Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Happy Holidays : )

I received this photo from a good friend today; it's one of my latest pieces; about 13 feet tall in Eagle, ID; next to the town Christmas tree : )  

The sculpture is titled "Wonderland" and was inspired by the Caterpillar getting is wings: made from steel, polished stainless steel, copper, & colored aluminum.  This piece is available: please email me for details, if interested.  refinerii@yahoo.com

-Amber-

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Shop Kitty

This is why the Skwish is the official Refinerii mascot...too long out in the shop & he comes looking for pets.   He will stand outside the door & meow until someone lets him in, & then he will proceed to jump up on tables & demand attention--no matter if we are in the middle of a project.   The Skwish gets what he wants, lol : ) 

I love how his belly pouch covers up his back feet when he is sitting like this; like a built in blanket, lol!

-Amber-

Friday, December 12, 2014

Refinerii Bridal Boutique

Earlier this year, I was overwhelmed with trophies, custom orders & bridal bouquet orders: I thought about just nixing the bridal portion of my online shop, but a friend suggested I have someone take over that part of the biz.  Well, after thinking it through, I put a little announcement on Facebook & got a great response!  Who know so many talented ladies would want to help me out!  After interviewing quite a few, I chose Tonya. 
 
Today, she stopped in to show me some of the new creations & we did a little photo shoot: loving some of the new looks she is coming up with!


I'm so glad that I can still offer the bouquets as part of the Refinerii brand; without Tonya stepping in, I would have had to turn down a lot of brides; it's a win win situation for us : )


You can see more Refinerii Bridal creations on the Etsy shop; RefineriiBridal and also on FaceBook at RefineriiBridal.  Check it out & gives us a like (if you like).

Amber

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

I-Beam Trophies

Some nice little steel awards we delivered last week.  This is the 5th year we have made these "management of steel" awards for this company: they specialize in steel buildings.  

The trophies are 4" wide by 9" tall (not including the sticky-outy parts)

Amber

Monday, December 8, 2014

Tower Crane Trophies

Just a quick share of some trophies that magically got built & delivered last week while I was in Mexico ; )  Thanks to Josh for keeping things running while I was gone : )

These cuties are 13" tall & built from steel.  We wanted to make a stylized crane to match the 80th anniversary logo for the Idaho AGC.  

So much fun!  These will be presented later this week at the annual convention Gala dinner & auction.  I hope they like them as much as I do : )


In the works for the next couple months; 70 battle axes, more hacker medals & trophies, lighted trophies for Apex Gaming Series Super Smash Bros tournaments, a couple signs,  a ton more trophies & hopefully some new jewelry : )  I should go on vacation more often, lol: things seem to happen while I'm away ; )   Stay tuned: Mexico pics coming soon.

Amber

Monday, November 24, 2014

Small Steel Tree

A cute little steel tree we shipped out; it stands 18" tall.  A special request from a client who plans to use it as a jewelry display in her store : )  

The stylized tree is an original design that we have used in the past for centerpieces; this is the first time we have made one small & out of steel; so cute!

I did have 2 cut & will be listing the other on my Etsy shop

Amber

Sunday, November 23, 2014

New side project; the Skwishy Blog

On a whim, I decided to start a new side project: Operation Skwish...

Skwishy Cat is our large, adorable, not so bright kitty/mascot.  He was recently diagnosed with a rare blood disorder; although he should make a full recovery, he probably is down to 1 or 2 of his 9 lives.  

A rescue kitty; he has been with me for almost 10 years: he came to live with me when he was just a teenager & even then he had a squishy belly--so he became the Skwishy Cat : )  He is very chatty, not very athletic, has big cartoon eyes, a cow spot & a racoon tail.  Skwish spends most of his time inside depositing white hair on everything: especially anything black...  He is hilariously adorable with his big meows, cross eyes, & quirky personality.

You can follow along on the Skwish's adventures on his new Skwishy Blog, Facebook & Instagram.

Skwishy will be making more regular appearances here as well: he is the official mascot after-all ; )

Amber

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Trophies of the Week; off to New York City

Just shipped these out today to New York : )


Made from polished aluminum with colored steel accents; this is the 2nd year we have made trophies for this event: I hope they like them!! 

