Tag: fetish

Arts & Crafts

Reading Time: 7 minutes

I don’t watch a good deal of commercial television anymore. We do have a cable connection through Spectrum (the old Time Warner) on one of the boxes in the house, but the 42″ in the den isn’t connected to the system. On that television, I have a ROKU stick and use it to connect through YouTube, Amazon, Netflix, Hulu and a host of other services that cater to that particular streaming option. Since we do still have the Spectrum account, I can even use the logon for the online service to connect to commercial stations like FoxSports, ESPN and even MLB to watch baseball occasionally. So I don’t need to spend the extra $60/month for another cable box.

Lately, I’ve been watching YouTube more than anything else, and my videos have been a collection of wrestling recaps (I may not be watching the WWE in Mondays & Tuesdays anymore, but I’m still keeping up with the gossip and random inanity they generate), how-to videos, and other accumulated pap just to keep myself entertained after working all day. About two weeks ago, I happened upon a video where this fellow from Utah was making a wallet from scratch, from leather. It was pretty fascinating. And intriguing. And I’ll admit, it looked pretty simple the way he was doing it. The caveat is that he’s been doing it for about 8 years now, so his movements are fairly practiced, still precise and he makes it look easy, although something of that quality rarely is. If I were standing next to him at his drafting table, making one right alongside (without coaching or tips) I can imagine my wallet would look very different from his. After watching the first video, I watched another. And then another. I didn’t subscribe to his channel, but I did start looking at other crafters videos, trying to get a handle on my interest. Was it just fleeting, or might there be something here for me? I’ve been looking for something to bring in a little extra money, and a bespoke business, even if it just sells a few somethings might be an interesting side gig. Of course, the initial outlay would be a slight impediment, since leather is a pricey commodity to be working in. The tools, for the most part, aren’t extremely expensive, but if you choose to do your stitching with a machine rather than using needles, nylon thread, and a saddle stitch, then you’re talking something in the thousands of dollars. Certainly way out of the budget of a hobbyist or sometimes crafter.

Unless you already have something on hand that would do the work in the meantime.

As it just so happened, my mother-in-law owned a Singer sewing machine.  As did my own mother, but hers is a 221 Featherweight, which I still have.  It’s definitely not designed for leather work, just mending, or making clothes.   In fabric.  It has a belt drive and the motor is very under-powered, on purpose, because of what it is, and what it was designed for.

My mother-in-law’s on the other hand, is a larger machine, with what’s called a a gear drive.  The wheel on the right side is turned by a gear on the inside, and it’s directly driven by the motor that’s attached (people have coined it the ‘potted motor’ because the housing on the motor looks like a small pot) giving it more torque and the ability to sew through heavier materials like denim, canvas or leather.  It took me a little time to figure out what model it was, as there was nothing on the machine that told me that directly.  Fortunately it still had the serial number plate, and with that I determined that the machine is a Singer 15-91 made in 1941.

Quizzing my wife about the machine, she informed me that her mother bought it new, and used it for all sorts of repairs on clothes, much as anyone that had purchased that model would have done.  It was colloquially referred to as the ‘Farmer’s Wife’ in that it was essentially ‘over-built’ in that it could do just about any repairs or duties that a rural wife would need done on a farm.  No Wal-Marts in those days.

It’s enclosed in what Singer called a #40 cabinet, where it would be attached to a plate and could be dropped down and the work surface folded up and over, making it into a small cabinet when it wasn’t being used.  My mother had one like it for her Singers, but her main ‘go-to’ machine when I was growing up was a little bigger than the 221, and it was partially computerized, in that it had stitches in memory, that could be produced on demand.  Even so, my Mom never got rid of her Featherweight, she’d had it since she had gone to college, and I was glad she kept it, as she taught me how to sew with it, and I still remember her lessons.

