There are some artists who work in several media in at once. It is as if the creative urge within needs to be expressed in different forms; or perhaps another medium is chosen when one is deemed unsuitable or inadequate to convey the artist’s message or whim. Palanca Award-winning poet Joel Vega writes for a science publication and also creates fantastical sculpture. I write creative non-fiction and do needlework – embroidery and quilts – reveling in the colors of embroidery floss and the patterns of cotton fabric, working with my hands and not only my head. And my classmate, writer Natasha Gamalinda, creates one-of-a-kind costume jewelry from beads, bits of rawhide string, and lengths of chain.
Nat belongs to the Gamalinda family of writing fame. A poet, essayist, and short story writer, she is completing her master’s degree in Creative Writing at the University of the Philippines-Diliman, where I met her in Dr. Cristina Pantoja-Hidalgo’s creative non-fiction writing class.
Her venture into jewelry art is called “Happy Wraps“. Nat designs and creates custom pieces in happy colors that make the soul skip with a glint of a glass bead, and fingers tingle with the feel of grainy leather.
Nat created this choker for me in my chosen flavors of chocolate, strawberry, and vanilla. She added a unicorn charm in the center, referencing my two-decades’ long involvement in the Philippine thoroughbred industry. I’m happy to own a statement neckpiece that turns heads and is also a souvenir from one of the most exciting young writers in the Philippine literary scene.
A choker Nat designed for me in the “choco-strawberry” colorway from her “I Love Ice Cream” line. Other flavors include pistachio and wildberry.
With the holidays just around the corner, why not ask Nat to create bracelets or neckpieces for your loved ones in their favorite colors and materials? Email her at email@example.com or search for ‘Happy Wraps’ on Facebook to see photos of Nat’s work and get your own custom wearable art pieces from this talented artist.
Photos by Natasha Gamalinda/Happy Wraps.