We’re having quite high temperatures already here in Tenerife, so for me is Henna time again! I made this for myself this morning as I’ve got asked for some flyers for a hairdressing salon near my house – the owner is one of my Tarot consultants. Making a new flyer was the perfect excuse for a relaxing self-hennaing session! I added the word “pax” (peace in latin) – there isn’t much writing usually on henna designs but there is a lot on tattoo designs and, as I made permanent tattoos before the non-permanent ones, I guess I got the habit!
I love all kinds of body art, and today I’ve been discussing with my husband the acquisition of some Harquus and Indigo (black and blue dyes for skin), which I think would boost the business as I cannot make permanent tattoos anymore and I have a lot of customers who miss me as much as I miss them! Still, men are 75% of permanent tattoo customers, and they always ask me if I have black henna – which I don’t of course! If you didn’t know, what is known as “black henna” is a very dangerous product that can cause permanent allergies, burnts and bruises – it is a shame for all true henna artists that still some people sell and use that product, putting people in such big risk.
Now, all I need is a “victim” for a full henna backpiece, something I’ve always dreamed of making – but never got the chance. Any volunteers?
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I’ve been working for two days in a custom Fairy Oracle reading for a dear friend in Italy, and as I always make pics of altars and witchy events, I thought I should share!
I’ve done many custom readings through Internet and, though it is something that requires a certain amount of time, I love to do this. Usually I send pics of the spread chosen – this time a simple three-question spread, so that made three pics and a few pages of interpretation, one for each spread and another as a general interpretation/guidance of all the cards as a whole, which I really think IS the mark of excellence in a reading.
I am not showing the particular spreads she got to keep her privacy, but you can see here the table display I prepared for her, along with one of my favourite oracles, the Fairy Oracle deck painted by Brian Froud and developed as a deck by Jessica Macbeth. I only use this deck for my most personal readings. Is there a difference between one deck and another, you ask? Yes there is. There is a huge difference. I collect Tarot decks and believe me, there is one for each situation. Each one has a different spirit guiding it and not all of them like to work in every situation; some like to go out with me to my Tarot readings at the Tea Bar, and some prefer to stay at home and work only for relatives and friends; some like “gossiping” and are great for a little curiosity, and some speak only of higher concepts and do not care to be asked about everyday events; some can work every day with no lessening of strength, and some get “tired” very easily and need to be recharged often.
And talking about Tarot, at last I got a copy of the advertisement where that my friends at the Tea Bar have included me – yes that means I’m on the press now! We’ve been getting such good response that we’ve doubled the tarot time, so now I will be attending on Tuesdays and Fridays! I think limiting my work to super-quick-5-euros readings has been a very good idea – I usually get around 30 Euros for a complete reading and not everybody is ready to give that money when they first meet you, but 5 euros is a risk for none of the parts, and that way I can filter the consultants too and keep for the longer readings only those who are truly prepared for what they are going to get. Many consultants still want me to make the decisions over their lives, and believe me, I only need 5 minutes to catch them after 18 years reading cards!
I will be adding the custom reading service along the week to the Dawanda shop, so stay tuned for updates! Now I have a batch of small jewelry waiting to be finished and sent to my aunt this evening, so back to pliers and beads!
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Posted in Everyday Life on April 25, 2008 |
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I’ve been crafting, cleaning and cooking for my husband’s birthday lunch tomorrow. I wanted to make something really special this year since it’s the first time we celebrate this day with his parents – being a Cancer, I am a Host At Heart! Preparing stuff for family gatherings and season celebrations, cooking and arranging the house is a natural pleasure for Cancers, and that may be one of the things where I’m more true to my astrological nature. My husband’s a Taurus – very homebound too so we’re a perfect team for this kind of events.
I handsewn the table runner and the napkins from a vintage but unused floral fabric and made the napkins rings and a matching center piece with eucalyptus branches, moss and vintage millinery flowers. For my in-laws, I prepared party favours containing the menu, a bag of my own mix of tea and herbs and two small samples of soaps made by local artisans.
For those who don’t speak spanish, the menu will contain:
Starter: Beef rolls with bacon and cheese (served cold in slices over a sea of iceberg lettuce and spiced with ali-oli, an Arabian-origin sauce similar to mayonnaise but with a lot of garlic)
Main Dish: Grated chicken with apples, with honey and ginger sauce, accompanied with “pretty potatoes”, a variety that only exists here)
Dessert: Stuffed Dates (the date is the fruit of the palm, it is sugared and preserved – they will be stuffed with cheese cream and minced nuts, accompanied with sour youghurt).
There’s a lot of Arabic influence in my cooking I must admit! African food is so healthy and yummy; everything is super-spiced, and in many ways so similar to Mexican food, another of my favourites.