Getting back to the 15-91, my wife informed me that her mother kept it in good condition, but it really hasn’t seen any action in the last 30 years.  I’d actually completely forgotten that we had it, since it’s been in its ‘storage’ mode ever since we’ve been in this house.  Over the ensuing years, we’ve used the top of the cabinet for that purpose, and a lot of stuff had been piled on and the contents underneath left to the spiders.  It was pretty cobwebby when I finally pulled it up a couple weeks ago.  Even so, 30 years of inactivity hasn’t been unkind to the old girl.  I wiped it down, and did a little inspection on what it might need to be workable again.  Asking my wife again, she informed me that we apparently didn’t move her mothers’ sewing supplies, so all of that was lost to the auction when her parent’s house was sold back around 1999.  A loss to be sure, but not a completely insurmountable one.  The manual I found online, and there are a wealth of websites and videos that talk about this model, and since it is a rather popular model, there are a lot of places where one can get original as well as quality replacement parts.  Even motors, if it came to that.

My initial investigation and inspection informed me that it’s in pretty good shape for being set aside for as long as it’s been.  Its lacking in oil for lubrication and in order to do leather sewing it’s going to require a little assistance in moving the material.  An industrial specific machine would employ what’s colloquially known as a ‘walking foot‘ mechanism, but Singer never made such a thing for their domestic machines.  Fortunately, there’s an aftermarket walking foot available for about $20, and I found a website that caters to the 15-91 (as well as other models) and I can get not only that but the thread spindle that’s missing from the top of the machine.  While I’m at it I went ahead and got some leather specific needles, just to have on hand.

In the intervening week since I started this entry I received the items I ordered, installed the new presser foot, put in the thread spindle and was able to successfully wind a bobbin and thread the machine.  I even put in a leather specific needle and tried sewing on a scrap of old leather from an old restraint that I had laying about.  It worked pretty well overall.  About five minutes into my test the machine started to squeal a bit under load, so it definitely needs a shot of oil in certain spots.  But it was able to sew the leather adequately, and it didn’t shirk when asked to do so, even though I was using cotton thread instead of the nylon that’s recommended for leather work.  I made a side trip to Joann Fabrics last weekend and was able to get the specific oil for Singer machines and will be making use of it in the near future.

Needless to say, unless I lost interest in the near future, I might have something to keep me busy in the interim.

Scouting out sites for play

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Even though I don’t get the opportunity all that often to play, due to the necessities of the LDR that I’m presently in, it doesn’t stop me from looking around and planning ahead for when the time comes for us to be together.  Even though I live in a house that’s nearly 200 years old, it wasn’t necessarily designed with BDSM play in mind.  The rooms for the most part are small, with high ceilings, and the construction of the walls and ceilings aren’t really conducive towards adding things like anchor points or what would be called ‘hard points’ in the trade, ie: items or things that can be used for tying rope or attaching chain to when restraining someone.

I suppose I could get some lumber or a shipment of pipe and construct a piece (or several pieces) of furniture that would do the same thing (or purchase one from a variety of sellers I’m aware of).  Too, I’ve been contemplating taking welding classes so I could in the far-flung off future create my own diabolical devices, but that’s a ways off.  This is more about places elsewhere that we can play, that would sort of be off the beaten path as it were, and wouldn’t necessarily involve trespassing or being caught in places we’re not supposed to be, either by the landowners, or by the police type authorities.

There are several play-spaces nearby that can be utilized, and I have one scene friend in particular who has in the past offered me use of her in-home dungeon.  I did a favor for her a couple of years ago, and she graciously offered me use of her play space.  I didn’t take her up on it at the time, since the situation between my slave and I was in a different space, and I wasn’t entirely certain she was going to be visiting.  As it turned out I was right.  She didn’t and I wasn’t in need of the space at that time.  I’d have to check to see if the invitation is still open (fairly sure it is), and then make use of it if we’re both agreeable.

