Thursday, December 21, 2006

Have a great holiday season!

I know I haven't written up for the past months. So sorry... I'm such a bad writer, eh? Life is busy with this and that.

The shop, Atelier JADE, will be closed from Dec. 30 to Jan. 9. We'll be opened from Jan. 10. We still have some Decole goodies and cute fabrics on stock. Enjoy the Japanese cute zakka with us!

Wishing you the best for this happy holiday seasons!

Friday, October 20, 2006

Long time no writing!

Hello, hello, hello! Phew, what a long time I'd been away from updating my own weblog. Gee, I feel bad. I was so busy visiting the clinic after Jade's surgeries on her ears, working on some works and so on. Now she got so much better and we don't need to see the doc for a while! It was so frustrating to go to see the doc as we had to waste a half day each time for waiting at the lobby. I haven't done much handmade projects other than emproidery and cross stitching for up-coming holiday seasons. Hope you guys are doing great! Missed you!

Friday, September 22, 2006


Sorry for the silence. I've been so busy with my shops and preparation to be hospitalised with Jade once again. She had some operations on her both ears in Jan., but will have another one very soon. There're so much to do before that as a mom. I'll get back to you mix next week!
Have a great days!


Saturday, September 16, 2006


The other day, I was tagged by Sara, . It's my second time to do this, but here we go!!

Four Jobs I Have Had in My Life:
1. Diplomat-to-be (2 yrs in France and Romania)
2. Administrative Assistant (4 yrs at a German firm in Tokyo)
3. PR/Marketing Asst MGR (4 yrs at the same German firm in Tokyo)
4. Online shops owner (ever since 2003)

Four Movies I Would Watch Over and Over:
1. Charlie and the chocolate factory
2. Sound of Music
3. the Phantom of Opera (2004 version)
4. Roman Holidays

Four Places I Have Lived:
1. Tokyo/Japan
2. Lake Mary in FL and Ellensburg in WA/USA
3. Paris/France
4. Bucharest/Romania
(... and New Delhi/India, Singapore/Singapore, Vancouver/Canada and now in Kamakura/Japan)

Four TV shows I love to watch:
Sorry but I don't watch TV at all...

Four places I have been on vacation:
1. Greek islands
2. Mauritius
3. Bali, Indonesia
4. Tasmania

Four Favorite Foods:
1. Italian Pizza
2. New York Cheese Cake
3. Onigiri
4. Tempura

Four places I would rather be right now:
1. Brazil
2. Cuba
3. Easter Island
4. Okinawa

Umm, done!!
Kinda fun. Hope you enjoyed, too!

Okay, then, I'd love to ask my dear Handmade Girl, to do the next!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Summer had ended...

Rain, rain, rain .... We're having rainy days here in Kamakura, Japan. And it's so chilly! Oh, it's so sad that summer has gone!
Since the temperature is not high at all, I started to bake rolls for our breakfast again. I'm doing this ever since Jade was one year old when she was ready to eat what adults eat. I know what I'm using for our rolls, and I feel so safe. Three years ago, I treated myself to buy brand new Kitchen Aid from the US (I paid exactly the same amount for shipping!!!! Awwww!)
Ingredients? Whole grain, butter, milk, brown sugar, yeast and a bit of salt. And you can add anything like chocolate chips, walnuts, raisons and so on. Today, I baked roll with fresh grinded parmesan cheese. Umm, yum!

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Long time no writing!

Hello girls. How're ya doin'? Sorry for my long silence once again. I've been super busy with my shops/translation work/etc...
I've been making lots of stuffs these days. This pure linen book cover is my favorite for the week. I used the fine Lithuanian linen with red DMC floss for monogramming. I like it a lot because it's so simple. It took me some hours to do the cross stitching an "M".
And the shop has new notions like this cute linen tape.
I haven't sent out the newsletter yet, though!

Atelier JADE

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Trip to Singapore

We have decided to travel to Singapore from Jan. 2, 2007 for a week. As my sister used to live and work there for some years, we've been there more than 20 times now. We just love the small beautiful island. And this will be Jade's first time to step on any other Asian countries besides her own country, Japan. So far, she's visited San Francisco when she turned to be 2 yrs old in 2005. We have so much plans to enjoy! Cannot wait to meet some of my friends I met online during our trip :D

Friday, August 25, 2006

Some refreshments!

