Flower Prize

Win a Work of Art from Studio Deanna!


Can you help me create a wonderful name for my new art installation?

This current work in progress is a fiber and metals, hand-crocheted Tropical Butterfly Garden that will be completed in March/April 2015 on site in Australia.  The installation is meant to be a quiet gathering space for small groups of all ages, for a stitch group to chat, and for children to touch the butterflies.

This piece needs a better name, Tropical Butterfly Garden feels too generic. I’ve been calling it a garden but it really isn’t. It will be a rainforest of wire & fibre hand-cocheted butterflies in each of their life cycle stages. To re-create the gorgeous colors found in the butterflies, flowers and plants of the rainforest, much of the fibre has been special ordered from an independent yarn dyer in Australia.

Wire Crocheted Ulysses Butterfly  This is the name brainstorming list I have so far, none of them really wow me as yet, but maybe it will kickstart an idea for you:

- Fiber Flutterbys
– Butterfly Dreamscape
– Chaos Theory – Calm from Chaos
– The idea of playing on chaos theory to describe a calm butterfly place.
– Butterfly Rainforest
– Butterfly Stitchery

I’m looking for a rockin’ name that peaks one’s curiosity to learn more about this piece. An name that will be easy to document via Instagram, Twitter and through this blog. In other words, a name with more energy than just #butterfly

The small print:

1. In exchange for providing the creative name for my project I offer one of my colored copper wire and fibre hand-crocheted flowers as a gift. It’s widest dimension is 18cm (approx 7″)

Flower Prize 2This prize is a completed project that will be sent as a gift by the most financially reasonable means possible.

2. If the same name is entered by more than more than one person, the first entry to arrive according to the website’s time/date will be the entry included in the contest.

3. I may choose none as the title for my project, but will choose the entry that inspires me to create my own title or the one I feel was the closest unique possibility.

4. My choice is wholly subjective. Multiple entries are welcome :)

5. I will be accepting entries through Midnight Pacific Time, Monday, October 20 via the following accounts:

Instagram – Studio Deanna

Twitter – Studio Deanna

Comment Section at the bottom of this  artist’s blog post

Or through email: studiodeanna (at) me (dot) com

Thank you so much in advance for everyone’s creative name suggestions for my Tropical Butterfly project.

Australian Fan Palm

The Upcoming Week in my Tatami Room Studio

Art, Tropical Butterfly Garden - Wire & Yarn Crocheted Art Installation

1. Name Game Contest: Today will be spent completing the winning prize!

Do you know what should I name my Tropical Butterfly Garden art installation? Be sure you are following my blog, Instagram or Twitter to catch the launch and upcoming details.

2. I’ve compiled a list of the flora, fauna and butterflies I’m including in the design of my butterfly rainforest installation. 27 species in all!

Daintree Tropical Rainforest Birdnest FernUnlike in the deciduous forest area I grew up, rainforest is very, very dense and while 27 species may seem like a lot, it really barely scratches the surface of all there is to discover.

Cairns Birdwing (Ornithoptera euphorion) aka Cooktown or Northern Birdwing
Spur Mahogany (Dysoxylum pettigrewianum)
Birdnest Fern Epiphyte (Asplenium nidus)
Strangler Fig Epiphyte (Ficus aurea)
King Fern (Ptisana salicina)
Birthwort, Indian Birthwort (Aristolochia acuminata)
Birthwort (Aristolochia indica)
Cairns Birdwing Plant (Pararistolochia australopithecurus)
Native Dutchman’s Pipe (Pararistolochia deltantha)
Ulysses Butterfly (Papilio Ulysses)
Pink Flowered Euodia, (Melicope Elleryana)
Northern Elkhorn Fern Epiphyte (Platycerium hillii)
Native Pepper (Piper caninum)
Needleberry (Raphidophora australasica)
Green Spotted Triangle Butterfly (Graphium Agamemnon)
Orange Annona (Fitzlania heteropetala)
(meiogyne  verrucosa)
(meiogyne hirsuta)
Calaboa (Uvaria concava)
China Pine (Polyalthia Michaelii)
Walking Stick Palm (Linospadix minor)
Lurcher Butterfly (Yoma Sabina)
Spearpod, Minnieroot (Ruella Tuberosa)
Desert Petunia (Diptercanthus australacicus)
Fan Palms (Licuala ramsayi)

Misc. Lichens and Mosses
Misc. Vines
Possibly some fauna

This week I jump into designing these species and their construction!

