//
archives

AngelicaBrigade Joyce

AngelicaBrigade Joyce has written 226 posts for Angelica Brigade + Miu Vermillion

Custom Ruffled Green Top for an Editorial Shoot

Here is another piece I created a while ago for an editorial shoot. I love the silk organza’s color, and I wanted to create something nice with it . . . Something non-floral in every single way.

I don’t hate flowers, but I don’t particularly love them either. And, yet, most of the headpieces and dresses I’ve created so far have flower-shaped trims on them because I find them easy to make. As some sort of compromise, I make those flowers as geometric as possible. People seem to like them. So, all is good. Sort of. But, before long, creating flower-shaped trims has become some sort of a crutch. And, THAT, is not good. I really need to do something about it or I’ll stagnate. So, I challenged myself to create 3 flower-free outfits in a month. The one you see below is one of them.

Angelica Brigade Ruffled Green Organza Top

The color of the fabric makes me think of the Greek Goddess of Harvers, Demeter. And, I imagined the fabric would make a beautiful Lanvin-style Grecian-inspired dress. But . . . it wouldn’t fit with the tone of the editorial I created this top for . . . Besides, I just can’t bring myself to knock another designers works off.

So, I decided to create something that features a several of my favorite SS2016 trends: ruffles, pleats, paperbag waist, and clothing with both transparent and opaque elements. But, I still keep the reference to Demeter. Like Ancient Greek chiton (or tunic), the wearer slips this top over her head and fasten it on the waist.

It looks nearly identical on the back, and meant to be worn with something else on the bottom.

Angelica Brigade Ruffled Green Organza Top

 

Advertisements

Angelica Brigade x Miu Vermillion Update

Though I’ve closed my Etsy shop and have been preoccupied with my other endeavors, I never stop creating handmade pieces. These past few months, I’ve been expanding my skill sets, creating numerous hand-stitched dresses, and different kinds of nail ornaments.

Below are some of pieces I created a while ago, made specifically for my fine art photography project that are going to be on view at Beautiful Bizarre currated exhibition at Vanilla Gallery: 『aestheticism~耽美~』.

Angelica Brigade x Miu Vermillion | Handstitched Dress for a Fine Art Photography ProjectAngelica Brigade x Miu Vermillion | Handstitched Dress for a Fine Art Photography Project | BackAngelica Brigade Nail Ornaments | Acid Green Claws with Swarovski Crystals | Custom Made JewelryThe exhibition is going to run from April 4 through April 23.

Aestheticism // Vanilla Gallery // Tokyo Japan // 4 - 23 April 2016It’s an honor to be have my works featured along the works of the artists I’ve been admiring for years.

Can you spot my pseudonym – Miu Vermillion – on the list of featured artists? A more legible list can be found on the gallery’s website.

Aestheticism // Vanilla Gallery // Tokyo Japan // 4 - 23 April 2016

The curator of the show asked me not to share my completed works before the opening day. So, to give you some idea of what I was working on, I will share some behind-the-scene images and sneak peeks instead.

miu-vermillion_behind-the-scene_taxidermy_001

The location of the shoot

miu-vermillion_behind-the-scene_taxidermy_004

Profoto B1, umbrellas, and difusers

miu-vermillion_behind-the-scene_taxidermy_003

To create the effect I want, I decided to utilize one light setup: Profoto B1 + translucent umbrella, in a complete darkness

miu-vermillion_behind-the-scene_taxidermy_002

A distorted sneak peek of one of the imagess

I created the dress using identical techniques I use when I make silk headpieces . . .

Angelica Brigade - Creating the Handmade Antoinette Dress

Angelica Brigade - Creating the Handmade Antoinette Dress

Angelica Brigade - Creating the Handmade Antoinette Dress

Angelica Brigade - Creating the Handmade Antoinette Dress

Apparently, I am allergic to the type of feather I used to construct the dress. Although I was wearing a wired surgical mask, I had to take numerous sneezing and coughing breaks which slowed my progress quite significantly.

angelica-brigade_by_miu-vermillion_making-the-antoinette-dress_006

Because creating the nail ornaments involves numerous messy steps, I didn’t dare to take snapshots of my working process because I don’t want to ruin or stain the surface of my phone and touch screen. May be, someday I will ask someone to photograph the working process for me.

 

 

Armored External Hard Drive, Recent Editorial Photo Shoot, Custom Made Designs, and Behind The Scene Photos

It has been an extremely busy couple of months!!!

I was in New York for a bit to join Miss Aniela‘s Fashion Shoot Experience . . .

Then, I spent most of my time creating clothing, jewelry, and accessories for editorial photo shoots I personally arranged, styled, and lensed . . . and, wrote a few articles for Beautiful Bizarre Magazine.

