Diamond Tooth Taxidermy

Exquisite Taxidermy Art and Design

© 2013 Diamond Tooth Taxidermy
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About Beth Beverly


I am a State and Federally licensed taxidermist who graduated from the Pocono Institute of Taxidermy in 2010 with high marks. I have a deep respect for this craft and those who strive to preserve it.

It is my pleasure to work on any trophy mount, be it a shoulder, life-size, rug, or fish.

I accept custom orders for fantasy mounts, wearables, and bridal hair pieces.

Sculptural mounts and hats are available for rental provided they are in stock at time of inquiry.

Contact me describing your wish and I will be delighted to make it so.


Diamond Tooth Taxidermy Blog:



One of My Favorite Things: WILBUR VINTAGE/A Beth Beverly Fashion Retrospective

Blouse from Wilbur Vintage

 I want to start incorporating posts about things and people who make my life as wonderful as it is that aren't necessarily taxidermy related, and am feeling inspired today to tell you all about one of my nearest and dearest, Wilbur Vintage.  I've known Dan Wilbur (owner and proprietor) for almost a decade now and ours is the kind of friendship that feels so instantaneous that the possibility of having met in other lifetimes isn't even questioned.  It's just understood. 
Gold shirt under black sweater from Wilbur-I'm posing with Cesar Galindo & model for his Fall '13 shoot.
Sweater again, in 2010
Dan has unparalleled taste in clothing and what makes him such a valuable asset to any woman's wardrobe is that he knows what women look good in.  Also, he's not afraid to tell you when something is not working on your body.  He understands that we all are built differently, and can see us through an unbiased filter- not the one we see ourselves through which can be tinted with flaw seeking shame or dumb shit we've been told by vampires who pose as people close to us in our formative years.

Recently I was getting dressed for an event and realised just about everything I wear is from Wilbur.  Especially clothes for events where I know I'm going to be photographed.  Without a doubt almost every time I leave the house, I can look down and see at least one piece from Wilbur Vintage on my body- dress, shoes, belt, scarf, shirt, gloves, anything and everything that looks good comes from this magical place.

Here's a brief video  from The American Hipster series in which I am lovingly ensconced in one my my favorite Wilbur blouses:






This dress is possibly my favorite Wilbur purchase- it's a vintage Bonwit Teller piece, which holds sentimental value for me since I spent five years of my life as the window dresser for Daffys which occupied the old Bonwit Teller building:

Cruise Elegant, baby: 2011


On the set  of Immortalized, 2012



 Back in 2010 when I made that fateful trek up to Brooklyn to compete in the annual Carnivorous Nights taxidermy competition (and won best in show in case anyone forgot) I armed myself with this stealthy suede number that was completely open backed.  It's hard to tell from this photo but it was drawn quite tight at the waist line with a little ruffle.  It felt very Cruella Deville which is exactly what I needed that night to dominate in unfamiliar territories.  This dress is probably second favorite in my collection.  Sadly, it requires a small waist and I've grown a couple inches since then- relegating this piece to its space on the dress up rack until I decide to put down the chocolate for a month or so.

Dress and gloves from Wilbur Vintage



 Back in 2011 I attended the Kentucky Derby and several of its surrounding events (The Barnstable Ball, The Brown Ball) to which I had donated taxidermy pieces to be auctioned off in exchange for tickets to said balls (side note- Mike Mills from REM and his girlfriend bought one of my hats. I wonder if she ever wears it and thinks of me...).  Of course I turned to Wilbur when planning my wardrobe for this trip:


   
At the Derby:Pink dress from Wilbur


 Our first night in Kentucky I stunned the locals with this number:


Unfortunately the hat is really being a camera hog so below is the same exquisite gown again, this time paired with a rabbit fur and antler hat:

Elegant night, AKA the night we narrowly escaped the Cozumel mafia

 Last year at the Radnor Hunt, the tailgate theme was "Islands", to be interpreted many ways. I went with Cuba and channeled my inner priestess, with the help of this colorful number from Wilbur.  This is definitely a do not try this at home level ensemble.

Dress from Wilbur Vintage





 When Immortalized was gearing up for its television premier there were several promotional events where I had the opportunity to dress in my finest.   The photo below is borrowed from Takeshi and that's me posing with him outside- it was a pop up gallery called Immortal Love and it was just terrific.  This vintage jacket paired perfectly with my just finished lamb fetus hat.

Jacket from Wilbur Vintage



 Inside from the same party:

Dress from Wilbur Vintage


 I also had the opportunity this year to show one of my hats during a NY Fashion Week runway show.  Here's me posing with the designer, Cesar Galindo and my hat.  The model wore it like a champ.  I took a mental snapshot of how it felt to sit in the front row and see someone walk so flawlessly in a piece that I made, and I take that snapshot out of the recesses of my mind and cuddle with it on rainy days.  I'm wearing this fantastic jacket I got from Wilbur that wraps around the body like a blanket and has tassels and ropes, a couple of my favorite things.
Jacket from Wilbur Vintage



I most recently wore this batik dyed dress from Wilbur to the second annual Ladies Tea at Devon, where it received rave reviews.  (Carson Kressley said it was his favorite dress of the day and that's that.)
Dress from Wilbur Vintage


In case you're not tired of watching me play dress-up, this video captures me in all my Wilbur Vintage glory, in motion no less:





 If you're feeling inspired to go check out Wilbur yourself, the shop is on Fabric Row in the Society Hill section of Philadelphia:

Address: 716 S 4th St, Philadelphia, PA 19147
Phone:(215) 413-5809
Hours:
 
Monday1:00–8:00 pm
Tuesday1:00–8:00 pm
Wednesday1:00–8:00 pm
Thursday1:00–8:00 pm
Friday1:00–8:00 pm
Saturday12:00–7:00 pm
Sunday12:00–7:00 pm


Not in Philly?  Lucky you, he's got an etsy shop:  Wilbur Vintage on Etsy










Vintage Post: Early Polo Days

The warmer climes have me dreaming of ponies, so I thought today I'd revisit one of my early polo polo matches.  Soon it will be long lazy afternoons of steeple chase, polo and dressage.
Mostly polo though. Polo people are my favorite.

 

Saturday, July 3, 2010

If there WAS a hat contest, you would've won the whole thing.

Last Sunday I took my gals back out to the Brandywine Polo Club for the 1st annual Philadelphia Cup.  This time we didn't work so hard; we just snagged ourselves some VIP tickets and hung out in the tent with the open bar (where the bartenders were pouring the BlueCoat with very heavy hand, if I may say so.  No complaints!).  While bringing our own tailgating supplies is fun too, on a super hot day it's nice to have the luxury of a VIP tent and everyone else doing the work.  Plus a DJ.  You's almost forget why we were there...







Oh yes-the game!  In between getting to know some of the members and networking with my hats  (it really was too bad there wasn't a hat contest but I'll take being showered with attention any day) we caught some excellent polo-pony action, and luckily wound up rooting for the winning team!







However, I think it's agreed that we all know who the REAL winners are.  My fascination with all things anatomical has me quite interested in horses; particularly polo ponies.  It takes a certain breed of horse to play polo; one that is shorter in the back and able to turn on a dime, one who is also capable of short bursts of speed comparable/greater than that of a race horse.  I imagine they're pretty intelligent too, as some basic understanding of what they're tying to achieve on that field must be present.  I can't help but marvel at their graceful, delicate looking ankles and how they hold up all that weight while gracefully trotting, running, turning, ect.  Having dissected a horse leg myself (I'm still working on the shoe; updates next month I swear) I have  a more vested interest in seeing these muscles in action for reference, as well as appreciation.



Those bandages on the front keep them from getting hurt when they get inadvertently whacked with a stick.







Speaking of sticks, one fo the female players from the winning team happened by and chatted us up while we admired the horses.  She was a darling by the name of Kathy Whitman and even gave us a brief lesson in hitting the ball.







That's Rachel Lynn K, our photographer for the day, and as you can see a real beauty.  All the ladies wore my hats swimmingly.







And look who we ran into!  One of my adversaries from hat parade past, Lauren St. Clair!  It's more fun to compete with people you really like, so we've become fast friends.  She even invited us on one of her gastronomical adventures taking place later in the day.  If you haven't heard about her eating her way through Philly, act like you know, fool.  Where all the food goes on that little frame is beyond me, though.



I know, I need a tutorial on how to mug for pictures.  I look like some kind of crazed animal.







Here's Eva in my squirrel hat; she was gracious enough to wear it and I think it gave her super powers....the unexpected side effect of wearing taxidermy on your head!







At halftime we all went out on the field to stomp the divots and surprise a sweet little red Ferrari (OK, I know nothing about cars so that's all you get) drove out on the field with Miss. Philadelphia sitting on the back with Maria Papadakis, both of them waving to the crowd.  While they're pretty and nice and all, the REAL sweet stuff was in the trunk which was filled to the brim with bottles of Veuve!  Those were promptly opened and we all enjoyed a toast ( or two or three) on the field.



When the game resumed we all took turns imagining ourselves driving such an exquisite piece of machinery.











Back in the tent, my hat was still commanding plenty of attention.  These ladies were pretty bummed about Mexico losing their world cup game earlier in the day but I think petting my duck lifted their spirits somewhat.







Handsome creatures:















And the winners!  What a fantastic day.



Freshest Head and Neck Fruits from my Hand Labor

Last week the gorgeous and talented Pearl ( you've seen her beauty here, see her creations here: Pearl Bell ) braved the sweltering climes in my third floor studio along with photographer and all around hottie Jim Coughlin (blog here: Snap Bam Splat and follow him on Instagram too @jimsinspace ) to shoot my latest headgear.  I provided the champagne.



