Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Year of the Rabbit (or....the year I THOUGHT I would be rich and famous) ~ Part One.

I have been a carnie a very long time.

Long before I ever picked up a soldering iron.

I went from show to show making these...
Ever heard of Wee Be Bunnies?

Wee Be Bunnies were what I was known for back in the day.

the original artwork for my hang tag

Back in the '80s when we were all going crazy for the Cabbage Patch Doll.

Back when soft sculpture was what everyone was interested in.

I even had a bit of a following....before Facebook.

One day, I woman named Debbie Linker approached me about teaching folks how to make my beloved bunnies - she wanted me to design a series of patterns that she would distribute. (she owned a very popular fabric/quilting store in Morro Bay, Ca. called The Cotton Ball)

Me: "Give away all my secrets???!!"

Debbie: "There are two markets out there - the ones who will steal your idea and try to make it themselves without your permission, and the ones who wouldn't dream of making it and have the money to buy your original work - this way you hit both groups - it's a win-win!"

Having shooed away many camera - toting bootleggers crafters from my booth, I knew she was right.

So I got down to it.....

I had the patterns printed and my entire family spent many an evening in front of the television stuffing patterns into plastic bags.

My attempt at a kitty.

We were a hit.

One day Debbie called to say that the megachain House of Fabrics was interested in picking us up.

And do you think you could design a line of nursery fabrics to go with the patterns?

You betcha!(they don't call me "anything-for-a-buck" for nothin'...)

I started with this....

Which became....this:

my 'story board' presentation:

I actually hand painted a crib sized quilt top.

After several trips to Los Angeles, we were told that the only guy standing in the way of fame and fortune was the CEO, who wasn't sure if he wanted to invest in a young mother from Smalltown, USA.

We waited....

And waited.....

I guess you know where I'm going with this.

It didn't happen, and all I have to show for it are some yellowing, old sketches...

a few patterns....
(you can even find one from time to time on eBay...!)

and this....
The last of a dying breed.

I invite you to come back for Part Two when I will show you more of my life with soft sculpture.
(I was even featured on the news and have the video to prove it!)


  1. Pam!
    I LOVE your bunnies! I think I have 4 of them!
    My fav is the "Garden Bunny" But I love the Christmas Bunny too (with the silver tray)
    I use to love meeting up with you at Piece Makers to see your treasures...good times.

  2. What a great story!! That crazy CEO had no idea what he was passing up! Your soft sculptures are wonderful. You have so much talent!!

  3. Your bunnies are adorable! I will have to stop by and visit them in person if any still live with you.

  4. What a fun story...looking forward to the next chapter...I think they are adorable!

  5. I bet if the CEO had been a mother, he would have given you a chance in a heartbeat!!!
    Can't wait for part 2

  6. I've always been a little too close to the bunnies to realize how adorable they were - especially in those photos of the patterns. So cute! And I'd completely forgotten about stuffing patterns. It's all sort of a blur now.