A’Kai Silks

  • balance
  • on this one I let the pink colors trickle down on purpose to create a flower appearance
  • showing Stephen Kaminanda the vortex
  • photo by Bill Hale

Latest

just a lyric/music share today

Cathedral Rock

 

“Holyground” ~Kan’Nal~

We walk on holy ground.
We are the temple thats not made by hands.
To change the world,
change your vision of it.
In this dream there is no blame,
we’re the creators of this mess we’re in.
Its time we seek to find some solutions,
for the old ways are killing us.
The most beautiful of all life lives within
the without.
And all places in between.
So lay me down upon the solid ground
and teach me somthing
from the ancient of days.
Your king of hearts wears a bloody crown.
Now I feel an open wound from a hidden sword.
Wait…I think its ok.
within the without.

 

 

spinning out of retrograde and maintaining boundaries

sirena dress

Who knows if the planets have an effect on us.. the sun makes us warm, the moon is reported as making us wacky.  So if Mercury in retrograde has really yielded a slow down effect over the last few weeks, then according to the astronomers, this is the last day.

Is it coincidence that I ended up down and out sick for almost a week, necessitating an IV of fluids at the clinic?  How about old friends appearing back again?  Losing keys?  Miscommunications?  All reported effects of M.R.

Shrug.  The days have been perfect unrushed bliss.  It has taken a few months to truly unwind from the pressure of the previous job.  The focus has been on dropping any residual anxiety, retraining myself to sleep at night (most nights have been pretty good), and being outside as much as possible.  I have felt energy surges and although my brain still feels like it’s in a bit of a fog, there has been an overall peace and happiness.  The layers really have to peel back slowly before the shoulders can drop and a deep breath can be enjoyed.

I have noticed a certain firm conviction in that old wise voice.  Communication with a certain friend has been tested and I am pleased that I can maintain a polite but very firm “I am not going to put up with that” .  I believe in second chances, in third chances, we all make mistakes as we evolve .  However as the adage says, certain repeated behaviors by people can’t and won’t be tolerated and it feels like successful growth to not react but simply to say “no more, you are blocked.”

I am enjoying the freedom of non-rushed days and feel it has been long overdue to step off the rushing train to re-evaluate priorities, and decide what is most important.  In the midst of a heavy work week, it’s easy to get caught up in a whirl of activity , then lay awake at night and try to sort out thoughts and feelings.  It starts to build up and becomes a tangled ball like a glob of black hair clogging a drain.  But once it’s removed the water runs clear again.

There are increasing windows of a quiet but very full feeling of happiness and not worrying about the ten thousand possible parallel lives.  There is a renewed interest in activities and a remembrance how a simple average day can be a great day.

So, retro.. you may be back again and in each rotation we can choose to climb up or fall back down and recirculate without moving forward.

I heard you loud and clear.  This last retro seemed to focus on returning patterns of health and toxic friendships.  I’m holding firm.

Colors of the big island, Hawaii

Gold

 

I dyed this set on the big island of ‪#‎Hawaii‬ I remember poetic days of ocean breeze rippling thru the trees as I worked outside of the most beautiful house . Quiet solitude where I could hear the whales and the tropic rain. Silks were in full production and each day saw a new bouquet of gold, indigo, lapis, marine, Ohia Lehua , mango. Mesmerizing lull of coqui frogs lava flow and the beginning and end of molten Earth. My new Asian eyed baby boy cuddled against me during afternoon naps and endless beauty of optimistic time blending with ribbons of light. Fire flowers green languid vines sugarcane twisting with honey hued skies powerful raw edged deep blue sea waves embracing abundant water life in the form of Dolphins and Gilled fairies . Mermaid siren song inspired dresses gracefully draped over sun sculpted necklines adorned with pearled seashells. Buttery soft cream colored sarongs entwined with plush velvet tentacles always lifting and rippling in the wind. Curled plumes of smoke gray with blood red sparks contrasting with the silver black crusted lava fields rich with the stories of the ancients. Dense mauna pua mountain flowers blanketing secret labrynths leading to the core vortex and gifting new eyes with interlocked tide pools generous with brush strokes of painted coral and a haven for the manta rays. In this place the rainbows had a scent and the purity of dance and breath replaced the ego facade of human civilization Music notes replaced words and the stars danced above the dusk soaked ocean forever humming its mystic wisdom.  

more silk veil options added to the store

Follow the link at http://www.akaisilks.etsy.com

These are made to order however check back for stock veils (they sell quickly)

I’m still hoping to add half circles again soon.

