17 September 2017

An Update From Timber

Relic B. Furry
Updates from Timber

There has been a flood of activities for Relic over the last year and as Relic now approaches his first birthday on September 22nd, he is eager to give a report of his activities thus far. Continuing additions and alterations to Relic have changed his appearance significantly and has helped define his character even further.

We accomplished the first of what we hope to be many trips to Anthrocon in 2017 and made many new friends while there. There were over 7300 Furries in attendance in 2017 with a total of nearly 2300 fursuiters involved. Anthrocon's Charity was Hope Haven Farm Animal Sanctuary which we were able to donate a grand total of over $37,000 ! The wonderful City of Pittsburgh, PA. continues to be a most inviting city for our sub-culture to flourish in and takes an active role in having a wonderfully “Furry” time with our attendees. The city enjoys our presence, our contributions to local charities and the lucrative boost to their local economy over the 4 or 5 day period that reaches upwards of $7 million dollars each year. Relic is very happy to have been a part of this wonderful and awe inspiring event this year. No other convention held at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center makes such an impact or impression to the local people of Pittsburgh.

Relic is now turning his attention to the second achievement which has always been in the sights since the beginning of his creation. Having lost a very close friend to cancer at the age of 19, we have always looked for a way to help others in such a desperate time in their lives. We are currently in correspondence with St. Jude Children’s hospital in hopes of becoming a “Partner” and volunteer to visit Children’s wards to bring laughter and a moment of happiness to children (and parents) that are most drastically in need of a small break from reality, a laugh or smile even if for just a moment, is Relic’s goal.

Relic will continue to attend any conventions that are close enough to be economically possible in order to learn from our fellow “furries” and broaden our impact within the community. At the current time we are looking to attend CanFURence in Ottawa, Canada in November 2017, and with luck FurnalEquinox in Toronto in February 2018. We will always have Anthrocon (held near the last weekend of June or first weekend in July) in our sites as an annual attendee as it is the largest Furry convention in the world.  

04 September 2017

Buyer Be Wise

A little "General Advice" for the upstart fursuiters that want to make their own suit! I have done so myself (which is what this blog is mostly all about) and it is a lot of tough work but also very rewarding to see as it takes shape.  Fursuit makers will know this all ready (or at least they should) and most would agree that your choice of Faux Fur is nearly limitless! A wonderful situation from the design standpoint but this can also make your decisions for your purchase a bit daunting, and can lead to indecision, and worse yet the purchase of what you didn't really want... DON'T RUSH.

To help "cut the clutter" you should really look at the material closely. Most Faux Furs are made from Acrylic fibers, but not all Acrylic fibers make good Faux Furs. The top-of-the-line fibers to look for are Kanecaron and Tissavel. They are the best performers for texture, softness and resiliency which are all the traits you are looking for when buying your fur.

So many people place price first by saying they cannot afford the good fabric, if that is the case (putting it bluntly but truthfully) you really must rethink whether or not you can actually afford to bother with a fursuit at this moment. Step back and save up some more money, you do not want to put your time and effort into a suit that falls apart in a years time because of poor quality fabric, how much money have you really saved at that point?  I have heard some people will look simply at the price and say since it is priced low it is not a good choice. That can hold some truth but not always, texture and pile also contribute to the cost of the material to a certain degree so will affect pricing as well. I do have to admit that for the most part it does seem that the better material does usually start out at around the $27 USD per yard price range and goes up from there (at the time this is written). Lets face it, you don't want to bother with that $17 / yd material that has fibers falling out in your hand like a Husky that is shedding in June.    

Shopping on-line brings you all the choices you can imagine, but it will deny you perhaps the most vital sense you need to invoke when you shop for Faux Fur... Touch! Not to say you shouldn't shop on line, but you need to be aware that to do so wisely will take some time and patience. You can choose your style, pile & color on-line with little problem, but before you buy you really need to be able to feel and handle the material. Most reputable shops will send swatches of material to you if you request them, some may charge a nominal fee, but it is worth it if what you plan on creating is to last and look as good as it can for as long as possible. 