Behold!



The Pearl:







I blocked this green felt hat myself, and named it after Ms. Bell for the simple reason that wide brim hats remind me of her.  There's a taxidermy wing tucked into the brim and some of the feathers trail off on the side, complimenting the downward swoop of the hat.







I also incorporated a sparkly tennis bracelet from my mother's collection.







The Pomp:







Comprised of the very same chicken from the Pearl hat, this piece is a taxidermied mount dried to mimic the shape of a swooping pompadour.







The mount itself is affixed to a handmade millinery base that I lined with pink satin and blue lace trim, which serves as a point upon which the hat can be secured on the wearer's head with bobby pins or elastic.  I like to see it paired with a cage veil but it can also be worn alone.







The Frenchie:







A taxidermied wing is enmeshed into the ruffles of a vintage millinery base, a fun jaunty little number.







Secured to the wearer's head with an elastic band, it can provide hours of worry free dancing, drinking, laughing, etc.  Worn alone here it's a flirty little number but can be paired with a white cage veil for a stunning wedding piece.







The Carnival:







Named after a wild night in which this hat remained on my head for 8 straight hours of drinking, dancing, being chased by Mexican gangsters, etc,  this hat takes a licking and keeps....on your head.







Secured to the wearer's head with an elastic band, the focal point of this piece is a pair of deer antlers embellished with genuine Swarosvki set amethyst crystals that point dangerously close to the eye.  The base is an antique millinery piece upon which I have added a raccoon fur poof and some hand twisted crinoline.







The Bobby:







My obsession with visors is still going strong, this example being in a hand blocked blue felt cap with a taxidermy chicken swirled around to create a bird butt poof at the top.  The chicken is, of course, embellished with crystals.







Along with the practical purpose of visors reflecting glare, the not so secondary mystique element of a slightly veiled face cannot be denied.







Le Roth:







As it took shape, this hat started to channel a sort of David Lee Roth ala "California Girls" energy, but en peu more French.  A taxidermied rooster wing sits atop a vintage millinery base with a yellow visor.  The bird head is hollow, while the exterior is just dripping with crystals.  Take from that whatever symbolism you wish,







The Andrea:







My classic visor hat.  Raccoon fur lined with felt and embellished with a sweet little green velvet ribbon.  Perfect for eye sex across the slopes and a toasty tete.







The Duchess:







This hat is a mashup of several species: the base is an antique rabbit fur pillbox, and I added a yellow poof of gosling down along with assorted chicken, guinea hen and pheasant feathers.







Ideal for a post hunt dinner on the estate, or a stroll down the avenue with you best beagle.







The Ladyship:







I think this piece speaks for itself. I just adore it.  It commands respect and gives the wearer an air of dignified authority. The base itself was so stunning to begin with, all I could do was add to it.  So add I did- a patch of assorted feathers, some gold metal charms from my personal collection and a tassel I made from silk fringe.  For women only, no girls please.







 



 



El Gatador:







A super cute felt number, this is a seriously easy to wear piece that stays on the wearer's head thanks to an elastic band, and it extremely lightweight.  One of my favorites, it's made especially special with a swirl of black rooster on top and a repurposed (read: my old earcuff from '84) alligator charm serving as an anchor for a bouquet of turkey beard hairs.







Perfect for any occasion, in my opinion.







 



The Marie:







Inspired by my Maid of Honor, this is a very proper velvet halo with a taxidermy rooster wing and saddle affixed to one side and a generous amount of Swiss dot veiling.  If only I'd had this on my wedding day; she would've worn it perfectly.  It conveys class, stoicism and a tremendous amount of fun just below the surface.  For the gal who can conduct herself properly at an exclusive event and then share a cigarette in the alley with the staff five minutes later.







 



The Shannah:







Not for the faint of heart!  The centerpiece of this headdress is a mummified bunny corpse coated in clear lacquer and covered in gems.  He's holding chain reins and resting comfortable among the spider-like fur "arms" of this vintage mink millinery piece.  Can be worn alone or paired with a cage veil.







 



The Mearrah:







I was going for a flapper feel with this hat; again the base is a vintage millinery piece and I added a taxidermied wing plus miscellaneous feathers and gems.  Works great with slicked back hair or a curly mane.



 



 



The Isabella:







I wore the unfinished version of this to my opening at La Luz and it was a hit.  Seeing it finished, and on a model, it feels more like a tribute to the late Isabella Blow, hence the title.  It's a simple piece consisting of a taxidermied rooster dried in a shape which hugs the crown and points out at such an angle so as to keep simpletons at bay.



 



Foxy Fascinator:







A simple little ditty comprised of chicken feathers fanning out from a taxidermied fox nutsack.  Sorry to be crass but I quite enjoy the juxtaposition of something people tend to shy away from serving such a pretty purpose.  An excellent conversation piece.







 



Guinea Hen Necklace:



Taxidermied leg with fox fur poof, gold chains and an old charm from a church in Philadelphia.







Guinea Hen necklace with pearls:







Freak Mutant Rooster Leg Necklace:



That spur says it all.  Ideal for someone who really wants to thin the herd of idiots who talk to them daily. No canvassers will even try to get your attention when you're wearing this.







 



Jawbone continuous earrings:



Fun to wear, lightweight nad a nonstop conversation piece.











Jaw bone continuous chain earrings:



Same as above; the chain is aluminium so it's also very lightweight.











 



So that was an eyeful, right?  And there is still more in the works!  Please think in advance about your Fall pieces and order now, folks.



XOXO Diamond Tooth.

Radnor Hunt Wrap up, 2012









 



The annual Radnor Hunt Cup was this past Saturday, and an exceptional day it was, as one might expect.  This time around I didn't take any pictures since I'm not really on speaking terms with my phone.  I think my new modus operandi is to just be photographed as much as possible and then hunt for those images online. It's fun and I highly recommend it for any fashion conscious gals and guys out there who hate carrying cameras and prefer to leave their hands open for cocktails and shaking other hands.



One tip: Wear the biggest, brightest, loudest thing you can find. This vintage dashiki  I'm wearing is like a brightly burning light,  attracting shutter-bugs to my flame.



 



[caption id="attachment_1634" align="alignnone" width="300"] That's my agent Erika to my left and our body-guard who shall remain nameless a few steps behind. photo compliments of Malvern Patch.[/caption]



 



The theme for the Radnor Hunt was "Islands, Large and Small" so I went with Cuba.  I basically channelled my inner Santeria Priestess and also this woman:







Sure a dashiki is an African garment but there are plenty of Cubans of African descent, and isn't that where it all started anyway?  I hope my loose interpretation of the cultural melting pot isn't offensive to anyone; I just want a piece of it all.



World Clique, y'all.



My hat is a series of rooster wings and tail feathers gathered around a visor with a vintage cat brooch and other embellishments.  A millinery masterpiece by no means, it was a last-minute confection whipped up just for fun and FUN IT WAS. I rolled in four deep with some polo friends, old and new and upon entering the Philadelphia Style tent dove headfirst into the oyster table, forgetting that whole 6 days of food poisoning that ravaged my internal organs just two weeks ago. We had already enjoyed some Spodee (have you had it yet?  Le duh.  Try it!) and now it was onto the race-themed cocktails.  I enjoyed a Finish Line with champagne and berries.



Soon enough I was chatting away with all my pals who I hadn't seen since last Summer and watching the races.  They got off to a rough start, with several riderless horses running the course after having thrown their jockeys,  In another entry I'd like to explore my thoughts on the complicated world of horse racing when I can articulate it better, because it's much more emotional and complex than on might think from first sight, but for now I will focus on the fun stuff.



I bet on a horse named "On the Corner" for the second race but he mostly stayed on the corner and didn't win me any money.  No matter; just being there enjoying my health, my friends, the food and sunshine was all the winning I could have asked for.



My friend Jaun, who plays polo, is also apassionate photographer. He is the best as covering these events, photo-wise.  I ran into him and the lovely Sharilyn, plus their wonderfully engaging daughters, under the tent but didn't have much time to chat- saving it for the  Brandywine Season Opener next week, suppose?  Can't wait.  Anyway, I can't steal any of his pictures to post on here so please go to his site and check them out.  He's got it call covered: Juan Vidal Photography.



Other folks who have the Philadelphia social scene on lockdown are Susan Scovill who is a perennial delight and one of my fave rave folks to run into at these venues; (check her out here: Susan Scovill) plus Hughe from Philly Chit Chat who never remembers my name but gives me love nonetheless.  In fact he threw me some of that on yesterday morning's episode of Good Day, Fox 29's morning news show.  I took the liberty to upload a video of just the segment relating to MOI.  Turn up your volume for the chuckles:



 



[





For full video go here:



Was Jenn Fred At The Radnor Hunt?: MyFoxPHILLY.com







We had to wrap it up and head out a wee bit earlier than last year (no rest for the wicked Mole Street crew) but it was just the right amount of fun and revelry.  Oh!  The hat contest.  By the time I mosied up to the judges stand, the women were piling into a gold cart to hand out the prizes to winners whom they'd already determined.  One shot me an exasperated look and I just shrugged.  Another one managed to hand me an "honorable mention" ribbon as a consolation prize.  Familliar scene?  Perhaps, except this time around sans heartache.  I've realised that sometimes it's best not to be judged.



 



 

20 for 20 #2: Turd is the Word









I got a sweet note from my newly minted overseas pal The Fashion Turd, so it's safe to post about what I sent her:









The Turd received a custom created, larger than life, bird talon hair stick!  Based on photos from her blog, she's got a head full of colorful locks, which made the job fun to the power of awesome because 1) dread locks are thick and strong, and therefore can hold pieces with a bit of heft, and 2)someone who deliberately works their hair into this style is most likely open to wearing items that are less than conventional.



