Sculpey Angel Dancing on the Head of a Pin

Sculpey Angel on the Head of a Pin

Working tiny is natural for me, I’ve been working at the micro scale for decades. I have fond memories of digging up the moss in my grandmother’s backyard and creating miniature landscapes, deconstructing worry dolls to make my own and making tiny sculpy scenes and decorated boxes. I’d often challenge myself to add as much detail as possible with pin points, tooth picks and whatever else I could makeshift into a tool.

On one particular weekend visit to my grandparent’s house, I watched a special on PBS about scientists using laser etching thousands of tiny angels on the head of a pin. Ever the confident 10 year old, I decided I didn’t need a laser to get an angel on there! I spent 2 full days glued to the kitchen counter figuring out the exact steps required to make one- even giving the tiny dancer teeth! Bursting with pride I ran over to show my 83 year old grandmother- you can imagine the scene my arm extended, holding tiny figure on the top of a pin just inches from her puzzled face…

“Grandma! Look at it!”

“Look at what? What is that?”

“It’s an angel on the head of a pin! It has even has teeth!”

She giggled, then chuckled and then cackled (it’s a family cackle- I have it too, it’s very distinctive in a joyful way) and replied “I can’t even SEE it! And you want me to see the TEETH?!”

So fast forward to today. My son Avery is a very 3-D thinker, he loves his legos- but I wanted to get him making things with a different material. I remembered how much I enjoyed sculpey when I was younger, so I treated the kids to the big 30 color pack and this afternoon we were all at the kitchen table playing. I showed them how to make a flower cane, and then how to marble colors together. It was interesting to see what each one chose to create. Avery was fascinated by color mixing, and the girls were extremely productive- churning out bead after swirly bead. Wyatt was a bit cautious at first- but he made a sweet little turtle and began a planet-bead necklace. I think he’s up to Saturn…

And I made another angel. While I had made at least a half dozen all those years ago, I really don’t believe any of them survived. They were so small- I’m sure they were accidentally vacuumed up. This one is a bit more advanced than the old ones- but after 25 years I really should have learned a thing or two!

I’m back!

Not like I was doing much while I was gone- let’s see- I moved, spent the fourth of July on the White House Lawn, and just got back from a balloon fashion show in Las Vegas, you know- the usual!  I’ll fill in the details shortly- but in honor of taking out my Singer for the first time in about 6 months, I felt inspired to blog!

Chloe wanted some snuggly dollys for her bed (it’s been awhile since she’s slept the whole night through, and yes, I will stoop to bribery) So I promised her we’d make some dolls for her bed. Now it’s turned into making mermaids for her and her little friend Morgan. I’ve spent most of the late spring/summer in perpetual motion- maybe this is a sign that I’m actually settled in a bit!

I promise I’ll write more about what I’ve been up to and blog more often again, but if you truly can’t wait for some of the recent details- go check out Larry Moss’s blog, over at While you’re there you can read about what we’ll be up to in September for Artprize in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Lego bracelet

Recycled Lego Bracelet by Emiko Oye

Recycled Lego Bracelet by Emiko Oye

What a sweet little find! Artist Emiko Oye creates amazing necklaces (imagine something a queen would wear to her coronation) by recycling those ubiquitous plastic building blocks, legos. The photo at left is a much simpler version, available in her etsy shop, but I really enjoy the color combinations she comes up with and how she sneaks in translucent and architectural legos.

Happy Memory

Rock Garden, Deep Pendant by AdornJewelry

Rock Garden, Deep Pendant by AdornJewelry

When I was around 4 or 5 years old, we lived with my maternal grandparents for awhile and they would watch my sister and I during the day while mom was at work. Often enough I was handed one of my grandmother’s spoons and told to “go dig” in this little patch of dirt between the spigot and the back-porch door. I’d spend hours transforming that little 2’x4′ rectangle of dirt into tiny moss-covered islands– planting weeds as tiny trees, placing little stones as boulders in the landscape,  lining the stream bed with sand, and building tiny bridges out of popsicle sticks…

I stumbled across these pendants on Etsy and was instantly transported to my grandmother’s backyard… The artist, Amy Mueller of AdornJewelry, combines polymer clay and faux moss into these beautiful little pendants & rings. They have a nice little interview with her.

So much more here…

Tiny Forests

Yuken Teruya corner forest

Yuken Teruya "corner forest"

I came across the work of Yuken Teruya, and I had to share- I thought these were absolutely beautiful. I really love the play between the negative branch, and the dimensional extended arm… wait till you see what he does with paper bags!

“Yuken Teruya manipulates everyday objects, transforming their meanings to reflect on contemporary society and culture. Cutting trees out of paper bags and cardboard toilet paper rolls, he creates meticulous and intricate art works, small and enchanting worlds, which relate to broader concerns.”

So much more here…