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Amirugumi: Our Crocheted Friends!

Team Shokunin recently had the joy of going to ResoBox, a Japanese Cultural arts center in New York City.  Walking around the exhibit was like walking into a wonderland of toys just waiting to come to life! Many cultural centers are dedicated to presenting traditional cultural experiences, reminding expatriates and their descendants of the beauty and pride of their heritage.  Image source However, ResoBox is a little different as it is dedicated to infusing the world with Japanese art and culture, and to see how it changes and influences the world around it. The 3rd Annual Amigurumi Exhibition was held between Dec 9, 2016 - Mar 31, 2017 and it was called “World Amigurumi Exhibition vol. 3: Mixed Materials Made Mini Monsters! The exhibition required that each...

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Worry Dolls – little pieces of Mayan magic in our world

The Worry Dolls were born in Highlands of Guatemala in the laps of indigenous people. These dolls are little pieces of art and tradition that originated in the ancient Mayan culture.  The tradition has been passed down from one generation to the next and now can be found all over the world.                                              Worry dolls are a collection of 6 -12 dolls, made by hand, usually no more than 2 inches tall.  They are dressed in traditional Mayan clothes and headdresses made from scraps of hand-woven cloth.  Before going to bed a person is supposed to tell each doll a worry, then tuck them into...

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At New York's Ukranian Museum, learn crafting Pysanky!

On the lower east side of NYC, just a couple of steps from Cooper Square lies a small museum dedicated to preserving Ukranian art & culture. When you first walk in you can see the permanent exhibit of Pysanky, Ukranian decorated Easter Eggs, on display. Image - Pysanky, Ukranian decorated Easter Eggs  Each one an amazing piece of artwork created using batik techniques. If your curiosity takes you to their basement, past the folk art exhibit, in the back left-hand corner, you will find the classroom filled with students of all ages and nationalities learning the magic and beauty of making their own Pysanky. Image - Gerdany And if you are lucky enough you will also find other workshops like Ukrainian Bead Weaving...

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Crafting for a Cause

No matter what you think of the US Presidential election, there was something pretty amazing about the crowds gathered on January 21st, 2017. A sea of oddly shaped hats emerged in Washington DC and throughout other major cities across the US. Most of these hats were in shades of pink but also appeared in various other colors. What was most noticeable was that nearly every one of them was handmade.  The hats themselves had an unusual design. Take them off the head and you see they really are not very sophisticated. Actually, each hat is just knitted into a simple square shape. Yet when you fit them on a head, you notice the top two points of the square are suddenly...

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