Thursday, June 26, 2008

Re-ment in Hawai`i

So I was about to order some re-ment from superbuzzy, but then the lovely Rima over at willynillywaterlily let me know that we have them here in Hawai`i! Yay! So I rushed on over to Ala Moana and bought myself a box (or two, or three, or six... can you hear the maniacal laughter?) I bought the mushroom, strawberry, and house set. Yay, thanks so much Rima!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Cactical inspiration

A little inspiration from nature is sometimes all you need to create: These huuuge cacti live at the Honolulu Zoo, which in recent years has actually gotton quite good (well, as compared to when I was little). My sisters and I went for fun one weekday (it's summer after all) and of course, me and my lovely camera took a million pictures. Hopefully I'll be able to post a few choice ones here on my blog or on my flickr, though I'm soon nearing the need to upgrade to a pro account. Anyway, these cati are bigger than beachballs; we have one on our patio that is almost the size of a basketball, but no where as large as these babies!

Anyway, I thought this picture would be perfect, because I have recently completed some cacti specially requested by a lovely customer of mine. They are basically made with the same pot adn dirt as my flower pot, but the actual cactus part took me a while to get just right ( I had to make it rounder, rounder I say!) But, I think in the end they came out cute! Off to go find more inspiration, this time for a wooly mammoth!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Big Island and Pookie

Huzzah, the trip to the Big Island was a blast, a lot of driving and rain/ vog/ fog, but still very very enjoyable! We stayed at Kilauea Military Camp for 2 nights and spent the rest of the time driving all around; it was very cool because KMC is actually in the Volcano, so we were very close to the action. The winds were on our side for the most part, and blew the ash and particulate spewing from the volcano away from us the whole time. I actually had the most fun taking pictures of a little someone I brought along for the trip, though I was a little embarassed so most of the pictures are from when no one was looking. I mean, wouldn't you wonder if a 5'9" 23 year old was taking a bazillion pictures of a 3" toy bear, instead of normal things like the scenery, people, etc? Anyway, I was mostly just paranoid. I was hoping to take some better pictures to possibly make a book, but maybe that will come later. So, here is my trip in brief, (although it was really Pookie's).

Many, many pictures follow: it's a storybook!

Pookie's trip to the Big Island

Pookie was really excited about going to the Big Island. He wanted to see the Volcano, so he didn't care if it was raining! But, he was getting a little hungry.

When the plane came in, Pookie stood by the window to look at it, even though it was very big and loud, Pookie thought it looked like so much fun...

And he was right! When the plane took off, Pookie was a little scared still but he really liked seeing the cars and people that looked like ants. Most of all, Pookie loved the big blue ocean; it was hard to tell where the sky began! Best of all, Pookie had some juice on the plane. POG is delicious!

Pookie got off the airplane in Hilo (Hee-low) and decided he was still a little hungry even after the juice so he went to Ken's and ordered a macadamia nut waffle with bananas and whipped cream and coconut syrup, with a side of spicy Portuguese sausage. Pookie was a good bear and ate it all!

The macadamia nuts on his waffles were very crunchy, and reminded Pookie that he had really wanted to visit Mauna Loa macadamia nut factory, so he could buy some yummy chocolate gifts for his family (as you can tell, Pookie loves food!)

The people at the Macadamia nut factory were very nice!

Afterwards, Pookie decided to visit Pana`ewa zoo; they had so many nice plants and animals there. Does that sign apply to Pookie?

He was really excited to see the white tiger, Namaste. But for a little while, Pookie couldn't find him. "Where are you pretty white tiger?"

Pookie thoroughly enjoyed the pigs, they ate their food like this, "gobble, gobble!"

And Einstein the cockatoo loved Pookie so much, he tried to pet him! Pookie must look like a big peanut!

Before going to the volcano, Pookie stopped off at a vanilla farm to rest. He got to pick a fresh strawberries, though he didn't know strawberries grew at vanilla farms!

Pookie decided to go all the way to Waimea, where he saw many nice shops. He even found some new friends.

When Pookie went to Na`alehu, he knew he had to stop and get some Punalu`u sweet bread... yum yum!

Along the way to the Volcano, Pookie found a nice waterfall, which was the perfect place to relax for a bit. Aaaaahhhh...

Finally, Pookie got to the Volcano! He loved seeing the lehua (lay-who-a) blossoms. Legend has it that if you pick one it will rain!