If you are in need of a smaller size for poi or spinning flags, I can create a made to order listing for you.

bint charisma crimson jem1 sunrisemerk tickle

 

Progress on clothing!

Ok just a quick update on progress .. currently selecting colors to use for the clothing line.. will be starting off with a few basic favorites..black, red, purple, teal, blue .. and since many folks liked how the white pants appeared in the photo I’ll probably offer white as well ..yes they can get dirty easy but white is soooo crisp and pretty. Delays are because we are working on offering excellent quality. The fabric we found is stretchy and sturdy.. I see too many yoga pants that are see thru so we opted for a more pricey fabric that eliminates this problem. What I’m wearing here is a very form fitting top with a sweetheart neckline and asymmetrical edges, it shapes nicely around the bust but still has the freedom needed for movement. The pants have a roll waistband and have side splits with button closures. I’m wearing a stretchy micro mini skirt over the pants. , the skirt is not attached to the pants so it can be worn over other pants or capris. It is slim enough to wear a belt over the top or as is. Soooo colors are coming together then the garments can be sewn up. I’d REALLY like to stock all colors and sizes but there are about 18 items total so far and keeping that much stock will be very expensive. For now items will be made to order in a variety of sizes from XS to XL. We will be putting together general measurements and tags shortly. The clothing won’t be custom measurements, but instead general sizes. Since there is stretch it should work great. We will be narrowing down how long it will take to place an order and have the order shipped, right now I do not have firm prices or a turnaround time. Creation from scratch is so fun!! Crossing fingers that I can roll out availability by end of February and have lots of time to have things ready by fest season. Tell your friends. Summer tour peeps. balance

Has Life Style ever been so important?

One of the things that entices an overworked person to move to a paradise island is the ideal of living a simpler more holistic lifestyle.  As I near my tenth year in the Hawaiian islands, I can say with  absolute certainty (and proof) that it has been forever life changing.  What first appealed to me as great weather and jaw dropping scenery has encouraged an outdoor lifestyle that is priceless.  Occasional island fever and fear of missing out on a mortgage on a large house on the mainland is always offset by the positive influence this magical place has made on health and how I view abundance and prosperity.

But you know, we have to make ends meet too.  Many other locals will attest to it being expensive to live in paradise, but our costs are often a compromise.  Many of us don’t care about your sports car or designer hand bag.  We have learned to pair down material possessions to fit in a small closet.  We don’t have to pay for heating costs.  We don’t have to buy winter wardrobes.  The beach.. is free!   But, we don’t spend every day dangling our toes in the turquoise water.  We do have to work.  We balance the need for income with the more important desire for health and a relaxed pace.  People live longer and are happier.

I sort of forgot some of these things with a recent job that wanted me to do 50 hours of work for 30 hours of pay.  One day off a week wasn’t enough and despite my best efforts at time management and creativity, there was not enough time in the day to enjoy the life I originally moved here for.

So I did the right thing and quit in November.  I had some money saved up and I quickly downsized by moving out of an expensive apartment, quickly remembering the bliss of being able to pack up my entire life into a few boxes and a suitcase.

It took me a few weeks to unwind.  I was exhausted.  But over time I started waking up with a sense of relief that I could have an enjoyable morning with my son before sending him off to school.  That I could walk the beach before rushing off to do errands.  I could rise with the sun, listen to music and put all my attention into the creative pursuits I always enjoyed.  I started dyeing silk again, I focused more on the clothing that I want created by my friends/team in Bali, I started dancing again.  I rediscovered the rainforests.  I love the beach as much as the next local, but I had so little time at the last job to step off the grid and soak in the tree energy we are blessed with.  I missed the tourist energy in Waikiki where I had happily lived for many years.  But I did not miss the night life with its smoky bars, karaoke machines, pool tables, loud intoxicated people, and that “need” to go out and socialize every night.  That novelty had long ago worn off.  My excitement became hiking a new trail, taking photos of places I may have visited in the past but now in an unhurried pace.

I started to BREATHE again.