The only roadblock to using the play-spaces I alluded to in the previous paragraph is, they’re public play-spaces and usually would be active with a play party of the organization at the time.  They’re not rent-able by private parties, so my girl would have to be comfortable playing in public and at this juncture I’m fairly certain she’s not.  So, while a good idea, it’s going to have to be shelved for the time being.  But waiting also has its downfalls, as play-spaces don’t always stay open long-term.  People get out of the scene all the time, things happen and places close.  It all can be pretty fluid like in all things.  It has a lot to do with money and people getting older and less interested at times.

There’s one place where I live that I would dearly love to either rent or purchase, because it would be ideal for a play space of my own.  It’s an old meat-packing building, though it sits in the off-side of town, and there are residential houses nearby.  Even so it could be easily converted for use, although there have been rumors of it being used by homeless people over the years, and it’s probably in pretty cruddy shape by now.  To me, if I came into a good chunk of money, I’d probably take the chance, but I’ve never been inside the building, so it’s a pipe dream at this juncture.  Just something I’ve always wondered about, thought about and dreamt of.   I actually equate it to the former studios of Insex on J Street in Brooklyn.  Oh, if those walls could talk!

My two cents (fwiw)

Reading Time: 6 minutes

I follow a good amount of blogs here online.  Nowadays the vast majority are WordPress, but there are some independents, a few on LiveJournal (still) and others on an assortment of hosted sites.  On occasion, I run into a post that I feel I’d like to comment on, and I do.  More rarely, a comment becomes a full-blown entry on my own blog, as is the case here.  This is in response to a post made from someone who I follow, and respect.  Someone that has their head screwed on straight, at least in my opinion.


I’ve been in the scene for the last 35 plus years. Active, inactive, watching from the sidelines, participating in my own way, the whole nine yards. For the most part, I don’t foist my own opinions on ‘WIITWD [What It Is That We Do]’ because I don’t subscribe to the ‘One Twue Way‘ so many others seem to think is the hallmark of the acronym BDSM. I’ve so often said (I didn’t coin the phrase, someone else did, bless them!) BDSM is a vanilla relationship with more ‘bells and whistles’, and it is.

All the underpinnings of a vanilla relationship are there, we just add things on (like a sundae!) to make it better for us, to make it more interesting, to make it inherently OURS. But that doesn’t mean it’s BETTER than a vanilla relationship, very much not!  Just different. Many, many, MANY vanilla people have just as meaningful relationships without a whiff of anything that might be inherent in a BDSM one. And they don’t need it. They don’t have to understand it, it’s not required that they do. “Different strokes, for different folks”. That’s a good cardinal rule that many kinky people (or wannabes) don’t ever seem to get. Certainly not on Fet, where the K&P people (or the ones that are determined to get there) seem to think being kinky is a step up. Um, sorry, it’s not. It’s just a different interpretation of the same thing that people have been doing together for millennia. Romans did BDSM, so did Egyptians. The Mayans practiced it as probably did Neanderthals. Naturally, it wasn’t called BDSM back then, but it amounted to the same thing.

One thing that I tell people who have looked in on my blogs, my profile on Fet, and other places where I encounter them is, you have to find how you fit into the whole scheme of things.  There aren’t any shortcuts.  You need to read, discuss, talk to people, find your own niche and how you interpret the whole scene.  You can look at ready-made sites like BondageLife, Insex, Kink.com, House Of Gord and think “wow, I want to do that!”  Well, I hate to break it to you, but that’s all fantasy.  Someone had their own version of how they believed BDSM to be and created a fantasy world out of it.  They’re using models (and paying them, which is a very important distinction) and not actually living what you’re seeing.  The videos you’re watching aren’t live action, they’re edited. (The only partial exception to this rule would be the old ‘Live Feeds’ that Insex did way back when they first started out..)  What you’re viewing has been made over the course of many hours, in some instances days, many takes and lots of editing on their computer to make a polished final product.  Life is a LOT more messy than all that.  Relationships aren’t made in a studio, they’re crafted in real life, with real people.  People that have emotions, outside problems brought into the relationship that have to be dealt with, hammered out, cried over and yes even argued and shouted over.  Submissives aren’t doormats.  Dominants aren’t infallible.  Mistakes happen all the time, and they have to be discussed, understood, and life will go on.  Sometimes there might be an instance where something unforgiveable happens.  It does.  It’s called LIFE for a reason.

