Monday, January 30, 2012


My fascination with Victorian and Georgian mourning jewelry lead me to carve a few skull charms—each sculpted out of wax and cast in sterling.
 It may seem morbid but Momento Mori (translated as "Remember you will die") artwork and jewelry was not a an uncommon theme in the past. The purpose, to remind people of their mortality. I was sadly reminded last week.
My Yiayia (Greek Grandma) passed away on Monday, January 23rd at about 10 to 10 in the evening. She would have been 96 in April. I have to keep reminding myself that death is inevitable— something everyone will experience—and she lived a long healthy life.
 It's just hard to accept that you will never see someone again, hard to imagine where they went and hard to swallow that their experience on planet earth in over. One of the last things she said to my mother before she died was, "I want to go home."  

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

beading bracelets

Hosanna did a couple posts on beaded bracelets (here & here) on thecraftsdept blog and I was eager to try some of the tutorials myself. There is a superb how-to (here) that solve the mystery of how to secure a strand of beads between two pieces of cord. 
It takes about five beads into your first bracelet to master the process. 
Tip: the larger the bead's hole the easier, so begin with a medium size bead. 
I used Swarovski rondelle crystal beads with silk beading thread that conveniently has a beading needle attached. You can basically use any type cording, to sandwich the beads between, that you prefer and use that pretty vintage pearl button you've been saving as the toggle clasp.
Okay, now get started!

Monday, January 16, 2012

make paper clay polar bears & igloo!

It totally slipped my mind that today, Martha's Snow Day show aired. As a child, I always played with clay and being stuck indoors with no school gave me the perfect opportunity (my sister & I would make endless miniature Fimo snowmen). What makes more sense than making polar bears and igloo (or snowmen) in between snow sledding and hot chocolate?
 I recommend all parents have clay in their homes at all times. Its a great tool for endless imagination and entertainment for kids. Growing up, there weren't many options of clay types—we would work the crumbling Fimo for like 10 minutes before it was soft enough to hold together! Today, there are all sorts of clay out there. I am really into Paperclay—it's easy to work with, air dries, is light weight, is easily carved when dry and is completely non-toxic.
Sculpting these polar bears is merely sculpting at all and covering a upside down bowl with a sheet of clay to make an igloo couldn't be easier either. Watch the video to learn the step by step and be prepared for the next big storm.
Polar Bear snowball fight!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Jude's animal tapestry book

Today, Martha posted on her blog about the tapestry book that I created for her first grandchild, Jude. Please check out her post—it captures how the book came together, including images of the process of making it.

  The Arctic.

 The Ocean.

  The Jungle.



Tuesday, January 10, 2012

felt animal art

I posted on the craftsdept blog about the segment I did just before Christmas. A handful of wintery animals from the Arctic and Antarctica aloft ombre dip dyed wool felt stretched in an embroidery hoop. They really came out sweet and I look forward to experimenting in different palettes with other animals. 

For the how-to video click here.
For additional photos check out here.
For the original inspiration look here.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Artsy videos that I enjoy. watch.

I was introduced to the "Don't hug me I'm Scared" video by a 12 year old girl. It's pretty awesome—a must see. This is it collective has a couple other hilariously strange videos like "Bad things that can happen to you".

Hosanna posted "All That Glitters: The History of Shiny Things" on thecraftsdept blog recently. I have always wondered how glitter was produced and this little educational video does that and more.

I saw Hero by Miguel Endara on RageHaus and just love the dot calculating. I have always liked the only black dots illustration technique.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

fringy tissue garland

To distinguish where the ceremony part of my wedding would occur, I draped a strand of lights along with a white tissue paper garland that I made. 
It's super easy—a couple layers of tissue paper, fringed and folded with a rope sandwiched and glued between. Done.
It was an inexpensive way to set the stage for a priceless occasion.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

do-ho suh

Back in October, I was able to visit Korean-born artist, Do-Ho Suh's exhibit just a couple days before the gallery's show ended. I was so blown away at the precision, craftsmanship and intricacy of his work that I wanted to share it with you. 
Rendered in sheer polyester, these 1:1-scale, 3-D replicas are pinned in place like ethereal creatures in frames and Plexiglass boxes. Suh's attention to detail is so fine that he even includes the instructional text on this strand of lights.
 I can't imagine the time spent and the patience in sewing all the tiny pieces of fabric together to create these structures. I imagine the fabric would fray and it would be nearly impossible to sew the tiny pieces together. Most people would have to be institutionalized if they attempted to make something like this, I would anyway. Jaw dropped— I was sincerely impressed.
I could have stared for hours at the gigantic dollhouse sliced open revealing a perfectly decorated interior, that stood in the center of the gallery, titled Fallen Star 1/5. Meticulously crafted, the to-scale model was a replica of Do Ho Suh's first American home, a three-story traditional in Providence, Rhode Island. In the living room, walls have collapsed as a model of Suh’s childhood home in Seoul crashes through the room. 
"It’s an architectural mash-up as a metaphor for cultural dislocation."-Aaron Krach for Elle Decor
The detail was out of control incredible. I can't express how astonished I was—this project would take me a lifetime to accomplish. It was too perfect for me to swallow that one artist could hand make all the pieces to this magnificent sculpture. Do Ho Suh is an artist to go see in person if you get a chance.