Meet the Batik Artists of Indonesia

THE MAKERS

This husband and wife duo, Dewa Made Yadnya and Desak Nyoman Parwati, take pride not only in their craft but also the compound they live and work in. The attention to detail in the woodwork of their private temple is mirrored in the detail of their designs, creating a harmonious environment.

Continue reading “Meet the Batik Artists of Indonesia”

Meet the Glass Blowers of Indonesia

THE MAKERS

For nearly 19 years, Nyoman has worked to perfect the dangerously impressive art of glass blowing. He originally learned the trade from a skilled Japanese glass blower and took it upon himself to start his own business. Today, he is the leader of these men.

Continue reading “Meet the Glass Blowers of Indonesia”

Meet the Wood Carvers of Indonesia

THE MAKERS

Meet Dharmayasa and Niluh Marsini. This husband and wife duo run their own wood carving workshop in the outskirts of Ubud among rice paddies. Here you will find a team of 8 carvers and painters who have been making their beautiful and unique hand crafted items for Earthbound Trading for the last 17 years. This long relationship has developed into a strong connection between us, our makers and our products.


Dharmayasa and Niluh Marsini

Niluh Marsini spent an entire year as an apprentice under expert wood artisans where she learned the impressive craft of wood burning. Watching Niluh Marsini in action is like witnessing an artist paint a masterpiece – except a bit more dangerous. She carefully wields her blow torch like the skilled pyrotechnic she is, creating spots on the giraffe and bringing it to life.

Niluh Marsini

Wayan, a mother of two, has brought her contagious smile and infectious laugh to work everyday for the last 7 years. Working alongside her twin sister, she contributes to the carvings by painting small details of each animal, bringing it to life.

Wayan

Our Adventure

Through winding roads and lush greenery, we traveled to the artistic and spiritual Indonesian town of Ubud. Nestled in a serene rice field sits a bright yellow concrete studio with open windows. In the front of the studio is where Dharmayasa and his wife Niluh Marsini hone their wood carving craft. The back of their home is where they are able to pray and raise their family. The site was breathtaking. So calm and relaxing. We could chill here forever!

Upon our arrival, the generous family greeted us with an orange drink and traditional desserts. Hospitality and good vibes run freely on the island, a common thread in Indonesian culture.

Balinese are very humble and soft spoken. But it wasn’t long before our photographer Emily’s giggly personality warmed them up and broke them out of their shell. She has that kind of effect on people.

Did you know Indonesia is known as The Land of Smiles? The spirit of the island is infectious.

Inside the cool, breezy home, artisans gather on the floor with blankets and snacks, creating a comforting environment. The need for an afternoon munch while on the job is clearly universal.

 

THE MAKING

The process begins with one of the most fast-growing trees in the world known as albesia. It takes only 2-3 years to grow 40ft tall and can be found all over Indonesia. Many artisans throughout Indonesia use this type of tree because of its abundance and ease to work with.

1. A carver sits on the floor in a diamond shape and uses his feet to move the block of wood as he quickly carves the giraffe from a block of albesia wood.

2. Niluh Marsini then uses a blowtorch for approximately 5 minutes to burn the spots onto the giraffe.

3. The giraffe is finished off with paint and stain to give it a natural look.

 

Explore the creations of the wood carvers HERE and find them at an Earthbound near you!


 Emily Stoker is an editorial photographer and storyteller living in Dallas, Texas.

You can often find her hiking with her husband and two pups, making books by hand or playing the ukulele.

She recently traveled to Indonesia to meet the artists that hand make one of a kind pieces for Earthbound Trading Company.

Follow her @emilystokerphoto

Vibrant Paper Flowers para Cinco de Mayo

Feliz Cinco de Mayo! This vibrant celebration commemorates the day Mexico won their fight against France at the Battle of Puebla. Although this holiday isn’t as big of a celebration in Mexico as it has become in the U.S., the festivities have brought together immigrants, Mexican Americans, and tequila-lovers alike.

