japanese bead


THE BEAD MAKER – Apprentice Watches the Master – A Rosary Shop in Old Meiji-Era Japan by Okinawa Soba

<br /><i>Via Flickr:</i>
<br />This image and its 3-D counterpart are dedicated to the illustrious, world-traveling photographer and Flickr member &quot;DCI&quot;. Ever since he asked me what the strange tool was in another photo I posted, I have been meaning to dig this one out and post it.. 

In the OTHER photo, this handy tool was dead on the ground. In this photo it’s alive and well, and a young apprentice is being taught how to use it.

The tool is called a PUMP DRILL, and though rarely seen today, it was an important part of many old artisan cultures. Amazingly, I discovered a great modern version of this “Boy watching the Master” on Kai-Erik’s photostream : www.flickr.com/photos/kai-erik/2860082920/ Take a moment to see his other photos showing close-up images of this tool as well. Thanks, Kai-Erik !

Due to the shaft reversing itself after many spins in one direction, the Pump Drill also required a unique bit. The all important flywheel – in the above photo it is a simple, ball-shaped weight in the shaft – could take any form; from round ball to “flying saucer” shape, and from smooth surfaced to ornately cast or engraved (making it a work of art in itself). It looks about as primitive as you can get, but it was an indispensable tool. It did its job making all manner of fine bore holes, the direction and flare of which could be accurately controlled by the subtle moves of a skilled operator.

Well, now that we have established how primitive this tool is, it’s only fair to tell you that at the very moment the quaint photo was taken above in 1904, back in the “advanced” nations of North America and Europe, every JEWELER, SILVERSMITH, GOLDSMITH, ENGRAVER, OPTICIAN and WATCHMAKER were all sitting at their benches using all sizes of the same Pump Drill seen above! With it, they produced the fantastic settings of the beautiful “antique rings and jewelry” that many folks like to collect, as well as the beautiful old precision watches and scientific instruments that still “keep on ticking” today.

In spite of that, I’m sure nobody here is about to trade in your variable-speed DREMEL Hobby Drill for one of these. On the other hand, if you are out in the wilderness with no electroicity (working on some kind of on-the-spot wood,metal, or stone project), some version of this drill with the right set of bits would come in MIGHTY HANDY.

If you are into stereoviews, the deep 3-D version of the above detail crop is here, and was photographed by JULIAN COCHRANE in 1904 for the Keystone View Company : www.flickr.com/photos/24443965@N08/2586445212/

In the Wikipedia under BOW DRILL, and you can see PUMP DRILL illustrated as a related tool : en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bow_drill

The Photo that DCI first caught the Pump Drill in is here : www.flickr.com/photos/24443965@N08/2477276418/

For other beautiful and interesting photos by the same photographer (including a couple of great self portraits taken while in Japan), look here : www.flickr.com/search/?q=Julian Cochrane&w=24443965@N08


Wire ring. I finally found a wire ring design I could deal with that wasn’t fundamentally the same as all the others I’d done so far. This is my practice piece for this design; I’ll be working on variations in future. Czech fire-polished bead for the focal, Japanese 8/0 seed beads for the rest of them, Artistic Wire 22-gauge and 28-gauge gold-colored wire.


I found that many girls in Japan get hair extensions!! In fact I asked some of my Japanese friends and they told me that a large amount girls start getting hair extensions during their last year of high school. I had them done too. I got the braiding style done and for $100!!! I did them in Shibuya, It was a store near the station near the department store LOFT. They lasted me 3 months then I had to redo it ^^ !! I loved having them in !! I like long hair ^^ I also prefer bead-head styled hair. I like how it looks messy!! :P

Cultural Misrepresentation in the new Powerpuff Girls

I recently watched the first episode of the Powerpuff Girls reboot with my brother, who’s very educated in Asian cultures and practices. He’s enjoyed Powerpuff Girls with me as I grew up with it, not as much as I have, but still maintaining a fair interest. The plot of the new episode “Man Up” reminded us of a season 6 episode, “Makes Zen to Me,” with its Zen references. The first thing my brother noticed was that it was terribly inaccurate to the Zen philosophy and, rather than being Zen, mixed a bunch of different cultures under the name, of them including Hinduism and Hippie-ism. Even so, the references they DID make were stereotypical and obviously didn’t delve into them.

Before we begin, neither my brother or I have ill feelings at all towards any of the practices mentioned in this post. We are in defense of them by displaying how incorrect and offensive they’re portraying them as.

Everything, including spoilers, is under the cut!

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I was inspired by the Greek myth of Persephone’s abduction.

This costume is made up of four pieces: Bodice, cloak, skirt and boot (not pictured). All nuno felted. On the back of the cloak I felted the Japanese character for ‘spring’.

Materials used: Hand dyed silk organza, silk gauze and silk chiffon. Commercially dyed corridale fibre, natural alpaca, silk fibre, rayon yarn and jade beads.


Plant of the Day

Friday 26 August 2016

Onoclea sensibilis (sensitive fern, bead fern, Japanese ostrich fern) has been used beautiful to help naturalise this landscaped waterfall and woodland path used to display native plants of Nova Scotia, Canada at the Harriet Irving Botanical Gardens, Arcadia University. This deciduous, rhizomatous fern will form extensive colonies if planted in moist sheltered locations. The shorter, narrow fertile fronds have much reduced lobes giving the common name bead fern.

Jill Raggett