Monday, November 21, 2016

Make your own essential oil diffuser jewellery

New creation  and reworked diffuser jewellery

Hey everyone,

I shared a photo of my latest craze in making essential oil diffuser jewellery on my @healmeinthekitchen Instagram and got requests to share how I made them. If you haven't checked out what I am up to in the wellness realm, please have a visit and drop me a line there. I had a super fun time hosting a DIY workshop with Oil obsessed Canada in Vancouver a couple weeks ago, for those who couldn't make it, here is a tutorial post for you to try at home.  This new found hobby reminded me that learning something is fun and the most important part is to follow your inspirations and enjoy the process.

A little background

I have been dabbling with essential oils on and off for many years. I started using them during my first elimination diet in my 20s. As expected, I felt deprived from the food limitations, so I looked for other sensory stimuli to satisfy my senses. My interest in aromatherapy was rekindled from the introduction to the amazingly premium quality Young Living Essential oils. Naturally, I began to search for more ways to surround myself with these powerfully charged life forces from the botanical kingdom.  One night, while I was browsing online shops for diffuser jewellery, an inspiration sparked and pulled me towards learning how to make them myself. Before you know it, the next day I was at the craft store buying supplies to start creating, because I simply couldn't wait to adorn myself with aromatic jewellery.

Through my research, I learned that there are several common ways to make diffuser jewellery. These including incorporating porous materials like felted wool held inside trinkets and wooden or clay beads to hold the essential oils against your body. For me, I was drawn to using lava beads as the mini diffusers. In this tutorial, I will be sharing a couple basic jewellery making techniques that will allow you to create your own designs or rework the diffuser aspect into your existing jewellery.

Look what I can make 

These techniques include:
  1. how to make eye loops to link beads together either to chains or other beads
  2. how to open and close jump rings

How to make an eye loop

  • 1 pair of round nose plier
  • 1 pair of side cutter
  • head pin ( bead length plus extra to make eye loop )
  • cord or necklace
  • lava beads or rocks with predrilled hole
  • jump rings to make your pendant

  1. Insert head pin through predrilled hole of bead
  2. Bend head pin at a 45 to 90 degrees angle with your finger
  3. Cut head pin at about 1 cm from bead
  4. Grab your round nose pliers
  5. Line the pin as close to the edge of round nose plier to get a true round loop, otherwise, it will look more like a tear drop
  6. Roll pin inward to form an eye loop with round nose pliers
  7. Straighten the eye loop in case it is leaning to one side
  8. Ready to add a drop of your favourite Essential oil on your lava bead 

How to open and close a jump ring

  • 2 pairs of pliers - non-serrated chain nose
  • jump ring

  1. Grip your jump ring with two pairs of pliers on each side of the split 
  2. Twist the jump ring open by moving the pliers in opposite directions, one toward you and the other away from you. 
  3. Reverse to close the jump ring

Now, all you have to do is connect your lava bead to your existing jewellery or create something completely new to diffuse your favourite essential oil on the go. For more information about Young Living Essential Oils click here

My goal for this post is to encourage more people to explore the forgotten childhood practice of make things with their own hands. I have found this act magically calming and uplifting. 
For those perfectionists out there, remember you don't to be an expert to learn something new. Practice is key to perfecting any skills if you choose to hone them. Have fun learning!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Therapeutic Colouring

Therapeutic Colouring

I am sure you must have heard about the new found therapeutic adult colouring trend hat is sweeping the nations.  I have always found drawing and painting very therapeutic. The first thing any art school  teacher will tell you is to carry a sketchbook with you all the time. In it you can doodle, write down ideas and basically do whatever you want. It is your private journal!

A few years back, when I was a caregiver for a family member, I often spent hours at Emergency or other scheduled hospital visits. Back then, electronic devices were not as popular as now, so I toted around my trusted sketchbook and filled them with lines and shapes. It was a really good way to cope with stress. As a painter, I have the intention to turn these drawings into a painting eventually, but I simply have too many to put onto canvases. I am so excited to see the current rage for adult colouring ( here an article about this anti-stress trend ) books as a mean of relaxation and therapeutic outlet. I decided it was a perfect time to dig out my drawings and work them into designs perfect for colouring.

If you haven't tried colouring as therapy, here are two free downloadable pages as my gift to you to get your colors out and play. I want to send these free downloads out on Mother's day because what mother do not need some relaxation fun, but to the gents out there, feel free to print and color away too. My plan is to comply a whole book for people to colour with and enjoy. Please sign up for my newsletter to be notify for upcoming posts. One question I have is How do you feel about an ebook version vs. a hardcopy to colour from? Leave me a comment and let me know. I would also love to see what you do to these pages so please share and tag me on Instagram @astridfox_art, Facebook: Astrid Fox Art and Designs or Heal me in the kitchen. Please respect that these are for personal colouring use only and not to be used for any other design purposes. I can be contacted for commission opportunities

Click on image to download
Click on image to download

Friday, October 3, 2014

Commission Art in her new home

In the beginning of summer, I made a quiet goal to myself that I would finish my commission painting by the end of the season and I was good on my word. I wanted to keep my goal quiet because I wasn't sure how my healing will progress and didn't want to jinx the fickle process. I was very lucky to have a client who was extremely understanding and patient with my healing journey. 

