Sunday, 17 January 2016

Apologies for Absence - Computer Malfunction the Cause

Greetings once again, Folks.

Cy Bear back again, after a couple of weeks of enforced silence.

 After the trip to Buckinghamshire, the computer on which Isobel communicates with the outside world - both on behalf of us Cuddlies and herself - began to stick (or rather the space bar - whatever that is - did).  Apparently that impaired her ability to type as fast as she is wont, so a trip to the nearest Supplier's shop was organised.

 It also coincided with the fact that the machine hadn't had its regular annual Health Check since it arrived with us almost 3 years ago, and with the warranty on it being due to run out in March 2016, Isobel decided that if that fault, and one with the microphone (which hasn't worked for ages) were non-repairable, she'd be more than happy to consider a completely new machine (having had a lot of trouble with the current implement since its arrival).  Following a visit (enabled by daughter Clare giving Isobel and the machine a lift to and from the shop premises), the computer duly spent 8 days being checked over and repaired and was duly returned with a full functioning Bill of Good Health.

Isobel,  while delighted to be re-united with the machine, (she'd had time-limited access to the internet via the local library computers in the interim, but was inhibited from doing EVERYTHING  she normally does each day for us Cuddlies) she does admit to being a teeny bit disappointed that the delinquent machine does seem to be behaving itself - AT THE MOMENT!  She has yet to test the microphone - and there's still 2 months left on the warranty if it doesn't!!!

Now when I left this blog on 3rd January, I'd been telling you about the new Yellow Dressed Rabbit girls Isobel was working on:  it's great to be able to tell you that today's bulletin is going to carry on the story - and may well take a couple of posts to do so.

The Yellow Rabbit story is now complete with the chosen Rabbit dispatched yesterday to St. Helens in Lancashire, UK.  The Rabbit shown on the right of the picture below is the one that is en route:

That's not where Yellow Rabbit (YR) will actually live - which is in Warrington, Cheshire.  The destination address is presumed to be where her Daddy works and where a signature can be obtained when the parcel arrives - allegedly on Monday this week.

This what these two Lady Rabbits look like from the rear:

This time around, (because there was some discussion when the project was under discussion at the beginning of our conversation with MrsPB), Isobel has made the apron so that it can be easily detached should YR's Forever Friend find the carrot in the apron pocket impedes full "cuddle access". The carrot itself is only sewn in lightly, so that could be removed if it is decided to leave the apron in situ.

So, how did the process proceed:   to get from the pictures at the end of our last post on 3rd January - to the finished items shown here?

Well, first of all, the bodies of both Rabbit Toys were stuffed:

All Coldham Cuddlies Lady Dressed Toys (be they Rabbits, Foxes, Coyotes or what have you) are made to sit down.  However, if the fabric used for their dresses is strong enough, and there's a convenient cushion, wall or background against which they can be propped, they can be made to stand - for photography purposes, anyway.

The next stage in production is to attach the shoes - from the photographs of MrsPB's two Rabbit Toys,  (also included in our earlier post) it appears that who ever made them, used the shoe pattern to make plush feet to match the head, paws and legs for those two Toys.  This is what the 2016 Coldham YR versions now look like.

Following the provision of  shoes, the next stage was to make the pantaloons for both Toys.  This time around, Isobel used some pale blue shiny poplin fabric she had in stock, and added white lace trimming to the bottom of each leg on both Toys.  The pants were then gathered and fitted around the "ankles" of each Rabbit, using pale blue embroidery yarn, with all six strands, to achieve the gathered finish.

Then the next stage is to start making the individual dresses........

I'm going to leave you all in suspense for another week - just in case, the negotiations regarding the Tiggywinkles blog project take longer to complete than we hope (or indeed, if permission to use our pictures is refused).  That outcome is not really expected - because Isobel intends to write about Tiggywinkles in exactly the same way as she does here (and helps me to do as well, of course).  But. these matters can never be taken for granted, and we have to be prepared for that outcome.

We've yet to get in touch with our contact at Tiggywinkles about being able to describe what it's like at that establishment - and to use the pictures in our camera to do so.  There didn't seem to be much point  - without a functioning computer for one thing:  also, each time we'd attempted to telephone our contact there, she was not in the office.  So, that is one of the first things we're hoping to get done this coming week.

Meanwhile, I can tell you that Isobel has amassed another £10-15.00 GBP for both Tiggywinkles and West Midlands Hedgehog Rescue since we sent our initial £25.00 each in November.  Not that we have sold THAT many Hedgehog Toys since then, although we've found new homes for several in that time.  But, we've been generously supported by those who have purchased any COLDHAMCUDDLIES Toys over the Christmas period as well.

In the Shop's shipping policies, Isobel tells would-be Buyers that she does over-estimate the possible shipping costs.  She'd much prefer to send a refund if the payment exceeds the actual cost - and it's a modus operandi that has proved acceptable to ALL our customers.   Now, the news of our effort to try to save the UK Hedgehog population is spreading - via the Etsy Teams Isobel works with as well. Since the Hedgehog Project began therefore, Isobel has suggested that our customers, together with Friends and Followers  - ALL of whom have given written support for her attempts to date - that instead of the refunds being sent back, they consider allowing Isobel to add the surplus shipping charges to the ColdhamCuddlies Hedgehog fund raising scheme.   (Naturally, if they'd prefer not to do so, the refunds will be returned - as in the past).

To date not one of our customers has refused - which is why, when Isobel gets around to adding up the funds, there could well be even more than £10-15.00 GBP winging its way to each Hedgehog Hospital.  I'll let you know next week!

Early in the New Year, our original Brown Daddy Hedgehog was offered a new home by Mrs LH of Marshall, North Carolina, U.S.A.  Before he left, the usual Farewell photographing ceremony took place -

Yesterday, we learned that he had arrived safely - and that he is currently sitting in MrsLH's work room, supervising her production efforts.  She is considering allowing her young grandson to play with him when they next get together!  (MrsLH is a fellow member on one of  Isobel's Etsy Teams - and her work can be seen by clicking here

The news of our effort to try to save the UK Hedgehog population is spreading - via the Etsy Teams Isobel works with as well.

Until then - have a great week Everybody.  Your Friend, Cy Bear.