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fluffy seats & special orders March 17, 2008

Posted by Crystal in company, fabric.
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Dirk’s custom scooter. Photo courtesy of Bryant Upchurch/Prime 8 Photography, Atlanta.
 
Wow, is it already March? I can’t believe how time is flying by. Usually January and February are the slow times of year in the scooter seat cover business, but I’ve been steadily busy. So much so that I’ve had to temporarily limit making any covers that involve either fluffy fancy fabric like the one above, or those that involve special order fabric or fabric you want to provide. 
 
Why? Well, for a couple of reasons. I love making you exactly what you want. But when a special order comes in, the entire queue slows down. Fuzzy fabric scooter seat covers take about twice as long to make as ‘regular’ covers, and when you want to send me a fabric you picked out, you usually have very specific requests that can make the process take up to three or four times as long. 
 
The good news is that I’m in the process of trying to hire local help to assist with making scooter seat covers, specifically special orders and popular custom orders. My goal is to make it possible for every customer to get their scooter seat cover within three weeks, rather than the one to two months that it can take sometimes during the busy season. 
 
So, if you’d like a super special fuzzy custom scooter seat cover, please bear with me! Ride safe!
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changes in pink cheetah fabric May 8, 2007

Posted by Crystal in fabric.
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My supplier has changed its dye lot of pink cheetah fabric significantly. What I dubbed “light pink cheetah” (above, left) on my web site isn’t available any more (at least for now), and all I can get is what I just call “pink cheetah” (above, right). If you have asked for samples of light pink cheetah, or placed an order with the selection of “light pink cheetah,” I’m using what I still have available, or I may be contacting you to ask you if you would mind the change. Click images for close-ups of the fabric.

I’m in the Mood for fabric May 7, 2007

Posted by Crystal in fabric.
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Last Thursday, the highlight of the day was shopping at Mood, the fabric store that is featured in Project Runway. Imagine three giant floors of fabulous fabric – even if you don’t sew for a living like I do, I’m betting this place would blow you away.[click for a larger image]
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One of my favorite finds was a faux-fur fabric that looks like wood!
wood-grain faux fur at Mood

My friend Emily in one of the many rows of upholstery fabric.
Emily in the upholstery fabric

There’s not nearly enough room in one blog to show all of the fabrics available, but I had to take a picture of this dizzying array of fabric. I literally got woozy looking at these.
dizzying array of colors

plain isn’t so plain after all April 9, 2007

Posted by Crystal in fabric.
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It seems that a lot of people who get a Vespa GTS with a black seat want a tan seat, and a bunch that get them with tan seats want black ones. Well, you can order a new seat, wait for one to come up on ebay, or you can get a plain fabric seat cover. This one, made of black velboa, not only looks great, it’s an economical way to change seat colors to the one you really want. The best part? You’ll still have your original seat color if you change your mind.

new fabulous furs February 28, 2007

Posted by Crystal in fabric.
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Just a quick post to show you some of the fabulous premium furs that I’m planning to get in soon!
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from the bullies at Burberry – a big fat “no.” January 29, 2007

Posted by Crystal in fabric.
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In the past couple of months, I’ve received a number of requests for scooter seat covers made out of Burberry or “Burberry-like” Nova plaid fabric. After searching high and low for fabric that would work (most actual Burberry fabric is too light for use as a seat cover), and even finding some awesome fleece that was a very close match, I ended up with a some bad news:

It’s a big fat “no.”

During my search, I found a web site that made little dog coats of genuine Burberry fabric. I wrote to the owner, asking her where she found it. She wrote this back to me:

Good Morning!

I would love to help you but I received a very nasty letter from Burberry International telling me that it is illegal to use their fabric including the fake fabric that is made right here in the USA.

I could not believe it as I see Burberry type fabrics at every department store I go to in [my city] and other places that I visit.

They requested that I stop and also send them all the fabric I had. Quite stern about it. I had been buying the real fabric from a source in England but they were also closed down and my source in Florida also was warned with the exact letter about using or selling the fabric.

Good luck in your search.

Further research showed that she was not alone – besides her supplier, other small companies were threatened with stern warnings to cease and desist from using Burberry or Burberry like fabrics or producting “Burberry-inspired” items. It even appears that some companies have been forced out of business, and designers have been forced to change their lines.

Now, I’m all about protecting copyright. I’ve been a writer and a designer for a long time, and I work hard to create what I do. I’d be sorely ticked off if someone stole my content, my copyrighted designs or my trademark, and have gone after people who have tried (many thanks to the scooter community, who often lets me know if someone out there has used one of my images, etc!). So, in essence, I don’t have a problem with them not wanting people to make products that could be dubbed a Burberry rip-off.

But it does piss me off that Burberry is apparently – for lack of a better phrase – suing history for trademark infringement. I’ve read in a number of places that traditional tartan producers have been forced to stop making a traditional, historical tartan plaid that is very similar to the Burberry plaid called Camel Thompson. The Camel Thompson has been around a lot longer than Burberry’s Nova check, but because Burberry threatened many of the kilt makers and tartan fabric producers, most have stopped making it.

The exceptions to their threats seem to be department store or mass-produced knockoffs or “Burberry-inspired” items. But then, the big department stores may be the only ones with more money than Burberry, so they can handle a lawsuit. The one with the most money (and Kate Moss) wins.

When it comes down to it, even if I were able to get it here or there, I can’t make anything from it. I wouldn’t be that keen on losing my business because I made a scooter seat cover out of a plaid that could be remotely seen as Burberryesque.

So I’ve had to tell customers a big fat “no.”

It’s just as well. With the its latest controversy, Burberry may be on the way out of fashion, anyway. And if it’s plaid you want, there are a lot more choices out there. Just give me a shout and we’ll find something.

glow in the dark fabric! August 30, 2006

Posted by Crystal in fabric.
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I had posted over on Vespaway about Nuclia Waste’s new glow in the dark scooter. Yesterday, Mike from coolightwest.com posted a comment about his company – who happens to make glow-in-the-dark fabric. Now, keep in mind, I haven’t seen this fabric in person, so I don’t know for sure how well it would work for a scooter seat cover. But given that the site pictures items such as jackets and life preservers made from the fabric, it’s probably a good candidate. One drawback: it’s pricey. But still, wouldn’t it be awesome to have a seat cover that glows in the dark? I’m going to see what I can do to get a sample. photo from coolightwest.com

blue camo is four months out August 9, 2006

Posted by Crystal in fabric.
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I got the official word from one of my wholesalers yesterday. Blue camo fabric may be available in three to four months, but I’m guessing we shouldn’t hold our breath. In the meantime, those looking for cool blue fabric should check out the blue and black cow, blue hibiscus (while it lasts!) or blue flames. Remember, too, that I can order other fabrics that I might not have in stock.

bubble fur makes prime time August 4, 2006

Posted by Crystal in fabric, scooter seat cover sightings.
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What are the chances of my making a Vespa LX seat cover out of pink bubble fur the same week the Head of Household on Big Brother All Stars has a matching pink bubble fur bedspread?!?

news about some favorite fabrics August 3, 2006

Posted by Crystal in fabric.
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Many people have written to ask for blue camoflage and grey camoflage, and sadly, none of my suppliers have these fabrics any more. Technically the blue camo is on backorder, but I’m not getting the most optimistic feeling about it. I have a small sampling of regular ol’ green and yellow camo if anyone is interested in receiving a sample, and of course, there’s always pink camo if you’re daring. The most popular fabric of the summer – blue hibiscus fleece – is nearly the end of its availability, too, I’m told, so if you’ve been eyeing it for your scooter seat cover, now’s the time to order!