It usually feels daunting to put paint on the blank canvas, but this time I felt less hesitant. Perhaps now I understand what its like to have health taken away from me. Having a second chance to feel well again makes me learn the lesson to never take health for granted. 

In the short couple of months I painted everyday. I practiced yoga in front of my easel every morning and would meditate on the my paintings as I go through the asana. Yes, Yoga helps me paint. I completed 3 oversize and 3 other smaller size paintings and felt so invigorated.

The day I delivered the painting to my client's home was a perfect day, I entered their beautifully decorated house with gallery like interior design. It was an artist's dream come true. Their children were  brimming with excitement to receive a large plastic wrapped object into their home and were eager to help unwrap it. 

Here is a slideshow that documented the progression from start to finish. 

Music by Venus Hum "Bella Luna"

Monday, July 21, 2014

10 days of happiness

I have reached 10 days of my 100 happy days challenge. I have found a rhythm in balancing my painting, family and healing routine. Long sessions of uninterrupted painting is no longer available, so I do many short but productive blocks of time at my canvases. I have finally found that I am used to multitasking so that has become my creative style too. My creative space is also where I practice my morning yoga so I find myself meditating on the canvases as I go through my asanas. I think about what colors to put where, which part of the painting is working and which is not. I find doing most of my creative processing on my mat useful, perhaps my body and mind is at an open and welcoming state.  When I am ready to put paint on canvas, I execute intuitively. I am learning the key to success, besides having the technical skills of whatever area one is trying to pursue, is knowing your own working style. The traditional way of working is not one size fits all,  I have never been able to sit down in a long session and work, I need to take breaks to think and return later to do more. So far I think the happy challenge is making a difference, I feel content, grounded, and fulfilled. I believe doing something I love everyday has really helped my body to heal, that is why I am practicing daily healing art making. My art brings me comfort, joy, confidence and much much more than I ever imagined.

July feed on Instagram ASTRIDFOX_art

Side by side double canvas at work

call me multitasking or ADD,  this is my set up

Friday, July 11, 2014

100 Happy Days challenge

Today is day 1. I have decide to join the 100 Happy Days challenge with my creative process on Instagram.  I am excited because it feels like I have just signed up at an art gym to work my creative muscles. I have recently picked up my brushes and hitting the paints daily. It feels good. I feel more fulfilled everyday, no matter what obstacles the day brings. Painting was missing for along time in my life.  I am finding a way to paint in short sessions with all the interruptions life brings. Family and healing health had consumed my last year and now it's time to work those creative muscle to get them lean, toned and strong. Follow my #100daysofhappiness on Instagram @astridfox_art.  If you would like to learn more about it go to and find out more. Get happy, I dare you.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

All my children

Today's Palette
It's interesting how I allow my personal growth and gut healing journey to be work in progress, yet I expect my artistic journey to be ready for presentation faster.  I am looking at them as all my children; my youngest is my gut healing, it has been all I focus on because it has been crying the loudest. It need a lot of care and patience but I feel I am finally getting a hang of how to take care of this baby. My personal growth is my middle child, it's always been there, not much complains, going along with everything. It's quiet. My eldest will be my art. I have greater expectations from it because the concept has been with me the longest. I went to art school, I painted religiously before my real kids were born so I expect that I can pick up a pencil or brush anytime and can produce work ready for show.

So how do I get my creative juices pumping like my healing juices?  I just need to do it more without expectations. By making more rough sketches, doodles, experiments,  I can build a library of references to use later. The most fitting part about the title of this post is the best way get back into my art is through my children. They can produce work intuitively without hesitation. I learn that I don't need to wait for the perfect moment to start painting. Today I painted with my 4 years old drawing beside me and later jumped from one side of the room to the other while I continued to paint.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Good cause to fuel my creativity

It's been about a year since my health took a turn from too much stress. The year was filled with confusion and uncertainty, followed by fear, then acceptance and the confidence to move forward. I still found it extremely hard to focus my energies to put together even little creative projects. I have periods of highs and lows. On good days, I may forget that I have an chronic disease with no known cure, on bad days, I can sleep 18 hours. Every time I conquered a flare up, I gain a bit more knowledge and wisdom about my body and how to calm the symptoms down. I no longer panic like before and have learned to be patient with the healing process.

Along the way, I have found support through social media. Facebook has numerous support groups for people with IBD. I also found amazing support through the Post 30 Paleo group. This group is filled with positive support. On instagram, the following hashtags have connected me to people who are affected specifically with #IBD #crohns #ulcerativecolitis. My favorite hashtag is #UCwarrior. Amongst the many people who shares their experiences and #IBD stories, I came across a brave lady You can read about her #purpleproject.  I was inspired by her energy and positive attitude even when times were and still are tough. I decided to reach out and use the opportunity of the cause to fuel my creativity. I am designing a series of work available on  with proceeds going towards the #purpleproject.  I hope to bring more awareness to this debilitating and often invisible disease. Please show your support by sharing about the project or making a purchase. My energy levels are still quite inconsistent, so often my time to work on this series maybe around 3am when I am awaken by stomach discomforts.  More designs to come!