TheSecretNest

Lovely Creatures for Gentle Souls

Victoria, Canada · 188 Sales

TheSecretNest

Lovely Creatures for Gentle Souls

Victoria, Canada 188 Sales On Etsy since 2008

0 out of 5 stars
(102)

Shop owner

Karina

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Announcement   Welcome to the Secret Nest, the art project of Karina Kalvaitis.

The Secret Nest animals are limited edition litters of imaginary creatures. There are only a few of each creature ever made, and each one in the litter is a bit different, so the one you fall in love with will be entirely unique. The Northern Unicorn litter has sold out. Now in stock, Buffalumps and Nocturnal Spotted Lambs!

Find the drawings that inspired these animals in my other shop - Secret Nest Drawings https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/SecretNestDrawings

Thanks for visiting!

Announcement

Last updated on Sep 6, 2016

Welcome to the Secret Nest, the art project of Karina Kalvaitis.

The Secret Nest animals are limited edition litters of imaginary creatures. There are only a few of each creature ever made, and each one in the litter is a bit different, so the one you fall in love with will be entirely unique. The Northern Unicorn litter has sold out. Now in stock, Buffalumps and Nocturnal Spotted Lambs!

Find the drawings that inspired these animals in my other shop - Secret Nest Drawings https://www.etsy.com/ca/shop/SecretNestDrawings

Thanks for visiting!

Karina

Contact shop owner

Karina

Reviews

No reviews in the last year
Iriver

Iriver on Apr 28, 2015

5 out of 5 stars

Beautiful print, fast service. Very happy with this!

cardeablue

cardeablue on Feb 6, 2015

5 out of 5 stars

It was shipped quickly and my friend loved it! Gorgeous piece of art and great seller!

Melanie Crabtree

Melanie Crabtree on Apr 7, 2014

5 out of 5 stars

OMG! I love this artwork! It is so cute. I will definitely shop here again!

View all 102 reviews

About

Inside The Secret Nest

I come from a family of artists/creators who are always working on one project or another – being excited about creating something is my natural state. In art school I was drawn to sculpture as a discipline because I could learn how to make almost anything. I graduated from the Alberta College of Art and Design (Calgary, Canada) with a major in sculpture and later studied theatre prop building at the Banff Centre in Canada. I love materials and working with my hands to create beautiful things.

I think of my work as similar to the view of life through a microscope. The closer a viewer gets the more there is to see in the details. I strive to make things that look great from a distance and draw the viewer in with even more to see.

The magic happens in my small studio in the Rock Bay neighbourhood of Victoria, BC Canada. This is a big, old, eclectic building full of artists and makers of all types. My small studio is overstuffed with art supplies as I've tried and loved pretty much every art medium you can name.

The Secret Nest Creatures draw on all of my favourite techniques to create a really unique and appealing type of sculpture. The felt and other soft materials are lovely and tactile, inviting touch. I've found I can give each animal a real personality when working on their faces in clay. I love being able to model the faces, hooves, and horns with my hands, adding and subtracting material as the spirit moves me.

The creatures start with a prototype of the animal's face made in oil clay. I make a mould from these prototypes which allows me to cast the rough shape of each head. As I finish and fine tune each head, the personality of each creature emerges.

Once the heads are made I start the long process of making a pattern for the animal's bodies. This involves a lot of trial and error as I draw out patterns, cut them out, sew them up, turn them right side out, then stuff them. Often there are seven or eight versions before I get the exact look I want.

With the pattern made up, the bodies of the animals are sewn from wool felt and stuffed with glass beads and wool batting (the glass beads add weight which makes the creatures lovely to hold). I then hand-dye the bodies to get their colours roughed in. I needle felt over the stuffed bodies to add details to the colour - spots, stripes, and other fun things. Needle felting also gives each animals a smooth and lovely pelt.

Depending on the animal, hooves, horns, gills, ruffs are also sewn on. This part is really fun and creative for me - I love making the little details.

This sculpture series began with a series of pencil drawings of imaginary animals. The prints can be found in my other shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/SecretNestDrawings

Questions? Please feel free to contact me!

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  • Karina

    Owner

    A love of animals is clearly visible in my artwork and a young girl I had plans to be a veterinarian or biologist. I now primarily use sculpture and drawing to express my fascination with animals and my delight in all things tiny and mysterious.

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