Hi all, for this month’s post I am excited to share what I have been working on recently.
I have been making plush prototypes for a new line of collectable plush, made by Funko. Toy lovers amongst you will surely be familiar with Funko’s “pop” vinyl toys and their bobble heads of licensed characters. The new line of plush are named “Fabrikations” and are unlike anything else out there.
This is how they are described:
Fabrikations is a new line of 6” soft sculpted figures. Each figure features a rotating head and vinyl accessories. These soft sculpted figures were created with the collector in mind. Each Fabrikation Soft Sculpture is filled with a dense foam to achieve a high-end lush feel. In addition, each Fabrikation is weighted to allow each figure to stand securely on the surface of your choice.
I have to give a shout out to Funko toy designer Ben Butcher, who came up with this idea for a unique line of plush and who has been awesome to work with. He is an amazing artist, so you should click on his name to find out. What an amazing feeling to be involved in the process of bringing these new collectables to fruition.
I thought you might like to read about a little of the process. So here it is folks, through words and pictures the story of the creation of a plush prototype from my perspective, me, the plush maker.
It all starts with the delivery of a box of fabric and a 2D design. On that design I will have a front, back and side view, there may also be a few images of details and there will be written notes of things to consider. The notes will be things such as “Use this fabric for the cape” or “His head is at a slight angle“.
From here I make a cardboard form of the head which helps me to turn the 2D into something 3D. My basic method for doing this is to cut from cardboard the shape of the front and side and glue them together in an X form. Then I add in horizontal pieces at regular intervals and at this point I have a shape that I can measure, make marks on and hold fabric up against. for the body pattern something more flexible is better, paper is my material of choice…check out those paper pants!
If I feel it is necessary I will make a fabric form of the basic shape. This is like a better version of the cardboard form. You can draw on it, sew on it or pin fabric to it, it will also give you an idea of how your fabric will behave, if you have to compensate for too much or too little stretch or whatever.
Sometimes I go straight to my flat paper pattern, sometimes this step comes after the fabric form. Either way there I will usually find myself tweaking and adjusting and often end up making several heads per prototype and enough arms for an octopus!
Obviously being a prototype the finish and the details are important, the prototype serves as a point of reference for the manufactured version. Details on this tiny scale are time consuming but they really bring the plush sculpture to life. There may be additional conversations at this stage, to make sure the prototype will be as envisaged.
The first prototype I made was Yoda, he was bigger than the others and there was a lot of emails back and forth to get him right, by the third prototype less changes and communication were needed.
When the prototype is complete, it is shipped off to Funko in Seattle, the paper pattern and instructions are emailed and I await the next set of designs 🙂
The first run of Funko Fabrikations are set to hit the shelves next month. I believe, you can already pre-order them.
Becky Gould is the big kid behind Scrumptious Delight. Working from her home in Vancouver, BC she makes plush toys and soft sculptures that combine a love of food, all things furry and an unnatural appreciation of small appliances.