Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Review: Loomi, a crafty little light

** EDIT:  They are now selling loomi kits.  Woohoo!**

Review note: I was provided 3 sets of paper pieces and two light kits for review.

Last week I got a super-terrific email from Josh, one of the Loomi folks, which was so personalized, specific, and *human* that I was instantly curious and had my metaphorical fingers crossed that I could help him out with the Kickstarter project he mentioned in his email.  I was not disappointed!

These are the lamps that *I* made with the kits he sent to me.  Are they amazing or what?  I know it looks like I photoshoped these or something.  At least it does to me.  I think our brains don't do well when the surface of something is lit from within.  We are so used to seeing surfaces lit from outside.  Anyway ... I nerdily diverge ... I find the the lamps mesmerizing.  Don't you?

I got my kits on Saturday.  They include 3 extra paper pieces in each kit, so I knew I could destroy one experimenting.  I want to give a shout out to my friend Sonya for the inserted piece of crochet.  I was totally inspired by her knitting project ordinary objects.  I also punched some holes with my eyelet setter and stuck on some stickers.

When back lit, you can also see the word bubble sticky note and, my favorite office supply right now, white-out tape.  I totally love the way  the white out tape looks, but holy crap, that would have been labor intensive to "white out tape stripe" 30 of those paper pieces.  

I considered sewing on the paper, but it's pretty thick and I didn't want to snap a needle (it probably would have worked).  Multi-colored zigzag stitches down the center of each piece would have looked really cool.  And the pin-prick holes from the sewing machine needle would have been nice when the light was on.

After doing my tests, I decided that I was going to leave the outside of the pieces untouched and that I would add opaque items on the inside that you could only see when you turn the lamp on.

Imagine the possibilities ... cute shapes like leaves, flowers or hearts... geometrics like squares, circles or stripes. .... creepy shapes like human heads, skulls, spiders   Oh, the Halloween possibilities!  Plastic spiders would probably took so amazing since the shadow would be dark where the feet touched and suggestive of the body.  Eek!  I'm on a time crunch though, so I decided to go for simple.

Monday, after work, I stopped at a couple of stores looking for stickers and/or tape.  I totally wanted to get the "lace tape" at Daiso, but I would have needed a bazillion rolls for the whole lamp.  I opted for tiny silver circle stickers and large white stickers.  You can see above that the silver stickers are almost opaque and the white ones are kinda-opaque.

Crap!  I just realized I could have layered the stickers ... put the silver dots on the bigger white circles ... and that would have looked SO AWESOME.  I could take it apart ... ;)

Since all the pieces are catawampus to each other, I decided to do the stickers on each one the same and let the positioning of each piece dictate the pattern that was created overall.

Also, I was really concerned about being "random" and about how many to put on each piece and whether they were spaced nicely and  .... gah!  I just wanted to have fun.  I like a good factory job, like putting a tons of stickers on paper in the same places.  I didn't stress about the configuration I picked, though. :)

I love those silver circles!  The inside of the lamp looks so cool as I was putting the lamp together.  The process of building the lamp is very similar to constructing modular origami, which I love.

Here's another in-progress shot.

I put together one lamp without embellishment and one with my circles.  Here they are hanging together.  I think Loomi is pretty even when it's not on.

Gah!  The spirals at the connection points are beautiful.  My spots are very nice overall, though you can't see 6 of the stickers on each piece because of the overlap.  Oops.  Still love it, though. :)

They have 11 more days  to reach their goal of $9K to fund this project via their Loomi Kickstarter.  If you pledge an amount that includes a lamp (starting at $30), they plan to ship all USA orders for delivery by Christmas.  I think these would make wonderful gifts for crafty friends, kids, or even yourself.

And, for what it's worth, Josh is a nice, thoughtful guy who really brightened up my week and I'd love to see him and his project succeed.

18 Comments leave a comment

Mo said ...
This is very cool - I'd love to have one to play around with.
12/6/2011 1:56 PM

Donna said ...
12/6/2011 8:01 PM

Elle Lenore said ...
Those lights are gorgeous! Just... wow. So awesome.
12/7/2011 7:52 AM

Stephanie said ...
Those are so awesome! And you are right...the picture totally looks photoshopped, even though it isn't. So cool!
12/7/2011 1:09 PM

Josh said ...
Hey thanks Futuregirl! We made our goal and people will get their lights in time for xmas!
12/7/2011 5:26 PM

futuregirl replied ...
Josh ... Yay!!!
12/7/2011 5:51 PM

Marie said ...
If you want to try sewing in the future, know that there are several sizes of needles. Look for needles that are labeled for sewing denim, as they are one of the heavier type of needle found at most stores. I'd be surprised if they would break sewing paper.
12/10/2011 4:08 PM

futuregirl replied ...
Marie ... You're probably right. Thanks for the tip! I really think the sewing would be cool. :)
12/17/2011 12:47 AM

Kuky said ...
Those look amazing. Alan didn't think those photos of them lit up were real.
12/11/2011 3:59 AM

Aditi said ...
Alice, these lights are so good...and more over handmade..these type of lights, made up of plastic were available in our city for our festival "Diwali, festival of lights".
12/17/2011 7:52 AM

chaobella said ...
I love this! please check out my sites. i love crafting too
12/18/2011 5:12 PM

Seanna Lea said ...
These look awesome. I wonder how it would work with holes punched for cross-stitch.
12/20/2011 1:21 PM

futuregirl replied ...
Seanna Lea ... Such a great idea~
1/8/2012 5:14 PM

lorna said ...
i stayed with someone who makes these over christmas. he puts them in tables and makes loads of different shapes with them, they look awesome with a different colour lightbulb inside ie blue in white and adding a different colour in the middle... i love these things can't wait to put mine up, with tweeks of course! :)

1/7/2012 7:45 AM

Genevieve said ...
I make these for the holidays. Some I make really small and put them over some of the lights on my tree. I do the same thing that Lorna mentioned and use different colored lights. You can't go wrong with these little guys. Some look really cool with embellishments on the outside too, such as dried pressed flowers.
1/9/2012 3:31 PM

chaobella said ...
SO AWESOME! i bookmarked this before.. and found it again :)
1/16/2012 12:04 PM

laura said ...
They are very pretty - too bad they are a rip off of a very famous [although maybe not everywhere in the US] Danish design lamp originally conceived in 1973 and still very very popular.
I love kickstart - but it's with people like these that I feel like you need to do your background check before funding what look like brilliant ideas. I mean do not get me wrong, the ideas are brilliant - just not owned by these people...
I make a provision - if they have cleared the patent with the danish company or if, for some legal shortcut they are not plagiarising the danish company's design - then good for them.
7/17/2012 2:15 AM
futuregirl replied ...
laura ... On their Kickstarter page they say. "An expired Danish patent from the '70's inspired us to create Loomi ..." No oblivious Americans here.
7/21/2012 4:30 PM


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