What an awesome sight! Pookie looked through the viewing glasses for fun, but you really didn't need to...

Because the volcano was erupting! Pookie climbed a tree and watched for a while. He was so happy.

While he was at the Volcano, Pookie did some hiking in nature. He came across a beautiful cave with water in it. Let's go spelunking!

Finally, it was time for Pookie to go home. He had so much fun; he had seen so much! He loved the nut factory, the animals at the zoo, the shops, the friends and especially all the food! What a wonderful day! Pookie must be soo tired, because he is sleeping! Goodnight Pookie!

The End!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

What are amigurumi?

What are amigurumi?

Amigurumi (pronounced ah-me-goo-roo-me) is a craft from Japan that makes an excellent hobby or passion; you should be forewarned that making amigurumi is very addicting. Luckily, it is a relatively inexpensive craft that does not take much time to complete. In recent years, amigurumi have become increasingly popular and trendy, due to the handmade revolution.

Basically, amigurumi are small stuffed toys crocheted from yarn (some would call them plushies or plush toys). Although they can be made to be safe for small children, the amigurumi phenomenon is largely the result of the interests of teenaged girls and women (how do you like them apples?)

Amigurumi utilizes crocheting in-the-round, meaning stitches are worked in a circle/spiral (and not joined) to build shapes. The result of crocheting in the round is sculptural yarn pieces that can then be stuffed, joined and embellished to form dolls. Most amigurumi utilize only a few basic concepts of crochet, and most use only the single crochet stitch (sc): increasing, decreasing, and slip stitch, are also vital things to know how to do before starting to crochet.

Although there are many different styles (usually influenced by the individual preferences of the crafter), amigurumi are usually characterized by their large heads and small limbs in proportion to their bodies. These seemingly bizarre proportions often give amigurumi a kawaii (“cute” in Japanese) appearance, and are a distinctive feature that is common to Japanese illustrations and amigurumi designs. Although there are so many inspirations for amigurumi, the most common themes that appear are animals/creatures, people, and food.

Materials that are most common to Amigurumi include yarn, stuffing, felt and plastic eyes. Although virtually any type of yarn may be used, worsted weight 4 ply yarn is the most common. Tools that are used include crochet hook/needle, yarn needles, and scissors or snips. Crochet needles used usually range in size from E (3.5, 9) to G (4, 8). Stuffing can range from synthetic to natural and plays an important part in giving an amigurumi its shape. Felt and embroidery thread are often used for embellishment (for facial features or other decorations. There are many types of plastic eyes; bead, half bead and safety eyes are the most popular. Eyes may also be made out of felt, polymer clay or embroidered onto amigurumi.

Amigurumi are versatile and can foster a person’s creativity; finished pieces can even be considered art! It is important to experiment, and if you are trying to make an amigurumi without a pattern it is helpful to note what stitches you use (in essence you will be writing your own pattern). There are many helpful resources on the internet, youtube, and more! Hopefully, amigurumi will become the perfect craft for you!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

New fabrics at Superbuzzy

Aaaah! Superbuzzy has these adorable fabrics, which I have been restraining myself from buying for months!!! (Okay, maybe one month, but it feels like much longer to a fabric addict!) Save some for me though guys, I'm waiting for my birthday to get closer so I can ask for fabric as a present! Note: photos from superbuzzy!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Vacation during vacation

Yay! I'm going to the Big Island of Hawai`i until Thursday 6/12. It's a mini vacation within a vacation; I'm going to go nuts! I'm going with my family, including my grandma and my aunty; hopefully hours crammed into a rental van won't make us crazy :) Talk to you guys later!

Saturday, June 7, 2008


Lately I've been disappointed in my favorite online kawaii store, shopkawaii. They haven't updated in a really, really, REALLY long time. How's a girl supposed to get her kawaii fix? Sooo, I did some sleuthing and I found this other really great site, phoophie. Their shipping is a little bit more, but overall their prices are much lower than shopkawaii. And, they have a different variety of stationary and goods. There was a definite food theme; strawberry rabbits, chibi kappa eating sushi, tamago no gohan and bento/food stickers. But there's actually a lot more on their website. One of the best things:lots of cute stamp sets! I think I'll get out the ol' button maker :D

I also made these: little pudding/flans. Appearing in my shop now!

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