Sunday, July 31, 2011

Washi Paper Covered Pencils with Case

My dear friend Mai moved back to the US, we all got evacuated last March but they were not allowed to go back anymore coz their orders were almost up. I was in California and she was in Texas, we were able to talk for a couple of times while we were there and a couple of weeks ago when she was on vacation back in the Philippines, she called me up and I was frantically looking for the wireless phone, but no luck there! Good thing she left her contact number so I was able to call her back and we talked for more than an hour. Right now, she might be back in the US, looking for a house? Waiting for a military housing? Waiting for the shipment of their household goods? I miss her dearly, she was my constant companion all the time! We never get tired driving around, walking everywhere, looking for new thrift stores,exploring the next vintage find we can haul back home, shopping for craft materials and constantly looking for the next item that would inspire our creative juices. I never had a sister, I always longed for one all my life but I can say that I have been blessed to have found great friends like her. We got the military house here in Japan last January of 2007 and I saw her at the elevator, she was so nice and we found out we live on the same floor across each other, she told me to knock on her door if I need anything and I gladly took that offer and never stopped bugging her 24/7.  She was gutsy enough to drive off base and really encouraged me to do the same. Today, our other neighbor and friend Weng wanted to go to the thrift store and we were talking about Mai and how we missed her and how glad we were, that before she left she have taught us the directions on how to find the thrift stores. Mai is the one out of boredom started learning how to make the washi eggs, until I really bugged her to start selling it. I have been collecting washi paper all these time but never really did anything about it until I found all the notepads and the cute mechanical pencils. 

Two weeks ago I was on the elevator and saw somebody and I asked her if she's new and I offered her a ride to the post office, she already called a cab so she just waited for me there and I offered to drive her back home but opted to drive her off base and show her some stores. Her name is Jing. So from then on we have been driving everywhere, eating out all the time and if Weng is off, we are out the whole day.  When she learned that I am making stuff and that I am drowning on sorting out all the stuff that I have shipped back and forth coz of the evacuation, she offered to help me wrap all the pencils! I was hesitant at first but she insisted that she is fine with it and that she is really not doing anything, so I gave in! Oh boy, she wrapped hundreds of pencils!!! She made it so fast! She is so amazing!!! I cant make just one post about all the pencils, it is really a lot that I cant finish sharpening all of them, I am seriously getting blisters on my fingers. So for now I would just post the ones I have successfully finished, I was lucky enough to find some clear case. I've been searching for some time now! I think I am starting to believe that when you ask God/ the universe/ Buddha/Allah, it doesnt matter whoever you believed in, no matter what your faith is, it will magically be there for you! I was really ecstatic about that find, I wish it is easy to sharpen all the pencils so I can take pics of all of it at once. I dont even want to sell it! It's all so pretty! so here it goes....

Friday, July 22, 2011

The Story of Us- a series of postcards

I dont feel normal. I have not been sleeping, I have been working like there's no tomorrow, my brain is functioning like it would explode anytime that my pair of hands cant keep up with all the ideas my brain cell is spitting out. Did you breathe at all? I think I need that for a moment. I kept on telling myself I would organize the house and would focus on cleaning, but I would pick up something and Id be like 
"hmmmm, let me try that and see how it would work''. And it wont be long and I am lost between the mountains of craft supplies I have pulled out of everywhere and I completely lose sight that I was supposed to be cleaning and not making more mess.

I have been so addicted working on hologram stickers, there's something about it that draws me in, the way the light reflects on it, how it changes colors, its just amazing. I am inspired to make this project from my Love in a Frame and Personalized Christmas Ornaments post. 
I was cleaning and found 5 frames that I have not used so I started cranking my dear Cricut machine.
The first designs that I made, I attached it directly to the frame but later on inserted white post cards behind it to get better pictures.

And then I decided to do a series of postcards.

The Meeting

The First Date

The First Kiss

The Proposal

The Wedding

The Honeymoon

Aren't those so adorable? I cant stop admiring it that I took more pics using the frames!

And then I did some more....

I dont know why, but these made me sentimental. Ahhh, love, the beauty of falling in love, the butterflies in your stomach, the memories of first kiss, it gives me such a warm feeling deep inside. 
I hope these images made you smile and made you take a trip back down to memory lane....

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

Cherry Blossom Cake for Manet

Three weeks ago my friend Manet sent me a message asking me to make two cakes for her for a co-worker's birthday party, I freaked out totally! I asked her if she was sure and told her I was not a professional at all. I usually make cakes whenever we have a get together and they really love the chocolate cake. She told me she knows how much love and care I put into it and that it was always the best. How can I possibly say no to that? A couple of days before the party I have to make around 700 pieces of faux wax seals so I did not have enough time to really work on the fondant. I told her I would just make both as chocolate frosting.

I decided to start working on the flowers and I was able to finish the faux wax seals on time so I made some more cherry blossom flowers. I totally broke my Ateco fondant tools, so not worth the $20 I paid for it! The plastic was really flimsy that putting a little bit of pressure would totally break it into two! Im glad when I was in San Francisco last month Michaels or Jo-ann's had a sale for the Wilton Course 1-3 Student Kit, we dont have much time to shop, I was literally jumping from one store to another coz we were supposed to drive back to San Diego that day and it was the Memorial Day Holiday so there is additional 20% off for the military that I wanted to take advantage of. Each course was $35 each and I think I paid $15 each which made me so happy, until I opened the boxes here in Japan, last week and I was shocked to know there's only tools and those student kits were supposed to be bought whenever you apply for the Wilton classes. But I was so happy because it came with a ball tool, the old version that was sturdy that Ive used to thin out the petals of the cherry blossoms which made it so easy!

I made sure I made enough flowers to give to Manet since she would travel a little bit far and it was just really hot. I decided to make the smaller cake the one with the cherry blossom flowers. Ive left enough space on the side to make sure she can put the candles.

Then I made the rectangle one with the roses. Ive left the frosting out too long and I did not cut the sides so I theres not much space for the piping,my frosting was not even level, I was shaking and totally distracted. There was a strong jolt from mother nature while I was working on the flowers. It was not the type of earthquake that started slow at all, so I immediately checked the news for tsunami warnings, my Japanese friend Hanna called me right away to check on me, she knows how I usually freak out, so yes the cake could have been perfect than this but the circumstances really frazzled me that night. I dont know if I should stop working on the cake and get dressed and get ready to go down just in case there would be more aftershocks but then we live close to the water too! 
 Here's the cake I made for Yumiko last year, I just realized it when I was browsing through my facebook pictures, my rose was not that nice yet, it was my first time making them. My piping was so much nicer though! Oh well, there's always next year, Ive learned from my mistakes and Manet assured me everybody loved it, and that's what matters......

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