That said, I felt free to go bonkers.  I started with the talons of a very large chicken (sourced from one of my farmer friends) clutching a chunk of electro-formed copper with a crystal embedded in it.  Once this was mounted on the hair stick, I embellished the base with dyed deer tail, rabbit fur and pheasant feathers.  I felt free to get as far out as my heart could carry me, knowing this gifteewould appreciate the outlandishness of it all.







Due to the size and weight of the claw end of the stick, some balance was needed both for aesthetic and functional purposes.







This was achieved by running a large link chain from the top, to a cap which would attach to the bottom, so the stick could be worn securely like so:







I'm sure she'll make it look even better than I am in this photo.  Now that it's in her little paws, I am excited to see how she wears it.  I imagine it could even serve as a unique sweater/kilt/cape/shawl closure clasp, not to mention sharp pointy self-defense mechanism for those late night crawls home from the bar, er...pub.  Mind the gap, ye!



xoxo, BB



ps: I don't mention it in every post but it should pretty much be assumed that all product shots seen on this blog, as well as on my etsy and website, are done by my on site photographer and husband, Jim Coughlin.  He also is a musician and painter; check out his stuff here: SnapBlamSplat



 



Up next: a client update or two



Coming soon on the 20 for 20 project: girl hunters, drag queens and another fashion dragon from the UK!

20 for 20, # 3: Put a Zoe on it.

I just finished making a hat box which is housing the halo fascinator I just finished custom making for Rachel Zoe.  I doubt she's aware of myself or this blog so I feel like the risk of ruining the surprise by posting this before she receives it is minimal. While this is technically the third piece I've created for my 20for20 project, #2's gift is still traveling through the postalverse and I know she reads this so I don't want to spoil it for her.  So there's that.



In a few hours, this piece will be en route to Madame Zoe, by means of which I don't care to bore you with.   The box is somewhat hastily made and it shows, but what's inside was made with plenty of love and thought.







 







I used a vintage halo-shaped fascinator base and built on it with feathers from a variety of foul, along with some salvaged antique mink tails.  My impression of Rachel Zoe is romantic hollywood gypsy, and while I know very little about her personally, I selected her for this project because I love her style, I admire her tenacious drive, and am inspired by the better-to-apologise-later-than-ask-first attitude I imagine her to have.







Unfortunately I don't have a blonde wig but I anticipate the brown velvet and feathers popping quite nicely against her light hair.  The charms make a nice tinkly noise and their translucency in the sunlight gives this piece a very gypsy feel.







I just hope it fits her!  That's the tricky part about designing unsolicited gifts for people-how to predict sizing.  I have very thick hair though, and that's underneath the wig (ha!  I wish this luxurious mane were my real hair!), so there should be a small amount of wiggle room.







Fancy chickens, pheasants, grouse, and vintage trinkets.  Let Madame Zoe look into your future.....







 

Twenty for twenty

I was chatting with friends at polo a few weeks back and two of them, almost simultaneously said, "I could see Kat Von D in your hats."



My reaction was "Really?  Wow."  I'd never seen LA Ink but I've seen many photos of her-and I love her look.  She's absolutely stunning.  "Too bad she has no idea who I am," I sighed, defeated, ready to move onto another topic but my friend persisted, "No, ding-dong, just send her a hat."



This sentence rolled around in my head for a while and set into motion a brainstorm which gave birth to my newest project, an interactive "piece" I am calling Twenty for Twenty.



I began by simply imagining that Kat had put an order in for a custom hat and said, "Beth just make it me.  However you see me."  I went with my heart and created the hat you see pictured in this post.  As I worked on it, I took a moment to really explore this feeling coursing through me, this in-the-zone elatedness I get when I'm not even thinking about my work but just letting my hands and eyes do all the talking.  I began to embrace this feeling of following my heart and creating something wonderful even though nobody asked for it.  There was no demand. Not yet.



That didn't seem to matter to me at the time.  I just focused on custom work and how right it feels.  I thrive on connecting with (nice, good) people and creating for them.  It just feels right.







After I finished Kat's hat, I was re-reading segments of an online book called "The Art of Earning" by Tara Gentile.  Toward the end there is a passage which inspired me to turn this good feeling about custom pieces and reaching out to people into a project. I decided to come up with a list of twenty individuals whom I've never met  but have been inspired by in some capacity or another. Some of them I'm just a plain fan of.  I would reach out to each of these people and make a connection through my work.  Like good old-fashioned fan mail!



This ties in to my love affair with the postal service.  Anyone who knows me well has received a note from me at some point in our friendship.  I love sending thank you notes.  At times when we are more organised, my mister and the kiddies and I would create our own holiday greeting cards to mail out each year.  I'm a sucker for that tangible piece of "hello" from the mailbox.  Like a long, convoluted paper-cup-telephone on a string.



I complied my list of twenty, and began the process of reaching out to them.  Some are more accessible than others (twitter is amazing for this), and some might never happen.  It's hard to tell (any of you guys tight with Gwen Stefani's team?)  But the responses I've gotten so far have been overwhelmingly positive and I'm so very excited to reveal more names (and why I'm inspired by them) in future posts.  I'm hoping that by following through with this brainchild, I can not only get more of my product on more people's bodies (I'd be lying if I said there wasn't a hint of self-promotion in this) and gain some exposure, but also to fully express the gratitude I feel towards individuals whom I am happy to know exist in this sometimes glum and banal planet.  Also, I want to remind people how rewarding it is to receive a gift in the post, a piece of art that someone spent hours of their own life to make.







And that, my friends, is that.  I'm tapping into something deeper than taxidermy and hats, so bear with me as I explore this.  I'd love to know your thoughts.



For now, here is Kat's hat.







I used one of my gifted vintage bases and spent oodles of time fastening the perfect chicken wing and feathers/pelt to it.







Inspired by her military meets goth meets doll type style, I used an vintage Trifari gold tasseled baton brooch and tied it all together with some chains and such.











Up next: My larger than life and circus inspired piece for The Fashion Turd!



Hats Off!

 



This past Sunday brought sheets of rain,  thunderstorms and my lovely friend Pearl to Diamond Tooth Studios for a shoot.  Ms. Bell is more than just a pretty face, she's also a lifestyle and home enthusiast.  She can wave her magic wand over any home, wardrobe, or human and said item will emerge sparkling and wonderful.  Please check out her blog, 7pm.



Together with the talented and professional services of Diamond Tooth on-sote photographer, Jim Coughlin, we had a few flashy packed hours together.  He like to shoot, paint, spray, stencil, and make music.  Please check out all the wonderful things he does on Snap, Bam Splat!



 



I've been busy working with the materials from that load of vintage hats I received a few weeks back, mixing and matching the elements from each piece with other pieces from my studio alongside certain taxidermy ingredients that revealed themselves as an ideal match.  This Gothic Bridal Fascinator started out as a black cage veil with white fabric roses.  I dyed the roses a fade-into black and added two mounted wings from a fancy chicken.







 



 







I kept the original velvet ribbon and added some black fur.







Here is another bridal fascinator; none of these bridal pieces are white  as they are geared towards a less conventional woman who is looking for something unlike what she can find in traditional bridal boutiques. This results in a versatile piece that could be worn by the maid of honor or even the mother of the bride..or for an event that isn't even a wedding!







I used the blue veiling from an antique wide-brimmed blue hat (shown later in its reincarnate form down below) and attached it, with the wings of a fancy chicken, to a wire fascinator base.  The feathers are hand curled to compliment the wearer's hair.







 



This is my Blue Poof Quail Fascinator.  This quail has been worn in several ways, before I found the perfect base for it which is the vintage blue ostrich feather one you see below.  I switched the original blue veil out with an off white, Swiss-dot one from another vintage piece and added a strand of sea pearls around the quail to bring out the creaminess.  I think this piece would be perfect for a Winter wedding....or even Spring!







 



 







Behold the wide-brimmed blue hat I mentioned earlier.  It's a strong, beautiful piece of millinery that stands  on its own without a ton of bells and whistles so I simply added the mounted and embellished cape of a chicken, some pheasant feathers and a few pieces of antique hand-tatted lace, all meant to compliment the shape and motion of this piece.







 



 







Hair Doin'!







Next up is the duck wing fascinator which Pearl has worn before.  I very much enjoy manipulating crinoline/horsehair, and look forward to making more of these.







 



It's light and easy to wear, ideal for the individual who wants to express some fashion sense but isn't willing to compromise her comfort level.







 



Here is another bridal piece, this one crafted with the base of a vintage fasctinator which originally was a simple green bow.  I took the fabric off, rearranged it and added a green cage veil from another antique pice.  Then came the mounted wings of a chicken and vintage charm in center.







The two wings are firmly pressed together in a way that makes the feathers pop out on the opposite side, not unlike what your fingers do when you clasp you hands.







 



Hold on!







OK, perfect.  This is my beloved montera hat, embellished with a mounted chicken head  that has been encrusted with jewels. This hat generates a very healthy dose of attention and makes for an excellent conversation piece. Ole!







It also opens up some fun opportunities for various hair-dos.  I like twisted locks around and under it, but a side pony tail or a combed out fro would also work just as well.







The last piece of the shoot was another fascinator Pearl had worn before, crafted from an antique base with a delicate off white veil.  I added the wings from a chicken which had been source mid-molt, so the spiny veins of the feathers are exposed.  This made them ideal for stringing beautiful beads on; I got these marble and pearl beads from two vintage necklaces.  I also hand curled some of the feathers.







