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Rough Seams by ursulav Rough Seams by ursulav
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.


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.)
Add a Comment:
Idarshu Featured By Owner Oct 8, 2013
Even if this was not adorable I would still be favoriting it because of the story of surprised joy.
Lady-Dazed Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2013
There are no words to express how much I want this little guy <3 
ThorneArtwork Featured By Owner May 5, 2013
Such a cute little critter. I especially love the dreads.
CatONineTales Featured By Owner May 3, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Awww gawd so cute!! These, presented with a book, would be an awesome way to encourage anyone to read.
loralye Featured By Owner Mar 25, 2013  Professional General Artist
See, I would have been so much more into stuffed animals as a child if this is what I'd been presented with.
HandDrawnViolist Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I entirely understand what it is like to make A THING! I got into knitting, beanie baby making (scary times) and dabbled (the jury is still out as to the success of that one) for that very same reason! It's so remarkably fulfilling to make something just come to life =D
Phil-Boswell Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013
GarnethRiparian Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013
Dude, he is fabulous.
AtonementStudios Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
0olong Featured By Owner Feb 28, 2013   General Artist
Wonderful! It's great to see you venturing into 3D again, it's been years!
emilysodders Featured By Owner Feb 26, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
Haha! This is so cool! Great story, concept, and your comments had me rolling! Great work!
SwanLullaby Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
It looks like a ewok
rachelillustrates Featured By Owner Feb 24, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
This is beautiful! Glad to hear you had a great time creating him too, I hope you do more.
SirPixis Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2013
God, I love the backstories you give to your creations, Ursula. He looks awesome.
sketcherjak Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2013
All. Completely. Understood.

Well done, you!
SleyTheDent Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2013   Artisan Crafter
He looks to me like he wants to start talking.
Very nice!
nienkezijlstra Featured By Owner Feb 20, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
That is amazing!
DaMushroom Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013  Hobbyist Artist
D: thats amazing
Unclrenzo Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013
Adain-chan Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
If you want to experience something else that's magical there's nothing quite like making a 3D object out of some yarn and a pair of needles.
Tamara-Hawk Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013
Very very cool ^^ The story reminds me of Terry Pratchett's Carpet people ^^ Just as weirdly connected to the normal world, but not quite. Will you be making more?
PaulEberhardt Featured By Owner Feb 19, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Cool! Love the background story too. :D
RosaleenDhu Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Professional Artisan Crafter
He looks great.

And it's amazing how often E6000 is when sewing!
burkeonthesly Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013
Even more than Rough Seams, I'm loving the story. You pull the most amazing stuff out of your head.
RhianimatorLGP Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013
Absolutely amazing, Ursula. And a backstory too. Maybe he needs a little scroll case with a scroll of the history of his tribe inscribed thereon. I look forward to seeing more of these. You go girl!
chafe Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
I love when you get excited about your own work because I get to read the description underneath it. (Because, you see, I hate your charming, roly-poly wombats and only watch you for the art descriptions.)
julipegas Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013
Oh my, this is so beautiful! One would never guess it is a first :love:

And yeah, making 3D things is pretty much like magic :XD: I'm getting started at it as well, doing a little sewing and a little paper maché. And I have had the same "LOOK! IT IS A THING" reaction, hahahahah!
Saskatia Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013
Your talent never ceases to amaze and delight me.
gryphonlady Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
this is a very cool thing you made... I love just about everything you do.. such a creative talent~
sad-roses Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Student General Artist
God I love your writing. The story bit and especially the personal bit. I just made an ugly paper mache doll for illustration class and I know how you feel :D
dragonladych Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
That's why I need to make jewellery every now and then, 3D stuff is great!

There is something "Drark Crystal-y" about him.
SiliconShaman Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013
Holy..!!! Ok yeah, that has to be the most bad-ass looking plushie EVER! And an awesome back-story too.
JynxedDraca Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Student Digital Artist
I love your comments and story snippets that you write with your art just as much as I love your art.
Carcaohtar Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
THIS IS AMAZING! If you mass produced these guys you could make a fortune... I'd buy one. What a cool back story. Great job!
Artoveli Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I know that feeling!! I started making plush toys a couple of years ago, and experienced the same miraculous rush you describe here! :XD: And it only gets better. Eventually you learn how to make pretty much any shape, out of nothing more than oddly-shaped pieces of flat, floppy fabric! You'll find yourself examining every stuffed toy you come across to see where the seams are and figure out if you could do the same thing on some experimental pattern. It's like, suddenly this endless vista of 3D creations opens up and the possibilities for creatures and characters is endless! :eager:

Achievment unlocked. Good on ya!
LizanaBee Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013   Traditional Artist
Love the plushie. Love the backstory. LOVE the description of the process. ;D

I'm just impressed that I can HEM properly, much less make something like THIS! I'd love to... but Wow! I love it. :D
scilk Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist Artisan Crafter
It looks really cool! XD Love the different textures of all the materials!
DesignsByEve Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
LoL I think he's adorable! I had to read your explanation to my hubby, also a Kevin. Told him that's about how the situation would play out in our house, too, and he agrees :)
Deborah-Valentine Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Professional Traditional Artist
brushtail-thegreat Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Phaeton99 Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Oh, the thingee is neat — but its the backstory that is brilliant! :meow:

Surely the Great Plushthanga smiles upon you favorably.
songbreezewolf Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
So, author, illustrator, and now sewing/butt stuffing of soft plush things.

Lord, woman, save some of the creative talents for some of us little people D:
Porecomesis Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
It looks great and it's great that you had such fun making it. Did you run into any problems making it?
Sophia-Christina Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
I Love the Story, Him and the work you put into creating this lovely being!!! Great Work!!
jamesgunner123 Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
...that is soooo flippin' cute and epic!.....guard this fella well, for I'm sure many an envious gaze has fallen upon him!....X3
keight Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
Totally cool!
IReallyWannaKnow Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Yayyy! :clap:
icenectar Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013   General Artist
I love reading your stories & comments ^^
shinyhappygoth Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013
That is fantastic. And E-6000 FTW!
Possum-In-White Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
This is so awesome!
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Submitted on
February 17, 2013
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Camera Data

iPhone 4S
Shutter Speed
1/40 second
Focal Length
4 mm
ISO Speed
Date Taken
Feb 17, 2013, 4:09:37 PM
Adobe Photoshop CS5 Macintosh