I also created a few headpieces for Lindsay Adler‘s Kelby Training and Dream Shoot Rentals

angelica brigade miu vermillion work in progress sewing clothes handmade

Yes, I make clothing, too . . . Here is a work-in-progress picture I shared on Instagram a few weeks ago

Behind The Scenes - Photo Shoot - Miu Vermillion (designer, stylist, and photographer) + Nami Hasegawa (hair stylist and makeup artist) + Regina Schnitzer (model)

[Behind the Scenes] Nami Hasegawa and Regina @ Aston Models

Lindsay Adler fashion editorial photo shoot - behind the scenes photo - headpiece by Angelica Brigade

[Behind the Scenes] Lindsay Adler‘s recent editorial photo shoot, feat. Angelica Brigade’s Geomatric Headpiece. Available for rent via Dream Shoot Rentals

[Behind the Scenes] Lindsay Adler for Kelby Training, featuring a custom made headpiece I created just for this class

[Behind the Scenes] Lindsay Adler for Kelby Training, featuring a custom made headpiece I created just for this class

I shot more than a thousand photographs and retouched a few dozens of them. Soon enough, my computer is running out of disk space.

I am not great at handling fragile things . . . and so, I like everything I own to be sturdy, and if possible, armored . . .

I guess, this 2 Terabytes Rugged Armor Military Shockproof External Hardware is perfect for me, LOL!

I really like the hot pink padded hard case as well

Last week, I spent the bulk of my time editing the photos I shot in the past months . . . I’m planning to submit them to various independent magazines.

The photos I recently shot look much more elaborate than the ones I’ve shot in the past. I collaborated with numerous people who love what they do and great at doing what they love. I’m looking forward to share them with all of you very soon (-:

miu vermillion - angelica brigade blog - little things magazine - photoblog - mook - kinokuniya - muchacha achachum

On my desk: Little Things Magazine and Muchacha Achachum Time Capsule book . . . And my current work-in-progress

 

This post might contain affiliate links; but, I’m not paid by anyone to write about their products. All opinions you read in this blog is 100% mine.
 
Any ad that might show up below this line is not endorsed by me and/or Angelica Brigade

Life is Art!!!

I’m thrilled to be a part of Papercut Magazine‘s Art Issue! (You can find my works on pp. 30-41)

I call this series Dark Remembrances. It’s based on my childhood memories and all the emotions I wasn’t able to express.

I decided to leave all the images untitled because I want people to interpret and relate to them in personal manners. I believe that titles will limit the scope of our interpretations.

Miu Vermillion for Papercut Magazine - Art is Life issue - Dark Remembrances - a blend of digital photography and digital painting

Miu Vermillion for Papercut Magazine - Art is Life issue - Dark Remembrances - a blend of digital photography and digital painting

Miu Vermillion for Papercut Magazine - Art is Life issue - Dark Remembrances - a blend of digital photography and digital painting

Miu Vermillion for Papercut Magazine - Art is Life issue - Dark Remembrances - a blend of digital photography and digital painting

Miu Vermillion for Papercut Magazine - Art is Life issue - Dark Remembrances - a blend of digital photography and digital painting

Miu Vermillion for Papercut Magazine - Art is Life issue - Dark Remembrances - a blend of digital photography and digital painting

I consider these images mixed-media art. They are blends of digital photography and digital painting with some handmade components.

Anyway . . . be sure to check the rest of the artworks featured in the magazine. You’ll love them (-:

– joyce @ Angelica Brigade // miu vermillion

Any ad that might show up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

Mastering Peyote Stitch and Mastering Herringbone Stitch by Melinda Barta

When I shop for jewelry-making books, I always look for elements-to-adapt and useful tips-and-tricks. And, these books by Melinda Barta (editor of Beadwork Magazine) has a lot of things for me to incorporate into my new designs.

mastering herringbone stitch by melinda bartamastering peyote stitch by melinda barta

I rarely see jewelry-making books that are filled with projects I’d like to re-create.

In many cases, the materials to re-create those projects are rather on the expensive side and/or unavailable for purchase. Besides, most of the time, the designs of those pieces do not suit my style.

But . . .
Nobody says we need to re-create those pieces in order to learn some new techniques.
That’s why it’s important for to find books that explain the techniques in detail.

As usual, I prefer to buy the e-book edition of the jewelry-making books because:

  • I can have all of those books in one place – in my Kindle Fire – and so, I can access the information I need much quicker (the search-inside-the-book function really helps)
  • Whenever necessary, I can zoom in to get a better look at complicated-looking diagrams.
  • And these obvious advantages:
    • Less clutter
    • Lower price
    • Quicker “delivery”
    • And, the books will always stay tidy

To learn more about these books, and to see a few sample pages of the books, please visit:


Full Disclosure:

  • No one is paying me to say good things about these books.
  • I never recommend anything lightly.
  • Purchasing things through the links I provide will cost you nothing.
  • However, retailers – like Amazon.com – is going to award me with a nominal (6% or less) commission which I will use to maintain this blog and to provide better contents for you. Thank you so much for your support.
Note: Any ad that might show up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

Angelica Brigade for Dream Shoot Rentals: Geomatrix Modular and Convertible Headpiece and Mask

geomatrix-modular-convertible-headpiece_angelica-brigade -for-dream-shoot-rentals

A set of headpiece-and-mask you can style in many different ways. Please scroll down to see a few different ways I styled this 2-piece set.