3. Still keeping track of my time and how it is being spent: HoursTracker total for this week: 12 hours 45 minutes.

Research & Development: 5 hours 55 min

Marketing: 1 hour 30 minutes

Construction: 5 hours 20 minutes

Follow my daily progress on Instagram: StudioDeanna

Zebra Wire in Tatami Studio

Studio Progress Report – Oct 10

Art, Tropical Butterfly Garden - Wire & Yarn Crocheted Art Installation

It’s been a busy week in my studio. Quite a few hours continuing my lepidoptera and biology research. A few hours sketching, a few hours of construction, a few hours re-organizing the studio all add up to a lot of hours!

Zebra Wire Order

 My order of Zebra Wire, colored copper wire arrived – Half of a rainforest in a box!

A design sketch has slowly been coming together as I gather information on the butterflies. It’s a sketch that only a mother could love and I can read. Thankfully it’s more about placement and arrangement than the final look. It’s supposed to be a view from the top but considering my poor drawing skills this is about it. A fat stream gurgling through the middle won’t really be that wide.

Butterfly Garden Overhead Sketch

I did a sad sketch with colored pencil of the Spur Mahogany with it’s planned epiphytes, but it’s another one that simply demonstrates my inability to draw 2D work from the 3D visions I have floating in my head.

The yarn dyer in Australia to which I have placed a special order has begun working and sending updates! I’m so excited to see the steps she is taking to help bring my project to life. I am hoping to post them in the near future.

This Tropical Butterfly Garden art installation project really needs a good name. It isn’t really a garden so much anymore but has grown into a lovely rainforest environment.

HoursTracker – Still checking in using this app to find out how long it is taking to create this butterfly installation. There are a lot of little minutes in various areas such as when my colored copper wire order arrived. It only took about 10 minutes to check that each item I ordered has arrived in good condition but each of these little 10 minute items will add up to a lot of hours over the several months.

Hours of Research & Development: 20 hours of testing butterfly designs, researching lepidoptera and their favorite rainforest plants, ordering & checking in of supplies

Hours of Marketing: 1 hour 30 minutes

Hours of Construction: 3 hours 10 minutes making a lot of little Euodia flowers

For the week of Sept 29 – Oct 5: 24 hours 40 mins

A lot of work done, a lot of work to go…

To receive little updates, more often, follow me on Instagram: StudioDeanna

Flower for SPUN Fiber Exhibition

SPUN Fiber Exhibition – Opening Night is October 17


One of my wire & fiber crochet pieces was accepted into the SPUN Fiber Exhibit in New York! It’s great to be included with these other amazing artists!

After seeing the creative names they have given their pieces I clearly need to up my name game.  “Flower” is just so “meh” when compared to ‘Colors of a Soba Shop‘ or ‘Emergence‘.

Flower SPUN Fiber Exhibition

Opening night is October 17 at Etui Fiber Arts!

Check out the other artists work. They are an amazing, varied group!

