Tuesday, December 31, 2013

December 2013

     December was a BUSY month, as it is for most.  I decided to make many of my gifts.  Alongside the sequined tail I was still working on (see October blog), I also made ornaments for each of my mermaid friends, which started as a sustainable secret santa gift for one person and turned into ornaments for everyone!  It was made using household items and leftover paint.  They were a fun surprise for everyone!
     In the cards I was sending out, I donned my mermaid tail and jumped into the Oceanarium at the Pacific Beach Hotel in Waikiki.  There was a nice Christmas interior and exterior to which I could pose with a "Merry Christmas" sign.  Next, I made a mermaid top to match the tail I made for my friend's daughter (pictured below).  It was uniquely designed to fit her then hand-painted and hand-sewn with tiny sequins as an added touch.  The difficulty was having it fit her without being able to measure her...luckily, it fit!!   I also made a monofin for the same friend's other daughter to match the tail that I put aside that fits her (see October blog).  We were able to do a test swim post Christmas, and she rocked that monofin!!  She truly was a mermaid in the making!  Last of my mermaid gift-giving, I made a monofin for the girls' mom who is a dear friend of mine who has helped me in sooo many aspects of my mermaid career.  Much of what I have done could not have been possible without her!
     An unexpected gift on Christmas came from the love of my life!  He surprisingly found a necklace I have had my eye on for at least a year!  It was made by the ever-popular Facebook name of The Vintage Angel.  Occasionally, she makes mermaid and ocean-inspired antique jewelry.  This particular piece is surely an eye catcher!  When I opened the box tears came to my eyes as I was in such awe that he even found this piece as I didn't believe she was still making them.  Such a sweet and thoughtful gift!
     It was a busy month, but the joy of having others enjoy a piece of what I do is well worth the time, effort and sacrifice of putting aside my own new tail to make tails for others.  'Tis the season of giving, and these gifts were so special to give!  :-)

Saturday, November 30, 2013

November 2013

     In November, I went to get my hair cut by my favorite hair stylist, Jen Jackson of Hottie Hair Hawaii.  She was so enthralled with my long layers she asked if I could model in her showcase for the Raw Artists of Hawaii.  How could I say no?  Later when I got some information about the show, she was unsure of what to put in my hair.  I told her I had recently made some sea crowns which she could use.  I showed them to her later, and she loved them!  When I was at the event, my hair was getting prepped for what was to be a mermaid afro!  Curls galore coupled with 19 multi-colored feathers and hair chalk topped with a mermaid crown was more than my hair had ever experienced (which is a lot to say after 15 years of stage and competition experience)!  I loved it!!  I did my best ever catwalk, which displayed my awesome hair done by Jen Jackson!  It was truly a memorable experience as I was able to cross off "Walk In a Runway Show" off my bucket list--and to add to it, to wear my sea crown across the stage!  :-)

     One thing I don't think anyone considered was what it was going to take to wash this out.  Oh.My.Goodness!  I conditioned the life out of my hair, trying to get through all the nests of knots put in by the feathers.  I couldn't get the feathers out; I could hardly find them!  Two days later, I still had nests in my hair.  I was able to get most of the feathers out, but still could not brush through many sections of my hair...I finally took the last drastic measure and razored the remaining knots out of my hair.  (By the way, Jen offered to have me go to her place two days after the event to help me out, but our schedules did not match up until 5 days after the event--I couldn't wait that long).  This is the post conditioner and brushed (yes, this was brushed) version of my hair.  Oh, the life of a mermaid!  :-)

Thursday, October 31, 2013

October 2013

     Halloween--one of my favorite holidays!  I love dressing up (could you have guessed?)!  I love watching people's creativity come out and see others dress up as well!  My big plan was to sit in front of my house, hand out sea animal toys and just enjoy seeing all the children in their costumes!  The sun was going down, the outside light was on, and I was all ready to don my tail!  I look outside...where were all the kids knocking on doors saying, "Trick-or-Treat?"  There were NO CHILDREN!!!  NONE!!!  I had a good idea that they were all at the local mall.  So I took my pail with sea animal toys, went to the mall and walked around asking kids if they wanted a sea animal.  I got plenty of funny stares, but what else is new?  :-P  What a great night seeing everyone in their costumes and being able to share what I do best!   
     Earlier in October, I was commissioned to make yet another child's tail!  Great!  But...could I please make it a surprise for Christmas?  Ohh...no fittings or measurements!  The client's daughter and a mutual friend's daughter may have been around the same size so the plan was for me to could make it to the friend's daughter's size.  I was also given a pair of stretchy pants of the client's daughter.  I fitted, pinned, hemmed and sewed this little tail to another child's measurements.  Once it was finished, I just wanted to be sure it would be a nice fit so we decided to have the two girls have a play date wearing stretchy pants.  Unfortunately, the client's daughter was a few inches taller and a almost a year older so the little tail didn't fit.  Back to the sewing machine.
     I had extra material to which I was able to remake her tail, putting the other one aside for the little girl to which it fitted.  Hours, days, weeks and a couple months later, a fully sequined, hand-sewn, hand-painted tail was complete.  Not only a tail, but a matching top and swimmable head piece.  Unfortunately, I never did see her in her tail and have yet to see photos of her in it, but was told she loved it!!  This photo is the friend's daughter in the tail (to be sure it was big on her).

