Our current time zone: GMT +8 (We're home in Singapore!)

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sew Special

"So... when are we going to see Little Yi Lins and Little Dannies running around? Hmmmm?"

If during every Lunar New Year, we get paid each time some nosy relative asked that question (and it's always the ones whom we see only once a year and hardly know, and thus shouldn't be concerning themselves with our reproductive schedule), it would totally replenish all the money that we give out in the form of angpaos (red packets) to our younger family members. We are incredibly bored of answering "Tomorrow!", "Didn't we tell you that we have 5 children already? You didn't know?! Ohhh." or pointing to Dan's intentionally puffed-out belly and cheerfully announcing, "Just 2 more months to go!"

Well, we will have a break from all these "well-meaning enquiries" (i.e. nagging!) this year. We won't be back in Singapore for the Lunar New Year, which falls on 14 February 2010. On the downside, we'll be missing reunion dinner with the family, dressing up in new clothes for house visits (well I will, not Dan!), and all that glorious festival food! Like my mum's fantastic handmade spiky little pineapple tarts :(

It's an even bigger pity that we won't be home for the Lunar New Year, because this time, we DO have Little DanYilins to tote along for house visits! We are pleased to introduce to the world.... *drumroll*.... Our mini-me's!!

Don't they look JUST like us? *beam*

Even before arriving in Lima, these dolls are incredibly well-traveled, having sat in a truck from Tracy's home in the UK to Manchester, where they stayed in a hotel for a few nights, then flew to Singapore, Los Angeles, Panama before finally joining us in Lima.

We have our friend Tracy to thank for our mini replicas. You see, Tracy designed the dolls and hand-stitched them, right from the scratch, with just a couple of socks (er, fresh socks, right Trace?) to start with. In other words, these lovelies are custom-made just for us, and only us!

Let's zip back in time for awhile - 1994 to be exact - to a classroom in a girls' school set in Emerald Hill. Tracy and I are sitting in the same row of desks, struggling with hours of Maths and Chinese, doodling complicated diagrams of human interiors for Biology while cooling off from P.E in our (ugly) green sports shorts. I'm seated behind Trace - which is really strange, cos I don't remember ever being taller than she was. After school, if Trace is not rushing off for art class, or flipping somersaults and burning up the racing track for her extracurricular activity, and I'm not twirling around en pointe in the dance studio for my E.C.A, we hop onto bus number 14 (on the upper deck!) and trundle back from Orchard Road to the eastern coast of Singapore. (This leisurely bus ride got alot more complicated, unfortunately, once our school moved to Bukit Timah.)

Since Tracy is in the UK and I'm on the GO, neither of us have access to our old school photos. So a snapshot from a page in her 1995 autograph book will have to do. Cheesy as the lyrics are, they still manage to bring a lump to the throat. We were only 16 then! Sigh.

After we graduated from secondary school, we moved on to different colleges. Although both schools are within minutes of each other in the eastern part of the island, we lost touch. Mind you, this was in the era where kids still handwrote letters to real pen-pals and "email" was a brand new word. Mobile phones, ICQ/MSN and SMS were unheard of. And kids in JC were only just starting to own pagers, as evidenced by the shiny silver clips and chains peeking out from our school uniform pockets. Trace and I only rediscovered each other sometime last year, on this wonderful invention called Facebook.

By then, Tracy had married a nice British bloke named Andy and was happily picking berries and living in England. She had also put her gymnast training to good use and is now, get this, a headspinning B-Girl! If you peer closely at her photo on her website (see link later), you will be able to make out some seriously cool dreadlocks. She got married in those. Uh-huh. Cool huh.

Anyway, as if transforming from a school gymnast to a rapping B-Girl wasn't cool enough, Trace leveraged on her artistic skills and set up Su-Lin Designs with an initial range of sock-people and sock-animals. She has since expanded Su-Lin Designs to include bespoke creations, sock doll DIY kits and T-shirts. This one-woman factory is churning out new stuff like hotcakes! We pitched the idea of a pair of DanYilin dolls as a very special momento of our once-in-a-lifetime trip to Trace. She kindly offered to sponsor our very first set of Su-Lin Designs sock creations! Ain't she the best?! (you're all supposed to shout "YES!" at this point)

And, noooo, they couldn't be just any ol' dolls that kinda looked sorta like us (or some random Chinese folks.) Trace was very professional about it and wanted to get every single detail down to a 'T'. She trawled our blog for photos of what we were wearing and we had to send her photos of our shoes and bags. We received some sketches to approve, one of which came with a range of different eyes for the Dannie doll to choose from (we chose the smallest pair of course!)

Everybody who has previewed the Dan doll has said that it looks EXACTLY like him. Agree? And he even has his old Oly camera too!