Hi friends! How have you been? Sorry for my long silence. Ever since I came back from summer holidays, my shops keep me so busy. But I sneaked out to have some refreshments for myself at AVEDA salon near our house. I had a hair cut, applied "digital permanent" and aroma treatment. Oh, I feel so freshed now!

Thursday, August 10, 2006


Since I have more free tim now, I decided that my daughter and I take hula classes once a week. A new class for mom and the little one just started here in Kamakura, so we jumped in last Friday to try out. Jade is just 3 yrs old, but she does a lot of activity at her preschool where she spends 8 hours every day. Her teachers say she likes to dance a lot, so I thought she'd enjoy it. And she did enjoy the entier one hour in our first class.
So mommy was very busy making our new "pau" skirts to wear when we go to hula classes. For an adult, you need 4 yards, and 2 yards for kids. That's a lot of sewing, eh?

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

my exhibition at a zakka shop

I had my first exhibition at a zakka shop in a local area on the last Saturday. There were 5 artists/creaters including myself from Shonan area. I brought my Hawaiian bags just like the first craft fair. It was a very hot day and we had less customers during the daytime. I guess nobody wanted to take a risk to dry up in the heat! But we had a lot of customers in the evening just before the fireworks started. I was there from 11 AM to 9:30 PM. What a long day it was! I got a cold and now I'm sick in bed right now. Gee, I'll be better soon! I just wanted to tell my friends that it was over. The result? I didn't make much money, but it was so great that I met new creaters in the local area. They say they'll invite me again quite soon for another exhibition. I'll think about how to improve to earn more $$$! :D

Thursday, August 03, 2006

busy like a bee

On July 31, I said goodbye to my work, a German firm where I had workd for 7 yrs! Yes, now I don't belong to any company and I'm free! Hooray, I feel so relieved and free. I had a great last day at work. Had fancy Italian lunch with some co-workers, my boss bought some yummy cakes and pies for all of us in the afternoon, got some farewell gifts from good frineds, and my sister treated me a great Chinese farewell dinner in central Tokyo, called Turandot. Here's a photo of pretty yellow flowers my husband gave on that day. Happy! :D
And now I'm so busy like a bee again as I have an event coming up on the weekends. I was invited by a big zakka shop in Chigasaki to have a kind of exhibition of my works
on Saturday. I'll show ll kinds of my Hawaiian bags there and sell them at the same time. I'll have to stay there from 11 AM to 9 PM!! So it's gonna be a long day for me. It's my first time to have this kind of event, but the owner told me to bring 20 kinds of bags. So I'm working so hard to make a lot of bags using Hawaiian fabrics. Phew!

Monday, July 31, 2006

Shin Enoshima Suizokukan (Enoshima Aquarium)

Two weeks in a row, we visited the local aquarium called, Shin Enoshima Suizokukan 新江ノ島水族館 as we bought annual passport. It's a short drive way from our home towards the Pacific. In front of the building, you can see beautiful small island called Enoshima. We're now so much into this fun place. The most interesting part is the dolphins show!
There're some 4th generation dolphins that were born right here and this is really rare in the whole world. Including those, 5 dolphins swim, dance, sing and jump along the young staffs who does great entertaining. It's so dynamic and fun. Even adults can enjoy every single moment of it! Last time, we enjoyed the show twice in a day! We strongly recommend to visit here!
If you don't have a car, don't worry.
You can take Shonan Monorail, bus, Enoden and Odaky line to get there. Just head to Enoshima 江ノ島, and you won't miss it as it's the one of the biggest building along the beach side! The admission fee is JPY2.000 for adult and JPY 600 for smaller kids. Enjoy!

Friday, July 28, 2006

Craft days again!

I'm so happy that I'm back again to have crafty days once again. After the fair, I kept working on the follow-ups with new customers. Now things get a bit slow down and I have my own time to
enjoy what I want to make. I wanted to make some beaded necklaces for myself and my little one. Here they are!
Doesn't Jade look so happy with it? She wants to be a princess in the future(!), and she thinks this necklace is just the right ticket to be closer to her dream! A three-year-old has such a cute dream!