Monday, September 30, 2013

September 2013

     This month was so fun!  I had the opportunity to go out and do a photo shoot with three great photographers!  I was with Carlos from Simple Touch Images, Jason from Wicked Moon Photography and Sharon Kamura.  We had to the opportunity to go down to the cliffs of Halona Cove, most known from the infamous movie "From Here to Eternity."  I did a couple private photos for some by-standers who were excited to see a mermaid at the beach.  It was such a fun, but painful experience sitting on the sharp rocks of the cliffs.  At one point, a huge wave came and dragged me across some rocks, which gave a nice mermaid bruise, but I would do it all over again as it was such a fun experience!  There were many great photos that came out from that shoot on such a beautiful, picturesque day!  

     I also finished the baby tail I had been working on.  200 hours, 11 weeks and 2200 sequins later, I was able to present the smallest, swimmable tail along with a Certificate of Authenticity to Baby Madison.  With the tails I have been making for children, each child receiving a mermaid tail also receives this certificate, which makes them an ambassador for the ocean to which they vow to take care of the ocean and its inhabitants to the best of their abilities.  I am now embarking on a two children's tails (and my own tail) to be done by Christmas!  Phew...busy life as a mermaid creator!  More pics of the baby in the tail to be seen soon!  :-)  

Saturday, August 31, 2013

August 2013

     Wow, this was such a busy mermaid month!  The busiest I've had so far!  The first three weekends were spent doing birthday parties, which I owe a HUGE shout-out to Mermaid Harmony for setting me up with these!  When the kids asked where Mermaid Harmony was, and I told them she swam to the mainland for a while.  They agreed that was a very far swim!  :-)
     The parties were great!  The first was my first boy pirate party!  For craft time we made pirate hats, and I brought the birthday boy a special pirate had of his own.  The next week, was a half landlocked/half in-water party.  We made priceless sea crowns and also some splashes in the water!  And lastly, my landlocked party was indoors where we made more sea crowns.   I also presented the birthday girls with a mermaid headpiece made with all the love the ocean!  It was such a great, fun month of parties!
     The last weekend of the month was spent a little swim away to a neighboring island: the Big Island.  I was overwhelmed with the sea animals.  First, I was able to visit the world's largest sea horse farm.  It is an amazing facility that breeds sea horses and releases them in hopes of increasing the numbers of sea horses in the world's oceans.  The next day was a much-awaited day for this mermaid, but I took the opportunity to trade my mermaid fin for scuba fins to see some fantastic sea life.  I have always wanted to see garden eels, which were a great surprise to find.  Later there were scorpionfish, eels and finally, what I have been waiting a lifetime to see: Manta Rays.  I was no Hannah Fraser when it came to interacting with them underwater (see "Manta's Last Dance" on YouTube), but they were quite a sight to see!  I will never forget the 11 rays that came to show their grace and beauty.  Thank you, Jack's Dive Locker for such an amazing and unforgettable experience!  I hope to see them again someday.  
     Not only did I have party preparations going on and manta rays to swim with, but I was also working on a baby tail for the littlest swimming mermaid.  I had hoped to have finished by the end of August, but I wanted to make sure every detail was complete.  It is at the brink of being complete, and I cannot wait to see the little mermaid make her first swim!
     To see more photos from this month and others, you can visit my Facebook page: Facebook.com/MermaidLindaStephanie    

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

July 2013

     This month, I continued working on my new tail, and I also started work on a tail I have been commissioned to make for an 11 month-old mermaid-in-the-making!  It is the CUTEST little tail!  Pictures soon to come; it should be finished in August.  I have been in the works of making a new video, which is now complete!  We were trying to get more footage with sea turtles and rays, but the day we went out to our prime location, conditions were terrible.  Luckily, we got some good footage of in the end.  I absolutely LOVE swimming in the beautiful, warm waters of Hawaii!  The sea is crawling with amazing creatures that cannot be seen in the video.  Take a look, and let me know what you think!


                                   Like and share on YouTube and Facebook!  :-D

Sunday, June 30, 2013

June 2013

     I attended one of the CUTEST mermaid birthday parties!  Everything was down to a 'T.'  They had sea star sandwiches, algae juice and even dingle-hoppers!  All the decorations and items were ocean and/or mermaid related so I felt right in my element!  There was even a photo backdrop for mermaid pictures!  But what mermaid birthday party isn't complete without a mermaid?  I was a surprise appearance to this little birthday girl who adored everything mermaids.  She had no idea I was coming.  When I showed up, she shouted, "A MERMAID!!!"  All the girls were dressed with their mermaid shirts, and they had just had mermaid make-overs complete with make-up, jewelry and nails.  I pulled one of my tails out for the birthday girl to use for the day, which made her mermaid dreams come true!  I also presented her with a gift with a sea crown made from all the elements of the ocean: shells, seaweed, pearls and a little sparkle.
     It was then that we began to add on to their mermaid ensembles by making sea crowns.  During this time, I was loaded with questions which I was only too happy to answer.  After all, how often do you get to ask a mermaid questions about her life under the sea?  We talked about sea animals and sleeping and eating and where I lived.  I told them about some of the animals I have encountered, and explained that not everything is out to get you; they just want to live happy lives like us.
     There was a moment of silence when the birthday girl exclaimed, "This is the best day of my life!"  That was a moment that warmed my heart; to have the chance to make someone so happy!  She also brought out her mermaid book to have me sign for her, which I felt honored!
     Once the sea crowns were complete, it was time for photos now that they were head to toe (or shall I say, "fin") in their creations.  It was hard to break away from such a fun afternoon!  I hope we meet again someday because though it was one of the best days of her life, it was also one of the best of mine!  :-D