Halloween 2017 #1: My Ghostie, My Boo

“You’re my Bobo, you’re my boo.”
Celeste Koh


Everybody knows that Taenggu is a big fan of Halloween. To her, Halloween is like a big holiday which everybody should celebrate. Because I knew Halloween is so important to her, I wanted to prepare something special for her even though it wasn’t really a love occasion. 😂

About 2 weeks before, I already developed some ideas for a Halloween art in my head, but this piece of string art wasn’t actually a part of my original plan. This idea came to me unexpectedly. I was actually sort of “forced” to do this as if it was an idea initiated and directed to me by the universe, but the interesting thing was, I was still given options to choose what I wished to do.

So what happened was that, on Friday, 20th October, I went for my monthly facial appointment at SkinLab at Westgate. It was already the last session of my facial package which I bought late last year. So at the end of my facial, I purchased a new short-term package that cost around $600. I remembered the last time when I spent over $1000 for my facial package, I could redeem some free gifts at the Westgate reception counter. So I went to the counter to ask if I could redeem anything this time too. The lady at the counter told me that because I had spent over $120, I could redeem a free ticket to their Halloween home decor craft workshop!

It was totally unexpected as if it was a present from the universe to thank me for treating myself and Taenggu to a new facial package (coincidentally, I had been attending many art and handmaking workshops lately too). Even so, I had to make a few decisions freely out of my own will.

First, I had to choose between String Art and Canvas Painting. I thought for awhile. I had already done canvas painting for Taenggu before (you can see my paintings I had done in the past at Category: Paintings) but string art was a totally new thing to me. So I went ahead with string art.

Second, I was asked to choose the date. I only had a few dates left: 21, 22, 28 and 29 Oct. I had already planned to go for a meditation course on 22nd and I would be on vacation in China on 28th and 29th, so 21st, the very next day, was the only date I could make it. It was so unplanned and so last-minute! I originally wanted to spend the 21st (it was a Saturday) at home the whole day doing my own stuff and now because I was presented with this unexpected free gift from Heaven, I had to get my butt out of my house to attend this workshop. Haha. But I didn’t mind it at all because it was an opportunity for me to learn a new form of art to make for Taenggu and the most important thing was I didn’t have to pay a single cent for it at all!

So the next day, at 3pm, I went to Westgate for the Halloween string art workshop. As stated on the ticket, it was supposed to be from 3-4pm, just an one-hour session, so I thought it was going to be a quick and easy craft to pick up at the workshop. So I sat at the bench in front of the workshop tables set up in the middle of the shopping centre. An assistant came over to me and told me I could choose between 2 kinds of template.

First was a picture of a ghost that says “Boo!” like this:

Or I could make a template out of my own name initial. Then she showed me a sample of what she had already done previously – it was a letter C with a heart shape in the middle! It was such a strong coincidence because my name Celeste also starts with a letter C and she definitely didn’t know my name at all! It was like it was secretly and carefully plotted by the universe. 😂 The name initial design looked so gorgeous that I was actually kind of tempted to make it for myself too.

Now not only was it the third decision I had to make, I felt like Heaven was giving me a test. It was either I choose to make the Halloween ghost for Taenggu or make the name initial C for myself. I thought to myself, I felt like I had been directed to attend this workshop for a special purpose and that purpose was for Taenggu. A Halloween gift for Taenggu. So I chose the former. I wanted to transform myself into not just a ghost, but a purple one (mine and Taenggu’s favourite colour) just for my Taenggu, my Boo. 😘

The first step was to hammer a nail above each dot on the template to make markings on my wooden board. So I started hammering all around with a small hammer which was provided for me. Not sure if anybody actually feels the same way as I do, my tummy would feel really hungry and empty inside as I hammer more and more. The last time I also did some hammering during my marbled leather wristlet workshop and I had the same sensation too! It was a really uncomfortable feeling which made me crave for some food (even though I had already eaten before I came).

It was already 4pm by the time I finished the first step! “There’s no way we can finish this whole string art thing within an hour!” I exclaimed in my heart. There were also a few other participants beside me who were still in the hammering and nailing process too. Since the workshop assistants didn’t stop us, we went on.

My board with the hole markings after the first step

The second step was to remove the paper and start hammering the nails into all the markings we had made on the board. It was like double the work for me. I had to go around the board for the second time again and hammer the nails into it one by one. It was such a tedious process, definitely wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. I was tired already. My hand and arm got weaker and weaker. “How much more do I have to go?” I groaned silently. In my head, I heard voices mentioning about Jesus. I remembered a voice saying something along the lines of “Jesus is asking for / thinking about any ways that could allow you to do it faster / speed up the process…” Later on, an assistant came over to tell us that we would have to stop all things by 5.30pm latest.

Another hour passed and it was about 5pm when I was finally done with the nailing. 😰

Finally, all nails in!

Now, the third and final, and also the most fun step finally came. It was the stringing part! It is kind of therapeutic to pull the thread around the nails in however ways you like. There are no strict rules or path you have to follow. You just have to follow your guts. The messier and denser it looks, it would turn out nicer too.

By 5.30pm, this was what I had managed to get done. Didn’t manage to get on to the “Boo!” part yet. 😅

We were allowed to cut and bring back home some threads with us to continue our work, so I did. I was determined to complete this Purple Ghost Boo string art as a special Halloween present for Taenggu.

The next day, during my meditation course at Kadampa Meditation Centre, there were several times while meditating with my eyes closed, I saw visions of a hand pulling a white thread going around the nails just like what I did the day before. That was when I knew I had been subconsciously thinking about my string art all those while. I knew it was a spiritual sign directing me to complete my artwork.

So over the next few days, I was at home silently completing the remaining unfinished parts well before Halloween. It was really enjoyable to do the stringing, I must say.

I had posted all the above work-in-progress shots I took at the workshop on my twitter in real time so that Taenggu could catch a glimpse of what I did for her that day too.

A week later, during a Halloween party organised by Taeyeon Fan Union (TFU), Taenggu specially designed and wrote a letter card by herself for her fans who attended the party. The design of the card was a ghost with the word “Boo!” which is exactly the same concept as my string art!

A Thank You card specially made by Taenggu

Did Taenggu like my Halloween string art? I’m sure this is a powerful sign from her telling me that it was a yes! Not only was this a present handmade by yours truly, I believed it was actually a present from Heaven too. Hope she could use it to decorate her house when I get it delivered to her after I find a suitable delivery box for it! Keke. 😘

Thinking of trying this form of string art on my own using similar but slightly different kinds of tools and materials soon when I find time. See how it goes! 😌

So here goes the very first piece of string art I had attempted in my life! 💜

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