Monday, August 27, 2012

Media Monday - Yokoo



Today I'm featuring this gorgeous video from the "Handmade Portraits" series by Etsy. I'm an Etsy seller myself, and I love to see who else makes things. Yokoo is one of the most inspirational artists I've ever come across. Please check out her shop. I love that she says that her work comes out of silence. Her spirit really motivates me to create, and to take joy in the process. Her styling and photography are impeccable, and I would feel so cool wearing any of her unique pieces.






















All images from Yokoo's shop.

Just gorgeous.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath

Image from poets.org, taken by Rollie McKenna
I love the way Sylvia Plath describes people in her journals. Here is a little glimpse of a family that I am particularly taken with, written in the journal of 1962.

"Mrs. Bertha Billyead an amazing & indomitable woman: white short hair, tall, keen blue eyes & pink cheeks. Quite greedy, though fattish, she ate lots of scones & cream & jam for tea. She cans (or bottles) about 200 weight of jam a year. And extracts her own honey. Secretary of the Conservatives in the country. At the end of the afternoon, she brought out her scrapbook of her life in British Guiana. An astounding document. Lots of pictures of waterfalls seen from the air in her three-seater plane; her black silk flying suit, like Amelia Earhart; her handsome pilot; close calls. Pictures of her with short hair, in pants, handsome herself, ordering a cowering black to move some dirt, on horseback, driving a locomotive which she & her engineer built, straightening the 7-mile railway tracks they made to help get the timber to the river. A succession of wood houses, grander & grander, as they made more & more money. They were at first too poor to buy meat; at the end the grant was sold for 180,000.* I couldn't understand whether the Major was her first husband, or second. Or whether she & her father built the timber plantation, or she & her husband. At one point, she said that she had no children but attended a Mother's Union meet as she had cared for a lot. And then, when she was showing me the pictures of children & weddings in the hall, she seemed to say "These are his children", meaning the Major's? Her father, George Manly, an amazing man of 89 in white linen jacket with that military blue eye who attributes his health to drinking a quart of rum a day all his life, said that when a jaguar was troubling them, she locked up all the dogs resolved to shoot it. Heard a noise, a scratching, at the house window in the dark. Crept downstairs with rifle & outside: saw a dark shape fall from the window. That's a dog, she thought, that the jaguar has thrown out. I'll save it. She ran & embraced the dark object, which turned out to be the jaguar. It dashed off & hid in the chicken shed. She went over & shot into the shed, then did run. In the morning the natives found the jaguar in there, dead, shot through the lung. So she is a big woman. Very opinionated. Said that these women get multiple sclerosis from worrying over their husbands' bad health and not accepting what God has sent them!

Major Stanley Billyeald curiously the odd-man out. Always making jocular references to his wife's expertise (on bees) & domination: "She has her finger on my jugular." A man of action; can't stand still. His father was a drunkard journalist & pot-boiler. He started in the ranks of the calvalry himself & worked up to head of the C.I.D. in British Guiana. An immense admiration, sardonic, for lawyers: how they can make monkeys of truths & learned men. He writes all winter: reports. Can't talk standing still: walks round & round the lawn, with a sort of horse-rider's lurch. He blue eye, also, his clipped silver moustache. The old man, his father-in-law, a sort of elderly double of himself. Three things I'll tell you, he said: There is no sentiment in business. There in no honesty in politics. And self-interest makes the world go round. All right, I said, I give you those. Gave Ted a box of little Velocity cabbages in tins & a couple of bunches of very odd cylindrical green celery ("for soup").

George Manly, the old man, was according to his daughter all sorts of wonderful & odd things. He seemed drastically hungry for a listener. Brought out his photograph album with prize-winning photos he had taken: of an old hawker with white hair and wrinkled like Methuselah; a fat little native baby eating dirt;snow on a wire fence (That's a bee-comb", someone guessed, to his delight), hand colored lily-pads like violent green saucers, and moonlight on the big waterfall (Kaieteur?), the highest in the world, in British Guiana. Bertha B. said something about his being a crack marksman, a world champion, & a trick entertainer on a party with the king & queen (which?)) He brought Ted to his bedroom at the end, to show him little boxes of jewelry he made from loose colored rhinestones & frames which he gave to friends; showed him his watercolors for doing photographs, and his mother and father, an oval black and white portrait of a dark, oppressed little woman & bearded smiling patriarchal man (her parents were killed in the Mutiny; she was married at 14). He prided himself on making the baby smile. Pretended to eat Frieda's parsley & then gave it back, while she made her queer "shy" face, sliding her eyes to one side under her lids. Promised to tell a story of a cockroach. Gave me a sprig of "rosemary from remembrance" as we left. Brought out a Captain Hornblower book, autographed to his from C.S. Forester, whose picture he had taken atop the big falls."

I think it's amazing how many people are in the world and that each one of them has a story like mine.

If you're interested in reading Sylvia's journals, the unabridged copy is published by Anchor Books, edited by Karen V. Kukil.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Reindeer in home decor






Yesterday, I was browsing in the Indian Art Center of California. (People in the LA area, this shop is a must-go. It's on Ventura Blvd, between Coldwater Canyon and Whitsett.) The lovely 72-yr old owner, Helen, was showing me around and explaining different pieces and the artists that made them, when she placed my hand on a pelt. It was the winter coat of a white reindeer, and I fell in love. Instantly, I imagined this beautiful pelt draped over a piece of minimalist furniture in a clean, crisp room with light grey walls and whitewashed hardwood. This morning I'm looking to see what amazing rooms I can find that use reindeer or similar pelts in their decor. (Animal lovers - although I do love fur, I only support hunters who use the entire animal. Helen said this artist used everything from the hooves to the teeth to the antlers and bones in his Native art.)

I especially love this first bedroom, which belongs to Juli and John, owners of Mjolk. Their Toronto-based design centers on Japanese and Scandinavian influence. You can check out their blog at http://kitkadesigntoronto.com/. Gorgeous!


Image from Remodelista.com    







Image from modern-sophisticate.blogspot.com

 







Image from missarrow.com

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Woods



Listening to a little Bon Iver this morning to get in the mood. I've had my coffee, and I'm getting down to business.

I'm working on a new piece this morning! My goal is do complete two new pieces for the shop before next Monday. If all goes according to plan, I'll beadweave a strip of these lovely labradorite chips together, lined with copper tubes on the edges, then sew the beadwork to a piece of leather for the face of a bracelet.



My workspace is what I call "controlled chaos". I like to see pictures of other people's studios or shops, where they have their own little room with an inspiration board, a desk, and plants. Right now, though, that's not possible for me - I work on our kitchen table. If we get a house someday, I'd love to have a little room just for my work, but for now there just aren't any rooms available! Once the business starts picking up, I'd like to buy a desk where I can set up my station, but for now I'm content to remain portable. I could use a little organization help, though!


Yikes, right?

Monday, August 20, 2012

Media Monday





These, "The Tree of Life" and "Beasts of the Southern Wild", are my favorite movies. And they are the same movie, at least in my eyes. The tell the same story, though they occur in different contexts and they reach different conclusions. The way of nature and the way of grace - these constantly wrestle within my soul.

If you have not seen these films, please do if you have the chance. The feeling they give me is indescribable. If I feel sapped of energy, of passion, or inspiration - I can turn to these films.

First Things First

Hi, I'm Kelly.


I live with my husband Colton in Los Angeles. We're new here.


I make jewelry.


As I'm beginning this new life in California and starting to run my business and Etsy shop, I'm in constant need of inspiration. This blog is intended to fill that need for myself, other craftspeople, and everyone who loves beautiful things!