Taylor’s Eclectic: Entirely hand sculpted of paper and wire, this extremely intricate abstract vase truly is the queen of the ocean. The second installment in my ‘Under the Sea’ series, this vase is translucent on a sunny table and equally beautiful on a cloudy day.
A highly tactile piece, the Jewel of the Ocean has individually pieced ‘bubbles’ that rise and fall across it, creating various dips and rises to run your fingers across. These dips and rises are inspired by the constant ebb and flow of the ocean and its’ abstract texturing and shapes.
The rich plum base color has been painstakingly pieced around each and every ‘bubble’ to allow for optimum translucence so that the colors and textures in this vase may be fully realized.
When I first came across this shop, I immediately was reminded of the Japanese animated film My Neighbor Totoro. So it should come as no surprise that Jacqueline, the artist behind UsagiRabbit is infatuated with Japanese culture. A student slowly working her way toward a college degree in linguistics, one of her goals is to learn to read Japanese. These whimsical bunny creatures are part Totoro and part Care Bear and so cute! Some are just for loving and cuddling, while others are put to work protecting your small electronic devices.
Jacqueline got her start in handmade when she couldn’t find the things she wanted in the stores. Though her shop has only been open since May she’s been creating art since she was old enough to pick up a coloring book – from making clothes for her dolls to patching up her jeans.
I used to knit scarves and a friend suggested I try selling some of them at a small local craft fair. I took the plunge and it was a blast! I loved meeting all those other crafters and artisans. Artists are some of the nicest people you can be around. Finding Etsy really got me thinking that I could make a go of this. It’s full of so many inspiring stories and helpful fellow sellers. I really want to try my best!
Her skills have been honed over the years with help from her mother (a lifelong seamstress) and various friends and teachers along the way. Isn’t it wonderful how the creative community came together to help this artist learn the skills to realize her vision?
There’s something about the feeling of the wool in my hands and the slight hum the thread makes that fills me with satisfaction.
Jacqueline first starts planning her creatures with a drawing and some key concepts.When she’s inspired a piece can come together very quickly; sometimes the process can take days or weeks. Once a design is decided on, she chooses colors and felts and cut out the pieces. The most time consuming part of the process is sewing the pieces because it takes a long time and the stitches have to be just right! Lastly, her creation is stuffed with pure cotton and sewn shut. Thus is born the latest addition to the UsagiRabbit family!
Well, I love all my finished creations (even though some of them can be quite beastly during the making) but if I had to choose just one I guess my favorite would be the orange rabbit with a yellow flower on its belly. It makes me smile when I see it.
Born and raised in New Jersey this Texas transplant is inspired by her travel and experiences of other cultures. She has no sales so far, so let’s get her started – shall we?
Like so many fantastic discoveries, my finding of Dela Flamant was a complete accident. However, I knew I loved this art as soon as I laid eyes on it! The intense repetition of the lines of rain in the above piece is mesmerizing.
The shop owner write this about the inspiration for their art:
“I am inspired by avant – garde 1960’s graphic design, in particular Swiss, Dutch and Bauhaus design work as well as antique images and fine art including paintings and drawings.”
The sailboat and lighthouse print above would be welcome in my son’s bedroom any day. I’m sure he would love to fall asleep dreaming of sailing the sea. I love how the artist celebrates the hand drawn aspect in this print.
This last piece of art has a thick industrial feel. It’s strong without being too overbearing. I can see this hanging in a home with modern decor. Actually, it would like nice anywhere!
The artist states that all posters are printed using soy based ink. I am unfamiliar with this type of printing ink but definitely inspired to learn more about it. When I discover an artist I’m always interested in their process, supplies they use and their inspiration. It’s clear to me that the art at Dela Flamant embraces the creative process and creates outstanding end products!
When I was a kid, we got in the car and drove my dad out to a nearby town to take a hot air balloon ride. I remember watching the balloons gliding through the sky. These earrings remind me of that day.
Elle got started in handmade when she was struggling with depression and loneliness. Jewelry-making was her way to be totally immersed in something that was not only positive, but kept her mind off of what she was going through. She fell in love with jewelry making and never looked back. Her style incorporates vintage pieces with modern beads.
Encouraged by friends and family she jumped into selling through her shop Elle’s Beads. After taking a blind leap, she learned as she went setting up up a business strategy, goals, and a budget.
I’ve met such great artisans, both in real life and through venues like Etsy, and I feel like I have a sense of community and belonging now.
Elle’s grandmother is a huge influence. She uses her antique sewing machine and vintage buttons to make a lot of her creations. She’s also inspired by items that people cast away as trash. She has a way of viewing things not as what they are, but what they could become with a little bit of fabric, paint, or beads. She’s also started sewing now due to her grandmother’s influence (she was a seamstress) and makes a point to only use eco-friendly materials in the accessories she makes.
My favorite item is my Vintage Sapphire and Silver Glass Pearl Necklace. It’s the first eco-friendly piece I ever made and it’s from an old vintage earring I repurposed as a brooch. I’m really passionate now about reusing old materials and making them into something beautiful and new. This necklace is a constant reminder to me of the beginning of that journey.
Elle supports the views that many of us handmade artisans have, even though handmade goods can cost more than mass-produced goods, especially those imported from overseas, they’re so much more valuable! When you buy something handmade, you’re supporting an artisan – a small business and an entrepreneur. You’re supporting a craft and a subculture that values the importance of keeping craftsmanship alive. Each handmade item is a little bit different and Elle, like all handmade artists puts her love and a part of herself in every piece.
These adorable vintage birdies are my personal favorite!
Elle is a full-time paralegal working for a non-profit in North Carolina. When not working at her day job or on her business, you can find her relaxing in front of the television, catching up on the latest book club book, or talking on the phone with her family. Online you can find her on Facebook, Twitter and her blog.
Every so often when looking for new artists to feature on this blog, I use Etsy’s pounce feature. This time when it brought up the brand-spankin’ new shop of Tiffany Chou I was immediately drawn in by the amazing photos of her jewelry. The stunning settings just suck you into the sea swept life and you find yourself pining for a lovely gold coral to wear around your neck.
Like most of the artists I’ve featured, Tiffany’s been making things by hand since a young age, 14 to be exact, and has always dreamed of sharing her creations with the world. She got a lot of good feedback on her most recent jewelry collection, so she’s been focusing on getting her online shop up and running, though she has sold a bit on her personal website as well.
The “Here sharky sharky” is my favorite piece, its very delicate and reminds me of the ocean.
As you can clearly see, Tiffany is inspired by the ocean and all it produces. She sells some of her line in a shop in Hawaii as well – a perfect souvenir from paradise, I’d think.
Each piece is inspired by a shell from Tiffany’s large shell collection. She chooses shells she believes will translate well into metal and then casts and plates each piece.
Tiffany’s love of the sea should be no surprise as she grew up in Maui, Hawaii. She went to the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and then moved to New York City to pursue her interest in fashion. You can find out more about Tiffany and see some more of her work on her website. If the jewelry wasn’t beautiful enough, it’s even more lovely when you know that 5% of the profits go to Coral Reef Alliance and 5% to Dancing Palette.