(In case you are wondering, you – or your model – can see through this mask)

This is the first unit of the 2-piece set. It can be worn either as a mask or as a hat.

geomatrix-modular-convertible-headpiece_angelica-brigade -for-dream-shoot-rentals_02

You – or your model – can also wear it as a hat with a half-face mask like this:

geomatrix-modular-convertible-mask-and-headpiece_angelica-brigade -for-dream-shoot-rentals_03

The “mask” or the first unit of the set can also be worn as a neck piece . . .either by itself or on top of a simple top or dress.

The crown or the second unit of the piece can be worn on the middle or on either side of the head. It fastens with a heavy-duty but soft elastic strap.

Because the front side and the back side of the crown do not look identical, this crown can be worn in 6 different ways.

geomatrix-modular-convertible-mask-and-headpiece_angelica-brigade -for-dream-shoot-rentals_04_worn-as-neckpiece-and-crown

Here are some other ways you can style the set.
[Note: The pieces you see below are the first samples of the design. The current version look much smoother than the sample. Please scroll down to see the comparison between the first sample and its current version]

angelica-brigade_avant-garde_headpiece_millinery_origami_high-fashion_demi-couture_crown_no-label

angelica-brigade_avant-garde_hat

Here are the comparisons between the first sample and the current version.

geomatrix-modular-convertible-mask-and-headpiece_angelica-brigade -for-dream-shoot-rentals_closeup_comparison-of-the-current-and-previous-version

The mask consists of 5 separate origami units, and each origami unit is hand-stitched onto the other units.

In order to make sure the stitches won’t unravel for many years to come, I stitched each part using the use the thickest and strongest upholstery thread I could find.

geomatrix-modular-convertible-mask-and-headpiece_angelica-brigade -for-dream-shoot-rentals_hand-stitched-closeup-view

Because of the extensive work involved, (at this moment) the two-piece set retails for $850. But, you can rent it from Dream Shoot Rentals for $75. And, right now, you can get a 10% discount on your first order).

The piece is currently out of stock. So, please bookmark the page and check back in a few weeks.

Oh, by the way, you can see a similar headpiece in the 29th issue of Dark Beauty Magazine.

miu-vermillion_angelica-brigade_virtuogenix_dark-beauty-magazine

This piece can also be worn in several different ways.

miu-vermillion_cold-lonely-hearts_009_s

This one is also the first sample of the design. The current version is also seamless-looking (like the one seen on the 3rd image above this text).

It consists of 7 hand-stitched origami units, and fastened on the back using millinery grosgrain ribbons.

This one retails for $375 (+shipping) apiece.

(If you’d like to place an order, you can contact me via my Facebook Page)

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

I haven’t shared anything on Instagram for a few days because I’m not allowed to show the photos of the projects I’d been working at just yet. So, please wait till the images are published in two certain magazines in a month or so (-:

Tomorrow, I’m going to start working on my next projects. So, you can expect to see my real-time updates on Instagram again.

Till next Wednesday~

– joyce// Miu Vermillion @ Angelica Brigade

Passion / Mastery / Thinking Things Over

miu vermillion contemplation

“If your heart is not in it, get out of it or change it”
-Sue Bryce

If one’s heart is not in it,
It’s impossible to give one’s all for it . . .
To spend many hours doing it . . .

“Masters are incredibly passionate and emotional people who just love to do things and when they love to do something, they do it all the time.”
-Robert Greene

I suppose, that’s the only way one can master a certain skill . . .

I love what I do

I love making things
I love avant garde fashion
I love taking photographs
I also love playing with image-editing software

There are times when work longer than 16 hours per day.

At the end of such days, I usually flop down in exhaustion. Even so, I couldn’t wait for the next day to begin so I can resume my work(s).

image editing - wacom tablet

Lately, I’ve been doing more and more things that have nothing to do with Angelica Brigade (my handmade business).

And, as some of you might have noticed, I no longer sell my handmade accessories and jewelry via online marketplaces. Mostly, because I don’t have enough time and energy to take more than a small number of bespoke orders per month.

My priority has changed

I’ve been re-thinking some things for quite a while now . . .

Because of the things I’ve experienced in these past two years (ever since I established my handmade business) I’ve been dabbling with photography, image editing, marketing, social media marketing, website designing, accounting, financial planning, and many more to support my independent business.

Many things have happened . . .

I still love making things
I still love avant-garde fashion
But, it looks like I’m heading towards a slightly different direction

I’m still thinking the details through
But I haven’t changed
I’m more experienced and skilled than before, and I’m aiming to become a better version of myself . . .

It won’t be easy, but my love of creating things will carry me through this transition and growing process.

-joyce @ Angelica Brigade // miu vermillion

Any ad that might show up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

Angelica Brigade for Dream Shoot Rentals – Tasha Reversible Headpiece

angelicabrigade demi-couture millinery tiara - kokoshnik - for dark high fashion editorial photo shoot

Here are a few snapshots of one of the headpieces I designed and created for Dream Shoot Rentals.

(I took the photos in front of a few yards novelty fabric that I draped onto a garment rack. It makes quite an interesting backdrop)

I like to create pieces that can be worn in several different ways. For that reason, I decided to embellish both sides of the headpiece.

angelica-brigade-for-dream-shoot-rentals_tasha-headpiece_iridescent-purple-lilac-roses-and-beadwork-side

I always put each of my designs through something I call a snapshot test.