Lifestyle people tend to be very judgmental.  Having been in the scene as long as I’ve been, I have to sometimes take a step back and evaluate what I’m seeing on various websites, or communities that I’m involved with, even to the point of holding my tongue before commenting on what I’ve observed, read and so on.  Others don’t bother with those niceities.  They shoot from the hip and damn the consequences.  Not always the best way to build a community, but then again many of them aren’t here to build, they’re here to criticize, and that’s about it.  YMMV (Your Mileage May Vary) is often being replaced with NMK (Not My Kink) or even worse YKINOK (Your Kink Is Not Ok) as if they had the corner on what’s right, what’s wrong and even what’s acceptable.

I have my own way of interpreting the scene at large and my own kink in particular.  It’s MINE. Let me say that again.  It’s mine.  I’ve spent years, nigh decades thinking about it, working on it and practicing it with a variety of people, submissives, dominants and even aquaintances.  Does it always work?  No, that’s why it’s always changing.  Is it for you?  Possibly, but it also isn’t a shortcut to happiness for you.  There’s no one true (or right) way to do all of this.  You have to do your own research, testing, interacting and critiquing to see what works for you.  There are no shortcuts.  I’m sorry, I really am, there just aren’t.  You can’t pick up a whip and become ‘Master(Mistress) So-and-So’ in a day.  If anyone tells you that you can, they’re lying their ass off, or trying to sell you something.

One final note and then I’m off.  There was one part of the above referenced post that I disagreed with.  But hear me out please.  The blogger I referenced named an author who goes by the pen name of Michael Makai.  I’ve heard of him, he’s written more than a few books on BDSM, but they’re not ‘how-to’ books, they’re fantasies.  The main reason I’m very wary about this fellow is that a few years ago he was not only arrested but convicted of several unsavory charges that would normally make most people blanch.  My point here is that ‘Warrior Princesses’ (as well as other characters) aside, the ideas that this person fervently believes in, as well as preaches (non-consensual practices, underage involvement and a host of other questionable ideas) in many ways taints what he espouses.  I’m not saying dismiss it completely, but be aware of what someone thinks elsewhere before you go for some part of it that you agree with, or fantasize about.  That’s all.  I know this part is going to cause some people’s toes to curl, (and worse) but I felt it needed to be said.  Fair warning, fwiw.  I’m certainly open to discussion.  If you want to flame, well, that’s your issue.

 

Order, order!

Reading Time: 3 minutes

facebookbackground_origI’m having a love-hate relationship with a BDSM vendor.  And I should have known better than to order from her, but after supporting her Kickstarter campaign (and getting stiffed) I really and truly STILL wanted the items that she had wanted funding for, and wasn’t going to take no for an answer.  So essentially, this angst was brought upon myself and admittedly, I have no one else to blame (except for her, who should know better) but yours truly.

After repeatedly contacting her over the many months and being either ignored or shined on (she would respond after a few days to my email with a cryptic “It’s in the mail, or it’s being shipped tomorrow.”) She’d again go silent and I’d wait for a package that would never arrive.  Some people got their product, others, like me got nothing.  It was only after some sleuthing that I was able to find her vendor website and what did I discover?  She was selling the remaining stock of product from her campaign on the website when she couldn’t even bother to supply her backers with what they had been promised.

Figuring at this point it was unlikely that I was going to be getting the product through Kickstarter, I did something that was probably pretty stupid.  I placed an order through her company for the product I was supposed to have gotten before and waited.  A week after placing the order I received an email saying that they’d been shipped.  No tracking number, no information as to how they might be coming, just that, a shipping notification.  And they never arrived.  Starting to sound familiar?  A few days later, I sent her an email, detailing that she’d giving me little information and I required more, like a tracking #, or some knowledge of HOW it was shipped, so I could at least track it.  I might as well have been shouting down a well.  No reply.  I tried again a couple of days ago.  Lo and behold, she responded a couple of hours later with a cryptic (and familiar) reply. “They’ll be shipped out tomorrow.” is all it said.  Seriously?  I thought it was shipped 2 weeks ago!  I really want to give her a piece of my mind, but I still want the product, before I have to contact my credit card company to sic them on her ass….at least this time I used credit instead of something else, so that I had a reputable company to do my dirty work for me, if she was going to be a pill again.

