Visit my Etsy Shop

Visit my Etsy Shop
Click Photo to Visit my Etsy Shop

Thursday, May 17, 2012


My husband built a studio for me in the loft of our two-story garage for our 32nd wedding anniversary.  I have been busy moving into it over the past week.   I'm only about half done as I am working very hard not to "junk" it up.  I love it.

Here is the really cool part.  He built it almost completely with repurposed or salvaged building materials.  For example, that hardwood floor came from the dumpster of a small neighborhood shopping strip.  Remember the restaurant that we walk by every day where they keep water and dog bones for the dogs?  Yep, there.

The walls and the two light fixtures came from a building materials recycling center here in Kansas City.  The four white shelving units were left by someone in the neighborhood on the curb and we found them first.  They do that a lot in my neighborhood - if you don't want it, just set it out and someone will pick it up.  My neighborhood is part of mid-town around the Plaza area and the University of Missouri at Kansas City.  There are a lot of young professionals and it costs a fortune just to buy a house in this area so I guess people think its not worth messing with once they don't want it any more.  I hate that philosophy and we moved in here way before the area took off and became so expensive but I do enjoy keeping a look out for good stuff.  Last summer we found a set of dining room chairs that I sold at my sister's and my fall yard sales for $150.00.  Go figure.

The walls came from salvaged aluminum over styrofoam panels so it is very well insulated.  The air conditioner was something we already had as was the rug.  The trim and the paint were new! and the lightbulbs!

He made a lapboard siding look on the outside wall going into the studio from a neighbor's fence that was being torn down.  I don't have  a picture of that yet, but will try to get one.

Anyway, this is what I've been doing for the last week.  I've also managed to make a few new pieces.

The chakra bracelet is something I've been planning for some time.  The research into the meaning of the components was something that I thoroughly enjoyed.  I guess it is my legal training but I still love a good learning experience about something that I know nothing about.  I have reprinted my short synopsis below the pictures in case you are interested in knowing what I discovered.

There are seven basic chakras - parts of the body, but what I found fascinating was that there are at least two other chakras too - in the spiritual realm - above the head and below the feet.  So, of course, I had to include those too.  The Om bead is by Melanie Brooks, the chakra beads by Ingrid and Marti, and I got the large crystal (glass) bead - which is amazing - from Artebellasupplies on Etsy.

The symbol (Om) is a sacred syllable which represents "Brahman" which is definied as the impersonal Absolute of Hinduism -- omnipotent, omnipresent, and the source of all manifest existence. Brahman, in itself, is incomprehensible; so a symbol becomes mandatory to help us realize the Unknowable. Om, therefore, represents both the unmanifest (nirguna) and manifest (saguna) aspects of God. That is why it is called pranava, to mean that it pervades life and runs through our prana or breath. Although Om symbolizes the most profound concepts of Hindu belief, it is in use daily. The Hindus begin their day or any work or a journey by uttering Om. The sacred symbol is often found at the head of letters, at the beginning of examination papers and so on. Many Hindus, as an expression of spiritual perfection, wear the sign of Om as a pendant. This symbol is enshrined in every Hindu temple premise or in some form or another on family shrines. Om is not a word but rather an intonation, which, like music, transcends the barriers of age, race, culture and even species. It is made up of three Sanskrit letters, aa, au and ma which, when combined together, make the sound Aum or Om. It is believed to be the basic sound of the world and to contain all other sounds. It is a mantra or prayer in itself. If repeated with the correct intonation, it can resonate throughout the body so that the sound penetrates to the centre of one's being, the atman or soul.

The Lotus
Native to eastern Asia and Australia, the lotus is widely cultivated for its fragrant pink or white flowers. It is sometimes called the Indian lotus or the sacred lotus, and it is also known in Egypt and in Africa as the white lotus, the Egyptian water lily and the white lily. Throughout many cultures, the lotus has been a powerful image and a spiritual symbol. In Hindu, Buddhist and Egyptian religions, the lotus is considered a sacred flower. Among its many meanings and significance, the lotus is a symbol of "spontaneous" generation, and so it also represents divine birth, spiritual development and creation itself. The bud of the lotus symbolizes potential, specifically of a spiritual nature. Because the lotus rises from unclean water to blossom as a pure, uncontaminated flower, it is a symbol of purity and resurrection. In the same way the lotus flower goes through much in its growth before emerging from dirty water to become a beautiful flower, the individual consciousness does the same on its path to enlightenment as the so-called impurities of unenlightened thinking gradually fade.

The Chakra
There are seven main energy centres (chakras) of the body. These chakras are like spirals of energy, each one relating to the others. Using the seven colors of the spectrum, Color Therapy aims to balance and enhance our body's energy centres/chakras and also to help stimulate our body's own healing process. Color Therapy uses colour to re-balance the Chakras that have become depleted of energy. Color therapy can be shown to help on a physical level; however there are deeper issues around the colors on the psychological and spiritual levels. Color has a profound effect on us on all levels, physical, mental, emotional and spiritual.

Violet - governs the CROWN chakra, at the top of the head. -- Beauty, Creativity, Inspiration
Indigo - governs the BROW chakra or third eye, in the centre of the forehead. -- Intuition, Mysticism, Understanding
Blue - governs the THROAT chakra. Knowledge, Health, Decisiveness
Green - governs the HEART chakra. Balance, Love, Self Control
Yellow - governs the SOLAR PLEXUS chakra, situated below the ribs. -- Wisdom, Clarity, Self-Esteem
Orange -- governs the SACRAL chakra situated in the lower abdomen. -- Happiness, Confidence, Resourcefulness
Red -- governs the BASE chakra situated at the base of the spine. Vitality, Courage, Self Confidence
Crystal -- Higher Crown/Soul (Core) Star Chakra is sometimes referred to as the eighth chakra, it is the first of the non-physical chakras or transcendental chakras above your head.
Brown -- governs the ROOT chakra. The earth chakra is located approximately 12 to 18 inches below the soles of the feet. Often called the earth star chakra... it is not within the actual physical body but is part of the etheric body. This chakra aligns you with the magnetic core of the earth...
This chakras meaning is all about the idea of 'grounding', especially in a metaphysical way. This chakra is where you connect to Mother Gaia to resource and reground your body. Its strong properties keep you grounded and protected, and secures your aura within the physical world.

Last, but certainly not least, I made a couple more pairs of earrings in the style originally inspired by Marina Rios.  So many possibilities - the first three pairs I made sold quickly, so here are a couple more versions.  No doubt there will be more.


Justice is doing great.  No pain meds, NSAID or tranadol, for a week and no whimpering or evidence of pain at all.  I am sooooo happy!!!!


Natalie -- NKP Designs said...

I am so glad Justice is doing so much better.

I LOVE your new studio! Can't wait to see it all filled up! I love the colors, too. How fun!

Those earrings are too cute! I think they look like little hangers.

Anonymous said...

Lovely "recycled" studio; so glad you used whatever recycled materials you could. We all know how important that is. So happy for Justice Marie-that makes my heart sing. I do believe red would be my chakra at this point. Glad you explained all of that. Nice going, Jean!

Anonymous said...

That's going to be a heck of a studio Jean. It's wonderful to have a dedicated space to work in. And you already know I'm tickled about Justice Marie.

Karen Totten said...

I loved reading about your new studio! What a wonderful project! Having your own space is huge.