It’s very simple. It involves asking someone to model my design and taking many snapshots of the design from many different angles. That’s the only way I can make sure the piece will look great in photos.

I usually have to perform this test a few times because none of my designs ever pass the test the first time around. Some pieces might look fine in person but might look a little bit unfinished in photos (too empty here, not full enough there, etc).

  • Each part of this headpiece is handmade . . . including the star-shaped chain/ornament.
  • Each bead is hand-stitched . . . each flower is handmade . . . and the hat base is hand-molded.

kokoshnik headpiece / headdress / tiara

I currently am not taking any new/incoming orders. I’m not selling any of my pre-made pieces either. However, I’m open for collaborations with other people whose work I find exciting and inspiring.

So, if you want to use this headpiece in your upcoming photo shoot, you can rent it from Dream Shoot Rentals for the fraction of its retail price (which, to be honest, is rather steep for something you can’t wear more than just a few times).

To receive information about Dream Shoot Rentals, their promotions, their new dresses & accessories, etc . . . please sign up for their newsletter.

And, if you are planning to attend the WPPI Expo in March, you can drop by at their booth to see the amazing dresses and accessories created by numerous designers from around the world. The pieces are available for rent right then and there.

Till next week, you guys!!!

-joyce @ Angelica Brigade

Any ad that might show up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

Making Mistakes: Learning What Works and Doesn’t Work – It’s a Matter of Perspective

Even so, it can be a little disheartening

Looking at all the materials I can’t re-use but not ready to throw away . . .

I really need to remind myself – time and again – that, at least, I now know what doesn’t work and what I should do next time

That’s how I learn to create every headpiece & jewelry I make . . . through trial and error . . .

True, I graduated from FIDM (Fashion Institute of Designs and Merchandising) . . . but as a merchandise/product development major . . . So, I never got any formal training in millinery and jewelry-making.

But, I have no intention of getting any formal training in hat-making and jewelry-making . . . Because it’s the main reason my designs don’t look exactly like other designers’ . . .  (Which, I believe, is a good thing)

(-:

And so, I’ll be making more and more mistakes and try my best to learn from those mistakes.

I hope, next week I can share my new designs . . . This week, unfortunately, I can’t produce anything worth sharing.

I spent the bulk of my time reproducing a few of my designs for Dream Shoot Rentals. (Check the link out to see pictures of amazing designs by various fantastic independent designers).

millinery grossgrain ribbon rose

I’m happy to say that this one looks a lot better than the original.

The original piece was a result of my experiment. It was the very first time I created that type of headpiece. So, it’s only natural that this one looks a lot better than the prototype (below).

headpiece by angelica brigade

I’ll be making a few more headpieces for Dream Shoot Rentals. You can expect to see real-time updates of my progress on Instagram or Facebook.

Till next week (-:

– joyce @ Angelica Brigade

Any ad that might show up below this line is NOT endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

Katriona : Demi-Couture Headdress – my inspirations, working process, and the finished headpiece

angelica-brigade_demi-couture_bonnet_floral-headpiece_gothic-lolita_victorian_hat_headdress_001

It’s a part bonnet part kokoshnik (russian headdress) . . . and it’s reversible.

angelica-brigade_demi-couture_bonnet_floral-headpiece_gothic-lolita_victorian_hat_headdress_002

It will forever be a one-of-a-kind headdress because I no longer have enough materials to make another (identical) one.

The fabric supplier that sourced these French novelty fabrics for me is no longer open for business.

angelica-brigade_demi-couture_bonnet_floral-headpiece_gothic-lolita_victorian_hat_headdress_003

Inspirations

I made this headpiece for Lindsay Adler‘s new company: Dream Shoot Rentals.

She emailed photographs of epic head-dresses to inspire me.

From those photos, I can get clear ideas of what kind of headpieces she’s looking for.

I would never copy other designers’ works. Not only because it’s disrespectful to other designer’s hard works; but, it also makes it hard for us to be memorable.

Last week, I blogged about the importance of being distinct. Without distinct trademarks, our works will never create any lasting impression.

So, while keeping the inspirational photo’s color palettes and overall silhouette in mind, I went ahead and designed something new.

angelica-brigade_demi-couture_bonnet_floral-headpiece_gothic-lolita_victorian_hat_headdress_004b

I find gothic lolita, victorian, and rococo fashion beautiful . . . And, I’m highly influenced by the aesthetics of Japanese anime . . .

RozenMaiden

Rozen Maiden

And . . . since my art school days, I often gravitate towards soft-cubism art, especially the works of Tamara de Lempicka and Umberto Boccioni . . . their clean, dramatic, and dynamic lines . . . their blends of fluidity and structure . . . and those shadows created by those flowing geometric folds . . .

tlgirl

Portrait of a Young Girl in Green Dress by Tamara de Lempicka

You can probably see how Tamara de Lempicka’s painting style influences the way I shape my silk hair accessories (such as the one you see here)

Source: http://artedeximena.wordpress.com/arte-contemporaneo/esculturas-s-xx/c-unique-forms-of-continuity-in-space-1913-umberto-boccioni/

Umberto Boccioni – Unique Forms of Continuity in Space. Source:  Artedeximena

This Umberto Boccioni sculpture might very well be my number one favorite. It creates a lasting impression on me.