Pics of the witch food tomorrow! But, if you were interested in the tea recipe, here it is:
Rooibos Tea – 7 parts
The other herbs, mixed together, make the other 3 parts. Getting the right quantities is the secret of great handmade teas, and that only comes from practise! One thing not many people know that you should always use an odd number of herbs – 7 herbs is my favourite, but also 13 for more medicinal effects. The herbs are:
Grated Orange Peel
This tea is the best recipe I’ve ever made for a good night of sleep, but also for anxiety, depression and other spiritual disorders, like when treating people that have been under a negative spell for a long time. Rooibos tea (Red Bush tea) is of African Origin – you can find a lot of info on it here.
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Posted in Paintings on April 20, 2008 |
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Copy – or better said reinterpretation – of Anna Lea Merrit’s painting Love Locked Out (1889) made as a present for my husband’s birthday. Merrit painted this piece after the death of her husband Henry Merrit, an art restorer who had died only three months after their wedding. The painting depicts Cupid calling at his mausoleum’s door.
This pic gives an idea of the tiny size of the painting! In the victorian era, many painters made “cabinet paintings”, which were either copies of bigger work or original paintings, made for the newer – and much smaller – houses of their time. I’ve always loved miniature works, and copying paintings is a wonderful way to learn and improve the “eye-to-hand” connection which is so important for a painter.
I’ve just started a new piece, Isabella And The Pot of Basil by William Holman Hunt – this is where I’ve got so far. Isabella “listens” to her lover’s head, which has been hidden in a pot of basil after her brothers kill the lover for not being of her same social level – another gore victorian story which has its origins in a florentine legend written by John Keats. Holman’s wife, who died shortly after, was the model for the painting.
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A friend had to give back to Oshum what she had promised – she needed a proper ritual and Oshum is unpredictable so I went to her house to give some help.
Orishas don’t like cameras in their rituals! Of more than a dozen pics, only two looked good enough to keep.
For the central image, we used a reproduction of “Circe Invidiosa” by John William Waterhouse that presides my friend’s bedroom. We both thought it represented Oshum wonderfully!
Making rituals away from my “magick store” at home is always a challenge- as with camping, there is no way to avoid forgetting something LOL!
What I took to the ritual: chalks for ritual signs, blessed water, Love oil, herbs and roots, consecrated spiced wine, a victorian brass plate to burn the herbs, my Orisha deck and four pieces of coconut, called the Obi Oracle, which are used to ask simple questions to the Orishas.
Now I’m tired, but at the same time I feel my energies increased and focused – I hope this feeling lasts!
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Posted in Uncategorized on April 12, 2008 |
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A present for a near birthday. I painted the fleece in warm hues and added embroidery around a vintage tile covered with an Alphonse Mucha painting. The safety pin is intented to be hooked inside the owner’s handbag, keeping the case always handy.
I am loving making this small unique pieces with the only purpose of giving them away – to be freed for a while from the “make-to-sell” need is a healing experience. Embroidery is, in many ways, like painting – it just puts me into a meditative state that I’m needing so much these days.
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I just finished the Steampunk embroidered necklace – and sold it on the go! I’ll have to make another for the shop I think!
It looks wonderful when worn, doesn’t it? I made my friend pose for some pics for my catalogue and it’s always such a feeling to see someone else wearing what you made- and looking like a Goddess! She will wear it at a wedding in the summer – weddings are always great publicity, and be sure she will be loaded with business cards to spread around! Actually, I always lend my best jewelry to my friends when they go to weddings or big social events as they always come back with commissions – jewelry makers take note of this!
After lots of tries I finally chose a simple turquoise satin ribbon – it adds a very romantic touch, doesn’t it? Next project, a birthday gift I can’t miss – I want to make another embroidered piece as this one was such fun! There is something so relaxing and fun about this… yes, I am already addicted. Official.
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Posted in News and Updates on April 8, 2008 |
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My last crazy idea: learning bead embroidery! This piece is still unfinished but I’m enjoying it so much I wanted to share my progress so far – I’m very satisfied with the results and, most important, this is being big fun for me – almost like painting with beads.
I wanted a Steampunk taste so I added the vintage clock gear instead of stones or crystal as the central pieces – the more I look at it, the more victorian it seems to me! The Victorian and Edwardian craft people were masters in the art of beading, and it was one of those things I had been neglecting and always leaving for later, as I had never found myself too comfortable working with seed beads. But this is a complete different thing! I had made a couple of unsuccessful tries in the past, and honestly, I’m too shy (or too vain, both are ok with me LOL) to show my “failures”. It’s being worked really freehand, no plans or sketches, with a big piece of blue navy cotton fabric (a tightly wowen cotton similar to upholstery fabric as I didn’t have any felt for the interface) and just the beads I have around.
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