Welcome to Moondog Treasures: yoga jewelry for women and men, mala bracelets, Sanskrit mantra necklaces, and wire-wrapped beaded crosses. I'm a yoga teacher, and these are my creations. On this blog you can read the story behind the jewelry. You'll also get to meet other talented Etsy artists whose work I admire. Contact me at moondogtreasures@live.com.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Etsy Artist of the Week

This week I'm featuring Etsy Artist, minimalista.  She's from one of my favorite places, California.  She includes images of the Mexican painter, Frida Kahlo, in many of her items.  I own a Frida t-shirt from minimalista.  I love the individualism that shows up in Frida's artwork, her love of nature, and her portrayal of suffering.  Here is an example of one of the Frida scarves from this etsy seller:
From the Frida Kahlo website:  Frieda Kahlo y Calderón was a Mexican painter, born in Coyoacán.  Perhaps best known for her self-portraits, Kahlo's work is remembered for its "pain and passion", and its intense, vibrant colors. Her work has been celebrated in Mexico as emblematic of national and indigenous tradition, and by feminists for its uncompromising depiction of the female experience and form.

"I paint myself because I am so often alone and because I am the subject I know best."  --Frida Kahlo
This is my favorite painting by Frida.  I got to see this portrait at a special exhibit in San Antonio many years ago.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Etsy Artist of the Week

This week's artist is Flor Larios.  I love her paintings of the Virgin Mary.  She's a big fan of Frida Kahlo too!  Just like me!  From her site..."I'm a self taught artist & illustrator. I love to paint and create decorative art pieces for the home and for you to wear.  I like angels, fairies, madonnas, nativities, butterflies, and ladybugs. I love art! I get my inspiration thru Frida Kahlo's art and religious icons."

Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal
  I've admired this artist for quite some time, choosing this particular item to showcase because it has a personal significance for me.  My sister, her daughter, my daughter and I got to visit the Shrine of the Miraculous Medal when we were in Paris last summer.  The site was so unassuming,  nestled in among the other buildings along a Paris sidestreet.  
Outside the religious site

A sculpture inside the courtyard

Inside the courtyard - a close-up of a carving of the actual medallion that many Catholics wear
Inside was a beautiful chapel where we happened upon the beginning of mass (in French, of course).  There was school of children visiting.  We listened to their angels' voices singing every song during the mass.  By far, this was absolutely my favorite part of Paris. 
Inside the chapel

Statue of St. Vincent de Paul

Friday, October 7, 2011

Finishing the Precious Silver PMC Pendants

The previous blog entry showed precious silver in its clay form, after it had been shaped and stamped.   These next few photos show the finishing process.
(Above) Fresh from the kiln. Fired at 1200 degrees F for 20 minutes

(Above) Soaking in a baking soda solution after being dipped in liver of sulphur.

The two pics below are the finished pieces.  The "namaste" is a custom order for a friend.  The "Be the Change" is for sale in my shop.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

All about Precious Silver with Moondog Treasures

PMC is Precious Metal Clay.  This material was created by the Mitsubishi Corporation in the early 1990s as a way to recover silver, gold, and platinum from old computers, medical instruments and photography supplies.  A method was developed that allowed the combination of precious metals into a type of clay that could be used to make jewelry and other products.

The PMC comes to me in clay form.  It contains of particles of pure silver mixed with an organic binder. I take images and letters and press them into the clay (see photos below), then fire in my kiln at 1200 degrees. When the binder is burned away during firing, it leaves a pendant of 99.9% pure silver. 

It's nice to know that PMC is made with sustainable/recycled materials.  I am even able to use the leftover clay and “mistakes” again by re-constituting the clay and creating a new product.

Clay in its raw form, before firing.

I'm adding a few new designs to my PMC pendant collection:  Mahatma Gandhi's quote, "Be the Change"/"harmony" with lotus flower/tiny om pendants/"moksha" (sanskrit word for freedom) with om symbol/"ananda" (sanskrit word for bliss) with lotus flower.  Some other best-sellers I'm including are the "namaste" ring pendant, Ganesh pendant and om symbol pendants.

All of these will be for sale soon (after they're fired in the kiln and polished) in my online shop, Moondog Treasures.
PMC in its finished form.