I’m always impressed by the fact that, from several different angles, it looks like several completely different sculptures.

I’ve never thought of it before; but, subconsciously, I’ve been trying to achieve this ideal. (Here is one of my earlier subconscious attempts to create headpieces that looks different if seen from different angles)

Working Process

angelica brigade working process

Though I own a proper electric flower iron / dapping tool … I still prefer to shape my silk flower petals manually … with candle flame & metal clips

angelica-brigade_working-process

I started with a clear goal . . . how I want the headpiece to look like . . . then I think of ways to bring that goal into reality.

Just in case I want to make a similar piece in the future . . . I diagrammed my process in my sketchbook.

150196_627699120617374_975821313_n

I basically built the headpiece part by part on a balsa block.

angelica-brigade_bonnet-kokoshnik-lace-swarovski-pearls

This is the first time I’ve ever made this type of headpiece in my life. As usual, I learned as I go.

angelica brigade - making the first sample of the katriona headpiece

Actually, this is the largest headpiece I’ve made so far.

Because I made this headpiece without any external help . . . and because I’ve never made anything like it before . . .  I needed 80+ hours to construct the headpiece.

angelica-brigade_demi-couture_bonnet_floral-headpiece_gothic-lolita_victorian_hat_headdress_005

And, below, are some low quality snapshots of the headpiece. I took the photos in my workroom around 4 in the morning . . . so, please excuse the horrible lighting & blurriness.

angelica-brigade_demi-couture_bonnet_floral-headpiece_gothic-lolita_victorian_hat_headdress

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

Current updates:

  • I was informed by Coco Magazine that the photoshoot I styled and directed will be published in their February edition of Coco Bride Magazine. Dark Beauty Magazine also told me that they are going to run the photographs I took in their Valentine Issue.
  • Right now, I’m making a few more headpieces for Dream Shoot Rentals . . . and building a cohesive collection using some materials I’ve never used before. (Super excited about this!!!). You can see my real time updates on my Instagram or Tumblr photo blog. Or, you can see some of those updates, along with photos of some other artists that influence me on Angelica Brigade’s Facebook Page.
Any ad that shows up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

[[ Promo ]] Free Chainmaille Jewelry-Making Kit With Every Purchase . . . Courtesy of Blue Buddha Boutique

Update (04/17/2916): Blue Buddha Boutique is closing its door permanently. The link to their website (below) is no longer active.

Till March 2014

You can receive a FREE mini kit whenever your purchase chainmaille jewelry-making supply from Blue Buddha Boutique

They will be changing the gifts up every 2-3 weeks.

To receive your special gift, simply enter the following code during checkout: JKATUARI

Note: The photos of the chainmaille jewelry you see in this page are NOT created using the mini kits.

Any ad that might show up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

The Importance of Being Distinct

angelica-brigade_avant-garde_headpiece_millinery_origami_high-fashion_demi-couture_gothic-black-crown_

To be outstanding, one needs to be different

And to be different, one needs to embrace his/her uniqueness

Unfortunately,
Some people might consider certain distinct qualities as weirdness
And so, in order to avoid rejections and humiliation,
One might decide to keep one’s distinct qualities hidden
And thus, stay in obscurity . . .

angelica-brigade_avant-garde-headpiece_unusual-origami-hat

The same principle applies to artists and designers . . .

In order to succeed, artists and designers need to offer something new and different

At the same time,
To make a living,
Some artists and designers might decide
to create the things they believe their customers want to buy

They offer watered-down versions of their aesthetics or ideas
Some of them might even decide to create things they don’t even like
There can’t be any joy in that . . .

angelica-brigade_handmade-silk-flower-crown_burnt-silk-roses_demi-couture_custom_headpiece photo by miu vermillion

But, what if people don’t want to buy our works?

All of us need to make a living.

So, what should we do?

angelica-brigade_handmade-bespoke-buttterfly-demi-couture_headpiece

I don’t claim to know all the answers

But, I know for sure that in order to succeed, we need to be memorable
and,
If we don’t stand out from the crowd, we’ll be absolutely forgettable

And, if no one remembers us, no one will look for us and buy our works

angelica-brigade_work-in-progress

And, so . . . take that risk
Be different, and shine

J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter was rejected by 12 different publishers before Barry Cunningham from Bloomsbury agreed to publish it.

Stephen King’s first book – Carrie – was rejected 30 times!!!

Walt Disney was rejected 302 times before he finally could get some fund to build his Disney World

So,
Expect rejections
At the same time,
Know that if we do our best and hold onto our distinctness, we’ll have a MUCH bigger chance to succeed

-joyce @ Angelica Brigade

Objectivity, Gratefulness, and Taking Calculated Risks

Each night, before I sleep, I make it my habit to list all the things I can be grateful about. It helps me to see my life in a more objective manner.

It’s too easy for me to focus on the things that went wrong. Although it’s good for me to spend some time finding effective ways to solve my problems . . . if I don’t make it my habit to think about the good things that happen to me each day, I would think my life is “suckier” than it actually is.

