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How to draw AKOYA

Zentangle pattern: AkoyaAkoya is such a pretty tangle pattern, it resembles twisted strings of pearls and it’s deceptively simple. I love it!

It’s from Texas CZT Sandy Hunter (Allen, Plano, Frisco, McKinney, N. Dallas), who has shared the very popular Cruffle and Puffle and more.

Her new Akoya is “Ay-oka(y)” with me.

It came about, as tangles often do, through something else Sandy was drawing: a Zendala she named a ‘holidala‘. And the process of drawing it turned “into something kind of unexpected and wonderful.”

Akoya is simply composed of orbs where you must pay close attention to executing precise orbs in descending sizes. Kind of hard to see at this scale in my example. But no worries because Sandy gives very detailed instructions for each step.

For me the key was Sandy’s Step 4 where she writes, “To get a good smooth curve, keep in mind that the biggest pearl in the middle is the halfway point of each section, not the end.” Each section is an elongated S with the largest pearl at the center, and if you bear that in mind you’ll be good.

Sandy illustrates the step-by-step instructions for drawing Akoya here on her blog and shows us several wonderful ways to use it. She features Akoya in two lovely Zentangles (“a simple border no fluff” and “a fancypants little star for the holidays“) and a Zendala featuring Akoya in a circular border. Very beautiful, all three. Enjoy!

Check out the tag sandyh for more of Sandy’s tangles on


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