Thursday, September 25, 2014

Please Vote for Me in the Etsy Design Awards! Pleeeease!

I'm over the moon today!  I've just found out that my Sterling Silver Origami Crane Pendant is a finalist in the Etsy Design Awards!  As a finalist, I have the chance of winning not only exposure in Inside Out magazine, but the people's choice winner also gets a trip to New York to visit Etsy headquarters!  How amazing would that be!


The origami crane holds a special place in my heart.  When I was in primary school, my teacher read us the story of Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes and it was my first connection to Japan, a country which I would later call home for six years.  When I was in my 20s, I went to Hiroshima and visited Sadako's memorial and was so touched by all the paper cranes folded and sent from children all around the world.  When I was teaching in a high school in Japan, if ever a student was sick in hospital, the school would get together and fold 1000 cranes which would then be delivered to the child's ward.

The crane also has other symbolic meanings attached and I love how a simple square piece of paper can be folded into a message of peace, love, health and longevity.

To create this crane, I first folded the paper, coated it to make it waterproof, had a mould made and then I get it cast in sterling silver by a local company.  I then finish it off with a brushed finish to give it a paper-like texture and burnish the folds to a lovely shine as a contrast.

So now excuse me while I beg.... please vote for my beloved crane!  Pretty please!  You can do so over here.  Oh, and there's also a chance you could win yourself a $250 Etsy shopping voucher while you're at it!





Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Taking Stock :: September

I've always loved reading Meet Me at Mikes' Taking Stock posts, so this month I thought I'd join in.  A little about my life right now...






Making : A new range of silver jewellery, inspired by the scales and colours on Koinobori.  I've also been making some Kanzashi again.
Cooking : A birthday cake for my mum, yesterday actually.
Drinking : Tea, lots of it, all day long.
Wanting: Some more free time.
Looking: At the mountains on my morning walks.
Playing: With my daughter, we're loving the beach in this weather and our year-long pass to the zoo.
Deciding: On designs for my bathroom renovation.
Wishing: I could clone myself.
Enjoying: The weather and my garden.
Waiting: For a night time cough to go away.
Liking: My life.
Loving: The "Tuesday Adventures" that I have with my daughter.  We're trying to make the most of the time before she starts school next year.
Considering: A bit of change in the direction of my work next year... 
Watching: Reign.  Oh how I love a historical drama, especially one with gorgeous costumes. And my guilty pleasure, The Block.
Hoping: That I can arrange another trip to Japan next year.
Marvelling: That our new nectarine tree is fruiting so well already.
Needing: A good night's sleep.
Smelling: The jasmine flowering outside my studio.
Wearing: Right now, pajamas.
Following: Lots of people on instagram.
Noticing: How much better I feel by cutting out certain foods that my body doesn't like, which sadly includes chocolate and strangely enough, cauliflower.
Sorting: Wholesale and online orders. 
Buying: Locally grown produce.  The strawberries are delicious at the moment.
Feeling: Content.
Snacking: On left over birthday cake.
Hearing: Right now, a wonderful silence which means that my little one has fallen asleep.


Wednesday, September 03, 2014

Etsy Design Awards

Happy September!  The Spring, in my part of the world, has started off beautifully and put an extra little bounce in my step.

Talking of September, have you heard about the Etsy Design Awards open to Australian sellers?  With prizes that include a trip to Etsy's headquarters in New York, a business coaching session with Clare Bowditch and coverage in Inside Out magazine, it's pretty amazing!

Entries close on September 12th.


There is a category especially for new stores, called "New Talent", so if you've been thinking of opening an etsy shop, now could be a perfect time.

If you're new to Etsy and are in the Brisbane area, BrisStyle have many great, free session filled to the brim with tips and tricks to get you going and running smoothly.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Lately, in the Studio

Lately, I've been having lots of fun playing with new work in the studio, tinkering around with bits of silver and dashes of colour, just the way I like things.

I've started playing with a new range inspired by the scales on Japanese Koinobori banners.  I want the pieces stackable with variations in colours that will blend together, these are some of my results so far....







I've also started extending my "Rock Pool" range.  My scarlet Rock Pool drop earrings are my go-to earrings, they go with most things in my wardrobe and I feel instantly more glamourous just by slipping them on.  I'm now working on some stacking rings to add to the range in a variety of different hues.



And of course, the main purpose of my recent trip to Japan was to source new fabric and handmade papers for the Kimono Reincarnate signature ranges.  I really love the treasures I found and how they're turning out.



And pssst... there are some new "Quilted" designs being added to my Kyoto Collection.



Recently I took an online drawing class with Lisa Congdon on Creativebug.  Even though I have a degree in Visual Arts, I realised that other than quick not-good-enough-to-show-anyone sketches of jewellery design ideas, I haven't done any pen sketching since my second year of university, which was a very long time ago.  While I'm still feeling rather rusty, it's been great to get pen back on paper and to doodle away.




I have plans for some of those doodles too.... and have been getting a few prototypes made which hopefully I can show you in the next couple of months...



This week the work in the studio is all about getting ready for the GoMA Winter Design Market.  It's on this Saturday, 19th July at the entrance to the Queensland GoMA gallery, South Brisbane.


Then, for a couple of weeks after the market I'll be working on a big update of my website to include the new designs.

Wednesday, July 02, 2014

Japan Trip 2014 - Temple Tramping

One of my favourite places to visit while I'm in Japan are the temples, both big and small.  I love their serenity, their sense of history and their beauty.  

One thousand origami cranes

Kaminarimon, Sensoji, Asakusa

Incense, Sensoji, Asakusa.  The worshippers direct the smoke onto the parts of their body they want to heal or strengthen.

Ema Tablets, Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto.  

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto

Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto

Fox spirits at Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto

Fox spirits at Fushimi Inari Taisha, Kyoto

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Japan Trip 2014 - Tokyo Streets

Street scenes from my last trip to Japan.  All taken on my iphone.




















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