Monday, March 15, 2010

Heiva i Honolulu HERE I COME!!!

The countdown begins...Thursday, March 17, 2010...2pm...doors open to one of the biggest Tahitian competitions in the world! I just celebrated my 30th birthday (which in Tahitian Dancing world is REALLY old). I decided I better compete now before I'm too old and the hips and knees don't want to do what I tell them to do. It's on my bucket list!

I haven't made my costume yet. The preliminary round is danced in a More ("grass") skirt. I did finish that! I haven't danced in grass in about 12 years so when I went into the garage and unrolled my neatly stored More, I found that it had yellowed and looked incredibly ugly!! So I took one out of my store and dyed it. I've never danced in a colored More before...always natural. So I picked RED! It's my favorite color and, with the help of Kaila (my daughter), decided red is fabulous! =) I made a headpiece, but...well, I'm not sure how I'm going to get it to Hawaii in one piece with the niau sticking out all over. Back to the drawing board.

Finals are danced in a printed pareu (wrap). I have two I'm deciding is black and tan with tangerine orange tiare flowers. The other is yellow and brown with white Tiare flowers. I was going to use the same headpiece, but red doesn't match with either of these colors. So...looks like I'll be creating from now til Wednesday!!

I did finish two headpieces for a lady down south yesterday. I have one more pageant order to do and then I'm free to work on my own!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Auntie Helen's Celebration of Life...Our 1st Performance

One week notice, no costumes and a dance troupe that wasn't supposed to perform until July! Well, what do you do? YOU SAY, "YES!"

Accomplishments this month so far...

1. I learned how to use a serger!

2. I learned to sew on a zipper...thanks to YouTube! Here's the link I used... ...Karen is AWESOME! =)

3. Finished 4 White Sandy Beach dresses.

4. Finished 2 keiki Otea costumes.

5. Finished 15 sets of Tane legpieces and 15 neckpieces.

6. Finished Brandee's Otea costume.

7. Finished 3 Over the Rainbow costumes.

8. Danced/Instructed ... lost track of hours.

9. Finished my Solo headpiece.

Whew...I have an AMAZING life!! =)

Next stop...March 17th... Heiva i Honolulu 2010!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Why did I raise my hand??

I was approached about a month ago by a few high schoolers asking for my help. They were starting a Polynesian Club at school and wanted to put something together to perform at games and stuff. Of course...I said yes. I'm actually really excited for them and I love seeing their progress. They're learning so fast.

Here's the part that went wrong...

I volunteered to make the hip hei (belts) for their costumes. Originally there were 10 dancers...not bad, not including the guys count on Tuesday was 30!! OMG...what was I thinking? I've been working on these ALL weekend.

I've finished 10!! Oh well, that's what I get.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

How to make a coconut bra...

Okay, I know you all have been wondering how to do this!! So here it is!

1. Pick a coconut! You can normally buy these from the grocery store. Make sure it's big (or small) enough to cover your, well, body parts, once it's cut in half!

2. Lay the coconut on it's side. Measure and dot the points in the middle all the way around it. Draw a line to connect the dots. This will be the line you cut it in half with. (Don't cut it yet!)

3. At the top of the coconut, you will find a small knot where the branch was once stuck. You will want to drill 2 small holes on each side of the line you drew, about 1/2" from the middle on both sides.

4. Drain your coconut into a jar or something so you can use it later for dessert!! Yum!

5. On the opposite side (the bottom) of the coconut, drill the same size holes, both about 1.2" from the line.

6. Deside which side on the coconut looks better and use that as the top. Drill 2 more holes for your neck strap, again 1/2" on both sides of the line you drew.

7. I use an electic saw to cut my coconut in half. BE CAREFUL!! Slipping coconuts can cause accidents. DO NOT CUT YOUR HAND/FINGERS/TOES OFF! (I stick my coconut in between 4 wood boards.)

8. Using a large metal spoon, scrape out the coconut meat. (Put asside for later eating!)

9. I use a power sander to smooth the outer coconut. You can do it by hand with regular sand paper, but it takes longer.

10. Attach your strings. I use leather cord because it doesn't come untied easily and you don't want those things fallin' out while your performing!! Also, leather doesn't break like some other strings. Knot the leather cord on one side, feed it through the drilled hole and knot it on the opposite side.

11. Make sure to seal any cracks so the splitting won't continue. Natural cracks are's a coconut!

I have these available for sale on search sellers: hulamelani or just email me!

Mel =)

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Young, dumb and outta control

Sometimes we do things when we're young that aren't fully thought out and turn out...well, bad. Like going to Tahiti, getting tatooed by a local who doesn't speak English while laying on the floor in a hut! He freehanded this...

I had my cousin fix it after 10yrs of people asking me, "What is that? A face? A clown? A bird?"

Monday, August 31, 2009

A really cool chair...

Why is it that I can never remember to take a picture of the projects I work on BEFORE I work on them?? Oh well...I gave this really cool chair a facelift this morning. It was ugly!! Now, it's pretty!

Mel =)

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Cute, cute, cute!!

Two of my favorite people are moving to Georgia...Yeah...why someone would want to move from California to Georgia is beyond me, but whatever. I just found out they're leaving Tuesday...I whipped them up a going away present. It's mostly for their two kids who will be stuck in the car for 5 days. It came out super cute. I was really proud because I normally am not too good at altering stuff! Check it out!