And I got stronger and stronger.  And lost 20 lbs without effort.  I dropped red meat from the diet and burned off energy by clinging to muddy hillsides in the bamboo.  And experiencing that fragrant scent of rain in the woods.  I was hooked.  Did I mention I lost 20 lbs?  Not from hot yoga or disciplined workouts.  Just by breathing, feeling the layers of stress melt away, making better food choices because I had time, not watching the clock when I wandered near waterfalls.

I found a peace and happiness that I had not experienced in some time.  I stopped worrying about retirement and career advancement.  I prioritized so that being outside, away from smoke and toxins and lethargy and draining relationships, was the basic necessity.

For fun I started posting photos on instagram.  Soon the photos were a log of my outdoor adventures.  Weekdays became longer and more meaningful and not something to be dreaded.  There’s still habits that need to be modified but without the tense nature of a live to make money work week, I solidified boundaries and better understood my relations with people.  Basically, I didn’t have interest in being distracted by “filler” friendships or beer induced romance ( I don’t drink alcohol ).  With clear lenses I could quickly identify things or people that didn’t flow with the simple beautiful nature of living pure and happy.  This didn’t go over well with certain people.  For expressing a polite opinion in a calm voice, I was yelled at by someone the day before Christmas.

 Red flags are easier to see when one is surrounded by green trees and one can quickly sidestep out of THAT train wreck waiting to happen.  

The phone enjoyed the mute button and communication strengthened with those who were also in pursuit of peace and happiness.  No smoke signals to cough through, life literally aligned.  For the first time in a long time, I was content (still am) ..NOT complacent, not willing to settle for “almost good enough”.  My senses sharpened.  Sleep improved and the lovely colorful dreams I enjoyed as a kid quickly came back.

I stopped mapping out every day and month.  People would ask “what are your plans for this day” or “what are you going to do next” .  Go with the flow was not the answer they wanted.  Discouraged that I would not wait next to a phone as their convenience (because my phone was turned off) it became crystal clear how I wanted to enjoy the moment and it did not involve being inside.  The Halloween haze had cleared , the holidays were over, and I did not wake up to a new year with a hangover.

I have been blessed with the opportunity to hit the reset button on some things.  I’m not willing to rush back in and mar the quiet of the mind and body.  Unless a greater need dictates otherwise, moving forward will be gently and while maintaining the uncluttered baggage free last few months.  That may mean I won’t make it to Burning Man.  Shrug.  Oh well.  I’ll opt for this, every time.

My eyes are wide open.  I’ll see you in the trees.

Photo by Twu Yong Tan Thanksgiving Day 2014

roots run deep

roots run deep

silk veil dance ..that simple

Long before I danced with veils in a bellydance class, I was simply spinning, twirling, waving, flickering with a long silk veil.  Large open spaces, no audience or glory needed.  Just silk and that undeniable urge in the body to have a silk in the hands.

Many bellydancers use the silk veil as part of their dance.  I did too, when I danced professionally in Colorado and San Francisco (and a few gigs in Hawaii) .

But one does not have to be a bellydancer to understand and use the silk veil.  This is where the English language will fail me again because veil dance is a third eye imagery, a spiral of physical energy so pure and strong you feel like a conduit to the heavens.  It’s where your stage face drops into a serene expression and you prefer to NOT be watched because you are in your moving meditation.

I’ve been creating silk veils for dancers for so many years and during that time I get focused on their creation because I want others to experience the feeling…

A few weeks ago I was able to dance again with silk and it sorta woke me up.  I forget that I need to dance with them too.  There’s no choreography to simple veil dance.  There is an intrinsic knowledge that your Higher Self will pass on to you.

I truly learned how to connect with my veils under the instruction of Adnan Sarhan, Sufi instructor based in New Mexico.  One of his teachings included tying one silk veil over our eyes so we could not see visually with our eyes .. and we could not see others, they could not see us.

A second veil was in our hands and he drummed and played music.  It may feel awkward at first to new silk dancers but to this day I recommend it.  That adage dance like no one is watching holds much wisdom in it.

My physical body has turned into this endless coil , after dedication the mind is free of the racing thoughts.  Sleep returns naturally.  Physical energy peaks.  It becomes a daily priority to be back in that space.

