Packing List for my Shiro Oni Artist Residency:

Later next month I’ll be going to Shiro Oni Studios in Gunma Prefecture here in Japan for an artist residency.  I’m super excited to create the technology reclamation installation project I’ve had floating around in my head for over a year. Using my background in fibers and metals, building an installation using these materials together again on a large scale feels like the best fit for me and I can’t wait to get started! The unexpected resurgence in neon will bring an electric brightness I didn’t think possible even a year ago without the use of electric effects. I recently bought all the neon yarns available at the Yuzawaya in Kamata.

IMG_0002In the meantime I’m gathering the installation supplies

1 – Cola drowned Macbook

15 – Neon yarns, various material content

4 – balls of black yarn, various material content

1 – spool of black thread

11+ – spools of fun colored copper wire

IMG_0003A plethora of crochet hooks in varying sizes

1 – 6ft battery powered el-wire w/AA batteries

1 – Fully loaded tool belt w/screwdriver, hammer, nails, tape, etc.

1 – Set Singer heavy duty upholstery needles

1 – Encyclopedia of Crochet pattern book

IMG_00061 – Jisaboke! An adorable hand crocheted mushroom and friend made for me to go with a previous installation, Metamorph-Us. Jisaboke means jet lag in Japanese and he often travels with me. Jisaboke reminds to be ever so thankful for the support of so many friends who have continued to encourage me to move forward with my artistic endeavors!

Bug Spray

Raincoat & Umbrella  – June is Japan’s rainy season!

Follow me and Jisaboke on Instagram or Twitter, Facebook and by to watch my progress as I create my latest fiber and metal crochet installation project later in June!

I want to create a monster!

When I went to the Spiral Independent Creators Festival earlier this month I found a very unusual piece by a young artist named Ishimura Manami. I love fiber pieces, metal pieces and any combination thereof but this piece was none of that.

She did an amazing piece using a glue gun and a tree that created what to me looked like an egg or a chrysalis that could give birth to a colorful monster bursting forth! I love pieces that send my imagination running.

IMG_0013 Ishimura-San’s piece stands about 5 feet high (153cm) and is about 3 feet (almost a meter) across!

IMG_0014  When we asked what it was created from she said it was done using a glue gun and my first thought was, “Who needs a 3D Doodler now?” Clearly she has mad glue gun skills!

IMG_0015  I’ve enjoyed her piece so much that I want to collaborate with her and create a fiber-y, slobbering, fire-breathing monster climbing out of its cocoon. I wonder what she has done with the piece? Did she sell it? Would she let me make my monster?

The SketchVid app give me the opportunity to play with my idea of my monster emerging from her piece, just hit play to see him emerge: 

Additional photos of her piece and other amazing pieces at the Spiral Independent Creators Festival can be seen at UniversoTokyo.

Travel Journal Art Books

Made several Travel Journal Art Books this past week. It’s a journey in itself where art takes an artist. I never thought to create a handmade book but once I started how could I not? Such an easy extension from my love of reading I wonder why I haven’t put together handmade books earlier.

IMG_0017 Recycling Worldwide Maps and tough upholstery fabric create a lightweight journal that is easy to toss into your backpack for your next adventure or for kids off to Summer Camp.


IMG_0025_2    Each page is about 5″ x 7″ with one side blank and the printed map on the reverse.

IMG_0027_2   Pages have been chosen at random in random order to offer a variety of spaces for a variety of travel needs. Each of the pages offer longitude and latitude for searching where in the world some of the pages are.

Three different coordinating button and wax coated thread binding are available in my store on Etsy:




Patterie by Rie Suzuki

I finally got to meet Rie Suzuki earlier this month at Spiral’s Independent Creators Festival. Her gorgeous embroidery work has impressed me from the first time I saw it.

Using sheer fabrics in multiple layers, satins, ribbons, beads and smoothly wrapping the hoops all leads to a lovely floating world for her feminine characters to swim, float and dance. Anything that brings stitch work into the 3D world such as Rie’s Stitch Drawings really inspire me.

IMG_0001 Detail from Swim/Float.

IMG_0003 Her meticulous attention to detail has led her to dye the fabric she used for this piece to ensure the best color for her work.

IMG_0004 Visit Rie’s Blog, or her website to see more of her inspiring work, including her unique stitch jewelry pieces. Don’t be shy, go say, ‘Hi!’ She is a lovely person who does speak English!



Sanki Art Exhibition: Big and Bold

Currently showing at the Tokyo National Art Museum is the 66th Sanki Art Exhibition of painters, sculptors, photographers, metal smiths, ceramic and fiber artists.  Big and Bold was my first impression yesterday as I stepped into the gallery of huge, brightly colored paintings.

As I moved through the exhibition, even the large variety of mediums still were consistently worked in large sizes and bold colors and sometimes in bold subjects. Enjoy a few of  my favorites from the exhibition:

IMG_0018I normally prefer 3D pieces, usually in metals or fibers or any combination thereof, however every once in a while a piece really makes a big impression on me. I loved this piece. Only the feet and edges of a person can be seen walking and it’s like the rest of the painting shows the infinite inside each of us. Our infinite strength, infinite potential, infinite love, infinite spirit…

IMG_0031This artist created individual leaves from fabric and added color and embroidery work to create the dimension we would see and feel in a real tree.

IMG_0029 IMG_0028 The amount of detailed stitches in this piece must have taken a very, very long time. The piece is over a 150cm high and the tweedy plaid pattern details are not material attached but it is the meticulous hand stitching created by the artist. That takes infinite patience.

IMG_0026 This printed textile of adorable hippos is another big and bold pieces beautifully done.

IMG_0021 IMG_0020 This gorgeous floral sculpture is created completely from the same material used to create the good luck knots on traditional Japanese envelopes given at weddings. A beautiful creative use of this material!

IMG_0024 This lonely pufferfish was one of the few whimsical pieces in the exhibition, making it a standout piece for me. The exhibition is open through Mon, May 26, 2014. I highly recommend it!

Art Book: Hand-embroidered Map with Sequins!

Got a lot done this weekend! In between my crochet projects and spring cleaning, I completed another hand-emboidered art book using modern flight maps and textured fabrics.

IMG_0001 Continuing my series of embellishing old world designs onto modern maps brought me to Paris and I remembered the Montgolfier Brothers are credited with the first manned flight by creating the hot air ballon. They then demonstrated a version, highly decorated, complete with red and white bunting, to King Louis VXI of France back in 1783.

IMG_0008 Hand-embroidered hot air balloon is completed with hand crocheted bunting and hand stitched sequins.

Open map size is approximately 50cm x 38cm. The map is both glued and hand stitched to the cover to ensure durability.


IMG_0006Folding, Step 1

IMG_0005 Folding Step 2

A big button and hand crocheted lace thread closure in a coordinating light blue. Fully bound my fun little art book measures approximately 13cm x 15cm.


Yarn Addiction Thursday: Crochet Bracelets with Beads

Crochet = the “Gateway Craft” to more hard-core creative artwork! Adding Art Instigator to my CV :)