The artists selected by juror Bartholomew Bland for SPUN 2014 are:

Natalya Aikens            Iron Spine

Francie Bergquist         Truffle

Benedicte Caneill         Walking off the Grid

Donna Chambers            My Peacock

Linda Colsh               Grand Place Descent

Eileen Doughty            Dragonfly Pond

Eileen Doughty            Kasha-Katuwe Hoodoos

Jeanne Flanagan           Purple Passion

Deanna Gabiga             Flower

Jamie Horikawa            Colors of a Soba Shop

Eve Jacobs-Carnahan       Knotweed: Not Safe

Cecelia Leiseroff         They Came from Outer Space

Susan Lenz                Ancestors

Susan Lenz                A Difficult Decision

Betty Maguire Hayzlett    Emergence

Betty Maguire Hayzlett    Desert Grasses

Heather Pregger           Tuning Fork #19

Norma Schlager            Fractured II

Barbara Sferra            Red Squares

Gerri Spilka              Helix Sketch #1

Janice Stevens            After the Storm

Victoria Swann            Eye Candy

Ruth White                Bend It Wright2

Beth Yazhari              World Quilt – Panel #1

Beth Yazhair              Victoria Sensibility

 You are welcome to follow my progress on this and other art projects via my Instagram: Studio Deanna

Common Eggfly Kuranda

Lepidoptera and the limits of Google


Seeking the scientific details needed to properly build my Tropical Butterfly Garden installation I have found big gaps and a lot of inconsistent information out on the internet.

Taking photographs of the signs at the Cairns Botanical Gardens has been immensely helpful in my research.

Taking photographs of the signs at the Cairns Botanic Gardens has been immensely helpful in my research.

Butterflies are in the scientific order Lepidoptera and to my untrained eye, seem so very distinctive from one another. Yet my in depth studies are showing there are many that simply look alike yet prefer to live near and consume completely different flora!

All those gorgeous tropical plants and flowers have several common names, similar looks to others; so much alike that sometimes the butterflies make deadly mistakes, too! I now know the difference between the Aristolochia elegant and the Aristolochia Indica.

There is a lot of amazing photography on the internet but the identification of the rainforest subjects does need a lot of work. Google can only show me what I request and many of the photos are mislabeled as one kind of plant when it isn’t  and much of my research needs to be exactly by genus and species. Understandably, not many photographers tag their work that way. So I have chosen to purchase the Field Guide to Butterflies of Australia by Michael Braby

Flora of Far North Queensland has been generously posted by ecologist, David Tng who spent a year in the Daintree creating a reference collection which includes excellent photographs from which to create my crochet designs. The plants are conveniently organized by scientific name. Thanks, David!

Papilio aegeus Orchard or Citrus Swallowtail Butterfly

This was never meant to be a scientific project, nor will it be but in the most general sense. However, I do feel a responsibility to ensure I do not put forth misinformation regarding the gorgeous butterflies and their lush rainforest home.

Cairns Botanic Garden

On this rainy, typhoon-y, Sunday, I will be an entomologist, studying the Yoma Sabina, the Papilio Aegeus, and consider possible crochet designs for the Adenia heterophylla and the Aristolochia Indica.

You are welcome to follow my progress via Instagram at Studio Deanna


Not just for Spinners – Tokyo Spinning Party!

Art, Tropical Butterfly Garden - Wire & Yarn Crocheted Art Installation

Friends and I visited the Tokyo Spinning Party on Monday. A show full of fleeces, silks, spindles, batts, workshops, and lots of other colorful yarn-y goodness.

Tokyo Spinning Party1

Tokyo Spinning Party 2

 White Romany, approx US$10.00 for 3oz.

Tokyo Spinning Party Felting

5 Ladies in a Felting Class

Is spinning popular in Japan? Happy Spinning’s booth full of batts was cleaned out! Completely! Yes, spinning is popular in Japan.


Tokyo Spinning Party Silk

Lots of Silk!

& weaving

Tokyo Spinning Party Loom

Tokyo Spinning Party - Boya Farm

Looking for more adventure? Check out Boya Sheep Farm in Hokkaido, complete with Sheepdog Shows at the farm.

I picked up a few things that might work for my Tropical Butterfly Garden art installation:

Ulysses Blue

A bit of sparkly blue to use in  combination with another yarn to create a great look for the Ulysses Butterflies.

