Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Bajidoo Bangles REVIEW

I'd like to introduce you to the fascinating and intriguing world of Brenda from Bajidoo Bangles. If you are not aware of Bajidoo Bangles, then you are in for a very special treat!! Imagine being able to listen to a person describe a few words about what they are passionate about in life and then being able to create a beautiful work of art in the form of a "bangle bracelet" depicting visually your interpretation of what they said?! Or, being able to look at a few photographs of a person and based on what you see in those photographs create a work of art that captures the character of that person. Well, that is exactly the very unique and special talent and god given gift that Brenda has! Here is a little bit about Brenda:

{Taken from Brenda's Media Card}

Bajidoo, is Brenda and Independent Mixed Media Artist and Designer

"About 9000 Years in the past and steeped in tradition, the practice of henna tattooing began, a form of art and beauty unto itself. A little more than 45 years ago my artistic eye began to develop. After a vacation trip to the Middle East in 2000, the two events somehow collided to form my brand of whimsical art. For my whimsical mixed media I have incorporated the swirls, curves, circles & lines of Mehndi (henna) art into my images, then married, rather randomly to my expression of realism which I suppose is my view of real life & voila!

Here you have it, special brand of what I coined to be "Bajidoo Art". I work mainly in mixed media, most commonly watercolor, aquarelles, marker, pen & ink, and acrylics - but also work directly with henna paste, mixed especially for my purpose for creating art on wood and other surfaces."


I spoke with Brenda on the telephone for the longest time, she's so friendly and open about herself that she makes you feel as though you have known her forever. Listening to Brenda speak of her life, her artwork, her inspirations, her love of animals, her unique and special talents was compelling and so intriguing. I felt so privileged to have had the opportunity to experience such insight into her life so I could capture her essence in this review.

I asked how she began creating these gorgeous one of a kind Bangle Bracelets. Brenda attempted to explain to me about her unique talent of being able to pick up words that people use to describe someone or something and her ability to create pictures from them in the form of her art. She has empathy to make people feel better, it is from their pictures that she views, and as a result feelings are established in her head that allows her to create these her art. She get the ideas in her head, and then creates images on the bangles. She is able to create their character on the bangle, not just their physical being.

Brenda shared a story about a woman who had just recently lost her son in a tragic car accident. The woman asked Brenda if she could put an image of her son on a bangle so he (her son) could be close to her. She asked Brenda if she could capture his character, his being on the bracelet. The woman wanted to be able to see what is in her heart and in her mind on her wrist. Brenda said she would give it a try, she wasn't sure she could do it, but gave it a shot. Brenda wanted the woman to be 100% happy with it. Brenda wanted to make sure that it fit perfectly with the scenerio the woman had in her mind and heart. So the woman gave Brenda a "soul-less" passport picture of her son and a second picture of her son "happy" sitting in the sun near a lake wearing a baseball cap with a big smile on his face. Looking at the 2 pictures Brenda was able to come up with an idea of who he was, and was able to feel what a very attached close knit family he had come from and his tragic accident had occurred on his way to a family celebration. The last image Brenda was given of the young man was a picture of the accident scene. Brenda was able to see his trauma, shades of red, pinks, purples. The end result of the bangle that Brenda created for this woman was a huge success, the woman was ecstatic with the results and thus Brenda's first bracelet was born. Her ability to pick pictures up and create an image from them is not a uniform or religious thing, but can only be explained as a spiritual sense.

Seeing the name Bajidoo got me real curious, what does it mean, where did it come from so I asked Brenda how she came up with the very cool name "Bajidoo" for her Bangles, and what a heart-warming story this is! Brenda love, loves animals, an admitted animal (dog) freak she has been known to have 5-7 Shar Pei's (her favorite breed) at one time. There was Shar Pei's Holly and Chester who were married but Chester appeared to be very uninterested in his wife Holly and it was thought that they had never "made it". Sadly, Chester became very ill and at around the same time Chester became sick Brenda found out Holly was going to give birth to puppies. It was as if Chester knew he was ill and wanted to make sure Holly had babies before he passed on, and in 62 days 4 beautiful puppies were born to Holly and Chester. They are what Brenda called "miracle puppies" and she couldn't bear to give them away. 2 Months after becoming a father Chester did indeed pass away but not before leaving a legacy behind, one of which Brenda named "Baji". When Brenda received Baji's Registration back from the American Kennel Club they had "added" next to Baji's name the letters "doo" so Baji became Bajidoo the official name on his registration.