Here’s some early photos , I was starting to increase volume of veil production as they were in demand by other dancers..  but I spent many hours in that large sunlit rooms dancing and dancing.  I remember once being told I had danced for six hours straight save for water breaks .

early2 early3 early4 early8 early6

 

quotes from the psyshamaniam

shamaniam

 

So I rediscovered Botanical Dimensions on the big island of Hawaii.  Score.  Part two of Curandera.  www.botanicaldimsensions.org  Sign me up.

And now for some festive favorite quotes from Terence.  The “language maker” .  I dig.

“We emerge out of nature almost as its finest work of art. The medieval mind spoke of the productions of nature. This is a phrase you hear as late as the 18th century. The productions of nature. And human creativity emerges out of that, whether you have a model of the Aristotelian great ladder of being, or a more modern evolutionary view where we actually consolidate emergent properties and somehow bring them to a focus of self-reflection.
Now, I’m sure that we couldn’t carry out a discussion of this sort without observing that the prototypic figure for the artist, as well as for the scientist, is the shaman. The shaman is the figure at the beginning of human history that unites the doctor, the scientist and the artist into a single notion of care-giving and creativity. And I think that, you know, to whatever degree art, over the past several centuries, has wandered in the desert, it is because this shamanic function has been either suppressed or forgotten. And we’ve… different images of the artist have been held up at different times: the artist as artisan; the artist as handmaiden of a ruling class or family; the artist as designer for the production of integrated objects into a civilization. This notion of the artist as mystical journeyer, as one who goes into a world unseen by others, and then returns to tell them of it, was pretty much lost in the post-medieval and renaissance conception of art. Up until the late 19th century and the beginning of the 20th century, where, beginning with the Romantics, there is a new permission to explore the irrational. This really is the bridge back to the archaic, shamanic function of the artist. Permission to explore the irrational.” ~ Terence McKenna, Opening the Doors of Creativity 1990

 

More on language, if you read any Gusdorf you will appreciate ..

 

“There is the phenomenon of non-ordinary, or what I call visible language and this is very interesting to me. This is where technology, virtual-reality, cybernetics, human-machine interfacing can actually make an impact and explore a frontier. Visual language is a transformation of the physiological impulse towards syntax into a final product, speech, which is not heard with the ears, but beheld with the eyes. It’s very interesting that all our metaphors of clarity of speech are visual metaphors. We say, ‘I see what you mean, he spoke clearly.’ This means that at the organismic level we associate a higher signal clarity with visual input, and on DMT and other tryptamine psychedelics you actually experience the field of language both heard and self generated as something that is visibly beheld. It’s almost as though the project of communication becomes high-speed sculpture in a conceptual dimension made of light and intentionality. This would remain a kind of esoteric performance on the part of shamans at the height of intoxication if it were not for the fact that electronics and electronic cultural media, computers, make it possible for us to actually create records of these higher linguistic modalities. In other words it’s possible to imagine a virtual reality that was driven by a speech operated synthesizer where the various parts of ordinary speech adjectives, modifiers, subjects and objects were interpreted by the cybernetic environment as topological manifolds of various shapes so that speech would then generate a visibly beheld topology and it’s possible to imagine a future world where in setting up marriage contracts or in negotiating corporate takeovers, in areas where clear communication, clear expression of intentionality was very important, that people would actually go into the virtual reality to use the visible language because its capacity for conveying intent would be much greater than ordinary spoken language. It’s not for nothing that Plato connected up the notion of the Good, the True, and ultimately, the Beautiful. The beautiful of those three concepts is the primary concept because it is visibly beheld, because it is seen. This is the great convincing power of the psychedelic experience. That it ultimately appeals to us through the sense that we value most. That we existentially relate to as the most authentic and that is the visual. Visible language is a kind of telepathy because if I make a statement in visual language and then you and I regard my statement, we are somehow, in the act of regarding, made one. Because meaning is not being created out of interiorized dictionaries which we each consult in the privacy of our own mind but rather meaning is a visible manifold in the public domain. Meaning goes public and the differences between people then decline toward being insignificant. It’s a kind of final confirmation of the McLuhan apotheosis and I think visible language is coming. Life in the imagination is to be the life of creativity carried on through these virtual environments driven by linguistic engines.” ~ Terence McKenna, Ordinary Language, Visible Language & Virtual Reality

 

Dude.

