Letter from Beatrix Potter to Noel Moore, 1895
Beatrix woulda had the best tumblr of all time, always answerin’ her asks, like ‘my dear followers, I heard that you like hedgehogs in teacups, so I got you some hedgehogs in teacups, enjoy!’ [Don’t repost Beatrix’s work, she’ll cut you.]
Jilli, what does Clovis think?
Clovis is mildly sad that Beatrix Potter isn’t around to do a portrait of him. Also, he feels that throwing snowballs would possibly lead to B - A - T - H - S, so he is dubious about how much fun could be had.
“When everything was unknown, they were there. Where anything could happen, they were there. These repositories of hugs, of fears, of hopes, of tears, of snots and smears.
Alone at night, they were the comforters, when monsters lurked in dark corners.
Sworn to secrecy, unconditionally there, unjudgementally fair, and almost always a bear.”
I was often brought beloved companions like these, with pleas to “make him better,” whether an adult with his or her own childhood toy, or a daughter, son, or granddaughter with an older or deceased relative’s belonging. There were often features the owner wanted kept “as is,” or restored as much as possible, repaired when restoring wasn’t possible. Cleaning was first, and I have often removed the stuffing so I could wash the covering by hand and let it dry without soaking the stuffing. Older stuffing was often by-products of other textile manufacturing (pillow ticks, blanket scraps, scrap paper, kapok or horsehair stuffing from furniture makers, even wood excelsior used to pack goods for shipping, and often a mixture of two or three types), and was often colored with non-fast dyes. Wetting it would cause it to bleed color onto the animal’s covering. Often the stuffing had been lost, or had been packed down and lost mass and softness, so pulling it out provided the opportunity to pick and comb it apart, “fluff it up”, and decide what material would be best to augment it when re-stuffing the animal.
In order to maintain the familiar appearance, I tried to keep repair to a minimum. I did replace missing eyes and ears, mend noses torn or worn open, replace pads for limbs still attached that were leaking stuffing. It was up to the customer whether or not I replaced missing limbs, and whether the replacement matched as well as possible or was a deliberate contrast to the original fabric. But the original fabric was kept as much as possible, even though a lot of people were uncomfortable with balding bodies and limbs. It was easy to find or make a garment to cover the torso and the arms, and missing fur on the legs didn’t seem so important. Missing fur on the head had often been gone so long it just seemed normal, so with facial features clean and restored, the companion was ready to go home.
It was finicky work, requiring some innovation as well as a knowledge of cleaning and repair methods, and a readiness to experiment. There was just something magical about the reclamation process, and the look on the person’s face when presented with a reclaimed companion.
I’m reblogging this for the commentary from arliss. I know her; she’s a wonderful person, and is the ONLY person in the world I would trust to do restorative work on Clovis. One of these days, when my schedule stops being insane, arliss and I will be able to visit, have tea, and talk about our fuzzy companions.
via Reblog for iPad
I think I might be evil.I know I am evil.
I love everyone who reblogs this with the entirety of my cold, black heart.
ASK THE STUNTWIFE.
Yes, StuntHusband. Who’s a fierce and evil creature? YOU are! Oh wait, no. I’m thinking of Clovis Devilbunny. (But don’t feel bad, I have it on good authority that I’m less evil than my toy fanged bunny, too.)
Ha! Oh, Clovis Devilbunny approves. Very, very much. Via electrotoxicfoxz:
Chris and I were talking one time, and I don’t know how it came up, but we decided Rabbit Smith should exist.
If I were ever to get a piece of Tim Burton art as a tattoo, it would probably be this. Vampire Bunny, 1998-1999
Clovis, modeling his new bow tie, and contemplating devouring his chocolate bunny minion.
Does anyone know where the most wonderful Lady of the Manners acquired Clovis’ fangs? Or was he born with them?Mopsy the Mopish needs fangs before applying to be a part of the Evil Bunny Alliance, and I have no idea where to get them.
Oh! Clovis is delighted that Mopsy the Mopish wants to join the EBA! To answer your question, Clovis acquired his fangs a year or so after he came into my life. They were carefully trimmed down from a pair of Halloween vampire fangs (yes, really!), and then painstakingly sewn on. When other members of the Evil Bunny Alliance are ready to participate in the Ceremony of Fangs, I have learned to lightly heat the sewing needle (by holding it in a candle flame, what, doesn’t everyone sew fangs on bunnies via candlelight?) and pierce/melt holes in the fangs BEFORE attaching them to the bunny in question. That makes things much easier, and with less of a chance of the needle slipping and stabbing you or the fuzzy bunny.