Posts Tagged 'gallery'

Taylor’s Custom Piggy Pouch

Upon seeing the crochet items Amigami has for sale, particularly the Mushroom Pouches, my longtime friend came to me requesting a piece of custom work.  He loved the idea of a plush lined pouch, and wanted to know if I could make a pig.  This darling piggy pouch is the result.

Made using the spiraling Amigurumi crochet technique, this super soft piggy is made from Lion Brand Baby yarn, and measures about 8″ x 5″.  The ears, feet, and snout were crocheted separately and attached during the construction process, along with the black button eyes (with white embroidery floss).  The pig’s curly tail doubles as a drawstring – when it’s pulled tight & knotted closed, not only does it appear pig-like, it also disguises the pouch’s opening!

The inner liner is actually a continuation of the crochet work.  Once the opening is completed, I simply continue crocheting a tapered oval shape, then turn  it inside-out into the pig and use the yarn’s slack to tack it down through the snout.

This little pig is super cute, and I’m absolutely inspired to delve further into the animal kingdom.  If you have any ideas for my next animal pouch, please share!

Fuse Crater Ball

Tomoko Fuse is one of the most prolific contemporary origami artists, whose modular assemblies are truly out of this world.  This is my first attempt at a Fuse assembly, an icosahedron made using Fuse’s classic 30 degree module.  It was completed using 30 four inch squares of heavyweight cardstock, and measures about 4.5 inches in diameter.  I love the geometric designs and “craters” the modules form as they are assembled – there are pentagons, stars, triangles and hexagons nestled throughout the sphere.  The weight of the cardstock made assembling this model somewhat cumbersome – in the future I will make it using a thinner base material.  This Fuse “Crater” Ball is a novel new edition to the Amigami line-up (as well as to any home or office!)

Chinese Zodiac Stone Necklaces

These elegant stone necklaces are inspired by the lore and symbolism of the Chinese zodiac.  I first had the idea after purchasing a jade rat key chain, in honor of my own zodiac sign.  After salvaging a carnelian monkey and purchasing a fluorite dragon, it seemed only natural to begin a series of zodiac jewelry.  Each of these necklaces features the same basic design, with “gun metal” filigree end caps, toggles, and genuine sterling silver Bali beads.  I am currently on the lookout to complete the set, I need quality stone fetish beads for: ox, boar, horse, snake, rabbit, dog, tiger, rooster & ram.
As I previously mentioned, this first necklace (and matching bracelet) features a jade rat focal bead in luxurious pale green.  Jade is known as the “dream stone,” and helps to promote harmony.  The jade is complemented by rounds of Moonstone, a stone associated with wishes, hopes & femininity.  Due to limited Jade supplies, the matching bracelet is actually composed of Green Turquoise, a protective & grounding stone which facillitates mental clarity.

In contrast to the lunar-inspired Rat necklace, this carnelian monkey set is inspired by the warmth of the sun.  Carnelian (also known as Sard) is an energetic stone said to enhance happiness & positivity, while sharpening the mind.  The small dark rounds which punctuate the set are Onyx, a stone of strength said to banish grief and heighten self-control.  The set is tied together by large beautifully banded rounds of Sardonyx, the “lucky stone,” which is actually a naturally formed combination of Onyx and Carnelian.  To complete the theme of happiness and celebration, the set is accented by genuine sterling silver Bali drums.

This third necklace showcases the natural spectrum of the mineral Fluorite, a stone of structure, aptitude & health.  The colors of Fluorite are said to differ slightly in metaphysical attributes, opening and activating the chakras they represent.  The melange of green, purple, colorless & rainbow fluorite is punctuated by small rounds of Amethyst, a traditional healing stone, known as a “stone of spirituality and contentment.”

This Chinese Zodiac collection is a wonderful combination of beauty and symbolism, which really allows the natural brilliance of the stones to shine as stars.  I can’t wait to complete the series, so stay posted for your birth year to be featured as the next Amigami creation.

Gemstone Jewelry With Form & Function

I’ve been intending to post photos of some of the stone jewelry I’ve created in the past, but lately I’ve been too caught up with posting current items to bother with the archives.  This is a collection of jewelry I designed this past holiday season as gifts for friends & family.  Constructed using only the finest quality metal and stone, these pieces were designed not only with aesthetic appeal in mind, but also the stones’ supposed metaphysical properties.

This first necklace showcases a crescendo of alternating spheres, in shades of dusty yellow which looks stunning against a darker wardrobe.  The large translucent orbs are Lemon Quartz, which is said to clear the mind & absorb negative energy.  The smaller brighter beads are Citrine, a powerful cleansing stone of emotional balance, which is also known as a “merchant’s stone” for promoting financial prosperity.  When combined, the citrine is said to dispel the negativity which the lemon quartz collects – the necklace retains an optimistic air regardless of the wearer’s stress levels.  Hung on a sterling silver chain, with complementary accent charm on the clasp, this elegant citrus-inspired necklace is a personification of happiness.

This next piece was designed for a longtime family friend who had recently been involved in a car accident and suffered a broken wrist.  To supplement the healing process, this bracelet features large free form nuggets of Pyrite (a stone of physical strength), framed by round beads of red tiger eye (his favorite stone) and accented by brass.  Tiger Eye is a grounding stone, said to combine the energies of sun & earth, which helps to encourage discipline & practicality.  Though designed with a man in mind, this silhouette is extremely versatile is looks great on women as well.