Curandera

Susan Seddon Boulet

Susan Seddon Boulet

 

Years ago I read the book Bless Me Ultima, then later proceeded on to the Dan Millman books (did I spell that right) and of course a healthy sprinkle of Carlos Castaneda.  Mixed with living in pine trees, climbing copper canyons, experiencing the flight of a  red tail hawk, you know.. all the stuff college age people do.  I was accepted to a costly yet reputable medical university after graduating high school but chose to move to Arizona to be near my terminally ill father.  During that time I watched the progression of death gray out his life until he literally became ash in the wind in the Sedona area of Cathedral Rock.  A late teen daughter being the primary caregiver for a terminally ill man who was always her solid foundation made me grow up fast and learn how to be resilient.  Almost.  My father was strict with me but always told me “use your judgement” allowing me to fall down so that I could learn to fly.

I moved to Flagstaff to go to Northern Arizona University.  I had no money, no plan other than some thoughts about majoring in pharmacy.  College was a tough bliss.. I loved reading the books assigned by the professors, I loved writing, I loved connecting with the friends I made.  And I loved learning about life and death through various vehicles.  It was an eye opening time but reminiscing back, it’s more of just remembering what the soul already knows.  Heavy with classes in psychology, Jungian dream analysis, deviant sociology, philosophy, origins of religion ..yes I loved the science classes too but felt I could WRITE and live a thousand lives in each of those classes.  One student may see those classes as prerequisites , others may see them as a doorway to more.

I’ve always been a soul searcher, or vision quester.  I don’t readily accept what is told to me by the Hierophant or that there is one universal set way of doing things.  I recognize the archetypal symbols of Jung but also formed my own through past lives, dreams, future parallels.  Each soul is unique like a fingerprint.  Our practices will vary.  I went to a few church gatherings and it didn’t feel right.  I’ve been part of pagan circles and other ceremonial practices but didn’t feel the need for the structure.

The path spirals and my mind was processing quickly and going out on tangents that could be considered other dimensional.  I could not sit here and cite code or talk coherently about quantum physics but “I get it.”

The beauty of life, and a freedom that I discovered that I could in fact fly unrestricted from my father’s discipline , I remember those as the happiest times of my life.

At some point I switched majors to nursing.  I had soaked up enough reading and writing for the time being and needed to finish school to manifest the next stage of freedom.. income .  Nursing was not a far stretch from my original desire to be a physician, it was a shorter path without heavy school loans and years of extensive study.

Living near the reservations in Northern Arizona, I was deeply drawn to the Native American cultural practices in the area, mostly Navajo and Hopi.  My early work as a nurse assistant made me very culturally aware of how other people see healing, and death.  I remember a colleague nurse being reprimanded by a supervisor because she had cleaned the room of a deceased Navajo woman and had unknowingly tossed out the juniper bead necklace.  I maintained my studies in western medicine but leaned more towards the alternative healing that was prevalent in Flagstaff, Sedona, and other areas.

It occurred to me that a great pathway would be to earn the western medicine nursing degree/license but also study along with the Native healers.  Medicine women, curanderas, naturopathics, botanists.  I had a growing knowledge of the plants and herbs native to our Arizona area and how the Navajo used them for healing.  I was enthralled.  I envisioned a job where I would travel by covered jeep out in the remote areas of the reservations to assist with medical care, with the forefront mission of being within THEIR culture and honoring THEIR healing .  Blending.  I adapted willingly and loved it.  I read about their history and symbols.

Life forked however, and I moved to Phoenix to complete the nursing school program.  I’ve never really embraced Phoenix as anything other than a means to an end, a slow hot one but I got the job done and no sooner did I graduate with that license, and headed to Colorado.  A bigger Flagstaff.  I had not forgotten my thoughts of being a nurse healer on the reservations ..or the dreams about traveling to other countries and hanging with tribes way in the outback to learn their healing methods too.  It was a parallel life I may return to next time around.

I have no regrets about not choosing that path and I enjoyed the time in Colorado.  I was fortunate to achieve the american dream at an early age.. beautiful log cabin home in the woods (elevation 8500 ft) , a perfect son, an excellent husband who never once raised his voice to me though I did give him reason to, a cat and dog, enough security for us to be comfortable.

I was working in hospice care , we sometimes gravitate towards work where we feel we have had personal experience.  I knew what it felt like to live with a loved one with terminal illness.  I knew the range of feelings.  It’s like having a nurse who has gone through childbirth as your nurse when you deliver your own child.  It helps when someone has been in those shoes.