It's getting so hot and wet with high humidity here in Japan! So my bags with Hawaiian print fabrics sell quite well to my Japanese customers. I'm now recognized as a Hawaiian bag maker! :D

Friday, July 21, 2006

The craft fair in Tokyo on July 19

The fair was fantastic. I met a lot of new people who shares the same work with me, "handmade". It supposed to open at 11, but there were such a long que, the organizer
decided to open at 10:30 AM. Before that, we creators had a chance to take photos and exchange shop cards and chat. I met great artists who does super great works. You can take a look on some
shots I took with the permission.

Of course, Jade was with me and she did a great job, handing the wrapped items to customers with a big smile! She and I had a great time and I did make a great $$$. Happy :D
I'm now invited to join some fairs in Tokyo and the local Shonan area. I won't hesitate, and will definately join to enjoy myself!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Craft Fair in Tokyo on July 17

It's a national holiday called "Umi-no-hi" (Sea Day) and there's a big craft fair in downtown Tokyo on July 17, Monday. You can enjoy 45 shops with all kinds of goodies for variety crafting projects.
It is supported by the Japanese biggest craft publishing company, Nippon Vogue Inc.
If you're gonna be in town, make sure to visit this one of the most popular craft show in Japan!!

The Name: Home Couturier vol. 3
The Date: July 17 2006
The Time: 11:00 - 16:00
(they'll restrict admission when it's too crowded,
so make sure to arrive before 13.00)
The Place: 12th floor of Nippon Vogue Inc. in Ichigaya
(near Shinjuku area)
Admission is free, but too many people will visit this fair from all over the nation. I hear some line up before 9:30AM!!

See you at my booth!

Friday, July 07, 2006

Cuties from the shop

Here let me introduce some cute zakka from Atelier JADE.
The first photo shows hedgehog stationeries. I've been looking for these kinds of cute goodies with hedgehog for months, and finally I found them at a shop in Tokyo!! Aren't they so cute??? All are made of wood (MDF). You can use the calendar forever as you only have to change the small wooden dice-like part every day!! Eco-friendly, eh? The middle one is a set of 3 magnets. And the right one is a tape dispenser.

And then you can see 2 photos of cute Cram Cram adhesive tapes. They're really popular at my shop, and I've been uploading new tapes one after the other. The pink cookies are coming back to the
shop again and yellow froggy is brand new ones.

And the cute goldfish stickers!! There're 2 kinds and you saw the other one in my previous journal entry. When we exchange the summer greeting cards in Japan, we can put those cute stickers on it!
And you see two kinds of cute Russian dolls. These are painted on the wood pieace and you can hang up anywhere.
There're new fabrics, too.

Enjoy shopping at Atelier JADE, Japan.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Summer Greeting

Here in Japan, we have a custom to exchange a card in the mid-summer saying "Good wishes in this hot summer" for years. The weather is really hard to survive, the heat and high humidity!!
Here I found some cute stickers of the summer greeting. Goldfish is one of the symbolic animal for the summer. Very popular during the season and you see it everywhere you go, on postcards, ads, magazines, books, etc. Cute, eh?
Have a great summer days, girls!

Friday, June 30, 2006

working for the show!

These are new item to be introduced for the show next month. They're 10 sets of a placemat and a coaster with comination of Hawaiian print and Lithuania pure linen. I made them dreaming of having a cozy meal under the tropical weather in Hawaii. I think it's quite interesting to mix those two different kinds of material. What do you think, gilrs?

Wednesday, June 28, 2006


Sorry for a silence. Jade has been sick with flu, and we're still visiting to the otological clinic to check her ears. And I started to work on the bags I'll take to the show. I set my concept on "Holidays in Hawaii". As I mentioned to you before, my living area "Shonan" is called Japanese Hawaii, and my bags with Hawaiian print sell very well here. Now I'm making 2 kinds of the most standard styles in my shop with different colors of fabrics. Also I'll make some
Home & Decor items later on. Oops, I'll have to prepare shop's card and other promotional materials, too. But I'm now concentrating on sewing up all kinds of bags! I need more time!! You know, I still work for the German firm and I go to work to Central Tokyo almost every weekdays as I'm managing a big project to publish our latest catalog in Japanese language. So I cannot take days off at all... Need more time!

These photos are from the local botanical garden here in Kamakura. They're both Japanese wild hydrangea. Isn't it so beautiful? I love the way they displayed them, too!

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

I'm so excited!!