This week, though, I have more things I can be grateful about . . . more than usual . . .

joyce-katuari_fire-mountain-gems

(For a better view of the text, please visit http://www.firemountaingems.com/jewelryartists/jewelryartists_bio.asp?docid=KATUARIJ )

The result of Fire Mountain Gems’ 2013 Seed Beads Contest is out! (You can see the complete list of the contest’s winners here)

Hours before I submitted my design (a few hours before the contest’s deadline), I sort of doubted it will pass the contest’s semi-final stage. (Mainly because my beaded headpiece is much smaller than other contestants’ designs . . . and thus less impressive). But, the worst thing that could happen was I wouldn’t pass the semi-final. Which isn’t so bad at all. On the other hand, if I chose not to submit the design, I have zero chance of even passing the semi-final. So, I decided to submit the design anyway.

I remembered saying “here goes nothing” as I clicked the submit button. And, now, I’m glad I did.

angelica brigade avant garde origami headpiece mask

Actually, I say that very same sentence so many times these past few weeks . . . Which means that I decided to ignore my (sometimes) overactive superego and take a huge leap. And, again, I’m glad I did!

Last week, I decided to write to Lindsay Adler, a prominent NYC-based fashion photographer I admire. I showed her some of my designs and my online portfolio. When she said that she’d love to work with me, I was over the moon!!!

Last week, I also submitted some fashion editorials I styled and shot to several magazines . . . I haven’t heard back from them yet. But I’m crossing my fingers.

Till next week, you guys!

In the meantime, follow me on Facebook or Instagram for real-time updates and behind-the-scenes photos.

-joyce @ Angelica Brigade

Any ads that might show up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

[[ Select Press ]] – updated in Jan 12, 2014

Dark Beauty Magazine Winter Fashion Editorial

Free preview available in http://www.darkbeautymag.com/downloads/issue-26-winter-digital-download/
Behind the scenes photos are available here

angelica-brigade_grace-ormonde-wedding-style-magazine

Grace Ormonde Wedding Style Magazine – http://www.weddingstylemagazine.com/hollywood-nouveau
Behind the scenes photos are available here

angelica+brigade+la+carmina+lacarmina+angelicabrigade+leveled+magazine+front+page

(Leveled Magazine) Real Talk with La Carmina – http://www.leveledmag.com/2013/01/la-carmina/

New Endeavor: Conceptual Photography

miu-vermilion_tangled-part2_small

Photographed and styled by Miu Vermillion
PVC top and skirt by Artifice Clothing
Silk Bouquet by Hapitat

To some degree, people are anchored to their past.
But, we should never let our past to define our future.
It won’t be easy.
Old habits, uncertainty, fear of the unknown . . .
But, the struggle forward is worth the effort.

miu-vermillion-square-tangled_small

Many people might say
“What the heck?!”
“You are a designer . . . you make jewelry and headpieces . . . Okay, sometimes, you make dresses, too . . .  So, stick on making things”
You are lacking stick-to-itiveness. If you keep on doing this, you’ll never succeed in anything
“Jill of all trades, master of none”
(o
r something similar)

Well, yes  . . . I make things . . . And I will keep on making things.

I will never stop creating demi-couture jewelry, headpieces, and dresses . . . But, from now on, I will make conceptual photographs as well.

I won’t be taking clients. Not anytime soon, if ever. Because, I want to focus on creating images I like, and to tell stories through those images.

angelica brigade

Many people don’t this, but I went to college as a Transmedia Art Major. I took photography and image editing classes . . . and, even after I graduated from college, I took a lot of dark, conceptual self-portraits. Not because I love myself so much, but because I had a hectic schedule (so, the only time I could shoot the photos are sometime after midnight).

So, I’m not a complete novice. A bit rusty, perhaps, but not a total noob. But, with a bit of practice, I’ll get the hang of it (again).

angelicabrigade 005

In order not to confuse anyone . . . and because my conceptual photography projects don’t always intersect with my demi-couture designs, I decided to keep them separate. For my photography projects, I will go by Miu Vermillion.

It’s early days yet, but here are my new Facebook and Instagram accounts:
http://www.facebook.com/MiuVermillion
http://www.instagram.com/MiuVermillion

I promise, more than 80% of the contents will not overlap with Angelica Brigade

Right now, there are many things I still need to figure out . . .
But it’s a part of the process, right?

– joyz k / Miu Vermillion

Rumination

angelicabrigade_miu-vermillion-2014_

Photographer: Miu Vermillion
Jewelry & Beaded Accessories: Angelica Brigade

This conceptual photograph is the (almost) perfect reflection of my current state of mind.

I’m giving myself a deadline. By the end of this week, I really should finish defragging my mind.

. . .

Last year, I overcommited myself to too many projects. I spent most of my waking hours (and sleepless nights) working. And so, I had no time to think and evaluate things.

It’s something I can no longer postpone.

It’s easier to keep on doing the same things and let chances, lucks, other people, and other external factors to decide the outcome; but, it sounds hazardous to me. It’s like going through life like a rudderless ship (which, eventually, will get stranded somewhere unpleasant).

