Sunday, November 19, 2006

MoonBeans - Traveller's Trinkets

MoonBeans fall from the moon on bright nights. They are seeds from the Gaint Cassia Tree that grows on the moon. They are particularly lucky for travellers.

There were a couple of sources of inspiration for MoonBeans. Firstly, there is the charming tale of the seeds that fell from the moon on the night of the Autumn festival from the tale Moonlight Over Casssia Peak - you can find this illustrated story on my Asain folktale blog Crackle Mountain. These seeds where like pearls and so for the fabric, I've used the naturally shiny lycra in white for their faces.

Another inspiration, also of Asian origin, is the old folk magic tradition in Japan of throwing beans in ones path before setting out on a long trip. This was to protect the traveller from Oni (a kind of Japanese demon). That is the reason why MoonBeans are good for travellers and as gifts to people who will be setting out on a journey.

Of course it wouldn't be magical if it didn't have a bell and so MoonBeans have a tiny seed bell on the reverse side on the top of its head - give them a little jingle to set the magic going. You'll also find a little butterfly at the base to be reminded of the creatures that are attracted to the moon.

MoonBeans are one of my Flying Star Toys.


rashbre said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
rashbre said...

oops... Second attempt - I mispelled the advert

rashbre said...

Hi Florence -

I thought of you when I saw the new UK advert for the Vauxhall Corsa which has five toys with a lot of attitude.

They are called the CMONs. Here's a link to the ad on YouTube. Sorry its in Spanish.



ps I also mis-spelled the url the first time, hence the extra/deleted comments!

lotusgreen said...

so cute!

we have so many of the same books!

Liana said...

Another one for ME!!!

jude said...

these are so full of energy, the cords are like trails of light, the details just amazing. i am so in awe of how you put all these images and stories together. a lifetime of research???

Florence said...

Rashbre, that was so cute and funny :D thanks for the link.

Lotusgreen, do you librarything? I wish I had more books!

Liana, I'm going to have at least 5 of them ready for the show.

Jude, I do spend a lot of time studing it's true :D another interesting point to note about the MoonBeans is the way the "arms" are folded - it is like the Japanese knot used to signify a gift. Simple things are rarely simple and yet have a rightness that is almost inexplicable - knowledge, craft and imagination embedded within it.


modmom said...

beautiful faces + work!

Rebecca-the-Wrecker said...

i'm lovin the moon beams!

lotusgreen said...

i have waaaaaaaaaaaaay too many books to librarything. unfortunately!

Florence said...

Thanks ModMom :D

Miss Wrecker I'm sure you mean MoonBeans not Moon Beams - not the same at all :p

Lotusgreen, I only have my fanciest books in LibraryThing at the moment but I'm a life member and there are people who use it to catalogue their entire collection and I MEAN collection!! Thousands of books some people have. I usually have to wait for the gods to maneuvor books to me via thrift shops so my collection is small but much loved :D


Anonymous said...

These are delightful! Delightful.
delicate and dancing, you are just very awesome.

Bellissimo!!! Brava mia amica.

You can tell I have italian class tonight!

then back to struggling to write as well as do some sort of nice illumination for calligraphied works... *sigh*

loads of hugs!

Jean-Luc Picard said...

They are delightful and beautiful.

Florence, I'm in LibraryThing as well.

Carmi said...

I love these! I wish I had had one on my recent trip to the western U.S. I cherish the little tokens of home that I take with me when I'm away - to wit, the little Teletubby Po that clings to my camera bag and is always featured in a photo from the road.

Thought I'd pop in after a while and say hi. Good to e-see you again.

Florence said...

Merly, You're Italian is simply flowing now :) MoonBeans are just so sweet and moony aren't they.

Captian, I saw you had Thinged I'll have to check you out there. My user name is florenceforrest, yes very obvious. I'll click through on your LibraryThing link on JPJournal when I new get the opportunity :D

Carmi, I'm so glad you stopped by. I too haven't dropped by your blog for a while, but hope to very soon when I get the chance. I likewise thought a little momento of home and loved ones would be something to cherish and it's one of the reasons why I've created MoonBeans :0)


lotusgreen said...

yeah, well i published a magazine for 15 or so years. can you say "review copies"? kinda speeds up the process ;^)

i just can't even imagine starting on such a project, even though i wouldn't mind having it there

just the titles would take me forever....

Florence said...

Lotusgreen, a magazine you say? that sounds interesting.

LibraryThing has a really neat system that makes that whole process of entering in the titles so fast. If you try the free account you get to enter about 100 of so but you still get to use their widgets like the ones in my sidebar (if using IE6 check way down the bottom of the page) and I have the book covers connected to an Amazon associate account via librarything too. I use it mainly as a way for people to see some of the books I read in connection to my art work and for people to get a feel for the things I'm interested in.

I love books, I wish I had more of them and more time to read them :D


lotusgreen said...

you know, the really neat thing about doing the japonisme blog is that i'm finally actually reading these books i've had for so many years and only looked at the pictures!!

i mean, i'm using the net and the library, too,, but it's like all my old books are new to me again!

you'll have time too some day ;^)


Florence said...

Thanks Lotusgreen :) yes, I agree, those big, beautiful folio books do have heaps of great essays as well as pictures.


lotusgreen said...

you know what? i just started doing a bibliography on my page, so it'll be like a booklist of sorts. so maybe i could try transferring that sometime when it gets bigger. but i'm including library books, so it won't be all my own books, but it will be all books i wish were my own if they aren't already.


Florence said...

Lotusgreen, LibraryThing allows you to add books you don't have and tag them with "wishlist" or whatever...Its all about the love of books :D and it is super easy even for the most obscure books, as it uses the catalogues of most of the great libraries in the world.


lotusgreen said...

oh that sounds cool!

lotusgreen said...

oh goodness--that is easy! thanks. i think i'll put a link to my page instead of doing a bibliography on my blog.

how do i note which are mine and which are wishes? just with tags?

and thanks!!

Florence said...

yep, just with tags is enough. you could even invent one like "read-it-don't-own-it" or something to cover those you've borrowed.

I'm so glad you gave it a go :D

will look to see your LibraryThing.