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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.  …

The Risk to Bloom

It all started with an acorn button and grew from there.
In an earlier post I mentioned this button swap blog hop, that I am participating in, and how I was immediately drawn to the acorn button.  Every day I would hold it in my hand, feel its essence, exam it, and then put it down.  This lasted for about 2 weeks.
Then I remembered I had etched an oak tree on to brass when making buttons for my partner Kylie of Lotus Out Loud
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 Etched brass was copper riveted to a piece of oak.  Merci beaucoup Papi for finding some oak!   I am using what Jesse taught me in his workshop.  It was the first time trying his technique.  It worked beautifully! The riveted brass was then captured with a piece of pierced copper. Voila!
And then the day came  when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk to bloom. ~Anais Nin
Namaste Kalaya
Hop on over to see what others di…

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