And so hospice care resonated with me.  I believed in the philosophy and patiently helped others understand palliative care.  My own experience with death didn’t make me a better nurse.  It did assist with empathy.  I do believe those who are of best assistance to others have experienced something similar.

This is to be continued.. because many things are coming into play and to describe them would open a new topic.  Let this stand as a preface .. ethnobotany, naturopathic healing, hospice, and I’ll toss out one tiny bit here .. assisting others with “mental disorders.”  In a holistic manner.  Enough said for now.

yup Hawaii will ruin you

I tried to move back to the mainland three times ..not sure if I will be here forever but this article is funny and pretty spot on.  At the bottom is a slide show of trees in Hawaii mmmm treeeees

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/12/23/moving-to-hawaii_n_4325058.html

Veils are handmade .. that’s what you wanted, right?

Over the many years of dyeing silks I have had to become quite creative in how I use either a small space in a high rise to a large tented backyard to dye silks.  Starting in Colorado with freezing cold temperatures, then enjoying the coolness of San Francisco, and finally the resting temple of Hawaii … all work spaces have required that I tweak my self taught method into almost impossible work spaces.  I’ll have to say dyeing veils on the seventh story lanai was probably my biggest challenge.  (A lanai is a balcony) .

The reason I’m writing this is for sort of an informal artist disclaimer.  When you order a silk veil or other silk item that I dye, it is HANDMADE.  There will be variations in all veils, that is what makes them unique.

I have a catalog of color schemes that number over 100 color designs.  It’s taken over 15 years to compile those photos (and some still are missing) , so to help my work flow when I was working with large orders, I used the photos instead of re-taking them each time.

But all of them come out different and the catalog should only be used as a guide.

I have been very FIRM about showing how the veils look in motion.  As dancers I am creating a pseudo visual display.  Motion photos do not always pick up all subleties.

As a result, some veils you will see have a very smooth gradient blend from one color to the next.. they are not stripes but smooth color gradients.  I am able to do this successfully with quite a few color designs because of the dyes I use .  But even the smoothest of ombres is going to have some variance.  Isn’t that what we like?

Other veils using different colors, or maybe more colors, will come out with a more jagged or streaked appearance.  If you look closely at a seashell that appears white, you will see many colors on the inside.  That is what the silk veils are like.

I used to sell veils that weren’t absolutely perfect like the photo at a deep discount.  I finally learned to value my time since I’m involved in so many activities now.  So unless it’s a glaring error, a misplaced spot, then all veils will be priced the same.  I may auction a few off on ebay but I’m no longer going to discount veils simply  because one has more jagged colors than the next.

I have offered veils at a very fair price since 2000 when I made an online presence.  I have covered the extra on shipping.  I have donated veils.  I see some veils made in China with bold stripes separating the colors dominate ebay (and sales).  I have seen other ombres sell for above $80.

What it cracks down to, I love the signature colors of A’Kai Silks.  Each one really has a story and a representation of a day I was having or an inspiration.

But sometimes..I get bored of dyeing those colors and want to … branch out..

So I am announcing my freedom as an artist to dye what pours from the hands like the mad little alchemist I am.  There have been too many days I have had to fulfill orders when I long to splash on something new.

So here’s the deal, by reading this (and I hope customers do) you are accepting that you are buying a handmade item by an artist.  At a very fair price.  And you are agreeing that it may not look exactly like the photo.  It follows the color scheme (for example Bird of Paradise is turquoise, dark pink and orange) but leave the rest up to me.

We will both be delighted with the process.

 

I’m going to post some photos of popular veils and provide a bit of detailing about how they come out different each time to give you a visual..

