Japan Inspired: DIY Tsumami Kanzashi

私は日本を愛しているよ! 日本人の私はもう話すことはできません….でも Google翻訳は手間を省きます!
I love Japan! I can’t speak Japanese anymore….but Google Translate saves the day!

College opened up a huge array of classes I thought I could never take. One of those being Japanese. I absolutely love the  fun pop culture of Japan, and I thought learning the language would be equally fun. It was! For a while. Until you try to memorize all 3 alphabets, sentence structure, and how mispronouncing on syllable could lead to major miscommunications! After realizing I had 5 additional classes until I “officially” would learn the language, I decided to save that for another time.

Enough of that, the focus of this post is to have a quick tutorial on how to make tsumami kanashi! What the heck is that? Those two flowers pictured above made of fabric and (supposed) to be attached to hair pins. Wika def: ”hana (flower) kanzashi are created from squares of silk by a technique known as tsumami (pinching)”. These ornaments and pins are absolutely GORGEOUS, worn by beautiful geishas. And expensive, made of vibrant colors, very elaborate, and traditionally large in size. Can’t get my hands on one anytime soon, so I decided to make my own extremely simple knock-off versions.

Supplies: Cloth (I used old scraps, non stretchy material works best), scissors, needle, thick thread, ruler, paper, buttons, ribbon, other items for decorating, hot glue gun, felt, hair pin/clip
Results: Fabric flowers! What’s not to love about that??
Let’s do the pink flower first:

1.  Grab a Pencil!
Start by taking your  paper (thicker the better) and making a square template. I did 2.5″ the larger the square the easier to fold.

2. Snip-snip-snip
The minimum I used was 6, but later had 7. There is no maximum!

3. Up and Away
Take a square, and fold the bottom corner to the top, creating a triangle.

4. Double time
Take both bottom corners of the triangle and fold them to the top corner.

5. Fall Back
Ugh forgive this photo…As I tried to show in the little white box, take left and right corners of the now diamond and fold them back. When you fold them back, they should be holding them together to create the petal like shape on the right.

7. Sew desu ne?
This is a tricky step indeed! Sew all the petals together. I placed my needle about two-fourths from the bottom, they stayed together pretty well. I connected the final petal to the first petal with a backstitch. After they were all connected, I sewed again to make sure they were all secure.

8. Gooey Glue Gun
Add whatever decoration you please to the center, securing it with hot glue. ON the back, cut out a piece of felt. Take your pin, glue it to the top of the felt, then glue the felt to the back of your flower.

Ta-da! This version of the flower is complete!

My Results: I used stretchy material, didn’t work too well in my favor but I still liked my little flower, I don’t really have sparkly decorative items, instead added two buttons that complimented the pinks and peaches. I made a big error though:

The petals in the back become a bit bulky, I had scissors, temptation too strong, went snip happy. I cut too much of the back off, and the shape was thrown off. Caution if you decide to cut the backs of the petals!

The red flower is SOOO MUCH EASIER!

1. Round it Out
Make a minimum of 5 circles. I used a diameter of 2” yet you choose how big you want yours to be.

2. Sew and Tug
Thread your needle with matching thread. Fold one of the circles in half. Take your needle and thread around the rounded half of the circle. For my circle halves, 12 stitches worked perfect. When the stitches are done, tug the rest of your thread through and the petal shape will instantly form.

3. Decorate!
Once again you can put whatever you wish in the center, then attach the felt and clip/pin to the back. Since I didn’t have a button the color I wanted, I wrapped one in yellow ribbon. Annnnd that’s all you have to do!~

Now you have two different flowers 🙂
Here are some links for the indepth tutorials:
Quick & Easy Fabric Flowers
Instructables

Final Thoughts:
1. Stretchy material works, if you have extra patience.
2. Caution when trimming the back of the petals!
3. Consider the size of your pins when creating your petal sizes. The red one is waaaayyy too big for the tiny pins I had.
4. There are countless tsumami kanzashi flowers, try some more out!

ありがとう, おやすみ!
Thank you, goodnight!

Return of the Ice Painting

“Sunrise”

Ice painting just gets better and better! And did I mention that it lasts a while? I’m still using the same ice cubes I made last week. I love how easy it is, the cubes are always ready to go, just a trip to the freezer and ta-da, easy art!

Making more pictures is a new hobby that’s growing on me (as if I need another one!) A few nights ago I realized that it really is a great stress reliever.

*Warning: slightly dramatic story ahead* I was minding my own business, just watching a foreign movie on Netflix on my Wii when our power  cut off. 3 seconds later it pops back on – the TV, lights, fan, alarm clock- everything BUT the Wii. I press the power button and no luck, it wouldn’t even light up. I was so frustrated! The Wii is my only updated game system, and I knew I wouldn’t be able to replace it.  What did I do? I dug out paper, scribbled some drawings and furiously started ice painting. After two pictures I started feeling better. I felt so alive letting the ice roam free!

I love ice painting. Everyone should try 🙂