Falling in love...
First Embroidery Piece in Progress.

The Story of my Paper Jewelry :)

Today I want to share something that makes me very excited. It is the continuation of an adventure that started up in a primitive way many years ago, I was exactly 18 years old. Way before I started my adventure in papercutting


Illustration 1

Back in time when I was living in Camaguey, Cuba, I was literally a starving student. My body weight was about 95 lbs (my healthy weight is about 120). I needed cash for the most basic thing that every human being needs: food. 

Illustration 2

My need for cash was the main motivator for starting a tiny student business that provided me with enough money to eat a little bit better for a while. I sold paper earrings (and other crafts) to the ballet girls in my school. My art school was a mix of visual arts and ballet. I got to build a whole club of fans formed by ballet students who would buy whatever I made with my hands. God bless ballerinas!

Illustration 3

The paper earrings that I made back then were part of a "line" that consisted on simple shapes made out of thick card painted with tiny little birds, flowers etc. I covered the paintings with some crazy varnish that was popular In Cuba made out of gasoline and polystyrene and then I made the metal hooks out of some hand-to-bend bronze wire from my sculpture class.

Illustration 4

Here I have to say that because of my lack of tools I had to use my teeth for shaping the wire for about 2 years. Thanks to that all my frontal teeth are slightly worn out. The only person that have noticed that was my dentist here in LA. I didn't tell him the story that I am telling you know :o

Illustration 5

Once finished and nicely organized in a box I brought my "products" to school and they sold out in a second. The price for each pair of earring went from 5 cuban pesos to 8. Converted to dollars that is basically nothing. Right now I think that one USD dollar is about 20 cuban pesos. But the tiny money helped me buy something to eat at the supermarket close to my home called "La Palma". How can I forget La Palma? Going there with a few pesos to buy a box of crackers was heaven! God bless La Palma as well!

The thing is that those hard (and important) times of my life were left behind. But whatever you did when were very young has always the potential to be revisited when you're older. That's what I did recently. I created a pair of paper earrings in order to revisit my creative past with the new skills that I have gained from my experience of working with paper.

Aretes 1 small
I am delighted with the results! This is right now my favorite pair of earrings! So colorful, detailed, happy and cheerful. I will be wearing them often. Making them presented some technical challenges but each one was overcome one step at a time. I cannot wait to make new pieces, the possibilities are endless.

Aretes 2 small

Besides using hard thick card for the main construction and paper with other weighs I also used teeny tiny glass beads and some beautiful sparking vintage crystals. I also gilded some areas where you notice the gold look.

Earring in hand small

These earrings don't look like they were made out of paper at all. That's the beauty of paper, it can become anything you want if you approach it with an open mind. The same thing happens with your life, you can make it turn into whatever you want with a little bit of creativity and lots of enthusiasm :)