Do you ship to my country?
I am happy to ship worldwide! When inputting your address at checkout, there will be a list of countries to choose from. If it's on the list, I'll post it.
My neighbours often receive my post. Is that a problem?
For expensive items, please contact me immediately after purchase if there is ANY reason that you think the parcel might not arrive safely e.g.: if your local postal service is unreliable; if you live in an apartment complex with an unsecured parcel dropoff; if your neighbours often receive your parcels; if you are not home during the day. Contact me here, or through instagram messages, and we can discuss courier services or collection options.
When will my order ship?
My shipping days are Monday and Friday. My local post office closed, so I cannot make shipments as frequently as I used to.
Do you take custom orders and commissions?
Please do not contact me about commissions. Please add yourself to the commission waitlist here. I am currently concentrating on refunding my kickstarter, and am still working out how I want to run my business. I am hoping to start working through the commission waitlist soon, but I don't know when it will actually happen. Please be patient; I'll get there eventually.
Everything is out of stock!
I release my mimics for sale once or twice a month. They usually sell out very quickly. If you'd like to be alerted for my next release, there's a shop drop mailing list right here.
When will you be making more of the thing I want?
I don't know. I am just one person, making all my products, taking all the photos, editing all the videos, managing the shop, social media, and my portfolio site. There are dozens of crafts I'd like to make, my to-do list is super long, and the more crafts I produce, the fewer I can make of each. I will always try to return to the classics, but they are a smaller percentage of my craft than they used to be. If the thing you want isn't available in the current shop drop, it might be in the next, or the one after that. The best thing really is to join the mailing list.
Do you use faux/vegan leather?
All my books and bags are made using genuine leather, usually a mix of goat, pig, sheep, and cow. Some of these leathers will be carved or embossed to give the effect of more exotic leathers e.g. alligator, but all are sourced from common produce animals. I oppose plastic-based alternatives (and yes that includes plastics made from plants, just as much as plastics made from dead dinosaurs), and none of the faux leathers I've tried thus far have been very nice to work with.
Have you heard about pineapple / cactus / plant leather?
Please don't send me links for articles about plant-based leather alternatives if you have not taken the time to research the exact composition. Anything that uses loose plant fibre requires a binder, and something to give it a smooth, shiny surface. I try to do due diligence when people send me links and so far, everything has been 10-30% plastic.
I am, however, very excited for Reishi, which promises to be one of the very first plastic-free leather alternatives. Unfortunately, it's still in the early stages and not readily available to me.
Are those real teeth?
Yes! Many of my products use shark teeth. Sharks have very fragile teeth, and are constantly shedding them and growing new ones. Depending on size and longevity, one shark can shed upwards of 100,000 teeth in a lifetime. Sharks have been around longer than trees, so the ocean is just littered with shark teeth and they are collected in Morocco as part of the fossil industry, without harming any living animals.
I also commonly use boar teeth, and very occasionally fox, both of which are collected in the wild from natural death. I have also recently sourced coyote teeth. They are tumbled in order to speed up cleaning, but this also results in them being blunted, which makes them much safer to use than shark teeth. Unfortunately, I cannot confirm the source for these.
Is this your full time job?
Yes! I quit my dev job in Feb 2020 and I've been working for myself ever since. It's not all sunshine and roses though; I ran a kickstarter, massively undercharged for my work, and massively overestimated the amount of identical, time-consuming work I was willing and able to do. I'm currently trying to refund people, so I'm broke as hell, and would not be able to survive without the support of my wonderful partner. I should hopefully have cleared all my kickstarter debt by mid-2023 sometime.
Can I copy your work?
Not for sale, of course, but I am more than happy for people to make their own books or bags at home, for personal use or gifting. If you post to social media, please do tag @suetyfiddle as inspiration.
You should do tutorials!
I already have. I have a 10 part set of BookMimic tutorials on both my Instagram and Tiktok accounts. These tutorials have been collected into a Tutorials highlight on IG, and a Tutorials playlist on TT. I also have a number of tutorials for painting the eyes. These tutorials are pretty short, but I'm planning on making a new, more in-depth set of tutorials which will be hosted on YouTube. Sub if you want to know when those go live :)
Which glue do you use?
It depends! Beacon Fabri-tac for leather and fabric and paper. In small quantities, it will not warp paper as agressively as water-based adhesives like PVA. PVA is very commonly used in bookbinding and I use it to seal and set the spines of my book blocks before covering. I often use superglue to set the eyes in place. For teeth, I usually use hot glue. It reinforces the base of fragile shark teeth, and adds extra bulk to mimic gums. Where possible, anything glued will be reinforced by wrapping or sewing, for maximum durability.
Where do you get the eyes?
Sometimes I paint my own eyes, sometimes I use pre-made ones. If you would like pre-made printed eyes, you can find them through various sources (ebay, aliexpress, amazon) by searching for "julie wang glass eyes". If you would like to paint your own eyes, you can find blanks by searching for "round glass cabochons".
I use Marabu black glass paint for the pupils, and acrylic paint for the colours. For glow in the dark eyes, I use LIT pigments from Culture Hustle. They have a very good colour, but are very coarsely ground and badly packaged, making them difficult to use. I'll be looking for an alternative glow pigment after I have exhausted these.
Where do you get the teeth?
I buy by the kilo on eBay, and unless you're starting your own business you will never need that many teeth. There should be plenty of curiosities or fossil shops that will sell smaller quantities. You will have to do some research to find a supplier near you.
Which leathers do you use?
I use a variety of garment leathers from different suppliers. If you'd like to try making your own books or bags: anything between 0.7 and 1.0mm in a soft temper from ItalianSkins should do well; I also like the Windsor Pig and Suave Nappa leathers from JWoodLeathers.
It's that book from Harry Potter!
No, it's not. All my products are inspired by D&D Mimics.
But it looks like the Harry Potter book!
I don't caaaaaaare.
You should make the Harry Potter book!
Ok, yes, I did actually make one on commission some years ago. It took weeks of work and it came out very pretty, but I'm never doing it again. It's based on the original description in the book, rather than the weird furry version from the movies. You can see it here. There's also a comprehensive set of build photos in my Instagram highlights.