Here’s how these Latinx Art Crowns came about. First, though – you can call them Mexi-Style Art Crowns if you don’t identify with Latinx, it’s cool too!
I’m thinking of my kids generation and how they are embracing the new term of Latinx. It’s a universal term for equality that empowers them. I’m not going to judge because if it inspires them to represent their heritage in a positive way, and be a better citizen, more power to them. It doesn’t mean the entire Spanish language has to change (gatx vs. gato? LOL!), it’s a way to put all genders on an even playing field.
Now that we have that out of the way…back to the Latinx art crowns!
I’ve always loved making mixed media crowns (see here), but hadn’t constructed any in awhile. When I was invited to speak on a panel at this year’s Phoenix Comicon, I thought I’d whip one up to wear. I stayed up late the night before and here’s what I came up with. My crown has my superhero name, a mirror for self-reflection, a cactus for my desert homeland, pompoms for my craftiness, leaves to represent life and growth and tall feathers to keep me connected to surrounding energy and spirit. I also loaded it up with lots of sparkles.
After I returned from Comicon, I went to clean up my workstation from the mess (mixed media projects will do that) but instead – I sat down and spent hours making more art crowns. I sold one on Instagram, kept one, and made six extras. I have three more set aside half way finished. I finally did sort out my workspace, so who knows when I’ll finish those last three.
Here’s my inspiration for these crowns. As girls, many of us were raised to have a princess mentality, from cartoons and movies, story books, costumes we wear, the tiara, and in Mexican culture, eventually a quinceanera. Everything had to be prim and proper and perfect. Not to mention a fairy tale wedding. That’s all wonderful if you love that!
However, I was always a tad offbeat from tradition. I NEVER fit into princess mentality. I didn’t want to be a princess, I wanted to be a queen. Of what, I didn’t know. Of yearbook layouts? Of headline writing? Of notebook stickers? Let’s just say Queen of Awkwardness fit just fine. And it stuck with me into adulthood.
Not that was a crown I could wear! So I made my own version using a plastic tiara as the base and worked my way up.
My daughter, Maya? Very different from me, She loved princess culture as a little girl and teen, and I didn’t stop her from enjoying it. It empowered her to value herself, her decisions and taught her how to have compassion. Things I hadn’t thought of during my earlier princess evaluation. But she didn’t exactly feel like a princess when she had her first romantic heartbreak. I put my crafty skills to good use and made a Queen of Love crown for her to wear. This is when she was 18. These days, she wears an invisible “Queen of Don’t Even Try It!” crown.
My Crafty Chica crowns are the best of both worlds – for everyone who walks on the raw side of the fabric. Because tiaras are not one size fits all and we need headgear representation for those of us who prefer sequins over diamonds. I thought I’d customize them to fit different types of personalities, which in my case, leans heavily on kitschy Mexican-American estylo.
I finished the crowns and wanted to see them on actual people before I put them up for sale in my Etsy store. Maya used to model my projects, and now that she moved to Los Angeles, photo shoots have been a challenge.
Turns out, last week I taught the first session of our 2nd Annual Phoenix Latino Blogger Boot Camp. At the end of class, I asked the students if they would model my crowns and they said yes!
Aren’t these young women gorgeous?
Let me introduce you!
You can click on the link to see more about each crown! Sonia Rivera is wearing the Dia de los Muertos bridal crown. This one has a centerpiece of a muertos bride that my husband painted, and it has white sequined fabric, wrapped in silver eyelash yarn, and is trimmed in tassels and crystals and glitter.
Alexie of Alexie’s Travels is wearing the “Hand of Peace” crown. It has a tin milagro hand reaching up into fluffy green boa feathers. It’s trimmed in red roses, paper flowers, Frida skulls, a Spanish language conversation heart that says “paz” for peace.
Thania Betancourt Alcazar of SubCulture Recall is wearing the Divine Beauty Art Crown. It has a mirror to represent self-reflection, roses, leaves to represent life and growth, purple stars that sparkle to always remember you are a superstar in all you do!
Carmen Love of Carmen Loves You models the “Believe in Forever” Art Crown. It’s a way to know that anything you love is long lasting and possible to obtain. It has all kinds of fun objects – like a kitchen scrubber, a resin heart, a car milagro, sequin trim, feathers and more milagros. Oh! And green sequin trim!
And here they are in my Etsy store! I’m so excited to share these with all of you. I was thinking aside from wearing them to special art events, they can also be placed in a creative space to bring good energy, happiness, and inspiration!