Birthday – I am getting old..

On the 12th of March I turned 26 years old.
Actually that’s nothing great to blog about, but my husband and me had a relaxing day in Tokyo with just walking in the not too cold weather and eating.

Some early trees in the Yoyogi Park (close to Harajuku Station) showed off their beautiful pink cherry blossoms already, so we sat somewhere close with some drinks and enjoyed the spring feeling.

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Afterwards we had a fancy dessert in Omotesando.

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I went with pastel colors that day to embrace spring.
The flower print sweater, bag and baseball jacket are vintage clothes which I combined with a faux leather skirt and Tokyo Bopper platform shoes. The flower crown is made by me.

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These cool transparent socks were actually a gift!
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Ah you guys, after passing the sweet 25 I feel like I am getting old already.
I mean I am moving towards 30! That kind of pushed me into a small crisis before my bday, but I think I am okay now.

Snowboarding in Hokkaido, Japan

Here I am again with the promised post about our short snowboard holiday in Hokkaido, Japan.
Many photos and also a video is waiting for you, so grab a coffee before reading on!

We actually decided to do the snowboarding in Hokkaido, because there was not really a difference price-wise to those famous skiing areas in Nagano and because I also had never been to Japans North yet. Actually I never did a ‘sport holiday’ nor ever stood on ski or a snowboard before.
I therefore was quite excited. (We actually did a first try a few days before the travel in an indoor snowpark, but mountains are a little different..)

So we squeezed ourselfes out of bed at 4.30am to get the Tokyo Haneda Airport.
After our arrival at the gate we were told that due a blizzard we might not be able to land in Sapporo and had to come back eventually.
Of course we tried anyway!
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And were lucky! Apart from this and one other airport all other had closed already, but we were able to land in Hokkaido.
A snowman was greeting us ♡
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However we had a delay which resulted in our bus being gone already. But it gave us more time to get our rental boards before the next bus came.
Excitement! Weeeeeee!
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After a 1.5 hours drive we finally arrived in Yubari (夕張). Our hotel looked like a ship.
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Because it was already in the afternoon when we arrived, we jumped in our snow wear immediately and got ready for the mountain.
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Proud like a cookie:
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Starting from the beginners slope (My husband doesn’t need it but he trained me how to board and stayed with me. Aww!) I was always paralyzed about the corner of the slope. There was no fence and it seemed to go down right behind and I was so afraid to fall down there. Haha.

So I tried to always board somewhere in the middle to not die on the first day. Due to the mentioned blizzard the view was limited to max. 200m and the snow was hitting the face with full speed. Furthermore I bumped my ass and knees a few times heavily when falling – but I had a blast!
We kept going up and sliding/falling down until it was dark.
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Afterwards we immediately warmed our frozen bodies in the Japanese Onsen (public spring bath) and then munched ourselves through the long buffet table.
Hokkaido is famous for its delicious and fresh crabs and my husband took fully advantage of that by shoveling a crab mountain on his plate.
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Nice ramen (noodle soup) packages!
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Actually the City Yubari is well known for mask melon but unfortunately it was not season – therefore we couldn’t try fresh ones.
Then we crashed into bed. And I am telling ya!! ISOLATED WINDOWS! COMFORTABLE WARMTH IN THE HOUSE! Something which I always wish for in Tokyo! Hokkaido has it! And space! The rooms are huuuge compared to Tokyo.

