbillies could be my new ATHF ornaments, but as of now, I'm not sure I have the amibition to tackle another set. I'm not gonna lie, I thought this was going to be a fairly easy project but it required a lot more trial and error improvisions than I imagined. There's always a struggle with a new project for me since I create every pattern on my own, but sometimes, like in this case, I initially neglect parts. There are always more details I want to incorporate when I begin construction on anything. With the Squidbillies, each character had their own tricky feature - Early's trucker hat, Granny's walker, Rusty's mullet - but I managed to complete each challenge and I think they turned out quite well!

I love being given the oportunity to create new things that I sometimes wouldn't have thought to make on my own, or hadn't the motivation or obligation to do before. But my favorite part of this project is that I get to contribute and be apart of someone's christmas tradition, or life, rather! It makes me very happy and proud of my work.


I just received feedback accompanied with a lovely photograph of their christmas tree!

"So impressed with the detail in these! Fans of the show and fans of foma! Thanks again! :)"

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Dog Delight

After the initial rinse in a steamy hot shower, the last thing I expected to see when I opened my eyes was a canine peeping at the corner of the curtain. Amused, I cupped a handful of water for her to drink. She happily slurped it up so I continued to feed her more. When I had to turn her away so I could shampoo my hair, she defeatedly slumped onto the bathmat and rested. Pondering this curious behavior, it struck me that all dogs ever drink is usually room-temperature water, so hot water is a substantial change in beverage to them. She lit up when I later called her back for a heavy dosage (post-shower reenactment):

Whether it be delightful tea or coffee, whatever derived from those laps of water must have been pretty glorious to her, cause it's been two hours since and she's still following me around like I am her messiah!