Come On In

WordpressPhoto by Lady2Soothe

Just 10 minutes north east of downtown Los Angeles lays a small suburb by the name of Eagle Rock, this is where my life began as a designer and crafter at age four. I would sit and sketch long legged beauties in the most fashionable attire and when finally satisfied, I’d rummage through my mom’s sewing supplies pulling out fabric, lace, fringe, button’s and forgotten remnants of unfinished projects until just the right combination of bits and pieces accumulated.

Through the years I’ve been fortunate enough to have lived in South Dakota, Alaska and Colorado. However; my very favorite place on earth is Crystal Cove, situated between Newport and Laguna Beach. My Grandfather owned a small cottage which sits on a bluff over-looking the most beautiful cove in the world (see movie “Beaches”). There has never been nor, will there ever be a place more magical than the “Beach House”. Click here to go to … Crystal Cove

During my 19 years living at the base of Pikes Peak in Colorado Springs I honed my skills as a seamstress to keep my kids dressed in style. When complimented on their outfits they were taught to say “thank you, my mom made it” and this is how I accidentally opened a business (because of a friend) whereas I designed, constructed and manufactured sportswear and costumes for exotic dancers.

Recognized as one of the best environmental settings for exposure to a variety of art forms, Colorado provided me with the opportunity to soak in the rich culture, native traditions and examine beautifully crafted weavings, basketry, beadwork, and pottery as I learned the history and stories behind the arts, crafts, songs, dances and indigenous culture.

Kristeen 1165-001 Kanika 1991

Being of Native American decent I became heavily involved with Lone Feather Indian Council and through some of the elders I learned to do extensive bead and quill-work. Because of Lone Feather, my daughter Kanika, a Fancy Shawl and Jingle Dress Dancer has danced in front of crowds numbering 50,000 and my son Rudy TwoMoon has learned beautiful bead and quill-work himself and makes amazing prayer pouches, leather medicine bags, prayer pipes, ceremonial turtle shell rattles and various other traditional items all in the time-honored old style way; all sinew, no glue!

Click here to go to…Primitive Beauty Arts
and admire Rudy’s beautiful traditional artistry.

By way of my mother I was able obtain a wonderful kiln and taught myself to work with clay. I love the feel of clay, its ability to become something other than mud. The total amazement of finding what was only hours before a lifeless grey lump, transformed into a spectacular piece of artwork each time I opened the kiln’s lid.

Naturally, with finished pieces, there comes a time when you run out of room and people to gift them to, so I began selling at various local events and powwows along with my bead and quillwork. Ultimately I was invited to local schools and colleges where I demonstrated the different techniques I performed in manipulating clay, glazes, beading, leather and quillwork.

I have an instinctive affinity for cooking which is extremely important when you have five children and all their friends showing up hungry. Luckily I loved creating edibles as much as I loved creating non-edibles. I now cater dinner parties and other small events to round out my income and appease my creative abilities and appetites.

In between working on my projects, businesses and raising five kids alone after I lost my husband in a car accident I managed to go back to Cosmetology School (an endeavor I began in my teenage years). I worked in the Beauty Salon at JC Penney’s until a scout from the Broadmoor Hotel found me. I was invited to work in the Salon/Spa at one of the most beautiful and prestigious 5 Star, 5 Diamond Hotels in the United States. It was like going to Disneyland 5 days a week. I was excited to get up and go to work every day. I would arrive early and stay late, and in the evening I’d start missing it before I even left the grounds. The most favorite-ist job I ever had! But, everything must come to an end, as did this.

Broadmoor Hotel Click here to go to … Broadmoor Hotel

Knowing I was bummed out when my job ended at the Broadmoor, a 2 week vacation to California was offered by my generous step-mom. I hadn’t even unbuckled my seat belt at LAX when epiphany struck, “I’m moving back to LA”! A year later, April 1st 2001 I packed a U-Haul, said a heart-wrenching good-bye to my family and made the 1200 mile trip home. And that’s how I came back to living in Los Angeles!

Over the years I’ve designed and produced so many fun and useful things: cooking, baking, ceramics, sewing, beading, drawing and all the wonderful 100% natural concoctions I’ve formulated to keep my skin from withering in the harsh Colorado climate, and now I would like to share them with you, so feel free to stay as long as you like, drop me a note if you have any questions and if I’m not home creating luscious goodies for What Zen a Lotion Bar you’ll find me wandering Venice Beach, strolling along the sea shore searching for that perfect shell or just gazing out watching the surf.

The ocean is my sanctuary and someday God willing I’ll live close enough to view it by just looking through my window. It’ll be a place like Crystal Cove, and I’ll live in a little cottage sitting on a bluff, and as night begins to fall I’ll settle into my wicker chair and watch the sky turn colors while the sun sinks into a silver ocean, and the waves roll in on the beach below.

Watch for me in the sunset
Beach_3 2-5-013
Photo by Kristeen

Click here to learn… How I came ABOUT creating Whats Zen a Lotion Bar


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