Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Dreaming

I dreamt I broke my awl and I was very upset as the awl in the dream looked like the metal broke like a twig into two, and I needed the awl to complete a book I was making. I can't remember why I was very upset about it, it wasn't my favourite awl and it's bent at the very tip of the point. Very strange...

Monday, January 18, 2010

Would You Like To See Where I Create?

Right, am biting the bullet, I look at all the other artsy craftsy blogs out there and when they feature their studios it looks like a dream. I'm like, no way I can compete with these lot! Lovely curtains, soft furnishings, beautiful arrangements here and there... But hey, each studio got their own personality right? Mine is still in the process of being shaped, right now it just needs to function.

These pictures, was the studio's current state few weeks back, now it looked like a hurricane went through it, need more shelves so I can organise the stuff more effectively. One day I'll have purpose built storage for all around the room... one day...

These are my two work table, the higher is actually a kitchen island that used to be in my mother-in-law's kitchen, she had hers replaced and so we took this one, I like the height as it allows me to work standing up, which I tend to for easier movement. The lower table was some generic six seater dining table which came with the house. That's Shazam! being her cat like self...

So we know this space used to be a verandah, check out the late 80s floor tiles, and glass sliding doors leading to it from the family room. So if I don't want the cats to make a nuisance while I'm trying to work (for some reason as soon as I'm busy with a project on the tables they decided to keep me company by being ON the table and knocking things and messing about) I'll just close the doors and you can see them waiting to be let in and still allows me to see what everybody is up to on the other side.

The shelves are all packed, the ones on the right are all my reference books and continually growing. On the left are the 'stuff'...

Ta da! The easel in the painting corner like I said it was going to be! Painting on the easel was done by my niece, it was one of her I'm-bored-give-me-something-to-do project. The painting behind the easel on the floor is mine, which I have yet to finish... I hung up my butterflies using magnets all along the metal pipe behind it that's holding up the roof. It looked real pretty against the nature background.

This is the whole 'bit' on the right side of the door when you enter, the 'stuff'. The table far left holds all the canvases waiting to be used. Next to it in the purple bins are my rolls of decorative papers. In front of it in the brown fisherman's basket contains my remnants of materials. The three tiered baskets are all my pretty patterned ribbons. The shelving racks are the rest of the tools, items, equipments, bits, supplies and more... Still have yet to make a dent in anything. Maybe I should just pack a box of random crafty stuff and do a give away eh, that might help with the overload, what do you think?

There you have it, an overall tour of the studio just to give you guys out there an idea of the space I work in. Hopefully it'll look different in a couple of months time, but with baby on the way, who knows...

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Meet Chi

We have two cats in the house, this is one of them. Sweet as honey and keeps me company in the studio. He'll be 5 years old this year in July, and right now having the time of his life.

"Wachu lookin' at?"

"Sigh... nothin' on tv... again"

Yes, he really sits like that. I forgot to mention he's also a very talkative cat and he loves being cuddled. Pictures are too cute not to share!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

My Wedding: The Dais

Being king and queen for a day, you also get to have your throne. Here, it's a big business when it comes to weddings and one of the expenses is the dais. You can choose to make your own or rent. When my sister got married ten years ago she had hers specifically made. Nowadays there are lots to choose from to rent.

I had two, I had some of the functions at home and I had the main event at a hotel. Initially we thought of just renting one and disassemble and assemble at the other. Logistically it'll be a rush job and the stage at the hotel is pretty huge and I didn't want the dias to be dwarfed by all the empty space around it.

This was the one we had at home, we positioned it to be centered to the chandelier of the living room. I wanted something which was all white and with more swags, I wasn't too keen with the box like shapes at the back, but it was already 1 AM and I just didn't want to argue anymore. Turns out, it was the same wedding dais my cousin used for her wedding the year before, with a change of seats, hers were two single chairs and I wanted a double seater.

This was the dais we had at the hotel. I was told I was the second person to use it and it filled up the whole stage. I had the colour of the flowers changed to reds, pinks, and whites, original colours were champagne. I'd like it to be all red roses but they didn't have enough.

I never saw the set up nor when it was completed. I only saw it when we officially came into the hall with the guests already seated, and the first thing that went through my mind was, "Wow, it's big, wasn't expecting that."

