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About



Hi, I'm Kalaya. The creator and dreamer of stuff. I have a passion for creating pieces from objects I find in New Orleans or wherever.  I love coffee, vino, and tater tots.

Kalaya has a passion for making and has been a Metalsmith since 2008.  All of her pieces are one of a kind, made in her private studio in New Orleans.  Processes include forging, fabricating, and making her own stamping tools.  She uses a variety of metals mostly silver and bronze, but also looks for other materials to play with or add conceptual weight such as wood, plastic, and artifacts found here in New Orleans or during her travels.

As a young adult Kalaya explored the Sonoran Desert in the Southwest.  Learning about her Native American and Thai roots led her to a fascination with myth, talismans, and amulets.  Being born into a military family led her to live a nomadic life.  She attended three different high schools on her way to earning a BS in Microbiology from Northwestern State University in Louisiana.  In 1992 New Orleans claimed her as her own.  She studied Fine Arts at Delgado Community College under Margo Manning, apprenticed with local artist Becky Burt and attended master workshops at StudioFLUX in New Orleans, the Revere Academy of Jewelry Arts in San Francisco and Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in Tennessee.

Kalaya migrates towards making pieces that have an organic feel.  Her inspiration comes mostly from nature and sacred symbols.  At least once a year the winds of the desert and Mexico call her back home.  There you can usually catch up with her in San Miguel de Allende eating a tamale.


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The Arrowmont Experience Pt. 1

I know from previous experience that I had to ask the driver to stop at a grocery store before dropping us off at Arrowmont.  I was feeling so good about having all my ducks in order and then this happened! I'm sure I screamed WTH because everyone was looking at me but I wasn't the only one in shock.
I was thinking...great!  Now I will have to walk to get my wine.  LOL!!!

Arrowmont for 2 entire weeks!  Yeah....Bring it on.  I can do this...roommate annd all.
I was in Anne Havel's All Fired Up: Who Knew a Torch Could Do All This?
My notebook for ALLLllllll the notes I'm going to take.
OMG!  I don't know where to begin.  I have so much to share.  Let's see...
I fell in love with a cup.
Annnd...then I bought a cup made by Jason B. Burnett.  He had me at the hexagons. Just an aside here.  I couldn't buy the cup I fell in love with.  Arrowmont has an assortment of ceramic cups in the mess hall to use.  I could post a cup a day on Insta but my friend did that.  …

South of the border in Oaxaca, Mexico

I've been idle for too long but I have lots to share with you!
Oh where to begin?


  Let me first say that Oaxaca is a place full of beautiful people.  The city was VERY safe and the place we stayed in was absolutely wonderful.  And the very best thing about it all...the plane ride was only 3.5 hours from New Orleans!  Gotta love that.

I don't want to bore you with all the details so I think I will stick to the art side of things.  Oaxaca is known for their textiles but I didn't take any pictures of any textiles.  :(  Lo siento.


There was this place that we stumbled upon called La Mano Magica #26 Macedonio Alcala 203, Centro.  This place had a variety of high end pieces for the taking and a price.  Off to the side we noticed a show going on and I immediately knew the work.  It was the work of ceramicist Alfonso Castillo.  One of the the great folk artist of Mexico.  


Eeeee!!! How exciting!


EVERY single piece is hand made including those replicas of Frida's paintings.  It'…

Everything Is Beautiful From Far Away...Or Is It?

I'm getting all up there with my new Olloclip.
It just clips on to my iPhone 5S.  I think that is an adapter for the skinnier version of the phone.  I wanted something easier to carry around other then the massive camera to take real close ups.
Here's what I've done so far.

I'm still learning about the clip but for the most part pretty satisfied.  It's good for those close ups in the studio.  Here's me drawing down wire.  This is when I feel like a true metalsmith.  HAHAHAHA!!!
The clip is also good for your morning walks to get those beautiful close ups of nature.
You see...not everything is beautiful from far away.  Sometimes you have to lean in to see the beauty in the macro world.
Have a great Friday!

Namaste
Kalaya