Amber

Friday, October 17, 2014

A tiny steel sculpture

Just a quick share; tiny sculpture (for me) made for at thank-you gift.  7" tall made from steel with an antique crystal that I purchased in Italy from an antique chandelier supplier : )  
Pretty cute; I hope the recipient likes it  : )

Amber 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

A lovely Fall Road-Trip to Challis

Last week, we made the drive to Challis. Although it was for a family funeral, we made the best of it & took some time to do a bit of sight-seeing.  The weather was perfect; as beautiful as the fall colors.
 

We took my parent's camper & stayed 2 nights: I haven't "camped" like that since I was a kid...
Both J. & I were surprised how much we enjoyed it, & agreed to do much more "glamping" in the future!  Thanks for the inspiration, Mary Jane ; )  There might even be a camper makeover coming soon...
 
 Our campsite at Challis HotSprings; right next to the river, with amazing views & a friendly welcome.  We enjoyed a soak in the pools after dark & explored the place the next day.

If you are in the area, I would highly recommend a stop here; the campsites were lovely with power & water.  There are the pools for soaking & showers on the grounds as well.  If you are not into "Glamping", they offer a full bed & breakfast service with lovely accommodations at the main house.

It's beyond gorgeous there--we had a great time watching the sunset by our fire, and waking up to the sound of the river was magical. 

Another stop we made along the way was Bayhorse; an old abandoned mining site.  It was built in the late 1800s and once had a population of 300.  Lots of the structures are still standing & there are many walking paths to see everything.

The old mill building is huge & was built on a steep hillside; amazing what they were able to build back then! 

There are quite a few stone structures on the site as well.

From the main town-site, there is a short trail up the creek; we made the walk & saw a deer that was hiding in the bushes to the left; we scared her & she hopped away upstream : )

At the end of the path, are these stone structures; they were actually charcoal kilns made from native stone.  Although they are fenced off now, I remember playing here as a child; it was a bit surreal to be back in the place that I grew up.  It's probably been 10 years since I have been in the area: I'm so glad we took some time to see a few of the sights--we already have plans to come back next summer with camper & 4-wheelers for some awesome hicks in the sticks fun!

On the way back, we made a quick stop at the SunBeam dam & the hot springs just up the road; we didn't have time to really explore,  but would like to come back & do the Yankee Fork loop next year.  I remember driving the loop many times as a kid; & look forward to seeing it again; more ghost towns, an old mining dredge, beautiful country & good company; what more could I ask for?  
 
It was a great trip & we are looking forward to more; next time we might have to take the Skwishy Cat with us, hehehehe.  Or maybe build a small chicken coup on the back of the camper for 3 small chickens, hmmmm.....Glamping with chickens I think would be marvelous!
 
Amber



Thursday, September 25, 2014

Idaho Power Trophies

Trophies of the week: made for Idaho Power for their company picnic : )
 Fun & funky: made from all salvaged Idaho Power parts (mostly)..glass insulators, cable, lots of pieces & parts & leather meter-holders at the top; with the 1, 2, 3  being stickers found on power-poles : )
 
I hope they like them : )  I had a ton of fun making them---so fun to play with lots of random pieces & parts!

-Amber-

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Turkeys : on the way to freezer-camp

The turkeys have an appointment this week...   Along with the extra Roo's that have been in jail for the last 2 weeks....   The Turks have been really fun to have around; they are sweet & curious & hilarious; all at the same time : )

 They are convinced that they are ducks: since we raised them with the boy-duckies this spring.
They like the sprinkler, the irrigation ditch, & the duck-pool--I think because they like to hang out with the boy ducky that was raised with them...so cute!

We ended up with 4 male turkeys: they are the broad-breasted bronze; the biggest of the big turkeys; bred to put on lot of weight in a short amount of time.  I would never get this breed again: they are cute, but it's obvious that they can't handle their own weight. They struggle to walk; one can barely get around--I think this sort of breeding for turkeys & meat chickens is cruel: I will never raise this breed again. I feel that it's doing them a favor to put them in the freezer: & that is not what I want...

 We are hoping to find some heritage breeds to keep next year: a breeding pair that can stay with us---we can sell the eggs/and/or poults  in the spring.  But we do not want to see another set of birds suffer: if these turkeys were not obviously suffering we would keep them around, but  they can hardly walk---even though it's hard to admit: I think they need to go: I think it is the right thing to do---they are just going to get worse....