Only thing was to move the seat from the dais at home to the hotel. We had our fan bearers, my significant other's nephew and my niece (traditionally they would be two golden aged women who would guard the newly weds from the start of the wedding ceremony up til the end of the ceremony) and flower boys and girls made up of my nephews and nieces.

It was fun :-)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

My Bit Of Charity

This post is better late than never... Three weeks before Christmas, Wina and I decided for this Christmas why not raise funds for Animal Shelter Brunei? Rather than wait for someone to organise something, why not take the initiative to do it, and we did.

We sold stuff we made and all proceeds went to AS. With the help of the ladies from the Hen House Harriers, and a few friends, we managed to raise almost $400. Thank You!! We only did our selling after our weekly run, so that was pretty good in two nights.

These are some of the stuff we've made for the first night, the second night which was the week after we sold totally different stuff which I don't have pictures of, mainly the pop up cards I made, didn't take pictures of those, but they all sold out! Yay! And some old cards I made from years back which all sold out too. Double yay! And books I made which I sold off at a ridiculously low price just because I got tired of seeing them. Whoever had coveted them, you could've had them for a steal!

The idea for this was to use up stuff we have and donate our time and effort. We only had a few days to make all these things and we made sure we had at least a dozen per item or try to...

On our first night it was pouring buckets, but that didn't dampen our spirits, from the back of my car we did a quick set up. Fortunately we moved to a more dryer location when we had the shout out at our joint master garage, we were able to set up the small tree and hung all the ornaments and displayed all the cards. Unfortunately, I forgot to take a picture of that.

These are some of the recycled greeting cards flowers I made using old greeting cards. I like these because they're a present and a card at the same time. You can write your greeting at the tag that's hanging from it. Anybody interested it's $4 each, various colours and always making them because they come in handy for last minute stuff. So all proceeds I make from these goes straight to AS.

My attempt at making Christmas wreath or any wreath for that matter. It looked so easy yet so hard! I ran out of ideas after the fourth one, hence why there're only four, all sold out.

Glittered tealights that Wina made and packaged. Finally got some use out of the many packs of glitter and curling ribbons I have. Packaged all pretty too. The silver purple all sold out, and we made gold and red, anybody want those it's $2 per pack, all for AS.

Wina called these colourful snowflakes, you can see them hanging in the first picture, we sold these for $4, I think there are 3 left and she used them as decoration to hang on her when she dressed up like a decorated Christmas tree.

These are really cute Christmas tree ornaments that Wina made and beaded. She checked out the ones they sold in the shops and hers are way better and cost less too, and it's all for the animals. She also did beaded and sequined candy cane ornaments as well. I must ask her to make me a beaded tree just for my collection.

Our next lot we're targeting Valentine's Day and St Patricks, there're going to be lots of hearts and four leaf clovers in the plan. Hopefully, we'll be able to raise more for Animal Shelter. We also have a donation box and a basket for people to donate pet food as well, it was great when people tell us to put their change into the box, extra money raised!

So if you feel really strongly about a particular charity, find ways to help them and do it. This is just my way of helping the charity I strongly feel about.
I linked this post up to one of the many blogs I read, it's my first time participating, hope I did it right: Your Favourite Project of 2009 on Tip Junkie

Sunday, January 10, 2010

My Wedding: The Wedding Invitation

Continuing on the wedding series, man I'm really dragging it out aren't I...

The front of the invite

Pop up flower!

Close up of pop up flower

I designed the invitation myself, keeping to the colour theme of the wedding. The intention was to keep the design minimal, non fussy and low cost. I stuck with black and white with a shot of red. For those of you who got cards to do, keep the following in mind when going to the printers. Factors that pushes up the prices are:
  1. Any die cutting (cut shapes other than a straight line)
  2. Any embossing (those raised patterns on the cards)
  3. Any foil leafing (usually text in gold or silver)
  4. More than one colour (more inks and mixtures of inks to get the colours you want)
  5. Extra pages inserted in (more paper, more inks)
  6. Fancy envelopes (especially if it has to be customised to the cards)
  7. Type of paper or card used (anything which isn't a flat non laminated or pearlised)
  8. Awkward shape (more paper had to be used to account for wastage)
  9. Any extra emblishments that needed to be added on (more work)

So, the fancier your invite, the more it will cost.