Sadly Bajidoo died suddenly 3 years later of Renal Failure but in his loving memory Brenda named her Bangles after him, the miracle puppy who had brought so much joy and love into her life. Art comes from within Brenda's heart. Baji represents that same space. Drawing and incorporating Henna into her Art give Brenda a chance to get her Dog Bajidoo back, just like people, like the Woman I shared the story about with you, was able to get a piece of her son back through her art.

Wow, right! I truly was captivated listening to Brenda talk and I tried to keep up with my note writing, wanting so much to make sure I captured the essence of everything she was telling me and speaking about. But, there is so much detail and dimension to her life's stories, and so many important elements, that I had to condense them here to fit it all in!



Meeting Brenda from Bajidoo was fate at its finest. I went to log into my Facebook account one day and right there on my homepage on the right hand sidebar was a picture of a Bajidoo Bangle with a link saying I should become a fan of Bajidoo Bangles. No kidding, my eyes "popped" open wide, as it was 6:30 am, and I couldn't click on the link fast enough to check out this most alluring facebook page of bangles. I must have spent 1/2 hour just reading up and down Bajidoo's facebook wall of entries, pictures, comments from so, so many obvious fans and I was in total awe, amazement, joy, over all the absolutely gorgeous, beyond words bracelets I was seeing for the first time.

In my excitement, I posted a comment on Brenda's facebook wall saying something like, I love your artwork and designs and I'd love to feature them on my blog, and that is how our connection was formed. Now let me share with you how Peacock Princess was born!

After Brenda and I had shared a few back and forth facebook messages she asked me to share with her what I'd like to see on my bangle, my inspirations, the things that I love and she agreed to make me a custom bangle. I told Brenda I was intrigued by Peacocks and that I loved wearing accessories and clothes inspired with subtle peacock feather designs and jewel tone colors. I also shared with her that I live on Lake Ontario so I am inspired with the water and the beauty of the lake and sunrises and sunsets that we have here. I also told Brenda that my hobbies are photography, Yoga, Japanese Cooking and I was drawn to Asian inspired art. From my sharing with Brenda these few personal things about myself, the Peacock Princess was born!

In her own words, here are the Steps that Brenda took to create my masterpiece:

1) First the princess images was sketched out on a 9 x 12 artist pad in charcoal. Then when I am satisfied with the sketch details I scan the image into photoshop and apply the color

2) Print and proof the design once more. The image is adapted to a proper size and format for the bangle. At that point I print the image out in the proper size and transfer the base of the image using graphite paper to the bangle

3) Here I begin the artwork on the bangle using Sakuru Japanese Gelly Pens, Micro Sharpies, and India ink applied with a Striping Brush.

4) Next, I touched up the highlights and shadows with charcoal directly on the bangle and Aquarelles.

5) The sparkle comes from the Sakuru pens and a Translucent Micro Mini Glitter.

6) Finally, I embellished /accented with Viva Decor Precious Metals Paints...which incorporate real silver and real gold in the paint.

and Viola! about 5 hours later a magical bangles comes to life. {End of Brenda's Words}

Okay, what better way to share with you what I think about my breathtaking Bajidoo Bangle than to share you with you what my initial reaction was to Brenda. These were my first words: "
Oh My Gosh!! This is absolutely spectacular, I am speechless, and that doesn't happen very often! This is gorgeous beyond words! You just created magic from me describing my passions, you are truly gifted!"

As Brenda continued to shared the images of my stunning Bangle here are more of my comments, that truly came from the heart: "This is equally as stunning as the flip side. The meticulous intricate work you were able to capture in the design and the colors are just leaving me awe stricken. It was like you were reading my mind when I told you what inspires me. This most definitely is a treasured work of art."

As Brenda kept posting more images of my bracelets, my excitement and joy just kept on escalating! Here was my next comment to Brenda: "Clap, Clap, Bravo! I am dancing with joy! This is a dream and I am going to wake up any minute, right! You are just amazing! Your talents far exceed any I have come across in a VERY LONG time! I cannot wait to write about you and your unique and truly beautiful work! One cannot help but fall in love with everything you create and this piece for me is simply the most exquisite treasure!"

Then, much to my surprise and astonishment Brenda created a custom made jewelry box to house my Princess Peacock in. She sent me a couple of pictures of the box that was designed to perfectly compliment my bracelet and store my treasure in. Here is my initial reaction to the exquisite jewelry box: "Simply Spectacular Brenda! The box is absolutely beeaauutifuuul! It is just as magical as the bangle! What a glamorous home for the bangle to live in, and live a long prosperous life :-) You certainly have wow'd me 10 times over in the last day! Dance, dance, I can't wait to talk with you on the phone!"

I then continued to comment with this: "This is the prettiest peacock I have seen! Captivating and alluring is how I find them to be and you have created their essence so wonderfully here!"

