From Cocoa Beach, Florida to Alanya and back to Washington. A story about passion and enthusiasm

One thing leads to another they say and that's exactly what has happened when a gentleman from the US bought a lamp from our Amazon store as a gift for his wife. I wrote about my experience with him (Sorry I never mention names as a respect for privacy) a couple of weeks ago.

Barbara Eden and late Larry Hagman played the main characters in the world famous TV series of 1960s and 70s, I Dream of Jeannie

After a short while, his brother-in-law got in touch with me, looking for a custom order gourd lamp. I was very happy to see that one nice job we completed led more business come in but I never thought that I would have another amazing experience (try) making this custom order. The entire process was a trip down the memory lane, another nice and enchanting interaction with the other side of the planet but also a lot more learned about our skills, our craft and the way we work. This gentleman was looking for a replica of the 'Iconic Genie Bottle' from 'I Dream of Jeannie'. And I said 'yes.. I will make it, no problem'.

As usual and like I always do with custom orders, me and this gentleman went through the process of selecting the right gourd, discussing the details. We shared ideas and information. This was our first ten days basically and I felt as if I knew what to do very well from the very beginning... but I was wrong. However, there was one thing I managed to discover which was his enthusiasm for the TV series 'I Dream of Jeannie'. within the correspondance we had over this process and time period, ı learned a lot about his love for the TV series which I will not go into details here as a respect for his privacy. I must confess that I owe thanks to this gentleman as his enthusiasm reminded me of a lot of things that I have forgotten. Not necessarily about TV series of childhood nostalgia. What he reminded me was 'enthusiasm' a feeling that most of us almost forgot at this side of the planet. Past decade has been more horrible for most of the people in this area and I doubt there are many people out there who feel passionate about something but survival under the current circumstances.

The Genie Bottle used in the TV series was originally a Jim Beam bottle.

Apparently, the original genie bottle was a Jim Beam bottle. Although you can get a gourd similar to this shape, only similar, it could have been very restrictive when you considered that you were making a lamp... Well at the end of the day, you want this object to illuminate.

The Iconic Genie Bottle of I Dream of Jeannie

So I selected 4 gourds which I thought would be close to the original Jim Beam bottle as a shape while providing some space for me to add some color and illumination to the gourd. Theoretically, I was correct but in practice, I didn't realize that I was going through a problematic process of confusion between figures which I was totally unfamiliar. And what was worse is I approached the Genie Bottle as an oriental, possibly clay made object with Persian/oriental figures on it. Once I learned that it was actually a glass bottle and the Genie Bottle was created around the characteristics of the bottle, I was well in depths of a labyrinth. To cut the long story short. My first attempt was not satisfactory to me... So I decided to start all over again. Thankfully this gentleman wasn't in a hurry and he knew what I wanted to do, so I have seen no pressure.

My first attempt to drill the Genie Bottle on gourd wasn't satisfactory. So I took the challenge for the second time.

This time, I selected a larger gourd with a larger bottom section. A larger bottom solved most of my existing issues as I had a lot of space to work on the oriental figure which surrounded the entire lower section. Maybe on the original genie bottle, this section didn't have much importance compared to the other sections on the bottle, however, for me, it was crucial if I wanted this object to become an attractive lamp. I didn't have the same opportunity to other sections. So I sat by my computer and drew that figure. Than copy pasted it to have multiple copies and finally put them on a sticker paper. One thing I realized during this process as it was highly likely that person who painted the Jim Beam bottle at the beginning though of this figure as flames that fire the bottle. In the TV series, before Barbara Eden appeared, the Genie Bottle produced steam.

Another attraction which we managed to introduce on this gourd lamp was a cap. To be honest with you, I never made a gourd lamp with a cap before. I felt this was another crucial characteristic that we needed to have on the gourd lamp if we wanted to make it as close as it can be to the original Genie Bottle. The shape of the head section of the gourd was good enough to allocate the cap at the right point.

A removable cap is one of the characteristics we managed to give on this gourd lamp to make it as close as it can to the original Genie Bottle

The acrylic section was the hardest bit for my workshop. It is usually my wonderful wife who handles the painting work. She put a lot of time trying to get it right. I must confess we are not painters. We use acrylic to make some of the figures that we use on the gourds attractive. But we had never painted shapes on the gourd. Even a friend of my wife helped us to complete the lamp. I needed to take them out for a dinner after all the work they have done. But eventually we got there and I am now confident to ship this work to this

Acyrilic works for this design was something which were not familiar at all.

gentleman. I hope to receive photos as I now that he has some sort of a steam creating device which he will place into the gourd and we will all enjoy the cap functioning. Thanks for giving Rising Star this opportunity as it has not only been a pleasure to work on this order but you reminded us of life and also areas of improvement in our workshop.

Altough the calabash based gourd lamp doesn't look like the original Jim Beam bottle, the gourd has illumination capabilities that the orginal bottle never had.

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