Handmade animal figurines have definitely gained popularity over the past few years on sites like Etsy. These little artisan goods bring a little more joy into our lives, especially at a time when many of us feel isolated, sad or lonely.
Lithops Studio is one of those companies, and they aim to ease the emotional burden many of us feel. The creator, Chien Nie, says she made her ceramic creations with the hope that they “help bring a little light to the quiet place inside of you. Slow down, breathe and be present.” She explains that she sends blessings with her every work and message.
In a sense, these little ceramic creatures and illustrations represent meditation and mindfulness. They are a reminder to clear the clutter and make room for peace and ease.
Chien Nie always shares his process along with his creations, in the caption. Take this family of foxes for example. She shows us the steps from pre-baking to post-baking and more. Foxes have little houses on their backs that can hold twigs and/or incense sticks.
Similar to Nie’s unique pet foxes, these irresistible little lemon bears are! She asks us: “When life hands you lemons, would you take them if you were carrying them on the back of a little bear?” The answer is obviously yes. This is the better way to tell someone to turn their lemons into lemonade.
We love that her little animal inventions often have a purpose beyond being cute, even though they are the definition of adorable. Take these fox planters for example. How can you stay in a bad mood with these cute little creatures looking at you, especially with your favorite plants inside them.
Her work is symbolic in a sense. Nature works in harmony together and its small animals help to shelter other life forms such as small twigs, herbs or plants. This image features a mint flower and blue pea pods.
This artist isn’t averse to getting a little abstract—in fact, we love it when she does. This series is called “WAI” and is inspired by the intention to sculpt without a specific form in mind, to create more amorphous forms that only develop their identity after glazing.
Chien also made a series of saucers and plates that can hold your keys, accessories and a plant friend if you buy one with a cap. Honestly, who could be a better guardian of your belongings than this cute little fox who definitely has you covered.
While most of the creations are meant for a counter or surface, we’re swooning over these moth wall hangings. She describes the design as “tedious and fussy” to make, but worth it. Some have indentations for twigs, but one of these cuties actually has its own fluffy antennae pre-sculpted!
If you find yourself needing a reminder to stretch and move your body daily, consider this entourage of stretching cats with metallic gold details. Place them on your desk or shelves for friendly company and movement.
If you don’t want figurines to create more clutter in your home or you can’t think of a place to put them, wear them around your neck! These apples, leaves, animals and lucky stars all have a little hook on them to easily get on a chain. Imagine making a charm bracelet out of these beauties.
It’s rare that she makes something that’s bigger than a trinket, but when she does, it’s so stunning that fans slide into her comments asking her to recreate another one! The porcelain master calls this cloudy beauty a “fox cave vessel” and features elaborate gold illustrations around a small cave in which a sleeping fox lies.
Pendants aren’t the only time this artist has experimented with turning her pieces into jewelry. These little swallows are depicted on 14-karat gold hoops. They’re even beautifully styled on their own on a twig, like the one here, if your ears aren’t pierced.