We celebrated the day with Mexican soft drinks, chips and guac, and some super colorful and easy paper flowers – perfect for a fiesta. We styled the table with succulents, Mexican blankets, and a shot or four of tequila and limes in our Himalayan Salt Shot Glasses. We can’t get enough of this combination of bright colors. Ven con nosotros!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Colorful tissue paper
  • Scissors
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Pen

1. Grab one, two, or three different colors of tissue paper for a total of six sheets of paper.

2. Draw a small circle on two sheets of tissue paper for the inner petals of the flower.

3. Draw a slightly larger circle on the next two sheets of tissue paper for the second layer of petals.

4. Draw the largest circle on the last two sheets of tissue paper for the final layer of petals.

5. Cut out all of the circles and layer them from smallest to largest.

6. Poke a hole in the center of the circles using a pipe cleaner. Use the other end of the pipe cleaner to poke an additional hole next it. Thread it through to the other side.

7. Pinch each layer of tissue paper to create petals.

8. Wrap one end of the pipe cleaner stem around the base of the flower to secure the petals in place or twist the pipe cleaners together to create a sturdy stem.

That wasn’t so bad now, was it? Without spending a lot, you can have vibrant tissue paper flowers for your next fiesta!

 

Día de los Muertos

When we think of death or about relatives who have passed, our automatic reaction is to often be sad and/or to avoid the topic all together. It’s understandable to feel down when talking about a deceased loved one but many Hispanic cultures take the opposite approach. Every year on November 1 & 2, known as “Día de los Muertos” or “Day of the Dead”, families prepare an altar-like set up in their home or town with offerings orofrendas for the deceased. The day is more of a time to celebrate the character qualities and personality of those who passed than to mourn. It is believed that the spirits come back to visit their living relatives and take time to enjoy their favorite earthly treasures, like tequila and tamales.

Instead of preparing for one of our own relatives, we decided to honor Frida Kahlo, the famous Mexican painter known for her self portraits. Photos of the deceased are placed at the altar to help honor and remember their life.

           

Pan dulce, which means “sweet bread”, is a classic Hispanic pastry often eaten for breakfast. We picked some up at a local panadería for our altar. Many people leave their favorite candy, like de La Rosa, as a sweet treat for their loved one. After the long journey, the spirits will definitely be hungry and need to refuel. Although they don’t actually eat the food, the spirits remove all nutritional value from the offerings. It’s also important to leave a bowl of water to cleanse themselves with. After all, who knows how long their travels took and what they encountered along the way.

Incense and candles are always seen at an altar. The spirits follow the aromatic smoke of burning incense and use the candles to guide themselves to their destination.

          

Look, we all seem to enjoy a drink or two and we’re ususally craving one after a stressful roadtrip or flight. How do you think the spirits feel after WHO KNOWS how long without some libations? Tequila is a popular spirit (no pun intended) found throughout Mexico and is found at an altar.

          

Vast majority of Hispanics are Catholic and many families incorporate their religious beliefs into their Day of the Dead altar by placing a crucifix. All Saints Day, a Catholic holiday, actually coincides with Day of the Dead and many Mexicans view it as the same holiday.

Flowers, specifically marigolds, are placed around the altar so the spirits can find their way into the home. The vibrant colors and fragrant scent lure the spirits in and remind us how fragile life truly is.

        

Tamales are a staple in Hispanic culture and are often made during big holidays and celebrations, like Christmas, and Day of the Dead is no exception. Many families put out other traditional foods like mole and even pumpkin. However, if grandma hated tamales and preferred a greasy hamburger, then that is what you would leave out for her. The offerings don’t always have to be traditional and can definitely be something more modern.

          

Even if you don’t come from a Hispanic background, you can still celebrate the day. Honoring those who have passed and keeping their memory alive is a universal tribute we can all get behind.