Honestly, I don’t understand how she manages to stay in business if this is the way she conducts hers.

Gearing up

Reading Time: 5 minutes

So here we are, less than a week before my pet and I are due to meet again.  The last time we met, it was November of 2017 and the first time for both of us…well, the first time that we met one another, I’ve done this multiple times, with different partners, it was a first for her, on several levels.  Granted, our dynamic has shifted a bit since then.  Confused?  That’s ok boo, we’re all confused in one way or another.

To paraphrase another post, “it’s been a long road, getting from there to here.”  7 months (and a couple weeks) to be exact.  Lots of angst, conversations, video chats, phone chats, packages zipping back and forth through the mail, trying to keep in contact, to keep things fresh, maintain the connection and the whole ball of wax.  It hasn’t been easy for either of us and the time apart has been pretty hard, I have to admit.  Honestly I think it’s been harder for her, since she doesn’t have someone to come home to, to rely on, to talk to about her day when she does come home.  Too, she’s moved away from what was her quasi ‘comfort zone‘, but I have commend her for making the move, since she did it for two reasons really.  One, to get away from a situation that was literally driving her up the wall, and two, to be closer to me.  Think about that.  That’s huge.

Of course, it hasn’t been without it’s own headaches, but we’ve been trying to weather them as they arrived.  Physical ailments, bouts of loneliness, a less than supportive roommate, the whole nine yards.  There’s been times when she’s wanted to chuck it, and go back to where things are easier, but I’ve tried to counsel her and bring a little logic to her thinking, letting her know that even though it’s hard, she’s in it for the right reasons, and she has a goal in mind.  Going backward isn’t going to accomplish it, so she needs to forge ahead.  Yes, it’s a sacrifice, yes it’s going to be hard, but in the end, it’s worth it, because of the goal that she wants badly.  It’s something we both want, and need to continue to work for.  Ech, sorry for the sideways tangent…but it needed to be said.

Getting back to what I was originally talking about.  Gearing up for the coming week.  Well, there’s a lot to do before I hop in the car and drive south.  And as usual, your intrepid chronciler puts it off to the last minute.  Ace Procrastinator, at your service!  I put in for the vacation almost a month ago, but was informed a couple of weeks ago that there might be a conflict, and the store manager had the final say in whether it was a go.  I pled my case, saying that I had a very good work record, am due vacation, and there were plenty of instances where others had been allowed to go under similar circumstances, so why should I be any different?  Granted, one of the department heads that intersects with my department is out on a medical disability, and someone else is covering his hours, someone that next week would be needed to cover my shift, but why should that be my problem?  Going back several months ago, I was asked to push back vacation because of staffing issues and I agreed (begrundingly), and as it turned out, I could have gone when I desired and nothing would have happened.  I really wasn’t interested in doing that again.  Fortunately, logic won the day, and I was permitted to take the time off.  So, win!

Another issue was transportation.  My wife and I have just one vehicle.  It’s a lease, and it’s in her name, not mine.  So I have to have permission to take the car, I can’t just take it and leave her without one.  Last year, I opted to rent a car to travel to my girl (then my Dominant) and it turned out to be a series of hoops, and a bit of an extravagance.  Nice vehicle, did what it was supposed to and served me well, but all in all it turned out to be $800 to rent the damn thing for 5 days.  This time, my wife said that it would be better if I took the car.  I agree, but I’m still concerned with leaving her without transportation.  This was much easier when we still had 2 cars.