Tokyo Spinning Party Yarn Big texture that might work for the rainforest floor along with this most grass-like yarn. Grass Yarn

Looking forward to attending next year!


A Piece at the Kana Art Festival Exhibition


I just sent one of my wire crocheted flowers to be shown at the Kana Art Festival & Exhibition this weekend in Gunma, Japan. This is a free event open to anyone interested in escaping the crowded city for a beautiful weekend in a lovely mountain town. Some of my fellow artists will also have work at the Festival Exhibition such as Lori Ono.

Wire Crochet Flower  Shiro Oni Studio is hosting the Kana Art Festival & Exhibition with details and directions on their website:

Date: September 27-28 – 2014

Time: 10am- 8pm

Place: Onishi 108-2

We’re holding an art festival on September 27 (sat) and 28 (sun) in celebration of Chiaki Horikoshi’s recent lifetime achievement award from the King of Spain for his cultural contributions between Spain and Japan. The Spanish ambassador to Japan will present the medal to Mr. Horikoshi on the 28th at 4pm.
Experience a great combination of Spanish and Japanese Events:
  • Flamenco and cante X Onishi festival music
  • Spanish Piella X Tochanage stew
  • Spanish Wine X Local Japanese sake
  • Kjell Hahn’s tearoom X Chiaki Horikoshi’s tearoom
  • Artwork from area artists and Shiro Oni Studio artists from over 10 countries
  • and its all free.
Booth photo

A Booth at the Tokyo Art Book Fair 2014

Art Book

My first book fair and, according to Zine’s Mate, it is the largest in Asia! My boothmates definitely agree that it’s huge, the amount of art books, zines, paper supplies, printers, and all the accessories seems to cover acres of booths.

TABF Booth

Tokyo Art Byte Critique’s Booth No. H-05 has been enjoying the amazing flood of creativity that has poured into the Gaien Campus. Here’s a look at the write-up for our group in the book fair catalog:

TABF Write-up

My favorite find so far is an adorable cat mamebon:

Neko Mamebon


Measuring a mere 4 cm this little book has a fat felted tail and a full story complete with illustrations. Created by a student at the Nagoya University of Arts for a Media Communication Design class. You’ll find them at Booth No. D-04 but at only 500 yen each they will go quickly!!

Across from our booth is the enthusiastic Knuckles & Notch from Singapore, sharing a table with another art book designer all the way from NYC:


Tokyo Art Book Fair 2014: Interview with Dai Oinuma


Studio Deanna:

Fellow Art Byte Critique Group artist Dai Oinuma interview regarding the books he has made for the Tokyo Art Book Fair, Sept 19 – 21.

Originally posted on The Spendy Pencil:

The sixth interview in the Art Byte Critique Group series for Tokyo Art Book Fair 2014 is with Dai Oinuma. Dai studied at Rhode Island School of Design.


“Grave.” Photo courtesy of Dai Oinuma

Tell us a bit about yourself.
I’m from Japan. I usually work in photography and video – both analogue and digital. My work is an exploration of the persistence, growth, decay, and rebirth of the environment and all living creatures.

What kind of book/s will you have at the Tokyo Art Book Fair?
I will have middle-end photoboks and postcards. I’m trying to make my book as affordable as possible while maintaining a certain quality.


“Kate”. Photo courtesy of Dai Oinuma

Are these books mass produced or is each one unique?
My books are mass-produced, but they are hand-made.

What kind of materials do you use?
Washi and cellophane.

What are two points you want people…

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Buttons Travel Journals

Buttons, Buttons, Buttons…

Art Book

Today is all about the buttons! Putting those finishing touches on my Travel Journals for the Tokyo Art Book Fair this weekend.

For every 5 buttons I sew, there is a small Pumpkin Kit Kat reward!

Buttons Travel Journals

Button, button, button, button, button, pumpkin kit kat, button, button, button…