Now that all the holiday festivities are over, let’s not waste the new opportunities (and lessons) 2014 has to offer

– joyz k / miu vermillion @ Angelica Brigade

Any ad that might show up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

Looking Back: Going Against the Stream

opi liquid sand stay the night nail polish nails lacquer manicure lacquer

You’ve read about those young successful people who thank their family for their support . . .
Well . . . I’m not one of them.

I’m not old, but I’m no longer very young. I don’t have family members who actively sabotage or stop me from achieving my goals, but they don’t support me either.

I’m not writing this to whine. What I’m trying to say is: Youth and support from family members are great but they are not the prerequisites of success.

The fact that I’m no longer very young is the very reason I should try to reach for my goals right now, before I become too old or to weak to do it.

As I said it in a previous post, I came from a (rather traditional) white-collar family. Most of them never understand why I don’t take the conventional and safe road by getting a steady administrative job. But I like to create things with my own hands [even if it takes me days to create – for example – just one intricately jeweled bracelet].

But, you know what, it makes me happy. And ever since I was a child , I always knew I want to spend the bulk of my time creating beautiful intricate things I can’t otherwise afford . . . And, I also find the act of creating things (instead of just using and consuming things) satisfying.

Angelica Brigade handmade bridal cuff / wedding jewelry / handmade bracelet for brides by joyz*k of angelicabrigade miu vermillion joyce katuari

I know my family members mean well . . . But, a safe yet boring life is not for me. It’s good to be safe, and it’s not like I’m not endangering my life and my future . . . With that in mind, I decided to keep on going . . . I will keep on spending hours to create the things that only exist in my imagination and bring them into reality . . .

If I don’t . . .many years from now, I’m going to regret it.

This is the last blog post I will write this year.

I’ll be back in January 5, 2014. And, by then, I can show you some of my currently-secret projects. It’s not that I’m keeping things mysterious just for the fun of it; but, my collaborators ask me not to share those projects with anyone (yet).

Anyway,
Wishing all of you a fantastic holiday season!

For daily updates, please follow me on Instagram or Tumblr.

Till then,

-joyce at Angelica Brigade

————————————

Next topic (January 5, 2014):
Dealing with doubts
+
Lots of photos

Any ad that might show up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

DIY Tutorials/Design Inspirations: Chainmaille Jewelry, Lace Crown, Statement Necklace, Paper Rose, and Origami Butterfly

Update (04/17/2916): Blue Buddha Boutique is closing its door permanently. The link to their website (below) is no longer active.

Here are several jewelry-making and other DIY tutorials that caught my eyes a few weeks ago.  The end results look striking; but, none of these pieces is difficult to make.

diy tutorial blue buddha boutique chainmaille necklace chain maille jewelry chainmail jewellery

Geometric Chainmaille Bib Necklace
I love the design of this necklace. I’m planning to make one for myself.
I might use larger jump rings and modify the design a bit.
To learn how to make it, please visit Blue Buddha Boutique’s Free and Easy Jewelry Projects page

DIY-Tutorial-Project-How-To-Make-Ombre-Necklace-Pistachio-Shells-Paint

Ombre Pistachio Shells Necklace by Creme de la Craft
I don’t know how durable this necklace is, but it looks striking.
I’m considering to use painted false nails instead . . .

diy-tutorial-glitter-lace-crown-hwtm

Glitter Lace Crown by HWTM
I want to make a taller, black, and non-glittery version of this crown.
Might look awesome on photos.

Paper Rose Prima Layout diy tutorial by stacy cohen

Paper Rose Flower tutorial by Stacy Cohen
Pretty, aren’t they?
I’m thinking about making a bigger  version of these paper roses by drawing the petals freehand instead of using the paper punches.

Butterfly Origami Tutorial

Swallowtail Butterfly Origami by Origami Spirit
Might look wonderful as hair accessory

None of these tutorials are written by me. I don't own these images either. So, if you are the owner of these images and you don't want to see them on this blog, please let me know. I wouldn't mind removing them from this page.

No advertisement that might show up below this line is endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

The end of an era, the beginning of something new, as seen on La Carmina in Rebelicious Magazine

lacarmina-rebellicious-angelicabrigade

La Carmina, on Rebelicious Magazine, wearing the last custom-made Angelica Brigade silk hair flowers / fascinators

Life is filled with unpredictable events; so, I’d learned not to say never.
But, these probably are the very last handmade flowers I create as a member/founder/leader of Angelica Brigade.

As of yesterday, I no longer sell handmade accessories and jewelry through any online handmade marketplaces

It was the end of Angelica Brigade’s years as a demi-couture accessories and jewelry company. But, Angelica Brigade is still here . . . This metamorphosis is just a beginning of something new.

My team and I are working on several massive projects. (Actually, we are still doing the very same things we’ve been doing these past few years, but in a larger scale. I’ll tell you more about those projects in a future blog post).

There are also a few fashion editorial photos that are going to show up in several publications early next year. (Hint: We produced them in October 2012; and it was the true start of Angelica Brigade’s metamorphosis).