 







 



Not to be outdone, our house model demonstrated his ability to work a chapeau.







 



And that's a wrap!  For more info and pricing, please visit my website, Diamond Tooth Taxidermy, or my Etsy shop.



 



 

From my cold, dead hands

Here are some items I recently added to my etsy shop, for all the tween-witch kids:







I don't want to alienate though, they're actually for anyone who would want to wear a bird talon.  This includes me and it could include you but it may not include your roommate or your cousin.  I wind of separating the feet from most birds I skin because, at this time, bird feet aren't all that palatable for the budding fashionista so I just use the wings/pelt and save the feet and heads for my own purposes.  And that's fine with me.  How boring would the world be if we all wore the same thing?



 







But for those of you who ARE into this symbol of strength and beauty with a dash of menace, what a great little trinket you can add to your wardrobe for barely any monies at all.  Customize it with your birthstone or any other kind of crystal, tie it up in your hair ,hang it from your phone, whatever your icy little heart desires.







OK, this is too sales pitchy.  Just check it out, OK?  I think they make great gifts...(too early for Christmas ornaments?) starting at under $20 a pop.



I Always Dress for Success

And that's what last Sunday's polo match was all about.  Us spectators were treated to a  beautifully played match (although I spent a good portion of it mingling in the VIP tent tasting amazing food and drinking Magners and champagne I really have to curb my socializing but it's so hard with all the great people to chat with!) and we were cheering for a cause: Dress for Success.  Hit that link and familiarise yourself if you haven't already.  It's ok, I'll wait.



OK, that's hacky.  Sorry.  Anyway, it was action packed, and while Susan Scovill has all the great pictures of the people (including me serving champagne for the halftime divot stomp!), she is unfortunately (for us) on vacation so I cannot borrow her images.  In the meantime, I have a few fun shots of my own as well as some borrowed ones from Amy Dragoo and Milicia Stojancic.



The beautifully captured photos of the horse-action is all Amy.  I think I am her biggest fan.  I truly adore her work.  It doesn't hurt that she's a quickly blossoming chicken master, either.











There was a hat contest advertised, and yours truly was slated to be judge.  The wheels sort of fell off that bus early in the day however, which is unfortunate because there were some pretty hats.  I chose my three favorites, anyway, and below is Cecilia (a rep for Dress for Success, coincidentally, although I didn't know if when I chose her!) who I deemed "Most Classic Hat".







Look at that priceless reaction; clearly it's in response to one of the flawless coast to coast hits during the match.  She can't believe her own eyes!



"Most Creative Hat" would've gone to my new pal Milicia Strojancic.  She crafts these lovely fascinators with botanical themes.







Pretty ladies! That's Milicia's friend Christine with us; she had a sweet little bird on the back of her head but we thought it would be polite to take a picture of her front)







There were some pretty ladies on the field, too:







Duke & Winston set up shop outside the VIP area; Pearl and I had the extreme pleasure of tending to this charming little guy while his human did all the grunt work of setting up the merch:



(I borrowed this picture from their website...again, Susan has all the good pics.  Susan, come home SOON!)  I also picked up a shirt for my mister; the tees are made from a really high quality cotton and I could touch them for hours.  Oh, and there's some pretty cool screen printed images on them too.







The winners!







The only time its acceptable to wear filthy white pants.  Well played, gentlemen.







I had seen another hat which I deemed "Best Vintage" but the wearer disappeared before I had a chance to get a photograph.  It was a beautiful white cloche-type chapeau with a large white multi-pleated ribbon hugging the back of it.  I did manage to catch a shot of this lovely gal, who I made a category up for:  "Best Dressed":







She has a polo match on her dress!  I love it.  She'd also been dancing, as we all had.  Nobody's shoes lasted too long after the music started.



Here's myself and polo pal Pearl.  We got pretty silly, like we always do, and had plenty of laughs.







And then somebody whipped this stuff out and the rest is kind of fuzzy.....







See you next time!!!

Felicia's Fascinator

Such a creative title, hmmmm?  I'm starting to think my wit went on vacation and left the rest of me in this South Philadelphia brick oven.  Alas, there are some wonderful things I've been cooking up in said brick oven.



HIYO!  There's that whip-smart writing style, peeking out through my sleep deprived haze.



I met Felicia recently and was instantly smitten at her zest, pep, zip, and rabid enthusiasm for all things culinary.  Upon being introduced to them Felicia then became somewhat smitten with my pieces, and it was then that we decided she must wear a Diamond Tooth custom crafted fascinator to an upcoming wedding at which she would be a guest.







I met up with her this morning at the Reading Terminal Market and watched her order an assortment of baked goods from Termini Bros with the panache that comes from years of tasty experience.



Yes, this gal knows her sweets.



I could hardly keep up with her, in fact she only slowed down to take her fascinator out of the box and give me the thumbs up.  When she learned that I used the wing from a chicken which had belonged to a dear mutual friend of ours, the approval rating went up.







I need to get a shot of her wearing it; the wing curves around from the back of the head and hugs the side before gently peeking out just a wee bit around the front.  I embellished it with hand curled ostrich feathers and vintage crystal-studded lace patches.







She strikes me as a woman of understated elegance so I wanted to keep it subdued and gentle.  I threw in some pheasant feathers and a chain detail that can dangle from the comb and over her hair, and called it a day.







Hopefully the sun will catch the crystals and make her pretty head sparkle at the wedding.  I hope you enjoy her, Felicia, as much as I enjoyed crafting her.



Giddyup!

Incase you didn't know, we're in the middle of a ridiculous heat wave, and while I tend to prefer warmer climes, today I've given up on trying to get anything done.  Unfortunately the first thing to go when I overheat is my vocabulary, so I'll make this brief.  Here are some photos from last Sunday's Chasin' for Chalfin fundraising polo match, which was a blast.  The sun became a bit oppressive for us delicate flowers at one point but fortunately some seasoned tailgaters absorbed us into their party.  Behold the pros:







Much better visual coverage can be found on Susan Scovell's site: Susan Scovill on the Mainline.  That's where I found this lovely group shot of Meredith, myself and our hosts.  I made a new hat specifically for the day, and I'm quite pleased with it.  Better pictures to follow.







Voila!  The front of our tailgate, an antique Rolls Royce.  Looks pretty glamorous, no?







Wait until you see the back!



That would be our hosts, pulling the custom-fitted wooden folding table out of the trunk.  Upon it was placed a heaping amount of finger sammies, meats, cheeses, and a dubious mixture in a plastic bottle with the words "polo punch" scribbled on it.  It tasted like citronella, perhaps an acquired taste?  (Give me a break, I'm still learning the ways of the tailgate!)  Regardless, it was a divine picnic.







In the event you were wondering, it's never the wrong time to whip out your Hooters coozy.  Never.







This is what I love about polo.  Everyone is there to have fun, and it's all-inclusive.  Just.  Have.  Fun.



And try not to step in any horse shit during the half time divot stomp! (I did, this time.  I guess I was overdue)







We were treated to a show of this horse-pulled carriage toting around two elegant gentleman and several gorgeous ladies., who dismounted and served us all champagne.  Delovely!











"yes, that's the right shade of yellow.  Perfect, darling, please proceed."







Oh, right, there was an antique car show!  Pretty nifty one here.











Believe it or not, there was an entire polo match that day!  There will be another one this Sunday, with cocktails, an after party and music!  Oh!  And a hat contest to be judged by yours truly.  Won't you come?  I'd love to see you, darling.







Tickets start at ten bucks!  I highly recommend you treat yourself to some VIP action though, check it out.



Click here for tickets: BRANDYWINE POLO CUP



Until then, the caravan of fab has left the building.







See you Sunday!

"We make good trade, John Dunbar"

 







That's what my dear old friend Erin was expressing to me last night when I presented her with her custom piece of fine taxidermic millinery.



Erin is a very talented stylist over at JuJu Salon in Philadelphia and fortunately for me, also one of my best friends.  Several months back we agreed to swap a hair coloring & a couple blowouts ( my ultimate indulgence!  Someday soon I'll be able to afford my weekly vice...) for a Diamond Tooth hat.  I was given instructions not to rush; she wanted me to take my time so her piece would be just right.







I held out just long enough for this green vintage hat to walk into my life which I knew immediately would suit her perfect.  Silly me; I didn't get any before pics but this hat in particular had significant crumple-age; after pressing and blocking it looked like an entirely new piece!  Once the millinery issues were straightened out  I added the squirrel portion.  From there its just a perfect storm of found objects and me being in the zone and loving what I'm doing....and trying not to get too carried away.







 



I brought the hat over to Erin last night and she was pleased as punch!  It fit her like  a dream too, I shall get some pictures of her wearing it shortly. I even got a surprise blow-out!



OK, that;s all the flexing my vocabulary has the energy for.  It's so hot in here and I just can't seem to find any more words. Take it away, Tom Tom Club:







A Sharp Dressed Man









Every girl is crazy about 'em.  Well, every girl ought to be, in my book.



This ZZtop video is actually really awful.  This is the first time I've seen it but I wanted you, dear reader, to listen to the song whilst reading this post.  This has long been my favorite ZZTop song (well, next to La Grange, of course) simply because of the lyrics.  It's like this song was written for me.  I've always been enamoured with men's accessories, and any guy who opts to incorporate these little extras into his daily ensemble earns high marks with me.  I used to buy gaudy, bejeweled vintage cufflinks at flea markets knowing that someday I'd meet a man to give them to.