It's all in the details. Check out Canon 450D camera!

Wearing black and red shoes exactly like Dan's, and don't forget the beanie too!

And if you think Trace has a bunch of nekkid dolls which she just dresses up in different clothes for different customers, well you're wrong. Su-Lin Designs ain't no Barbie or paper doll factory. The DanYilin dolls even come with Dan's and Yi Lin's tattoos! Each stitch is painstakingly sewn on by Tracy herself. I think her back ached more from sewing than it did from her b-boy sessions. (I'll treat you to a good ol' Indonesian or Chinese massage the next time we're back in Singapore together, Trace!)

That's definitely my back alright. Please ignore Dan's finger poking my doll's bum...

And that's Cao Guowei... yups!

Dan claims that Trace overlooked one tiny detail on his doll though.... but we couldn't possibly have sent Tracy photos of that now, could we?

The extra bump that wasn't originally there. Is that a llama in your pants or are you just happy to see me...

Okaaaay, so it IS a llama in your pants! WTH?!?!

We are totally in lurrrve with our dolls (yes, Dannie loves his dolly!) and you'll be seeing alot more of them on our blog as they travel around the world with us :)

GOing somewhere?

He will do anything to help promote our blog

And now we come to the most important part of this post (it really doesn't matter if you don't remember anything that I wrote earlier, but you hafta remember this!!):

Su-Lin Designs is now taking orders (pick something from the
current range that suits your fancy, or get one custom-made) from customers in Singapore.

The perk? Free delivery from the UK to Singapore (otherwise very expensive, you know!)

Place your orders by
1st December to receive your sock dolls before Christmas (Christmas 2009, that is!) Please be kind to the Sock Lady/Elf/Gnome by doing your Christmas shopping early and not flooding her with last-minute orders. Remember, these wonderful creations are 100% handmade, so give the girl some time to consult you on the design, stew in her creative juices (while twirling her dreadlocks), and then breathe life into your order, stitch by stitch.

Check out Su-Lin Designs online to get some ideas from Tracy's past creations. Don't just think Christmas - birthdays, baby showers, Lunar New Year festive hampers, wedding gifts, Valentine's Day (that sock dolly is going to score you some points with your crush!) are all occasions for a Su-Lin Designs special creation. Go ahead - make someone a proud, happy owner of a Su-Lin Design sock doll today!

Dan likes his doll to be a little more, er... bare

Thank you Tracy! I love my Yi Lin doll!

This post is made possible by the following people. We would like to express our heartfelt thanks to:

Tracy: for spending so much time and effort in creating the DanYilin smallies. We love them (and you too!)

Gerald: my good friend from Temasek Hall days (go Funkamania!) and thereafter, supper (Blk 88 bak chor mee & Simpang Bedok prata) buddy, dive kaki (let's go diviiiing!!) and wedding photographer. Thanks for escorting the dolls from Manchester to Singapore. Let's go diving again someday!

Elaine & Rhys: my friends from law school. Thank you for replying my countless emails, and for coordinating with my parents to collect the dolls in Singapore and escorting them (and the bak kwa and Po Chai pills!) right to our doorstep in Lima. You beat the professional couriers handsdown!

Mum & Dad: for coordinating with my friends to receive and send off the dolls. Thank you for being an important link in the logistics chain to ensure that the dolls got to us on time.


Anonymous said...

Thks to Tracy & Su Lin that for the lovely & sweet dolls that is a replica of them. Beside the said tatoos, any other marks reveal the same.

forex course said...

Wow these are very lovely sweet dolls. Those marks are same.

Lint said...

eh how come your dolly doesnt have boobs?

Lint said...

Maybe we shld do 1 for the whole family! Including Benji!

Dannie said...

@ Anonymous Well, there are no moles or anything like that on the doll & action figure, if that's what you are asking. But if you want something like that, feel free to check with Tracy on her blog!

@ forex course: Welcome to the blog. Hope you enjoy the ride!

@ Lint I suppose we have to cut up the llama now and share them as private parts! And Benji's dead. With him, it would be like taxidermy!

Debra said...

The dolls really look like you guys!!!

Glad to know you guys are still going strong - keep the funny entries coming :)

Yi Lin said...

Hi Deb,

Yes, Tracy got our smiley expressions spot on!

Been reading yr blog n following yr journey with little funnyman Sean in the World Of Babies. It's always a good read too :)

Yibin said...

Eh...I really like the dolls... ;)

Yi Lin said...

Hahaha, action figures, action figures, not dolls (as Dan wld tell you.) Yeah, they are really special, esp. cos they are traveling the world with us. These are gg to be family heirlooms! Trace does alot of other sock figures though, not just in the human form. So check out her webby for more ideas if you wanna get some for yourself, or just to see the photos and read her blog abt each creation.

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