Today my gentle, shy, beautiful girl Lolly is 5 years old! Here she is a couple of weeks before we brought her home, in her official shelter photo. Just a little black bear:
And on her first day at home:
She's an old soul, this dog. I swear she has the kindest eyes I've ever seen on any animal, humans included. When she was brought into the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City five years ago, she and her sister were so terrified that they needed to be held by the kennel attendant for long amounts of time, just to stop their nervous shivering. To this day, the strangest things freak her out--packaging tape (so every time I wrap up a sock dog, she's out of my office and running up the stairs), the click of the TV being turned on or off, hail on the windows--and yet, once she's outside, she's a crazy girl; running and playing and chasing Ava around mercilessly. At the same time, she's so patient with Sophie, and I trust her completely when they are alone together. I've watched, and if Sophie does something Lolly doesn't like (like accidentally stepping on her tail), Lolly responds by licking Sophie away. It's hilarious--no growling, no biting, just a few well placed slurps to the face. Works every time.
I was already volunteering at the shelter when I met Lolly--but once she entered my life, my commitment to the animals there grew tenfold. I had fallen in love with this dog and grew to know the worth of all of the homeless dogs and cats even more than I had before. I wanted to do even more to help them, and that's how Original Sock Dogs was born. I often wonder what life would have been like for Lolly had I not met her, or had she not been lucky enough to end up at a no-kill shelter. It crushes me to know that there are so many dogs like her out there who may never find a loving home. So please, in honor of Lolly today, hug your pups and your kitties, and send a few kind thoughts (or a small donation of time or money) to your local no-kill shelter. They do good work there.
Poor Calliope has run away from the circus and is looking for a nice, clown-free home. Hope you like her! (And even though she's an elephant, 10% of her sale will still go to the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City.)
Every once in a while, I need a little creative divergence from all the mutts (though I do love them so). And after seeing so many fabulous plush elephants on etsy, I wanted to try one out myself. Cathy suggested I make a pink one, so here she is!
I'll probably put her in the shop later today or tomorrow. Just trying to figure out if she needs any extra touches before she "goes live". What do you think? Should I make some more?
Thought I'd share a recent custom kitty I was asked to make. By far, this was the most complex request that's ever come my way. I'd kind of been dreading the day a tabby cat request wandered my way, but I wanted to take it and see what I could do.
Here's the model:
This was a much beloved cat who was her mom's very best friend and constant companion. So, no pressure, right? haha
Because the cat had shaggy/longish hair, I had to use socks that had the right texture. The only pair I had that would work were cream colored, so I hand dyed them to match the cat's undercoat. Then came the really tricky part--all those stripes! Of course, there's no way to capture each and every stripe, so you kind of have to go for capturing the general look of the cat. The plush ended up taking way more time that I had anticipated BUT I think she turned out pretty well! Maybe not quite as dark in coloring as the real thing, but close.
My customer was thrilled with her and said that she looked forward to hugging her cat again (the real kitty passed away recently). I'm always sad to know I'm making a custom in honor of a pet that has died, but knowing how much happiness and comfort their plush likeness can bring--there's just no feeling like it. It's one of the biggest reasons why I do what I do!