These next two pieces were collaborative works with my partner.  The first is an edgy pendant showcasing a genuine Ammonite fossil. Ammonites are a prehistoric form of marine life, said to bring structure to one’s life while allowing them to understand the big picture.  The fossil is framed by small spheres of spotted Dalmatian Jasper and disks of Bronzite, on a large brass chain.  Dalmation Jasper, also known as Leopard Jasper, is a stabilizing stone which promotes patience and helps one accept responsibilities.  Similarly, Bronzite is known as a “stone of courtesy,” promoting equitability and unbiased judgment.  Although the stones used are sharply contrasting in appearance they hold common threads metaphysically, which allow them to come together in a youthful necklace of peace & understanding.

This final tourmaline bracelet is truly elegant & unique.  The vintage-style butterfly, which we bent to match the natural curve of the wrist, was originally purchased about a decade ago from a local Claire’s Boutique as a necklace focal point.  The bracelet is adorned in pink and black tourmaline rounds, and accented by faceted nuggets of green tourmaline and “gun-metal” filigree beads.  Tourmaline promotes inspiration $ self-confidence, and it’s said to mirror the body’s chakras.  Rubellite (aka pink tourmaline) strengthens love &the healing qualities of the heart.  Green Tourmaline, also related with the heart, brings about both clarity & wealth (material & emotional). And the powerful Schorl (aka Aphrizite or Black Tourmaline) is said to protect against & repel negative energy.  With a design reminiscent of a peace sign, this bracelet connects the energies of mind, heart & body.

All of the wonderful information I’ve presented here on the stones’ properties has been gathered from the definitive source on the subject, Love is in the Earth:  The Crystal & Mineral Encyclopedia, by Melody. It may be the heaviest book I own, but it certainly suceeds in leaving no stone unturned.   🙂

2 Tone Suri Alpaca Beanie – 100% Handmade, From Cut To Crochet

This is hopefully only the first of many in a very special series of crochet work.  My partner Ramon travels the countryside each spring shearing alpacas, and a few weeks ago he returned with some of the fruits of his labor.

Mother Rasha & cria Morningstar, donors for the White fiber in this hat!

Amongst his clients is Vision Acres Ranch of Berkeley Country, West Virginia.  After the 2009 shearing season, Judy of Vision Acres began processing this high-quality alpaca fiber into exquisite hand-spun dual-toned yarn.  And it’s not just the dual coloring which makes this yarn unique – it is composed of 100% Suri Alpaca fiber.

Herdsire Scimitar (a.k.a. "Sam") contributed the brown yarn for this hat!

Suris, unlike their more popular fluffy Huacaya counterparts, feature fiber which forms natural locks, giving the final product an altogether different consistency and feel than your standard alpaca fiber.  Thank you to the Judy & everyone at Vision Ares Ranch for caring for these beautiful animals & creating the yarn, as well as to Ramon for shearing the alpacas and for bringing me spoils.

The hat is created using a modified version of a stylish beanie pattern I found in the Ravelry databases.  Unbelievably soft & warm, it’s also extremely breathable, making this hat a great year-round accessory.  Accented by a large natural-colored button I found in my mother’s vintage sewing supplies, this luxurious hat has certainly been given the personal touch from start to finish.

Annual Wheeling Moose Steak Fry!

The solstice is approaching, and in Wheeling, WV that can only mean one thing:  the annual Moose Club Steak Fry!  The Loyal Order of the Moose is an international fraternal organization, much like the Elks and Kiwanis Clubs.  Every year we take a break at the Wheeling Island Marina, with great food, drink, & entertainment.  Tons of people showed this year, and the weather was superb (minus a rain hiccup during set-up) — all in all, it was a great success!!  The shelter is spectacular, with abundant seating, cooking space, and lots of room to roam.  Thank you to Tom Dorsch & his family for maintaining this wonderful space and allowing us to use it!  Congratulations to Dennis and Katie for winning the 50/50 Raffles.

And a HUGE Thank You to Ed, Katie, Gus, Karen, Box, Rabbit, Bill P, Arden, and all the other Moose members who volunteered their time towards making this year’s steak fry such a success!

This year a special appearance was made by Stone and Alberto, 2 alpacas from local Rancho Chico Ranch.  They were a big hit, and loved hanging out with the crowd and being true party animals.  Thanks to Ramon for bringing down his boys — we hope they return next year!

As the unofficial photographer of the day, I’m posting a full gallery of the day’s activities.  Please feel free to comment and share your memories of the Moose Steak Fry!

Modular Origami Brocade Rose Cubes

This beautiful design has an eye-pleasing geometry which makes it look great with any color scheme.  I originally learned the module for making these brocades from The Origami Handbook, by Rick Beech (2002). A variant of the traditional Sonobe module, this figure is actually a simple 6-piece cube, which is given its rounded appearance by its frills (which function dually as assembly pockets).

Typically I hang my origami, but this is another great display idea!  Made from 16 gauge copper wire, the spring-like base is complemented by a swirly sun burst design.  Thank you Ramon for the awesome concept!

I do have an example of a hanging brocade rose, and lucky for you, it’s now for sale on Etsy!  Hopefully I will have more on sale soon, once my stock is returned.  Made from printed card stock with a vintage-motif, this 4″ cube is filled with lavender potpourri and adds to the ambiance of any room’s motif.


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