Another issue.  What to bring along in the toy line.  So many choices!  But it’s a ‘first’ meeting, so I can’t be too crazy, and besides I have to lug in (and out) all the stuff I’d bring, and be sure not to leave things behind.  So probably bringing a couple floggers, a few paddles, and some equipment like carabiners, locks (and keys!) is a good idea.  There will be times when she’s going to visit me here in the future, and then I can bring out the ‘big guns’.  In the privacy of my own playroom.  That will definitely be nice.  Too, there are play parties in my area we can attend.  But that’s for the future.  Right now, I just want to introduce her to play without scaring the crap out of her.  Certainly there’s ONE item that I don’t want to forget, and she knows what it is.  It’ll be the thing I pack FIRST, because forgetting it would be unforgiveable!  And I can’t disappoint her like that.

Oy, I have a lot to do before next Tuesday.  And here I am writing a post….well, lucky you, because you got to read it…

 

Thunderboomer

Reading Time: 1 minute

When asked what one of my favorite ideas about a scene would be, I’ve always answered, “play in a thunderstorm”.  I just love the idea of playing in a driving rain, having my submissive tied to a tree, or to a post and me playing with her body, while the lightning crackled in the sky and the thunder rattled all around us.

Of course, I wouldn’t play with any toys that are worth a bit of money, but the nice part about nature is, it provides toys of it’s own making that don’t cost a dime.  Switches, branches, brambles or even rocks being used with rope for weights, and of course there are a myriad of different toys one can use that are waterproof, or just plain discardable after they outlived their usefulness, and won’t cost you a mint to replace.

I’m reminded of this because we’re experiencing our first thunderstorm of 2018.  Stirs the imagination, it does!

More Opportunities, more toys

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Oh brother.  I have to say I’ve never been one to pass up a good bargain.  I’ve always said that it’s a good thing I don’t have an inexhaustible supply of money, because I’d end up with a warehouse full of BDSM toys.

I bought another toy that was on my bucket list last night.  Ever since I started using the computer to connect, I’ve also used it to watch porn.  And in my kink formative years, there always needed to be something with restraints in them.  Now rope restraints are all well and good, leather restraints do the job, but there’s nothing quite like seeing someone struggling in cold, hard steel restraints.  Just gets the juices flowing.  At least it does me.

When I was watching Insex during the late 90’s and early 2000’s, I was always floored at the cornucopia of metal toys that the owner of the site had.  I learned later that almost all of them were hand-made, forged from raw steel by a fellow who went by the alias ‘KGB’.  I’ve said many a time if Intersec/Insex ever had a garage (or estate) sale of the items that were made for the various websites, I’d be nearly the first in line.  You just can’t pass up good workmanship!  So, in the same vein over the years, I’ve been haunting sites that sell old gear, from people who have either gotten out of the scene, or want to make some quick cash selling things they don’t have a use for anymore.

I’ve been a member of Fetlife nearly from the beginning of that site.  I’ve also been a member of their ‘Kinky Items For Sale’ board for many years as well.  Certainly I’ve gotten more than a few good bargains from that board in that time, with people who have taken good care of their toys, but for one reason or another they either don’t wish to be active and want to re-home their past purchases, or they just don’t want them anymore.  For every person that wishes to sell their used panties (ew), there are people that want to part with quality floggers, restraints, bondage furniture and other goodies at fairly good prices.  Even better than eBay I’ve discovered, and way better than Craigslist (I’m continually reminded of the woman who posted for sale her late husband’s St. Andrew’s Cross, stating that it was a very fancy clothes hanger).

Certainly there are many places one can get forged steel toys, and even at better than average prices.  But when someone offers them at a discount, it’s sometimes a race to get it before someone else can contact them.  Which just happened to be the case last night.  Within about an hour and a half of the person posting them, I was able to broker a deal and purchased them.  Of course, with such a quick sealed deal, I have to be certain that they’re going to fit my pet.  But, that’s something that we can discover when she visits.  And if not, I can always resell them.  Because there’s always someone willing to buy.

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