Just yesterday, I got an e-mail from a famous tezukuri artist and she's inviting me to join her trade-show next month! Lots of famous handmade artists join the show to show and sell their works!
Gosh, I'd never talked to this lady (she's well-known handmade artist making candles and other zakka in her own style and her house is introduced in many books and magazines and so COOL!!). She said she likes my style and it would be fun for me to join the event! At the last show, there were more than 2000 visitor for the 5-hour-event! Gosh, I'm so thrilled and excited. I don't have much time left and don't know what to do as this would be my very first show or event in my life to join!! I'm kinda panicking right now.

Monday, June 19, 2006

brunch at home on weekends

Since my husband and I both work, we take turn for cooking. I cook every weekdays, and he dose over the weekends! Fair, eh? Last Friday, we had our friends at home and they stayed until 3 AM!! So we had a lazy weekends at home. On Saturday, we had sunshine until the afternoon (Yes, we're in the middle of the rainy season right now!!). So we had our brunch at the patio. Isn't it great to have a meal outside with some sunshine? We just love it!!
The menu was a plate of sandwiches with bacon, cheese, fresh tomato and lettuce, cherries and banana!! Nothing special but cozy brunch at home under the sun!!
Hope you had a great weekends, too!!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Let's make Shiro-Tama Dango today!

These days, I enjoy cooking with my 3-year-old daughter every weekends. She’s so much eager to learn new things and wants to try out. I discusses with my hubby that we’ll give her a beautiful “real” houchou (Japanese cooking knife) for children as her 4th b-day gift in autumn. She’ll be thrilled

This Sunday, we made Shiro-Tama Dango (White ball Dango). Dango is one of Japanese traditional sweets made of rice powder. Curious to know the recipe? It’s so simple and easy, but I wonder if you can buy the Shiro-Tama powder in your area.
Okay, here we go!!
First of all, pour the one packet of Jyosinko (上新粉: rice powder) into a bowl and then add some warm water. Mix it up until it gets the hardness of earlobe. Make small balls about 2 – 3cm dia. Just like my daughter is doing in the photo! She did a great job on that.
Put them into boiling water and wait until they pop out from the water. I’d say it takes about 3-5 min. or so.
And rinse well with cold water. Pour some “anko” (sweet black beans) or “kinako”
(soybean flour) to serve.
Got it?

Friday, June 09, 2006

The rainy season started...

Here in Japan, we've just got into the rainy season "tsu-yu" from today. Yuck. From now on we'll have lots of rain and higher humidity for a month. Sigh...
But we need it for the trees and flowers, and also for our daily water. You don't wanna know how gross the Japanese humidity is...
Okay, girls! Have a great weekends!

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Shop updates!!

Finally, I finished the uploading work!! Now you can see the brand new Atelier JADE!! Let me know what you feel about it compared with the previous one. I wanted to do it on the first anniversary day (June 2), but couldn't make it!! Aagh!
Anyway, I hope you enjoy!!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

cross stitching!

My daughter is suffering from inflammation of middle ear again. She had an operation in Jan. and was hospitalized for a week. Every other day, we visit the local otologic clinic for the treatment. I didn't want waste the waiting time at the lobby, I started and finished my cross stitching project. It was an order from my Japanese customers as a gift.
The letter is "R". Can you see? It took me quite a lot of time as I haven't done it for a while. But it was fun!! I usually make bag or other stuffs using a sewing machine, but it's also lots of fun to make something with your own hands without any help of the machine.

Monday, June 05, 2006

and another crafty project... GREEN

I love pink as many of you already know. But I came to love green as well these days. Look what I had made for the past one week. All in green (and white)!!
The first one is a summer outfit for my 3-year-old-daughter, Jade. I don't make many clothes for her (because it takes a lot of time and patience. Oh, and skills, too!!), but one day it all came up mind all of a sudden. I mean the fabric and design of it. And here it is!! I know my instinct was just right!! I added two coconut flower shaped button and lace for her sleeves. Cute, eh?

And I made two bag with white/green fabric I found at a local store. A kind of thick canvas-like fabric with beautiful flower all over. I like this kind of print fabric a lot! I made 2 designs of bags, the smaller one to carry my Canon EOS camera with a big telephoto lens to walk around the town. And the bigger one was made-to-order for my Japanese customers.