 I know that they had a very good Turkey life, but it's still hard: they have been a part of our everyday urban farm life & I'm sorry to see then go...I have hated to see them suffer & will never choose that breed again.   Turkeys or chickens that have been bred for nothing than meat production: it's  cruel,  & I  do not wish to be a part of it any more.

 Amber 


Friday, September 12, 2014

Boise's World Trade Center Memorial

Today, we finished up the Boise World Trade Center Memorial; a project that was started over 2 years ago.  There were some last minute changes, things that went wrong, & a lot of hours of hand drilling stainless steel, but it is finished...and I'm so grateful.
I was so honored to be a part of this project: I was invited to join a design team by Jensen Belts to submit a concept for this project over 2 years ago...our design was selected from a group of other firms who applied for the contract.
We had more than a few late nights this week, but it was worth it to see this project completed on 9/11.
As we were working today, we had more than a few visitors stop by the park to see the progress & share their memories of that day 13 years ago.   From the beginning, this project was a bit surreal; but today was humbling--we met some that personally knew those listed on the First Responders' names wall.  Some brought flowers in silence & some wanted to share their personal experience of that day.

 Our wall lists over 400 first responders: 343 Fire Fighters, as well as EMTs, Police, and others who gave their lives in hopes of helping others.

I am grateful to have been part of this project: one of the most significant in my career as an artist.

The Memorial is located off Shoreline Drive in downtown Boise; near Shoreline & Americana Blvd.  in River Side Park.  The sculptural element is an actual piece of structural steel beam from the WTC Ground Zero.  It is displayed in a series of stainless steel rings; at eye level, with recycled concrete paths leading up to it for close viewing.  There is also a steel wall with over 400 of the First Responders listed in polished stainless steel.

Thanks so much to everyone involved; those who dedicated funds, labor, or services to see this project in place: we could not have done it without you!  


Thursday, July 3, 2014

StarCraft WSC America 2014 Trophy

Another build share; this one for the StarCraft World Champion Series American finals; the tournament will be happening this weekend; July 5th & 6th in California.
This trophy was made of aluminum, steel, printed acrylic & has LED lighted accents.
It stands about 17 inches tall & features imagery from the game.
 I love the fact that it glows; it plugs into the wall for permanent display for the winner: I want to make one for our own personal game room--too cool!  
We did a little spotlight in the bottom, with 2 smaller ones on the plaque; they illuminate the main plaque perfectly!   I am really liking the contrast of the perforated steel & the rainbow colored steel accents; it was a bit of a departure from the original vision, but I'm glad we went with it : )
The polished aluminum pics up the light nicely; it's a great contrast to the steel & acrylic.
 Another great build for the books; thanks to the whole team; Ray at Rogue Design Syndicate, David Ultis for the wiring, Josh Klinsky for the CAD files & design details, Mark Olson--thanks for the amazing aluminum welding skills, & The Sign Center for printing/cutting on a tight timeline!  I couldn't do it without all the help!
I can't believe that my R & D these days consists of playing games; yes--been making my way through StarCraft 2 for inspiration for the next one---I'm not very good, but it's sure fun!
 
Happy 4th!
 
Tune into Twich TV WCS America Chanel this weekend to watch the live feed; the top 8 will battle it out for the trophy & cash prizes : )  

Amber

Monday, June 16, 2014

StarCraft Trophy for Red Bull E-Sports

Just wanted to share; the latest trophy shipped off today to Santa Monica for Red Bull E-Sports; 
a  20" tall steel, aluminum, & acrylic trophy for a StarCraft tournament : )
It has LED lighting; flashing lights at the base, with glowing lights to illuminate the Red Bull plaque, as well as the lower portion of the "fins."   I think it will look really perfect for a tournament; as the lights are always low for gameplay : )

I'm so loving the lights!  Thanks so much to David Ultis for helping us out with the wiring!  He is also the genius behind lighting the Major League Hacking trophy, as well as the first StarCraft trophy we made last year : )  So much fun!  I'm loving coming up with crazy, over the top concepts for these awards--and they are so much fun to build!

More to come : )

Amber