You should not rule out your local chain stores like Joann Fabrics! One key to locating the right Faux Fur here is to know when their shipments are arriving. Faux Fur materials (the good ones) move rather quickly so be prepared to pay them a quick visit when the trucks arrive!

30 August 2017

Dual Use Foot-Paws

After finding the perfect base for Relic’s next set of foot-paws I am now getting close to making the patterns for the fur.
They started off with me dismantling my old ski boots as I fit them into the trash.  As I pulled the liners from the boots I suddenly realized that they would be the perfect base for my New set of foot-paws, they have my arch support and are fitted to my feet.

They have a rear entry design so adding a zipper for closure is a snap!  

I wanted to make this pair have more pronounced features so decided on much thicker foam to start with doubling up Three inch foam for a good 6 inches to start with. 

Sculpting moved along with few issues, I have gotten rather adept at the process.

The sculpting nearly finished I am starting to turn my attention to the soles and also Patterning for the fur.  I am going to have inter-changeable soles (one set indoor one outdoor). I will need to decide on the method of applying the soles as needed but will likely use either Magnets or Velcro, or a combination of the two. 

I will also be sewing the fur covering so it will be removable for cleaning and will likely have a base covering of plain white cotton material like a bed sheet covering the entire foot. This will all be determined on the fly as I work on them but is the way I am leaning. 

So as they are now I need to start working on the “Sole-searching” to get them figured out.

26 August 2017

Relic's New Paws

Not that they will be much longer than the ones he has now but the toes are going to be much taller and a little wider so they will be more pronounced.  
Still much sculpting to do but working with 6 inches of foam allows for a much more pronounced toe... unlike the 3 inch that are on the current foot-paws.

25 August 2017

Sculpting Is Next

The bases for my new foot-paws are nearly finished so I am turning my attention to getting ready to start sculpting the foam into the shape of Relic's paws. I will opt this time for a more toony look but will strive to keep then as compact as possible. I simply don't care for large feet that force you to waddle like a duck.

24 August 2017

First Of The Two Bindings Done

This actually went along quite easily... this almost looks like I know what I am doing!  lol

I spent more on the Zipper than I normally would have but I wanted to make sure it was a good quality zipper and not some cheap piece of plastic... 

Of course they don't stock the length zipper I needed... so had to buy one 4 inches longer than needed... oh well. It works and keeps the fit snug! 

Now on to the second one!

Bindings Of A New Sort

I have the first of the two bindings finished to the point of installing the zipper. 

I will have to trim material as I fit the zipper to ensure the binding will tighten the liner to my leg.  Once the zipper is sewn in I will permanently affix the binding to the liner.  So far, So good! 

The Perfect Base

I think I have stumbled upon the perfect base to use as Relic's next pair of Foot-Paws!  

I was picking apart my old Ski Boots the other day (the plastic had all become brittle and was breaking off easily) to reduce them to fit in the trash, and as I pulled out the first of the two liners I realized that they were actually "rear entry" liners and I immediately thought to myself that they would make great Foot-Paws!

I am pleased that I have found a way to extend the use of at least part of my old ski boots as they were so expensive to begin with. REDUCE-REUSE-RECYCLE!

After freeing the liner from the second one and standing them together I was convinced that I was going to make use of them for exactly that! 

The design of the liners obviously gives an easy way of putting the Paws on and taking them off. I will create an upper section from a heavy material like that of jeans to encircle the uppers that will have a heavy duty zipper for a closure up the back. By using a heavy material on the uppers I can avoid having to deal with a zipper in the fur and just use Velcro or magnets to hold the fur in place once they are zipped up. Any way to avoid wear and tear on fur is a huge plus as far as repairs are concerned.  

07 August 2017

Sporting The New Vest

Relic was able to sport his new leather vest with his Navy Medals at Thompson Park last May and I am finally catching up on the photos after returning from Anthrocon. 

I think the use of a vest is a good way to display my medals and it works equally well in suit or regular street clothes... its a win-win!  

Only one fault wearing the vest covers up Relic's Anchor... so he doesn't wear it all the time.

Many thanks again to Linda Morrison for the awesome pictures. I would never get the photo's I like if you didn't have the eye for them!