For myself, I designed my wedding invite around the pop up flower. I already knew how the card was going to come out physically with the prototype I made and had the information laid out using Illustrator. I then bought the prototype and the file to the printers, after fiddling a bit more on the file with the head designer the layout was done. Chose the paper and came back a week later to collect all 600 pieces.

During that week I hunted for the right shade of red and grey for the flowers. 600 pieces of red and 600 pieces of grey flowers were needed. To see the process of making them click here.

Then it took me another week to stick all the flowers together and into the cards. I glued half in already when I realised the glue I was using was staining the card which was visible on the front, I half hoped majority of the people who recieved the invite had poor lighting.

After the wedding mom announced she held back 100 pieces. I slightly had a fit because we could've invited more or save money and time on not having to print out that extra hundred and make the extra hundred flowers.

So what am I going to do with these extra cards, If you're interested in recieving a wedding invitation with the pop up flower, email me with your address and I'll send one over to you.

P.S, my wedding invitation worked out to just under a $1 each. Not including the cost of pizzas for the volunteers to help cut the flowers out.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Buku Hantaran: Tuyy's Flowers

I got an email one day with an attachment that says, "I want something that looks like this, with this and this. Is that possible?" I took one look at the picture and go, no problem.

The attached picture in the email

I thought it'll be easy to find a print like that, it was all the rage, notice 'was'. The closest thing I could find was a silver backed and the pattern outlined in flock. Would the client go for it I wondered and emailed her. Fortunately for me she said yes. Fantastic!

Next was the flower, I must admit between the time when I first saw the picture to making the actual thing was a couple of months, and now when I look at the picture I didn't realise it wasn't the same type. The flowers got a lot of compliments though because they came shopping with me the whole day, so that was a good sign.

She also wanted their names in the window, which I decided to turn it inside out to simplify the creation process and it allows me to create a non tying fastening by using velcro instead, I've been wanting to do that. There were some bits which I thought of then forgotten and only realised after everything was stuck down but it's ok, only I noticed.

And after all that, I came up with this.

I had a bit of a challenge with making sure the flowers stay. At first there was only suppose to be one flower, but the bottom corner looked too bare and I figured each name must have a flower hence why there're two. Then I thought it looked too full but went with it anyway.

More pictures of the folder can be found here.

Verdict: She totally loved it! Oh I was glad. I received an email from her that had lots of hearts in it. How lovely was that. I hope you had a great moment on your engagement day Tuyy!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Buku Hantaran: Aqua or Turquoise..?

The email for this order was interestingly long. Colour combination of silver, white and turquoise was the theme. I visualised something clean and crisp and I wondered whether I could get away with snowflakes since it was a winter order.

I used minimal flowers in various shades of blue greens, and used the silver as accents. I especially like the silver leaves at the ends of the ribbons, I don't know if I am able to pick up some more in time for the matching guest books.

The blue heart shaped gems, oh man, it was a killer gluing them down one by one, but it was necessary. I thought of using more feathers but turned out one was enough.

Matching guest books next on the list, three to be exact...

More pictures can be seen here.

Monday, January 4, 2010

What New Year Brings


I've been away for quite some time...
Am slowly uploading pictures of past events...
Playing catch up so to speak...
Bear with me...
A huge chunk of it is thanks to this one...
Who would've guessed, not me that's for sure, I was convinced I was coming down with something and it was anything but this...

How was I suppose to know apart from being nauseous like hell, on top of that I was fasting which made it worse. I was convinced I was lacking in certain minerals or vitamins. And the fact my period was very late made me sure I was sick.

Figured before I head to the doctors I better eliminate a certain question which I'm sure they'll ask. No way I'm going to give them that satisfaction.

It was late in the day when I did the stick.



So that's what all that nausea was about!

First trimester was spent with the toilet bowl and bed all day long, I didn't get morning sickness like most people did, my morning was great! It was after I got out of bed was when the tsunami hits. I was in no mood to do anything, although for some bizarre reason I was cooking often but not eating.

I'm in my second trimester now, and feeling better. I'm back in the studio. This year I planned big things in this space. And I only have a few months to do them in before my whole life changes again. Better start cracking...

Happy New Year Everyone!


Contact me at