Gems of Jaipur

 

These incredibly detailed medallion tapestries hail from the bustling city of Jaipur, India. Jaipur is known for its skilled artisans and colorful creations ranging from jewelry and antiques to textiles and rugs. Each tapestry is screen printed by hand to preserve the intricacies and ensure vibrancy. We’re always excited to share our new finds with our customers and bring a bit of culture into your home.

  

Tapestries are a diverse textile that can be used in many different ways to fit your needs. Traditionally they’re hung on a wall to easily brighten up a room but they can also be used on a bed or couch to add a touchy of whimsy. It’s a simple way to change up the vibe of a space without spending a ton.

 

Pair a tapestry with interesting textures, such as these macrame pillows, to create diversity and warmth within your home. The unique color pallettes give us a lot of room to experiment with different hues and styles.

 

Release your inner child and build a fort inside or out! Make a bohemian fort by linking various tapestries together to create a cozy and colorful space fit for relaxation and meditation. Hang part or all of it in front of a window to mimic a suncatcher. We love how the sun peaks through to illuminate the tapestry and bring it to life.

Gemstone Sets

Gemstones are believed to naturally possess their own energy levels, which can be attuned with your own to bring about certain outcomes in your life. We carry gemstone sets that have been selected for relaxation, protection, good luck, wealth, or good dreams. Each set comes with its own velvet pouch. Carry the whole set or different combinations for the outcome you desire. Just $3.95 per gemstone set.

Relaxation Gemstone Set from Earthbound
Relaxation Gemstone Set: Amethyst, Moonstone, Rock Quartz, Rose Quartz & Smoky Quartz

Amethyst quietens the mind and attunes it to a higher level. Moonstone helps calm and balance mood swings. Rock Quartz draws in soothing, healing energy around you. Rose Quartz calms the heart, mind and body. Smoky Quartz helps to draw negative energy away from you.

Protection Gemstone Set from Earthbound
Protection Gemstone Set: Grey Agate, Red Jasper, Lapis Lazuli, Gold Tiger Eye & Amethyst

Grey Agate is a protective stone for everyday stress. Red Jasper is useful for travelling and protects against the dangers of the night. Lapis Lazuli is used to protect against environmental pollution. Gold Tiger Eye protects against evil influences. Amethyst attracts loving energy and protects against stressful job situations.

Wealth Gemstone Set from Earthbound
Wealth Gemstone Set: Gold Tiger Eye, Garnet, Moss Agate, Green Aventurine, & New Jade

Gold Tiger Eye attracts helpful people and material things toward you. Garnet is used for business success. Moss Agate is a stone of wealth, attracting riches and abundance. Green Aventurine is a stone for good luck, and is believed to stimulate money energy. New Jade is for wealth, prosperity, and good fortune.

Dream Gemstone Set from Earthbound
Dream Gemstone Set: Amethyst, Black Tourmaline & Turqurenite

Amethyst brings a calming influence and helps you get better sleep. Black Tourmaline is an excellent absorber of negative energy, and is useful for keeping nightmares at bay. Turqurenite combats insomnia and creates peaceful dreams.

Good Luck Gemstone Set from Earthbound
Good Luck Gemstone Set: Moonstone, Gold Tiger Eye, Black Tourmaline, Turquentine & Green Aventurine

Moonstone is for luck with love. Gold Tiger Eye attracts helpful people and material things toward you. Black Tourmaline is a powerful stone for luck and happiness. Green Aventurine is also associated with luck, and is believed to stimulate money energy. Turquentine is for success and ambition, bringing luck in your career and motivating you to take action.

Please note that the gemstones’ properties are drawn from various references and are given for informative purposes only. This information should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice.

Singing Bowl

Singing Bowl

Singing bowls were originally used by Buddhist monks for meditation and religious ceremonies, and are also now used worldwide for music, relaxation, and personal well-being. Play a singing bowl by striking it or rubbing the wooden mallet along its surface to create a continuous, harmonic sound. Our singing bowl set also comes with a mala for counting mantras, and a plush pillow for the bowl to rest on. [$39.95]