I wanted to share with you my initial comments about the bracelet because I felt that was the only way I could communicate how truly magnificent Brenda's work is and my honest feelings about the "Bajidoo Experience". The bracelet is like nothing I have ever seen before, meticulously crafted with the finest materials, and the attention to detail in every aspect and element of the design is totally mind blowing. There are literally no words to describe the level of heart, soul, talent, passion, compassion, empathy, that all played a part deep within Brenda to create this very fine masterpiece for me. It is EPIC, something so huge, you just have to accept that it is there, and embrace and behold it for what it is, art and beauty too big for words to describe!

What is wonderful about Brenda's creations is she basis her prices on the amount of time it takes her to create them. My bracelet would sell for $85.00 but if you see an item on her website that you love, and perhaps it is not in your price range of what you can afford, Brenda can adapt from that design and modify it to create for you the same piece, for a price that is more affordable to you. A Custom Made Bracelet costs no more than a finished piece of work. Price is based strictly on time and materials.

I also asked Brenda if I have to worry about banging my bracelet into something and risking the design being chipped or damaged. She told me there is a special water based leveling gloss coating on the design that will keep it protected and looking just as beautiful and the day I first was able to behold it in my hands. It is triple thick and waterproof, my bracelet will last me my lifetime and will serve as a family heirloom to hand down to my own daughter one day!

Here are some of my other personal favorites from Bajidoo's Website:

STEEL POPPIES ($65.00) - This Bangle has a high dome profile on the wrist, very rounded and raised up from the mid point. It is a Large Bangle and not for the faint of heart.

It will make a more than a subtle statement, it will certainly be noticed. The imagery includes a detailed depictions of a poppy blossom based on a traditional henna tattoo design for the poppy flower. This is a very feminine design with loads of sparkle, this design is further enhanced by the Swarovski Crystals that are present at the center of each flower. It is a real stunning piece,must see it in person to truly appreciate the design.

A Special Note from Brenda about this Piece: Metal Butterfly and Steel Poppies. I was given dozens of jars of a fabulous paint "Viva Decor's Precious Metal Colors" and "Glass Effects" While attending the CHA trade show here in Orlando. I was imagining a design that would really show case the beauty of these paints. Metal Butterfly and Steel Poppies are the result. These paints are unbelievable, fast drying - water based vibrant colored Metallic's.

MYSTIC ($190.00) - Mystic "Relief Carved Bangle" and therefore one of a kind. A Bangle of this size and stature will make a more than a subtle statement, it will be noticed. The imagery includes painted images of the "hand of Fatima" which is then flanked by carved scroll work, this design is eastern mystic inspired and is completely unique to the surface of this Bangle. Includes Natural semi-Precious Stones, 3.5 Carat Yellow Citrine, 2 Carat Black Spinel. The Bangle colors are Black & Multi. Bangle size Large 9 inches interior circumference (RE: High Dome) it is most common that you’ll wear 1size larger than the norm.

A Special Note from Brenda about this piece: Mystic is a Relief carving of scroll work and troughs that surround the Hand of Fatima positioned palm to palm and spreading outward. This bangle was inspired by a Professional Belly Dancer named Nika. Nika requested a design that included the Hand of Fatima. I fell in love with the image and had to use it in another Design. The Bangle was carved by hand using a Dremel Rotary carving tool. The art was rendered with Sakuru Gelly Pens from Japan and Aquarelles. It also includes copper coated micro-mini glass marbles, 1 natural semi-precious 3.5 Carat Yellow Citrine and Four natural semi-precious African Black Spinels at 1.5 Carats each. The carving alone was a full day of carving and sanding before the art could be applied. Mystic all totalled was a process that spanned several days and about 18 hours of actually hands on effort.

ENTER THE SPARROW ($45.50) - This Bangle has a high dome profile on the wrist, very rounded and raised up from the mid point. It is a Large Bangle and not for the faint of heart.

It will make a more than a subtle statement, it will be noticed. The imagery includes a sparrow which is considered to a bird of good omen by the sea fares of the world, this design is olde world inspired and is completely unique to the surface of this Bangle. The colors are light mulberry, pink, with accents of gold and light blue. It is a real stunning piece,must see it in person to truly appreciate the design. A one of a kind piece of Bangle Art, for the collector.

A Special Note from Brenda about this Piece: Enter the Sparrow was an experiment that incorporated Scrap Booking Rub-ons. I wanted to see if they could be used on the surface of a bangle by incorporating them into my paintings. I have since learned I can incorporate just about anything I can glue down! The Sparrow is a good fortune for sailors. It is believed to assure a safe trip back to harbor. Even though my image on this bangle is of a split tail swallow. The sentiment in my mind at the time was to carry the wearer safely home from her travels.