 

example of a very smooth gradient ombre from fuschia, red and orange

example of a very smooth gradient ombre from fuschia, red and orange

in this one the green jags down into the yellow to create a dynamic ripple

in this one the green jags down into the yellow to create a dynamic ripple

 

ah volcanic.. never did have a firm recipe for this one.. one mass of wild color

ah volcanic.. never did have a firm recipe for this one.. one mass of wild color

another good example of a bit of jag to the colors

another good example of a bit of jag to the colors

on this one I let the pink colors trickle down on purpose to create a flower appearance

on this one I let the pink colors trickle down on purpose to create a flower appearance

one of the first works of A'Kai where you can see the colors gradiate into each other naturally, this sets the veils apart from factory made

one of the first works of A’Kai where you can see the colors gradiate into each other naturally, this sets the veils apart from factory made

what I call the sandwich style with an eye or aura band in the middle.. you will see more of these as I love making them

what I call the sandwich style with an eye or aura band in the middle.. you will see more of these as I love making them

an example of one of a kind, in this one just a blast of blue on the edges, cannot be duplicated

an example of one of a kind, in this one just a blast of blue on the edges, cannot be duplicated

in a class all its own, this one is not an ombre and is dyed with jagged flames on purpose

in a class all its own, this one is not an ombre and is dyed with jagged flames on purpose

tangled up in blue

spin

At long last I was able to pull out a silk veil and spin until I nearly collapsed at the recent Kaminanda show in Honolulu.  Want to hear some really groovy tunes?

showing Stephen Kaminanda the vortex

                                                                               showing Stephen Kaminanda the vortex

Like the others, I was happy dancing on the limited floor space but I knew I wanted to fly without smacking into someone’s open beer or lit sage stick.  Hazards of spinning.  Hula hoopers have it better because if they use LED hoops we can spot them (and wow does it hurt to get whacked by a hoop.. get hit by silk and you will feel like you were kissed).

The long stretch of dance took over again in a suitable venue.  Grounding energy with limited room to spiral is a careful balance.

But towards the end when some participants were leaving the floor to get a drink or rest, I had a small box of space and I drew a tantric circle around it… out came the veil and in her light blueness it was like she had never left my hands.

Creators often get immersed in making healing tools for others.  If you doubt the silk veil is a healing tool I invite you to try it.  Some call it a flow toy.  Different words for a similar path.

Most often I have been creating veils and items for dancers without using the tools myself.  There really was no doubt in my mind that I would fall out of practice, you see, because dancing with a veil is like dancing with your spirit guide.. you hold hands with the vapor and weave in and around each other .  You breathe and ripple the silk.  I’ve seen the movement within festivals to own the next best toy, the biggest light up hoop, the baddest art car, the coolest motion app.

But the beauty of silk is that it is so incredibly simple

Yes, it is used by bellydancers and they incorporate middle eastern movements to veil and perform.

But the silk veil is a’veil’able to anyone.

It will change how you breathe.  It will change how you move.  It is like a spiraling form of yoga.  Yes.

buds for life .. before his show

buds for life .. before his show

lyrics Bob Dylan

Early one morning the sun was shining
I was laying in bed
Wond’ring if she’d changed it all
If her hair was still red
Her folks they said our lives together
Sure was gonna be rough
They never did like Mama’s homemade dress
Papa’s bankbook wasn’t big enough
And I was standing on the side of the road
Rain falling on my shoes
Heading out for the East Coast
Lord knows I’ve paid some dues getting through
Tangled up in blue.

She was married when we first met
Soon to be divorced
I helped her out of a jam I guess
But I used a little too much force
We drove that car as far as we could
Abandoned it out West
Split it up on a dark sad night
Both agreeing it was best
She turned around to look at me
As I was walking away
I heard her say over my shoulder
“We’ll meet again someday on the avenue”
Tangled up in blue.”

blue spin

the spiral continues ..

spiral

 

People ask me, don’t you get dizzy when you’re spinning?  If you think about it, the potential to be dizzy only happens when you stop spinning.  So yea, life has been a bit dizzy lately.  Multiple demands, pulled in various directions.. but other than the quiet meditation of creating silk, the ZONE of spinning is when all things are connected and my soul feels the fire of kundalini sprouting like tree branches and twisting in every direction.

So now I start the ritual of stretching towards movement ..

Tonight I’ll be delighted, along with others, to the mind bending magic of Kaminanda.  Go look for yourself.  Better yet, start spinning and you will find balance @

Want the large half circle silk veils? Look below

photo by Bill Hale

First of all, here is the link to the campaign: http://igg.me/p/minimum-order-needed-for-half-circle-veils/x/8686719

Hey guys, if you have been following the blog, you know I have been pouring most of my attention into the creation of the yoga inspired clothing line.  I quit my job in early November to restructure some of my health patterns and to focus 200% on building a new product line.  I have been offering made to order silk items in the store at http://www.akaisilks.etsy.com .