To some it may appear a little fey, but I think it speaks volumes when a man takes time getting dressed, thinks about the way his clothes fit his form, and is thoughtful about embellishments, etc.  It makes me sick to see how the vast majority of the opposite sex has given up on fashion, wearing a uniform of cargo shorts, flip flops and baseball caps.  Men: do you take no pleasure in the art of "getting ready"?  Whatever happened to putting your best face forward?  Take one look outside my house and I should consider myself lucky guys are able to get their jeans up to the bottom of their asses nowadays. It really turns my stomach, especially when I see these offensive creatures walking around with women who clearly invested some serious time in their appearance/ensemble.



Ladies!  Put your stilleto-clad foot down!  Send your beau back inside to change and don't let yourself be seen with him until he is dressed to match your caliber.  Do not lower your worth by letting yourself be paraded around by a slob!



Men!  Stop letting yourselves go!  Some of you complain about not having as many options as women in the shopping/clothing arena but really, you can personalize your look with any or all of the following:



cufflinks (easy)



ties (duh)



bow ties (not for the faint of heart)



belts (very easy)



tie tacks (easy/moderate)



a monocle (difficult, not for amateurs)



watches (easy)



rings (takes panache)



pockets squares (fun and endless ways to fold!)



stick pins.  So easy, so elegant, and speaking of:







I apologise for the poor quality photos; my in-house photographer was not available at the moment and I clearly  am not skilled with a camera.



This is a custom lapel pin I just dropped off  for a dear friend and fellow sharp-dressing enthusiast, Adrian Hardy.  He is also a talented purveyor of music, I believe the term is DeeJay although I cringe when I hear myself say that because for some reason (perhaps due to my complete lack of a night life) I feel like an out-of-touch poseur when I use that word.  Irregardless, Mr. Hardy and one of his partners-in-crime over at LOTis Media had a fairly significant event last night in Philadelphia to tend to and Adrian requested I whip up something fancy for him.  I've said it before and I'll say it again: I love doing custom work.  Pieces are so much more special to me when I've got a specific client in mind.  That said, it also makes for a much more harrowing experience as I hand it over, wringing my hands and praying they like it.  I'm pretty sure this one went over well; I'll have to troll for pictures online to see.







The parameters given to me for this lapel-pin were Arian's personality and what I know of it, and the fact that this particular event was a "white party".  I used a bed of Polish Hen  plumage and added feathers of pheasant, peacock, and mourning dove.  I also embellished it with some rabbit fur and a dazzling vintage charm.  All of this atop a 24K gold-plated stick-pin!



And there's more where that came from, folks!  Just check out my Etsy shop!







Say it with me, ladies and gentlemen: men's return to fashion starts RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW, with ME and team Diamond Tooth.



xoxo,



Beth Beverly



 



***update: Here is a photo of Senor Hardy last night Courtesy of Philly Chit Chat: Not too shabby, eh?



A special comb for a special gal

Here is a comb I was recently commissioned to make for a friend as a gift for her sister-in-law.  Commissions are my favorite assignments; I thrive on personalizing things for specific individuals.   The recipient in this case has reddish hair, and appreciates a flash of bright color.  I incorporated a cameo because it reminded me of the couple who commissioned the piece.







According to my friend, the cameo resembles her sister-in-law!  My personalised work seems to somehow magically blend in perfectly with the wearer's style and personality; I truly think this is where I excel.  These are the times when I follow my instincts and it works.



Here's a full-sized image.  I just had to get these shots quickly since I had to run out and deliver the piece.  It's comprised of pheasant, peacock and misc bird feathers; some were manipulated and curled.  I also incorporated vintage gems and beaver fur.







 



And here is another picture.  It is so ridiculously hot in here and I can't think.  Words hard.



The Patron of Christmas Tree Farms.









I've met Kathy.  She really is the patron of whatever team she's playing for.  Super classy lady.  I wonder if I can be the Tanqueray of taxidermy?



Sure, why not.  One of the players complimented our headwear during the lap; you can hear me thanking him.



 







In case you couldn't tell, yet another Sunday was well spent by yours truly taking in a match at Brandywine Polo Club!  I gathered up two of my favorite gals and tried out two new fascinators on them.



 



Pearl is sporting a piece fashioned from one of the vintage hats recently gifted to me; I used a chicken of the frizzled breed with spiky, featherless feathers.  Perfect for holding jewels!







 



I attached a quail head-piece I've been working on to the "muppet" fascinator from the vintage set.  None of these pieces are finished quite yet; this was a test run on some works in progress.  I'm not entirely happy with this one.







 



Action!







 



This was the first time that I lazed about on my blanket during halftime, opting out of the traditional divot stomping.  My belly was full of black licorice, champagne and happiness.  AS you can CLEARLY see from this photo there was a horse-drawn carriage on the field, complete with a heralding trumpet player announcing its arrival.  That carriage actually seems to show up at every match; I think I need to start rubbing elbows with that lot.







If I could only get up.







 



Here is Maria trying to cut the end off a particularly sharp spiky feather vein that kept poking Pearl in the neck.  I had no intention for the hat to be so dangerous.







Did I mention she's using the serrated-edge mini-blade on a wine opener?  After two bottles of champagne that can be hazardous.



Alas, all ended well.  We stuck around and I talked hats with some of the club members; we nibbled on strawberries and called it a day.



A very, very fine day.



Vintage Hat Surprise!!!

First, you take about thirty vintage hats and fascinators.



Next, you put them in some fabulous antique hat boxes (stack the hats thusly, please):



 







Then, you give them all to ME!



Me?  Did someone say....ME?  Meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.*







Anyone who knows me really well can spot two of the most special people in the world gracing the outer edges of that picture above.



Seriously, though, how amazing are these boxes?  I want to live in a time where items are crafted this well out of materials that AREN'T plastic.



 







 



Foxy!







This Stetson box had an inner structure to support a top hat, but it was so worn the actual box didn't quite survive.







I'll take time to photograph the hats better in the future, but here are a few I hung up in my studio.  Several of them were too perfect to alter, so they're in my dressing room awaiting a wearing.  The rest are a bit worn/tired, and just begging to be embellished/repaired.







 



This little number I call "Blue Haze".  It consists of a simple navy cap swathed in a cloud of blue veiling and white flowers.







 



Judging by the hand stitching over the tag, I'm guessing this hat was a homemade creation, embellished post-purchase.  Discoveries like this make me feel closer to some woman I never knew.  DIY at its finest.







 



A simple black cap:







 



A green bow fascinator!  Perfect for a wedding...I may taxiderm it up and add it to my Bridal collection.







 



A cream fascinator with white florals.  This ones a doozy!  I can't wait to show you what I've done with it.







There were some veils in the bunch as well.  More for the Bridal collection....







Also, sorry these pictures aren't so great.  It's clear to me I need to invest in some new display heads.



Here is a darling little black veil with white silk flowers on top!  I almost love it the way it is too much to change it.....almost.







These roses! J'ADORE!







 



Here's another veil, off-white with some red roses.  A little worse for the wear, but I love the idea.







 



I call this one the muppet poof.  It's already been switched up a bit; another potential Bridal piece in the works.







 



This is a simple black velvet wire base fascinator:







And another, non velvet....







 



I've been having a very exciting morning pairing natural/animal elements with these vintage pieces and everyone is getting along swimmingly.  Updates coming soon!



*a reference to one of my favorite videos:











 



 



A HUGE thank you to my mother, and her pal Carol, without whom this well of inspiration would not have happened for me.  XOXOXO!



 

Elvis was reincarnated as a bear and his skin is on my table.

 



I finally got around to working on a bear-skin rug for a client; she is another really fun individual to work with who basically said, "make it as glitzy and shiny as possible."



Words to live by.



So I set out to source materials and make the sparkliest, most pizazzified bear-skin rug the world has seen.



I bought the skin frmo a hunter who shot the bear with a bow and arrow, harvesting the animal for food.  The cape arrived tanned and fairly soft but I had to rehydrate some parts to soften them up more in order to work with the facial areas.



Opal the cat approves of this fur.







Here is the head form.  I altered it slightly to express a nice Elvis-like lip curl, and proceeded to plaster the top left fang with crystals.







 



Diamond Tooth, indeed!  And this is just the beginning.  Stay tuned for an update on this hunka hunka burning work in progress.



Birthday Surprise!

Here's a quick little ditty about a hair pin I made for a very special gal who celebrated her birthday yesterday.  I didn't have a ton of time, and I was given some very basic guidelines (she's kind of girly and likes shiny things!) so I ran with it.  The other caveat (for lack of a better word) is that the birthday girl sports a massive mane of dreadlocks.  Long, thick, beautiful dreadlocks, so a typical fine toothed silver plated hair comb wasn't going to work.  I opted for a pin and combined dyed deer tail (typically used for making fly-fishing lures), pheasant feathers and a vintage gem earring.







When my friend opened her gift; her joy was unmistakable.  I wish the happiness I glean from giving other people something they genuinely love could be bottled and used as currency.  It feels better than money.  Not really knowing her style or preferences, I went with my gut and wound up with a product that, accordingly to the recipient, was an uncannily perfect fit.  This brings me so much joy and seems to be a recurring theme in my custom pieces, which is more than I could have hoped for.  I will touch upon this more when I post pictures of the bridal pieces I presented recently to a client- but until the wedding those details must remain under wraps.



Horses? What horses?

My Memorial Day was deliciously taken with white wine and cheese-filled, prosciutto wrapped figs at the Brandywine Polo Club with a side of horse action.



My two lovely hat models accompanied me and supplied the picnic:







We had front row seats for all the action.  I'm still getting a grasp on exactly how polo works, but despite all the things I don't know, I can say with absolute certainty that it's an event I could watch for hours.  The athleticism, the pageantry, the uniforms...