131105_goth_model_alternative_modeling_rebelicious_magazine_art_nouveau_6

You can see the rest of the photos in La Carmina’s blog (check her blog out! her adventure and style never fail to inspire me)
or
On the magazine’s website

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

[from my Instagram photo blog]

Embarking on a gigantic project, consisting of a series of large scale pieces … #my #workinprogress / #wip #photoblog - #angelicabrigade #beadwork #design

Embarking on a gigantic project, consisting of a series of large scale pieces … #my #workinprogress / #wip #photoblog – #angelicabrigade #beadwork #design

Working on multiple projects at the same time & my work space is such a mess. Some people might say I should be more methodical, but, this time, I’m working with abandon. Without specific plan, I’m letting my whims & intuition to guide me. This freedom is intoxicating. There is a joy in it unlike any other. Doubtless, some of my experiments might end up in my dumpster; even so, beautiful & fantastical things will be born from those failures —- #angelicabrigade #photoblog #workinprogress #wip

Working on multiple projects at the same time & my work space is such a mess. Some people might say I should be more methodical, but, this time, I’m working with abandon. Without specific plan, I’m letting my whims & intuition to guide me. This freedom is intoxicating. There is a joy in it unlike any other. Doubtless, some of my experiments might end up in my dumpster; even so, beautiful & fantastical things will be born from those failures —- #angelicabrigade #photoblog #workinprogress #wip

#quote - #life - #truth

#quote – #life – #truth

As a person, I’ve finally come full circle. And, for the first time in my life, I feel whole.

I’ll write more about this next Sunday (December 22, 2013), but here’s the short summary:

I came from a family of white-collar workaholics. And, for decades I’ve been dealing with their not-so-positive opinions and reactions about my decision to pursue something they consider manual labor (using my hands to make art . . . and then demi-couture jewelry and accessories). I’ve learned not to care about what they think and say; but, it used to feel like a rebellion. But not anymore. It took many years; but, I’ve made peace with myself, the kind of person I am, and my wishes for the future.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – –

This upcoming Wednesday (December 18, 2013), I will share my favorite diy tutorials (written by other experts)

Any ad that shows up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

DIY Tutorial + FREE Pattern: Beaded and Embroidered Holly Headband

angelica-brigade_christmas-headband_2

(You can find the list of materials I used to create this headband at the bottom of this page)

Download the free pattern here and copy the pattern onto your beading foundation

The techniques I used to create this headband is exactly the same with the techniques I used to create the Christmas Ornament (last week’s free tutorial). For more details and step-by-step photos, please visit that blog post.

angelica-brigade_christmas-headband_pattern

  1. Follow the above diagram and satin stitch the leaves and berries using DMC Cotton Perle #5
  2. You can satin stitch the white parts seen on the diagram . . . or . . . bead them with size #8 seed beads (I used nickle-plated seed beads).
  3. Bead the outlines using fire-polished beads in similar colors. (I like to put a few accent beads to make the piece looks more interesting).
  4. Cut the piece 1/16” (or 1.5 mm) outside of the outermost edges of the piece.
  5. Glue the piece onto either a piece of flannel or ultrasuede. Wait till the glue is completely dried.
  6. Using size #8 seed beads in similar colors, bead the edges with “clean edge finishing” (the technique seen in #14-17 of that webpage)
  7. Pass through these beads 3 or more times to make sure they won’t unravel.
  8. Attach the finished piece onto a piece of comb &/or headband.

This time, I decided to make my own headband.

  • The technique I used to create the headband: Right Angle weave. (I usually stitch through the same beads 2x)
  • Make small loops at either ends of the headband that fit the elastic or ribbon to fasten the headband with
  • The beads I used to create the main part of the headband: 4mm fire polished beads
  • I filled the gaps between the beads with size #6 seed beads

—————————————————————————————————————–

Materials:

  • Pattern
  • Beading foundation: (a stiffened felt or Lacy’s Stiff Stuff)
  • DMC Cotton Perle in bright green, slightly lighter green, bright red, and dark red
  • Embroidery needle size #1
  • 3mm fire-polished beads in green and red
  • Size #8 seed beads in green and red
  • Beading thread (I use Nymo size O in green and red)
  • Beading needle size #12
  • Felt or ultrasuede
  • Glue
  • Pen, scissors

Optional:

  • If you want to bead the leaves with accent colors: Size #8 nickle plated seed beads (see below)
  • If you want to make your own beadwork headband:
        • 4mm fire polished beads in green and red
        • #6 seed beads in green and red
        • Fireline 6 lbs. test in smoke
        • Elastic or ribbon

—————————————————————————————————————–

Feel free to reproduce this headband for commercial purposes, BUT:

  1. On your product description, please write: “Original design by Joyce at www.angelica-brigade.com
  2. Since I won’t be the person who create the piece you’ll sell in your shop . . . To avoid possible misunderstandings . . . Please use your own images to market your version(s) of this headband

If you have any question, please don’t hesitate to contact me by writing a comment on the reply box below. (Don’t worry if you don’t see your message on this page right away)

Alternately, you can also contact me via Facebook

—————————————————————————————————————–

Any ad that shows up below this line is not endorsed by me &/or Angelica Brigade

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 1,495 other followers

%d bloggers like this: