Thursday, December 27

Maison et Objet Paris Fair {January 2013}

Hello friends, 

How is everyone doing and how was your Christmas? Any snow at all? We are spending our winter holidays with family in Philippines so it's been pretty hot so far. 

I had announced on social media earlier this month a pretty exciting news: Etincelle Creative STUDIO will participate to the upcoming Maison & Objet Design fair in Paris in January 2013.

It is the biggest design & decoration fair in whole of Europe (with the Design fair in Venise) and I am very very excited about it. I have to say it's only thanks to one of my greatest friend and supporter: Rosy of My Kinses. She participated last September and proposed me to take my collection to the next edition. And here we are! You may remember the {Interview with} I wrote last January about Rosy, she's creating stunning home accessories with a distinctive African touch {catch up here}.

If you are planning to attend, please visit the stand C92 in Hall 1. I won't be there personally, but my Mini Me dolls certainly will be glad to see you! And so will be Rosy :-)
I am presenting some of my classic designs and will be launching new designs as well. To be unveiled on the blog and in my Etsy shop in late January.

Happy New Year everyone!

Friday, December 21

A Christmas Party Styling {for Beautiful Revelry}

Hello friends,

This is my last post until Christmas. I am taking a break under the tropic with my family and I will try to post from there, but it won't be before the week after Christmas.

Have you read Ann's post on Beautiful Revelry last Tuesday? She was announcing our collaboration for 2013! 

I will indeed work on party styling for Beautiful Revelry starting February 2013 but we thought the announcement could come with some eye candy and I created this Christmas table just for you dear friends. I mainly used party goods from Beautiful Revelry online shop, and some of my own props. 

Check Ann's entire post here with pictures that are not posted here below...

I wrote Merry Christmas on my wall using mt tapes and made the bunting banner with a polka dots wrapping paper I had bought for wrapping my Christmas gifts. To create a natural feeling, I gathered branches from the park and spray painted them white and I love pine cones too - I could have picked them up in the forest as well but these ones come from my local flower shop. 

The red chevron favor bag is from Beautiful Revelry (check out the whole range of colors!) and so is the twine and the wooden gift tags. So cute, don't you think?
I made the other little bags out of kraft paper and the same wrapping paper used for the bunting. You can use anything ribbon or thread that may be in your house when wrapping gifts or favor bags. Plain colorful stickers, sequin or woolen threads would work well too. 

I haven't baked much in my oven yet, and nothing sweet so far. So I didn't feel like going over board and cooking cupcakes or even a cake. Instead I went to French pâtissier Dalloyau in Jiyugaoka, and bought des pâtisseries. A cake stand, some glitter... et voila!

Last I wouldn't have a Christmas party without some hot chocolate and I did just that. You could add mini marshmallows if you like and sprinkle chocolate powder or even add some crème chantilly... Yum!

You may want to check out my Pinterest boards for more inspiration to decorate your home for Christmas {here and here}.

These little guys were purchased in a shop in Jiyugaoka... cute!

I wish you all a Merry Christmas and beautiful winter holidays wherever you are to celebrate them. I am looking forward to share with you all the exciting creative stuff that 2013 will bring on and I want to THANK YOU ALL for the marvelous support that you are giving me, it is truly amazing!

©All photographs by Etincelle Creative STUDIO

Wednesday, December 19

Things that keep me busy these days...

I think I pretty much now how it would feel to work in Santa's workshop just before Christmas! I have been really busy lately with work, completing custom orders and mailing them, styling a Christmas table for Beautiful Revelry Blog {more photos to be unveiled tomorrow}, realizing a DIY Christmas heart felt decoration for F of Fabulous Blog, and being involved a lot at my kids two schools {which means organizing Christmas Parties, gift wrapping etc...}.

What have you been up to these past few weeks?

{Click here}

Giveaway #2 :: A Lucky Draw & A Winner

Hello friends,

It's about time to announce the winner of our last giveaway of the year here on the blog! I processed as usual with a lucky draw done by my almost 6-year-old daughter. And the winner is...

Azizah, congratulation!

Your prize has already been mailed to you of course, so that you have a chance to get it on time for Christmas. Happy crafting and gift wrapping!

Till the next time...

Tuesday, December 11

Giveaway #2 {Japanese Stationery Goodies}{CLOSED}

Hello everyone,

I was able to finalize my second giveaway today, at last! It kind of took me forever but it's all worth it as you will find out below.
Since Christmas is fast approaching, I will keep it short so that I can mail the goodies to the winner by the end of the week :-). Let's get started!

# what you can win
a set of 5 plain white cards and 5 red envelops
a Decorush to decorate your cards, gift tags or presents
2 "Merry Christmas" rolls of mt masking tapes
2 rubber stamps with Santa and his reindeers
2 sheets of mt seals {NEW}
1 set of paper doilies
2 little Christmas decoration to enhance your gift wrapping experience

# how to participate
- visit my Etsy shop, choose your favorite item and tweet* about it (make sure you tag me @etincellestudio to help me keep track). If you are not following me yet, you will have to start by following me ;-)
- once you are done, leave a comment here on the post to let me know you've done it.

* if you don't have a Twitter account, don't freak. You can share it on your Facebook wall and tag me @EtincelleCreativeStudio to help me keep track (you will need to "like" the page first if you are not a fan yet)
** if you prefer to pin it on Pinterest, please do as you wish, and tag me along the way (@etincellestudio)

# terms and conditions
- giveaway open to anyone worldwide
- starting today December 11, 2012 until December 13, 2012 12pm (Japan Time)
- winner will be announced on the blog on December 13 and goodies will be shipped the day after by EMS.
- winner will be emailed personally as well.

Edit 13.12.12 (1pm): this giveaway is now closed. Winner will be announced shortly!

I am currently running a special promotion in my etsy shop - enjoy free shipping* when you purchase an item with coupon code FREESHIPPING (at check out).

* this promotion does not apply to custom made items. thank you.

Monday, December 10

FREE SHIPPING! {Christmas Promotion}

Hello everyone!

How was your weekend? Holiday Season can get so busy, I am really looking forward to our holiday break now to recharge my batteries. I don't like waking up early in winter, it's so difficult to leave my bed in the morning! I would like to be a bear and hibernate until Spring, sounds like a good idea, huh?

Joke aside, I am having a promotion starting today and for one week: the shipping is on me worldwide when you make your purchase through my Etsy shop!* 

shop for this item {here}

Use coupon code FREESHIPPING at check out to save on shipping fees from December 10 till December 17, 2012.

shop for the dolls {here}{here}{here}

If you haven't finished your Christmas shopping yet, or want to buy an early gift for a little one's birthday, this is an opportunity to grab!

* I ship by EMS from Japan with a tracking number and it's not too late to place your order and receive it before Christmas. Usual delivery time varies from 3 to 7 days depending on the destination. Of course I can't guarantee the delivery schedule at 100% as it is out of control, but it's been very reliable so far.

** Note: this promotion starts now until December 17, 2012 8pm (Japan time). 
This promotion doesn't include the "made to order" dolls. I am not accepting any custom order at this moment.

Thank you!

Friday, December 7

A Handmade Market in Minami Azabu {Tokyo}

Life is full of surprises and you must be ready to jump when opportunities appear... I have been following tokyo_lily on Instagram since October and just yesterday I noticed her photos about a market in Minami Azabu - which is near Roppongi, central Tokyo. The goods on sale looked rather beautiful and I was intrigued. 

You may know that I have been on the lookout for handmade markets ever since I came back from France, which explains my excitement! I immediately commented on Lily's photo that I was interested in paying them a visit, if she could kindly tell me the location {all details are here by the way}. The market is open until tomorrow 7pm and we are off to Yokosuka for the entire day so I really had to make it happen today!

I jumped on the train right after dropping off my son at school, and managed to find out the house pretty easily. It happens to be Lily's home as well as her gallery space for Subject Matter Art, a rather beautiful project about photography. Since it's a home and we are in Asia, I had to take off my shoes, yeah! first time ever to browse a market in socks. It certainly adds to the coziness...

The space is absolutely gorgeous with a minimalist feel and spreads over three floors. My favorite room has to be the South-African one with the stunning botanical photography by Clinton Friedman, the wire baskets, the delightful textiles and paper goods by Skinny La Minx and the light made of white ostrich feathers! Heaven.

Chie of Coco Roxx

Then at the top floor were more sellers, all super friendly and enthusiastic about their work. Chie is selling her handmade jewelry under the label Coco Roxx while Katie Van Camp represents her beautifully illustrated books for children Harry and Horsie - I got them both + 1 tee shirt + THE poster. Too cute! The retro illustrations are by Canadian artist Lincoln Agnew, what a discovery! I love his style.

Katie Van Camp, author & the poster of Harry

I also got to meet up with the two mums behind Tokyo Urban Baby - The Essential Guide to having  baby in Japan & baby-friendly places in Japan. They have an online shop as well, give it a look if you are looking for something different - the silk necklaces are just gorgeous!

Kate Neath and Tomoko Momose of Tokyo Urban Baby

So, if you have time tomorrow, please drop by the Minami Azabu Art & Design Market and say hello to everyone from me. If you come by 10am, there will be croissant and coffee to welcome you. Wine after 4pm. No excuses, I know you will make time for this!

Thank you to Lily and her team for bringing this market to life, and I hope to be part of the next edition!

{Interview with} Jahje of Baby Jives

Hello friends,

I have another wonderful friend and small business owner's story to share with you all today. Welcome to Jahje of Baby Jives on EtincelleCreativeSTUDIO! We've been in touch for a year or more, I really can't remember how and why and who.... but I believe we first "met"via Twitter.

Jahje is making absolutely stunning mobiles made of wood, wool and fabrics, and loads of love too. She always comes up with the sweetest designs (butterflies, birdies, boats or clouds) and the best color combo ever! I got a bird mobile for my children's room a while ago (I thought it was for my office, but they insisted...) and they love it. I now have my eyes on a cloud mobile, just too cute!

Wonderful Jahje, welcome on ECStudio!

ECS: Jahje, please kindly introduce yourself, your work, where are you currently living and anything else you would like to share about your background and your family?
I am Jahje Ives the mama behind Baby Jives Co which specializes in handmade mobiles to inspire wonder.  I began the idea for the company when I was pregnant with my son, the original Baby Jives, and searched for a unique mobile (without finding one).  My mobiles are handcrafted one at a time using natural materials such as cotton fabric, metal, and wood so they will endure for years as a work of art meant to last long after the last diaper is changed. I am also working on expanding the line to include other children’s decor items in 2013.

The Ives family

I live in Philadelphia, PA with my husband Joe and our 2 children, Gavril (3 ¾) and Elodie (9m).  I was actually born and raised in Philadelphia and have lived here most of my life, minus 4 years spent in Houston, TX and 1 wonderful year spent in Rome, Italy.  I love to travel and joke that I must have gypsy blood since I jump at any opportunity for travel.  Of course now with 2 young kids travel is much more complicated.  As for dreams, I am living out my dream right now.  I get to work from home every day making art that goes all over the globe while I raise my kids.  It’s not the easiest job but it’s definitely the most rewarding.  I wouldn’t trade it for anything!

Cloud mobiles {here} and {here}

ECS: What are your sources of inspiration for creating your adorable mobiles? How often are you introducing new designs?
Many of my designs are inspired by nature and my daily adventures with my kids. One of my favorite mobiles was conceived on a summer day when we were at the botanical gardens chasing butterflies and I thought, “What a wonderful moment.... I want to capture this and bring it home!” So my butterfly mobile was born. I am constantly sketching new ideas but I don’t often have time between my family and my orders to create new designs as often as I would like.  I try to give myself a day every month or two to just be in my studio and work on a new mobile without too much interruption (some is inevitable).  When I don’t get that day to focus I start to get very cranky.

Birds mobiles {here} and {here}

Where the magic happens... So pretty and dreamy!

ECS: You are a mom of two little ones who must keep you busy day and night. How does your working schedule look like?
Yes, Elodie and Gavril keep me very busy during the day and often during the night too {sigh}.  My work schedule is shaped around them.  Gavril goes to school 2 mornings a week and in the mornings Elodie takes a long nap so I get a few hours to work then.  Then many days we head out for a playdate somewhere so the kids don’t get too crazy.  Then my mother lives nearby and she comes over almost every afternoon which is an incredible help. I honestly could not do this without the help of “Gran-nanny”. When she is here I can get a bit done in my studio but my kids often clamor for me after a while and who can resist?  Then I make dinner and after the kids are in bed head up to the studio again to work for a few hours before collapsing into bed....and then it all begins again the next day.

Dreamy cloud mobile {here}

ECS: I have witnessed your growth over the years which is wonderful to see. How do you make things happen overtime? Are you setting up precise goals at the beginning of the year and if so, how often do you revise them?
I fly by the seat of my pants. Really. I do keep goals in my mind but if I try to lay out anything tangible it seems like life gets in the way and I just get frustrated that I am not accomplishing what I would like.  I have long term dreams of where I would like the company to go and I try to challenge myself to do something once a month for my growth (like reaching out to a blog or researching for a new product idea). When my daughter was born in February 2012 I made myself a promise that I would let myself just enjoy that first year of her life without stressing out too much about growing the company.  Now though I am hoping I can take a day for myself  at the end of the year and send the kids out with my husband and sit down and really plan some things for the business. But for now it is managed chaos.

I love Jahje's photo styling too! {here}

ECS: What got you started on Etsy? What do you like most about this platform?
I honestly can’t remember how I found Etsy - is that terrible?  When I was pregnant in 2009 I searched for a unique mobile that was not made of plastic or covered with cartoon animals and I think it might have been then that I stumbled across Etsy. I didn’t find anything I liked so I decided to make a nature inspired mobile using fabric that I had been collecting for years. It was my first bird mobile and the response was so great that I decided to open my shop Baby Jives Co on Etsy about a year later (when my son finally slept).  

What I love about Etsy is that people from all over the world can find my work and buy it while I play at the playground with my kids.  I love the freedom that Etsy gives me to run a business without an actual storefront.  I have actually run galleries in the past and I often think of my Etsy shop as my gallery that is open at all hours to anyone.

ECS: You recently launched a brand new website with its own e-shop. That's a wonderful leap I am ready to take as well. Who did you work with, and what advice would you give others when developing their own website?
My website took almost a year to launch and it’s still being tweaked mainly because I am a perfectionist.  I worked with the wonderful Eleanor Grosch, who I met a few years ago through a mutual friend.  Eleanor is an incredibly talented artist and designer who helped me create the look of the site that I wanted.  I created the drawings and the text for the logo and then gave Eleanor an idea of the different pages I wanted and she went from there.  Now that’s it’s live I maintain the shop, blog and some of the graphic aspects while Eleanor is my architect and site guru (I bow to her knowledge).

When developing your own site look to other sites you love for inspiration.  They can help give you a good idea of the pages you want to include and how to create a good flow for site navigation.  I would also say be patient and know that your site will always be a work in progress.  Once my site was launched there were a whole bunch of things that I realized needed to be added or changed but if I hadn’t let people on the site I never would have known.  And remember things will go wrong but with patience all can be fixed.  

ECS: Which design(s) are you the most proud of in your shop?
My clouds are one of the designs that I love best in the shop.  It’s such a simple idea and there are many cloud mobiles out there but there are no other clouds quite like mine.  Mine are fat little rain clouds with dimples and all.  Of them my favorite is the Showered with Love Mobile aka the Rainbow Heart Mobile.  It’s such a simple idea and honestly the inspiration is a bit kitsy; it came from all those years of watching early 80s cartoons like the Care Bears and Rainbow Bright where hearts would rain down from the sky to melt the hearts of the villains or chase away a bad day and the idea of simply wanting to shower my kids with love.

Showered with LOVE {here}

ECS: Last, you were recently among the finalist of the Martha Stewart American Made Award which must have felt quite amazing. What were you able to learn through this experience?
It was an amazing honor to be selected from over 2,000 talented applicants and then I managed to make it into the top 15 finalists.  One of the things that I learned from the whole experience was don't be afraid to put yourself out there. I almost didn't apply for the Award because I thought I had no chance of being selected. A fellow maker actually pushed me to apply and I am so glad that she did because even though I didn't win, the publicity that the event generated for me was amazing. Also since it was a public vote and you had to generate your own rise through the ranks I had to overcome my shyness and ask people repeatedly to vote for me. That made me reach out to a lot of folks that I had previously admired from afar to find that they actually knew of me and my work and were even admirers. 
What an accomplishment!