My GOD the uniforms....







Unfortunately my action shots are embarrassingly low-rent, but I know someone who took about five hundred OUTSTANDING photos and her name is Amy Dragoo of akdragoophoto.com.  Please please check them out; you will not be disappointed.







I almost think she and I were the only ones watching the game!  Polo is fun like that; there is so much eye candy and great conversation, it can be hard to concentrate.  I was rewarded for my focus by seeing several truly fantastic plays, none of which were caught by my camera.  It's much, much better in person though.



At the mid-game break, the fans are invited to step onto the field and stomp the upturned bits of earth back into the ground.  It's fun to watch people accidentally jam their shoes into some fresh horse crap.







These are the fascinators I worked on for the event.  The one on the right has actually made an appearance at the club before but it complimented the ensemble better than the one I had just finished, so that one will debut at another time.  Polo matches are the perfect place to wear fantastical head-gear; not only is the the sky (literally) the limit but they act as a magnet for other fun people to strike up conversations.







Also, I think it's polite to dress up for the horses who are working so hard.











I'm hooked. You might be too...take a gander at what's available at Diamond Tooth so you can get gusied up for the next match!



See you there...



 

Release the Hounds!

But after I've unstuck my pink stilettos from the grounds, please.



The soil is quite moist from the precipitation we've been experiencing.  I aerated (free of charge!) about 80% of the green you see below:







When I wasn't feigning absolute comfort in the most impractical shoes in the entire place, I was relaxing in style under the -speaking of which -Philadelphia Style Magazine tent.







What is this event,you ask?  Why, the Radnor Hunt Steeplechase of course!  I was the very fortunate guest of my dear friends at the Brandywine Polo Club who joined forces with the Style mag to produce the most luxurious tent-mosphere I've ever had the privilege to enjoy.  The furniture, the florals, the displays, all were thoughtfully arranged and delightfully polo-philic.







These mini arrangements were scattered throughout the infield seating area.







These chaise lounges were borrowed from my future powder room:







Lush, green grass is a nice touch.







If I hadn't been wearing fishnets I would've taken the heels off and dug my feet in.







Look at the bridle bits!  My love for all things equestrian is making it hard to write.



Below is a solid gold chair crafted by hand from three generations of British royalty on loan from Will & Kate's personal collection.*







In the tailgating area the classic cars enjoyed their moment in the sun.











The theme this year was the Great American Novel.  First person to leave a comment correctly naming this story gets a taxidermy treat from me!







I'm sure this tasted just like chicken.







Old Man and the Sea, complete with Mr. Hemingway himself!







I met a lovely woman named Heather who had a daughter competing in the hat contest (thankfully there is a child's division so no "accidents" had to happen to the little dear); they invited me to this particular tailgate where, along with the Old Man, I encountered an entire roast pig!







Some friends of the Polo Club (and female players!) were hosting this tailgate, the theme being Moby Dick







Up by where we'd set up the  Polo Club table, there were some tres classy air-conditioned portopots complete with pump flush action.  This stall came with enhanced instructions.  It's hard to see the wording but some clever little scamp wrote "otherwise you might catapult shit onto the ceiling".







She may have been overestimating her strength just a tad.



Back down infield at the Phila Style tent, a handsome gentlemen stopped by with his horse to chat.  I wasn't able to catch it but his four-legged pal took out a woman's mojito in one gulp.  Can't blame the furry guy.







My new friend Claudia!  She's one of the players at the Polo Club.  I can't wait to watch her play.







More friends of the Polo Club.  I just adore how effortlessly well they all match.  Total eye candy.  Listening the Portuguese being playfully shouted back and forth didn't hurt either.  At least I think it was Portuguese.







My all too gracious host Branden Walsh,  polo-phile extraordinaire, with a beautiful mystery woman standing on a chair.  Note the flip-flops.  Very intelligent.  All the ladies seemed to know what they were doing and wore flats or wedges.







This adorable little lady wore boots.  The nicest boots I've ever seen, I might add.  She was learning how to shake hands and properly greet people when we were introduced, but her and I made a silent agreement that shaking hands is totally gauche and real ladies curtsy.  And so we curtsied to one another and if I had gotten a video of it your heart might break.







Parked next to us was a gentleman and his wife and their antique Packard.  Silly of me not to get a picture of the entire car but I certainly enjoyed posing inside of it!



That damned smirk...







Oh!  Right.  That's my ribbon for taking third place in the ladies hat contest.  While I am absolutely thrilled; I really need to work on getting a different color ribbon.  I thought the blue hair would clue the judges in on what I was aiming for...



Thanks to the Daily Local News for this lovely photo in their online coverage of the day:







Back to that Packard: I had the presence of mind to take a shot of my view from the steering wheel, seeing as I have no clue when I might get the pleasure of sitting at the driver's of one of these ever again.



Yummmmmmmmmmm.







Oh hello!  The owner was emphatic in telling me that my sitting in his car had added a significant amount of provenance to it.  I replied that his Packard had done likewise for my seat.  And there begins the slippery slope of dirty jokes that I'll leave up to your imagination.





Considering the world was supposed to end on Saturday, I think it's fair to say I would've gone out in style.  Speaking of which, it didn't occur to me until late in the day that every stitch of clothing/accessories I had on was from WILBUR Vintage.  I didn't even plan that; but I guess I love the shop that much.



For more pictures covering the event, please check out the photographs my new pal Juan Vidal took throughout the day.



*Bev-tale?  You decide.

Like a ________ with its head cut off.





Specifically, a pheasant.



I recently came into contact with the striking and fabulous Kiki Hughes, proprietress of Kiki Hughes Boutique in Philadelphia.  Word to the wise: click on that link and check out her store if you're near Philly.  There are some truly, truly gorgeous wardrobe pieces in there (like my ostrich feather skirt!!!) and all the clothing is merchandised in such a clever and unique fashion that you'll kind of get sucked into a time warp and forget how long you've been there ogling at the displays.



Anyway, Ms. Kiki has this lovely pheasant head hat from her personal collection which her cat made into a sacrifice one night by ripping the head clean off.  What killer instincts!



My cat Frankie, a.k.a the Diamond Tooth Studio Mascot, seems to not care less about anything feathered which makes him an ideal work buddy, provided I keep all things mousey out of his reach.  For the most part, he just wants to be near whatever I'm doing.  Example:







Upon closer inspection, this bird was more than just decapitated.  He was straight ripped.







I started by sewing binding tape over the cracks and along the edge of the head which I then reinforced with an adhesive.  This would provide a stronger  bond once the whole thing was sewn back together.







Cotton filling back into the head:







Next was the binding tape along the edge of the bottom half:







Finally it's time to sew the head onto the body.  This is where curved needles come in handy.







After the head was securely reattached, there was still the job of filling in the blank skin spots with feathers.  Fortunately I have an abundance of pheasant plumage on hand and was able to find the right shade/size.shpe to blend in with the originals.



And he's finished!  Top view:







Side view:







Other side view:







So the moral of the story is:  I do repairs.  Please feel free to contact me should an old piece of taxidermy in your collection need some new life breathed into it.

Kentucky Fried Chickens

Team Diamond Tooth is back from a whirlwind tour of Louisville and the myriad of Derby-related events taking place there.



We drove through the night, leaving at 9:30 pm on Wednesday and arriving in Kentucky about 12 hours and many rest-stops later.







By sunrise we were coasting through some gorgeous country farm landscapes.  We stopped at a gas station for a fill, some coffee, and a bathroom.  The lady's room had a tub with a hose for washing the cow crap off your boots.







Just outside of Louisville, we stopped in a Starbucks to change and freshen up for our first appointment in town.  Here I am, very sleep-deprived and high on adrenaline.







We caught a celebratory cocktail at a sushi joint  just across from Seviche.  I marveled at the fish in the tank.







After Seviche we drove across the bridge into Indiana for a tasting at Bristol.  Our generous hostess then regaled us with tales of the tradition known as "Thunder over Louisville" while we enjoyed the view of the city from our vantage point.  Unfortunately we arrived after the show had taken place, but check out the video below for the action:















We checked into our room and closed out eyes a bit before getting gussied up and heading out to the Barnstable Ball.  Unfortunately we were a little early...







like 24 hours early. Rule #1: sleep is important Staying awake for 36+ hours straight can do unusual things to one's perception of time.  No worries though, we made the best of our fabulous selves and headed to a local bar on 4th street Live where my serama hat caused quite a stir. We then took a cab back to our room. Rule #2: derby rates apply in cabs during this time of year, meaning that patrons will pay about $10/mile. Your best bet is to bring a bicycle or get a room reserved early enough to secure a spot in the middle of town.







The next morning found us sampling chocolates at Gyhyslain, which isn't a bad way to start the day if you ask me.







Next we moved onto Doc Crows for a bourbon sampling where the owner was extremely generous with his time and knowledge, schooling a couple of newbies like us on the ins and outs of Kentucky bourbon.







We then hit up Kentucky Oaks for some infield action.  Meredith fully immersed herself in the experience like the good sport she is.







I hear it's ok to order your wiz wit in any native tongue you please. That's Southern hospitality for you.







Off to the Barnstable Ball, for real this time.  Here I am from my patio perch, surveying the madness on the lawn.  I'm wearing a hair comb composed of quail feathers and head.







Inside the mansion this book was on display.







I found the title an interesting juxtaposition to our surroundings.  Perhaps I should go look te book up before I go getting snarky and whatnot.







Off to the Julep Ball!  By the time we made it, the auction was over and three of my pieces had sold!







The comb went to this lovely lady.







What a great smile!  Her name was Ryan, but that's all I remember.







I then encountered these stylish women sporting my other two pieces.  They were kind enough to permit me to make adjustments.







Gorgeous!  I cannot fully express how honored I am that women with such a unique range of style find my work desirable.







Look!  My Summer beret!







I want to hang out with these gals.







Oh and by the way that's Mike Mills accompanying this lovely pair.  But I'm sure you knew that.  Unfortunately in my excitement I completely forgot both women's names which is my loss because they really strike me as potential kindred spirits.







Derby day.  It all leads up to this.  We dragged ourselves out of bed and proceeded to spackle enough makeup and clothing on as it would take to make us look human.



Or something close to human.  I think we embraced our inner 60's secretaries that day.











Mimosas will always take the edge off.







Derby rule #3: Don't even try driving to Churchill Downs.







The pink tractors belonged to Vinyard Vines, a fashion label that has truly enmeshed themselves in all things derby.  I'm a fan of the pink whale.











Here's a couple of wild and crazy gals posing in front of Secretariat.







Unfortunately I didn't win any bets that day, but it was the experience of a lifetime, and over before I knew it.  We scoffed at the advice given to us by many and left our change of comfy shoes at home.  That is why we hobbled to gate 10 that evening and caught the first pedicab we saw:

Somebody's Getting Married!









I met with a client last night who has commissioned me to create  her bridal headpiece to wear in her upcoming nuptials.  We hashed out the details over a cocktail and snacks, and as we talked about the wedding, her relationship, etc, we marveled over how much we had in common.  It truly is remarkable that we hadn't crossed paths really, up until recently.



Anyway, all the talk got me feeling nostalgic about my own wedding day, and how much I enjoyed the process of preparing for it.  I created the corsages and boutenniers fo the wedding party as well as my own veil and bouquet.







I made a special hair piece for my maid of honor to wear:







As well as one for my flower girl:







Aren't they handsome?  That's my husband to the left, our officient (and dear, dear friend) in the middle, with the best man to the right.







A close-up of one of the brooches I made for the family members.  This one is pinned to my mother.







It's my dream come true to create pieces for brides.  Perhaps because it is that one day where a girl really can go bananas and express her most extravagant fantasies through attire, and that's the niche my work seems to fall into.  Not every woman wants to stop traffic or look like an exotic creature of fashion every day.  Some of us thrive on the attention generated by dressing unusually, but many of us don't.  The wedding day, however, seems to be the one occasion where it is socially acceptable for all women to truly let their light shine, and I find tremendous joy in being able to help facilitate that illumination.

Eye Candy





I was quite fortunate the other day to receive a disc in the post from a recent test shoot by photographer Jenna Stamm.  I provided a hat for one of the looks and I just adore the final product!  I very much enjoy seeing how other people style and wear my pieces; it inspires me to keep creating wearables so that every woman and man of substance can be adorned with a touch of Diamond Tooth.







These images are all very similar but I loved each of them too much to pick just one.







The hat may look familiar; it's one of my absolute favorites.  Coincidentally, it was almost exactly a year ago the materials for this piece were sourced.







Running for the Roses

I love horses.  I've never wanted to own one, I don't even really enjoy riding them...rather, I prefer observing them.  I could watch a horse move for hours.  In my eyes, there is no more perfect example of the balance between strength and agility, brute force and beauty.  I also love horse people.  There is something in their blood perhaps, that I can relate to.  Seeing as all things equestrian tend to be on the financially steep side, one would think that there would be a sort of elitist vibe that could frighten a Bohemian artist such as myself.  I couldn't find that notion further from the truth though.  At every equine event I've attended, I've found myself amongst free-spirited individuals who appreciate a good quirk much more than the proverbial next guy.



That said, it only seems logical to take my love over state lines and partake in "the most exciting two minutes in sports", AKA the Kentucky Derby.  I must confess, the thought hadn't even occurred to me until my sister in law, Danielle, (who dreams big and accomplishes bigger, see here) suggested it over Thanksgiving dinner.  I set my sights on Churchhill Downs for 2011 and since then have worked tirelessly with my miracle worker/facilitator of dreams Meredith Lindemon of Meredith Communications to make it so.  She dove headfirst into the task of getting me not just into the Derby but fully immersed in the entire event.  Contacts were made, sponsorships were proposed.  We worked out this and that, revised the product, toiled and troubled until about a month ago when the pace began to pick up.  Before I knew it I was presented with a ten day deadline to create 4 custom hats for a silent auction and 75 (seventy five!) hand-crafted brooches, hair pins nad combs for gift bags at the Julep Ball.



Remember Barbaro?











I was searching for a Derby related video to include in this post and I fell down the rabbit hole of Barbaro tributes.  I am stunned at just how many of these videos exist (also at how graphic and injury-focused most of them are) and overwhelmed with emotion recalling how the love that so many of us felt for this heroic creature united us that Summer.



And now it's all done and my little army is en route to Kentucky.  I will be following suite next month to attend the Ball as well as Kentucky Oaks and the Derby. Of course I'll need to create something to wear to these events but for the moment I'm going to get a full nights rest and come up for air.  I just wanted to share photos of the newly minted Diamond Tooth Millenary 2011  Derby Line and take a moment to thank these people:



Jim my husband, who never complained while his home turned into a feather filled factory and graciously relieved me of most domestic duties.  Oh, and he happens to be an awesome photographer who shoots all my work for me.



My folks, who have proven to me time and time again that if you ask, you shall receive.  Not just because they're kind, but because they believe in me.



Danielle, my aforementioned sister-in-law who gave me the idea in the first place.



Daniel Wilbur, proprietor of Wilbur Vintage who would open up his shop early for me and patiently allow me to paw through his trinkets in my attempts to amass enough charms with which to adorn all of my creations.



Bailey  (and all my chicken friends!), aka chicken master; without his donations I wouldn't have had any medium to work with.



Gregory Andrew Powell, millenatrix extraordinaire and my arch nemesis who was kind enough to momentarily bury the poison-tipped hat pins and  share some of his wisdom.



And of course Meredith, who wasn't afraid to push me to reach higher even while I was being a brat.



Sun Hat:







This a Panama hat embellished with fancy chicken and peacock feathers, swiss dot horse hair and antique veil.



.







Summer Beret:







This little beret is composed of fancy chicken and ostrich feathers, swiss dot horse hair and a vintage brooch.



Oh and look!  Leather tags!







Fascinator:







A little something to enhance your up-do; made of fancy chicken wing and peacock feathers, antique ceiling and vintage pearl beads.







Comb:







That is the back of the comb; it's  a tricky shot since there's so much going on.  I used an antique comb from 1920 and embellished it with the tail feathers of a fancy chicken, some peacock, and a vintage crystal necklace.  I added a poof of antique French veil.



Below is the front.  This one is a real doozy.







Brooches:







These are a few examples from the gift bag items.  I used 24K plated stick pins as the bases and each one is one of a kind and infused with my heart.















Combs:







The bases for these are silver plated combs; each one is lovingly hand crafted.











Hairpin:







Only 5 of these; silver plated base with vintage jewelry embellishments.



A little behind.

As anyone who works in a creative field knows, an artist must occasionally supplement her income with tedious, unglamorous jobs such as working gigs on cruise ships down in the West Indies every now and again.   Tiny violins, I hear them.



The down side is, while living on board said cruise ships, no taxidermy gets done. Virtually nothing gets done, since I live in a room the size of a pocket and internet connections are sparse and sporadic at that.  So my apologies, all five of you who read my blog and have perhaps checked in over the last two weeks wondering where I am.  I've been busy acquiring a tan that would make the cast of Jersey Shore green.



Upon my return to dry land,I have hit the ground running, so to speak.  I am in the midst of some prep (some, HA!)  for a really big-time dream project with a deadline that is making me laugh or cry depending on what state of self-medication I am in, I have a thousand or so loose ends to tie up for a performance piece next weekend (I'll post about that shortly) and I'm rehearsing for an aerial dance gig just three weeks away!  Yes, I am a circus performer also.  Someday, my passions will merge together and this will all make sense.  For now, here are some images of samples I made for my mega-project that may or may not be a secret at this point.  Feast your eyes:



 







 







 







 







 







 







 







Next up: more details on my collaborative performance piece with local artist Andria Biblioni.



Between then and April 9: reruns.

Happy Birthdays!

I was recently commissioned to create a custom flight-of-fancy-hat for a friend's mother.  It was a birthday present and, seeing as the giftee shares the same big day as yours truly, I poured even more love and care into this piece.*



I was given the parameters of a making a piece that was a bird alit on a wide-brimmed hat and given creative freedom as far as the rest goes.  I found this lovely sun hat made from woven horse hair and got to work on a recently sourced hen from my dear chicken master buddy.  She was rather large- a little too large for this purpose, but I was so enamoured with her coloring I plowed ahead and taxied the skin onto a smaller, altered form.  I posed her to be perched, curious, holding back part of the brim with her wing; almost an extension of the wearer's head.







I gave her a pair of oversized eyes and lined them with crystals, as well as embellishing the original coat with some brighter pheasant feathers.  A gold and diamond chain around the brim completes the look.







Look at that beautiful fuzzy bum!  The blueish feathers underneath the tail are the pheasant accents.







I added a poof of white with some belly down at  the end of the chain, and called it a day.   Well, there were some structural issues to address but I took care of those earlier.  When one is wearing such a monumental structure on one's head, it helps to have straps on the ready to hold said structure into place.  I rather enjoy the pomp and circumstance of dressing up in this way-having an entire creature on my head makes me taller, it makes me stand up straighter, and I am so much more aware of how I move my head.  It feels very elegant.  I am eager to see how well my birthday sister and recipient of this gift wears it.







 



Photos by James Coughlin



 



*I never actually put more love into any one piece than another.  I adore all of my children equally.

My hair looks like a bird's nest?

Why thank you.



Well, more like a chicken coop I suppose.  Regardless, my head is honored to be the vehicle for exhibiting these lovely specimen, donated to yours truly by my local organic chicken/egg connection.



This is a rooster beret I made recently.  I wore it on New Year's Eve.  I've been told that it's customary to eat chicken on December 31st, as they are scratching backwards into the dirt...reflecting on the past, I suppose.



I'd prefer to wear my poultry.



*



Right here is the Serama hen hairpiece I wore for the Carnivorous Nights taxidermy contest last month.  I look forward to trotting her out again.



*



Look at those gorgeous feathers.  Perhaps she'd like to take a ride on someone else's head for a night.



*



Ladies?



*Photo credits: Jim Coughlin

Your Reputation Preceeds You...

I think I'm on the verge of being known as "the woman who wears chickens on her head", which couldn't delight me more.  I certainly seem to be going through a hen-phase, as far as what inspires me.  Or perhaps its the availability of chickens as specimen?  It's hard to tell.  I very much enjoy working with them; the plumage is unique and beautiful, plus the skin resilient and quite easy to manipulate.



So last week I decided to check out the opening of the new Jonathan Adler store in  Old City.  The designer himself was to be in attendance, and I learned that he'd raised chickens with his family as a boy so I wanted to wear a new head-piece in his honor.



I dried and fluffed a gorgeous rooster and toyed around a bit in my studio, waiting for ideas.  I took the legs and head and used them for a different piece, then played with the rest.  It was freezing inside and just to see how it felt, I put the entire pelt on my head.



Warmth!  Unbelievable warmth!  Well, duh, I thought.  We don't fill our coats and duvets with down for nothing.  Seriously though, I was impressed at how much heat was retained atop my head.  So...why not?  I would wear the whole thing as though it were a feather wig.  The result was dramatic and over-the-top.  Here's one shot I got from my computer before leaving for the event:



 







 



And here's another taken of me while there.  The shop looked fabulous although I had to go back yesterday to really check out the merchandise, since it was packed to the gills that night.







As you can see, it's just a little silly but totally glamorous.  If nothing else, it's absolutely a conversation piece.

Pretty feet, pretty face

I've had these three deer feet from the first deer I ever skinned all by myself, way back last year while I was up in school.  The cape, unfortunately, had some bacteria from exposure (by the time the doe got to me, she had been expired for some time) but I managed to salvage the legs for future use.  I found inspiration in the form of a gift for a couple of dear friends (har har) up in NY who have a deep appreciation for all things art....including the art of looking good.



What we've got here is a  deer hoof with a miniature mirror mounted on the front.  It is to be hung near the door so as to provide one last check yourself spot before heading out for th evening.  Spinach-free teeth?  Check.  No crusty eyes?  Check.







 



I capped it off with some copper tubing and a hen foot (going with the pedi theme)clutching a gemstone.  Garnished with some feathers and voila!  A Christmas present I'm hoping will please.







 



Happy holidays!

Brooklyn Bound

I've been getting all my ducks in a row (that would be a great pun I guess, if I were using ducks this time around) for my trip to Brooklyn next week where I'll be participating in the annual Carnivorous Nights Taxidermy contest.  I'll be a first timer, but not a forgettable one.



 



I'm entering two pieces, the one below has been shown most recently at Vincent Michael Gallery but I've reconfigured some crucial elements to take her to the next level.  Obviously none of these photos will be of the entire creature; full shots to come next week after my hopefully triumphant return.







 



This second entry is my best work to date.  I'm quite pleased with how she turned out  and look forward to showing the final results.  Two hints:



Iridescence,







And sparkles!







 



 



Of course no event would be complete without a new headpiece so I've got one of those in the works as well:







 



 



See you next week!

Special Delivery





I've been crafting a custom hairpiece for a very special gal the last couple weeks, in my spare time. I should've had it done by Sunday but I was given a unique specimen which was too large and too precious to keep in the freezer so I chose to put all other activities on hold so I could skin this...wonderful creature.  Full story to come shortly.  In the meantime, I was told by my client that she wanted a hairpiece for a gal pal of hers who enjoys wearing, of all things,ducks on her head.



What I want to know is, how have I not met this woman and if/when we do, will we both implode from the sheer weight of our shared sense of high fashion?



Her friend gave me a time and price range and we worked out this little ditty right here:







Sorry for the shadowy picture but I'll beg her to let me borrow it later to get a professional shot for my website.  I mounted a squirrel head onto the kind barette which is held into place with a stick driven through the hair.  Technically it's a bun holder but they work just fine for ponys and half ponys.  The squirrel was embellished with some jewelry and feathers, while his feet wound up dangling from the stick part.



 







 







Creating wearables seems to be more and more the direction which makes most sense for me.  Art is so much more accessible when you have it on your head!



Some of these things were never like the others...

Here are some new pieces that I just got around to getting decent pictures of, thanks to my full time live-in photographer James Coughlin.  You can see more of his work  at Snap Blam Splat.  Honestly, I don't know what I would do without him.  Well, I do actually, I would pay through the nose to rent the equipment and go insane trying to figure it all out. Dude makes a wicked tie-dye too.



This is the hen from a month back; I just got her back from the "Other Nature" how at BahdeeBahdu, which received a nice write-up on Cool Hunting.  I wound up going with the name "Nascita Typica".



















This is the hat I wore to the Polo Cup;it's a female Bufflehead which has been embellished beyond the point of no return.



















And this is the male Bufflehead hat I wore to the Devon horse show a couple of weeks ago.  He's naturally flashy so I let his real colors shine.











Hat Parade High Jinks

Last week my gal-pal Sarah and I trotted out my two new hats to the Devon horse show and participated in the hat parade.  I went the conservative route in terms of design, something I'm happy I tried but don't think I'll do again.  Notice how both birds are completely lacking in embellishment. I figured I would embrace the beauty nature had given them but in the end I feel like they fell short.  Plus I only came in third. I think if I'd gone with my gut I would've swept the whole thing.







As soon as I snatched up my yellow ribbon Sarah and I embarked on our mission of getting as intoxicated as possible on the free Cartier Champagne in the judges stand. I, to ease the crushing sense of failure and disappointment in seeing what I felt entitled to go to someone else.  Sarah, well she just likes free booze. We brown bagged a fifth of voddie, bummed some smokes off a carnie or two and called it a day.







You can take the girls out of Philly...but you can't make them drink.  Rather, you can lead a fillie to water, but...



Oh nevermind I've got to get back to work on a new hat.  Sunday is another hat contest and I'm going armed with the knowledge of how these things work this time.  Well, not really because I'm still clueless.  Pretending to be wealthy is exhausting; I can't wait until I actually am the real McCoy just so I can relax already and kick my feet up without worrying someone will see the trace of a neon green sticker on the bottom of my second-hand Ferragamos.



Until then, I will keep faking it until I make it.  I'll check in again after the Polo Cup so set your eyes to tranquil because my next post will be full of BLUE.

Darning Ducks





Yesterday I finally got around to paying the piper in regard to stitching up all the holes I created in my duck skins while degreasing them last week.  The darning process added about an extra hour to the mount time, for the two ducks combined.  Here's some sewn up holes:







One of these Buffleheads was just about shot to bits; there was no leg bone to work with, a shattered wing bone, and buckshot in the beak.  Plus, when I was skinning it I pulled too hard when I reached the neck area and just about tore the entire hood off the damned thing.  Sewing that up yielded no results as the whole creature just looked more pathetic the farther I got.  PLUS I must not have degreased him enough because my fingers kept getting oily as I worked.  I don't mind the finger oil (in fact it feels quite nice on my dry skin) but once I start transferring the oil from my fingers to the feathers on the exterior of the skin, they appear yellowed and dull.  I could always proceed and then clean the feathers  afterwards but that doesn't mean the oil residue on the inside won't bleed out through the skin eventually.



When good ducks go bad. Very, very bad:







I'm not sure how everything went SO WRONG on this one duck but I'm very thankful that all the mishaps were concentrated on him while the other one mounted so easily it was as though I were in a dream-state.



I positioned him on a hat (the 2nd for my Devon Horse Show series) and although he may look slightly unnatural, I wanted the wing to arc around the brim of the hat and frame the wearer's face. I'm trying to achieve just the right balance between whimsy and realism.



Heyyyyyyyyyyyy.

Some horse "legs" arrived in the mail the other day and I thawed one out the other night to see if I could turn it into a human shoe.  I've had an obsession with pretending to be a horse for years; and although I am aware the wearable horse shoe has been done, I will not be at rest until I get a crack at it myself.  Plus, I want to try working with every kind of creature.



Here is the leg, thawed out.







The odor of barn filled my studio immediately and I rather enjoyed it.  Unfortunately I may have bit off more than I could chew...







It took me about thirty minutes to realise that I really had no plan and wasn't entirely sure of what I was doing at all.  I managed to skin the leg down to the hoof, but then had to cut the hide away as it would not invert around said hoof.  That's fine; it shouldn't be much of an issue to reattach, but once I managed to sever the hoof from the rest of the leg, I wasn't quite sure what to do with it.  A crash course in horse anatomy is basically what this project has turned into.



Here's the hoof, with spongy tissue and miscellaneous cartilage/bones still inside:







I've managed to cut out all the flesh I can with a knife, but it's not enough space to work a partial shoe into.  I got frustrated and had to leave it for a couple days; tomorrow I will tackle it with a drill.  That will smell totally awesome, I'm sure of it.
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