I am now over two thousand dollars invested into the yoga clothing and you can follow this blog for updates on when items will be available.  This has been a very exciting project but it has tapped my savings.

Many dancers have requested the super large half circle veils that I first started offering in 2003, but I need to place a minimum order with the supplier.

I have started a campaign on Indiegogo to not only let dancers know that I am back in business but to raise funds for the veil order.  The campaign was launched yesterday, I want to clarify for those who pledge $50 or above, you DO get to select your choice of ombre colors for your veils.  My only request is that you do not order anything in black as I have limited space.  You can check out this photo album for ombre color choiceshttps://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150815378745001.693482.10150097521895001&type=3

Since I already have a few backers, I am not able to edit the perks to clarify that dancers can select their colors.

I know dancers have waited a long time for me to return to dyeing the large half circles and this is the fastest way I can get it done.

Below is a snip of text I copied from the campaign, again you can follow the link for full details.  Please share with your friends and help make this happen.  I have been very disheartened by the number of overseas manufacturers who have used my photos and attempted to copy my color designs to push us out of the market.  I think by now dancers realize they get what they pay for and they are ready to support quality hand made silk veils from the ORIGINAL source again.

http://igg.me/p/minimum-order-needed-for-half-circle-veils/x/8686719

I am the owner/creator of A’Kai Silks.  While I was in nursing school, dance was my creative outlet.  I started creating my own skirts and silk veils to dance with at concerts and festivals, and later went on to dance professionally in San Francisco as a bellydancer.  I self taught myself how to hand dye what are now considered the signature color designs of A’Kai Silks and now feature a catalog of over 100 different color combinations.  In October 2003, I introduced the super large half circle silk veils dyed in the ombre colors to the bellydance community and was actively selling them on ebay.

Over time, many of the overseas manufacturers could see that I had a unique product and started to copy my color designs.  My photos were stolen and used on their site, and they sold my product at prices I could no longer compete with.  You can see many of my photos, which were taken over the span of 15+ years, at this link Photos of Half Circle Veils .

Dancers soon realized that they could purchase something that resembled my work but it lacked the quality and hand made touch that made A’Kai Silks a brand name.

What I am wanting to do is to resume my work in hand dyed arts again.  I have been working as a registered nurse for the last few years but always knew my true love was with dance and creating silks.  I have been actively working on introducing a yoga inspired clothing line that is very close to being launched, but in the meantime I wanted to reintroduce A’Kai Silks as a top quality silk dance prop to previous and new dancers.  My goal is not to be rich, but to have a sustainable outlet that allows me to create something beautiful that will be used by dancers worldwide.  I plan to continue to work part time as a nurse in hospice care and maintain a balance.

Need a serious head count

Veils inspired by the abundance of butterflies

Veils inspired by the abundance of butterflies

Ok dancers, I’m getting ready to toss down a few dimes on organic cotton fabric for the clothing so finances are running tight.  I do want to buy a round of half circle veils (the large ones) but need to know how many dancers are SERIOUSLY in the market for large half circle pairs.  I’ve had some email inquiries but before I use rent money to buy the stock of white veils I need (there’s a minimum order required) I need to be sure dancers are truly committed .  Too many times I have purchased the materials and been left high and dry.  I know the veils will eventually sell but please only email if you are committed.

I do realize many dancers still think I’m working full time as a nurse and many don’t know that I reopened.  Right now items are made to order because I have been putting most of my effort towards developing the yoga clothing line.  The time frame I am suggesting for made to order silk veils is about two weeks to be on the safe side.

I’m also willing to do custom orders again if there is fast, efficient communication.  If our emails bounce back and forth for a few weeks and then nothing happens, please understand that is very time consuming .  I’m not quite yet in a place where I can offer every item in every color as ready to ship.  And once the clothing has the final green light, it will reduce the amount of time I have to dye veils because I will be managing orders for clothing.

So if you are interested in the super large half circle veils that A’Kai Silks made popular in October 2003, you are welcome to comment here or email akaisilksinfo@yahoo.com .  If I can get ten people to commit I will buy the minimum order.  And I’ll be happy to create private listings in the store at http://www.akaisilks.etsy.com so you know that your request is reserved and won’t be purchased by someone else (because history shows once they are listed, they sell out quick).

Many thanks.

Jesennia

akaisilksinfo@yahoo.com

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