METALLIC BUTTERFLY ($42.50) - The unique Butterfly Bangle, is 1.5 inches wide. All designed in metallic tones of fall. This Bangle is covered with an original painting of the whispy scrolling details adjusted for the space available.

The hues of a late day sun accented by the butterfly ...gold & Black abstract dots wrap around the entire bangle in one continous play, the bange has been adorned inside and out. An amazing eye catcher, you'd be the only one on earth with this design, a Bajidoo Sigature piece. Makes a great gift for a true Bangle lover!

A Special Note from Brenda about this Piece: Metal Butterfly and Steel Poppies. I was given dozens of jars of a fabulous paint "Viva Decor's Precious Metal Colors" and "Glass Effects" While attending the CHA trade show here in Orlando. I was imagining a design that would really show case the beauty of these paints. Metal Butterfly and Steel Poppies are the result. These paints are unbelievable, fast drying - water based vibrant colored Metallic's.

WHISPERING WINGS ($135.00) - This Bangle has a high dome profile on the wrist, very rounded and raised up from the mid point. It is a Large Profile Bangle and will be noticed by everyone.

The imagery includes a Humming Bird, and Fluttering Butterfly and a Dragon Fly...this image is all about the delicately winged creatures of nature and is completely unique to the surface of this Bangle. It is a real stunning piece,must see it in person to truly appreciate the design. A one of a kind piece of Bangle Art, for the collector.

A Special Note from Brenda about this piece: My mom loved dragonflies and humming birds. She was an avid gardener. I made Whispering Wings for her. The first image was on a hand painted recipe box. Everyone went crazy over it until it was sold. I decided to move that image to the Bangle. The art is rendered mostly in Aqurelles, but there is some India ink and Sharpie. For the drawing the biggest challenge is working in minute detail in the "Double-Round canvas" made of up the inherent shape of the bangle itself, following by the fact that my largest surface is only 1 3/4 inches wide. It also includes 312 individually hand set Swarovski Crystals, 50 White Crystal and 106 Peridot Sawrovski Crystal on each rim (top and Bottom). The art for this bangle was accomplished in approximately 3 hours, the crystals took an additional 4 hours to apply.

RED BINDI TATTOO ($55.00) - The Red Bindi Tattoo, is an intricately tattooed Bangle which includes glistening gilded accent work. Based on Traditional Old world henna tattoo designs this painted in a lovely rich deep red moving toward burgundy, black and then gold. Completely created by hand with incredible detail work, then accented by designer bindis from India and sealed with a high gloss waterproof sealant

The bangle is an Large 2.75 inch High Profile Domed design, and standard circumference of 7.5 inches, measures from the inside opening of the Bangle.

A Special Note from Brenda about this Piece: Red Bindi Tattoo, incorporates water based gilded henna tattoo's from India, as well as Designer Indian Bindi's - the Jewel that is often worn to show status at the center of the forehead. Red is a color for auspicious occasions like marriages, birth of a child in the Hindi Culture. Working with water tattoo (or temporary Tattoos) can be quite tricky, the biggest challenge is the order of the applied paint, art and bindi's....only second to the difficulty of working in a "Double-Round" medium inherent to the bangle itself.


I tried to capture as much as I could about Brenda and her fascinating and unique talents, and her magical works of art. Brenda creates so much more than her amazing Bajidoo Bangles, she also designs Lampshades, Boxes, Clocks, fine art paintings, Logo Designs, teeshirts, letterheads for companies, business cards and her work can be found at shows and in boutiques across the country. You can visit her website and blog to learn more, and believe me you will want to!

I want to thank Brenda so very much for providing me with a custom made Bajidoo Bangle that I will wear and cherish for years to come! She was so very generous with her time not only in creating this piece for me, but also for giving me her individed attention during the phone interview. I appreciate it so much and enjoyed meeting her live, it was the highlight of my month!

Lastly, if you visit Brenda's website you can see in much more detail all her works of art and also enter her monthly contest. Details about it can be found here!

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Fifi Flowers said...

Those bangles are absolutely gorgeous!!! Off to visit Brenda's blog!

Priscila said...

those are really chic!!!
If you would like come visit my blog for a giveaway : http://www.littlemissheirlooms.blogspot.com
we try to have a brand new giveaway a week!!! So follow us so you don't miss out!

Anonymous said...

I was looking for blank bangles, and this site came up. As I am not an expert, I can see they are not blank!!! You should advertise on the correct web site!!!!!!!!!!!