ECS: Will you decorate your home for Christmas? Is there a family tradition that you love to follow as well?
I keep things pretty simple in the house but we always have a lovely Christmas tree.  Over the years we have collected and been given so many ornaments that pulling them out is always a sentimental journey.  This year with a baby who is pulling up on everything we will be getting a small tree for a table and letting the kids decorate it. Every year I also try to create a handmade ornament for Gavril and now Elodie.  I also love baking for the holidays and Gavril loves to help me decorate.  I have been collecting cookie cutters for years and along with angels we also have dinosaurs, guitars, and hippos on our Christmas table.

Baby Jives mobiles in gorgeous nurseries {here}

ECS: Etsy favorites/ pick up 4 items from different shops on ETSY that you really like.
It’s so hard to narrow down but here are a few things that I would love to end up with in our home this year.  

For my husband
A laser cut print by Rob Ryan {here}

My husband and I have collected art for years and I love the message of this one (something that we need to be reminded of now that we have children).

For my daughter
Freja Toy’s Crochet Baby Fruits {here}

My daughter chews on everything and is delighted by rattles.  I love that she could use these to teethe now and they would be a wonderful imaginative toy later.  

For my son:
Transportation memory game by Little Sapling {here}

My son is obessed with trucks and I know he would like this not just to play the matching game but also to pretend with.

For myself
Aztec geometric legging by Iheartnorwegianwood {here}

I live in leggings and dresses in the winter and I can’t wear jewelry right now with a young baby so why not dress up my legs?  

{...the end...}

I hope you enjoyed this interview as much as I enjoyed putting it together. Jahje has been such an inspiration for me these past months, and I am so inspired by just thinking all what she was able to achieve in just 2 years with two little ones in toes. I hope she has inspired you as well.
Thank you for accepting this interview Jahje!

Behind the scene...

:: Jahje is extending a special discount for you dear readers. Use the code ecs2012 for 10%off on and
Valid until ....

:: You can read all my {Interview with} posts by clicking {here}. If you have started your Christmas shopping and are looking for unique, special gifts, I have got it covered for you!

Have a wonderful weekend ahead!

Thursday, December 6

DIY TUTORIAL on F for Fabulous blog

Hello there,

I am really excited to share with you all a tutorial I have prepared a couple of weeks ago for the fabulous blog of my friend Fenny in Malaysia {F4Fabulousblog}. I have known Fenny thanks to the e-course Blogging your Way two years ago, and we were able to meet up in person last Christmas while we were taking a family holiday in Malaysia.

Fenny is a very supportive blogging buddy, and I was thrilled when she kindly asked me to collaborate to her Christmas series this year again. I thought of an easy project for everyone, that doesn't require too many sewing skills. It only requires a piece of felt, cotton embroidery thread, polyester fiber to fill it up and your own two hands. You can customize it easily by adding pompoms and ribbons, check the tutorial {here}.

The photo above shows you one way to use your creation, here placed on a wreath I made for my entrance door. You can imagine many other ways with just a few adds on - please check the whole tutorial {here}.

Jump to the tutorial right HERE!

Thank you again Fenny for your continuous and valuable support. Happy crafting folks!

©Photo by EtincelleCreativeSTUDIO - Editing by Fenny for F4FabulousBlog

Monday, December 3

MT Tapes Online Shopping directory

Here we are again, talking about MT tapes... I will only stop once I am away on holidays! 

I wonder what is your favorite theme now that I have shared all of them with you (see photo below). And what idea will you be more likely to reproduce at home for a party or for decoration? 

I have written several posts in the past about MT tapes, so you might want to check out the {MT section} of this blog. I have also a very complete board dedicated to MT tapes on Pinterest, you will find tons of ideas on how to use them in your everyday life. Check it out here.

©All photos by EtincelleCreativeSTUDIO

I promised you an online directory to shop for MT tapes from the comfort of your home. There are some truly amazing shops out there with outstanding customer service and I am happy to share these links with you all. If you have personal favorites and recommendation, please share the links in the comment section and I will edit my post later on. 


Omiyage: check out their blog too for loads of DIY with Mts
Tippy Tapey (Etsy)
Mooseart (Etsy)
Pikwahchan (Etsy)
UGUiSU: lovely blog too if you like everything about Japan


I hope to have more shops to add to this list soon, make sure you share your favorite (or your own shop by the way) in the comment section!

To catch up: more photos on the above party sets 

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