The next morning started with a breakfast buffet. Another specialty seemed to be black bread (and other foods). In the past there has been a huge coal mine in Yubari, thats why they still sell bread etc. as ‘coal bread’. If there is coal inside or not or what makes the color – I don’t know – but there was no difference in taste.
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Yubari at better times. (Now its actually bankrupt.)
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After our stomach was filled we headed for the slopes. Unfortunately day 2 was still blizzardy weather. We still could not see the mountains around us, but it was slightly better than the day before.
“Lift-Selfie”:
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On day 2 I tried to step a bit higher on the mountain. Not to the top top but quite high already. Down at the station we had -6°C and on the top -12°C.
And the wind! Yes, the wind was extreme on the top and bashed the snow in our faces with no mercy. It was cold and painful so that we couldn’t get on the board and down the slope fast enough. Haha.
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After driving down a ‘intermediate’ slope a few times we headed for the top of the mountain. That also allowed us to take the gondola instead of lifts, which was wind protected and comfortable. Ha!
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At night then another specialty of Hokkaido: Soft-ice-cream
Since the North of Japan is the only place which seems capable of producing proper diary products and potatoes – soft-cream is also unbelievable tasty! The difference to the crap in Tokyo was really significant! So milky!
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On day 3 the weather finally cleared up a little, so we used the chance to have a little walk through the city/village.
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Ninja turtle!
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Not without my ice-guitar!!
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Well a little wind was still there at times..
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I was dreaming of this since I was child!! To wake up once and the snow is so high that I have to dig a tunnel to get out of my house. Yesss!
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Between the street and the houses – snow walls everywhere. So fun! A snow paradise!
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Unfortunately the most shops were closed and the area around the hotel felt a little like a ghost city. The city went bankrupt some time ago. No jobs. No people.
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After our excursion we went back to snowboarding of course!
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Every day we saw many troops (from the Army or sth.?) who were trained to ski. They were everywhere.
I have never seen people skiing in camouflage.
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And then: For the first time we saw the sun above the mountains. Yay!
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Whoops.
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Step by step we tried out all slopes (except super pro ones).
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On the last day we still had time to do the snowboarding until 3pm, before soaking in the bath for the last time and getting back to the airport. The weather was perfect!

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And finally we asked someone to take a pic of us together.
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The weather was great, our mood perfect and my snowboarding skill good enough to board smoothly with my love.

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My husby also took a video of me boarding on the last day.
I uploaded that to YouTube so you can see it:
(I don’t know why but it always seems slower and the mountains more flat in the video.. LOL)

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Finally we also discovered cute deers who were looking for food.
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Then we had to get back.
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But I found apple soda (which is normal in Germany but never seen in Japan). Yay!
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At the airport we had a big bowl of Hokkaido Ramen before departing back to Tokyo.
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The 4 days were really amazing and I can really recommend Hokkaido for snowboarding!
I hope to get back to see more of Hokkaido the next time.

New creations Winter 2014

Before I’m going to tell you about my short snowboarding holiday in Hokkaido I have to really really update about my new hats and accessories / jewelries I made. It’s been such a while and I am running super late with my blog. As usual. Ugh.

So lately I tried to concentrate to finally update my online shop here and on Etsy. I figured out that if there is nothing in my shop nobody could actually buy something.. so.. in order to have something to eat I will update them more and more now.

Today I want to show you a few new hats which I made and sold in Harajuku already. Also new jewelry is available. Since I don’t only make things for the head but also for the neck and other body parts. Mehehe.

Let’s start in a chronological order.  (I try to keep myself as short as possible – who wants to see more detailed photos is invited to check in my shop listings. I keep many photos in there.) 

Velvet Choker Necklace
I love to wear those in private and wanted to make my own designs too.
The velvet is even a stretch fabric which makes it super easy to wear it tight but it is still very comfortable. I have a purchased one with normal velvet and sometimes it makes it hard swallowing because it does not stretch at all. So I am very proud to say that I love to use different and high quality products!

The pendants come in different variations.
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With handmade pastel color glass heart:
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The ‘Galaxy-Choker’:
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Bracelets in pastel hologram and goth look:
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The best seller within the jewelry in Harajuku and overseas is the metal mesh choker necklace:
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The overly beautiful and lovely girl Cara (her Blog: www.glacial-glow.blogspot.com) from the UK got her hands on my mesh necklace and published photos everywhere on her Twitter/Instagram! I think the necklace looks so perfect on her! I am really honored to have such lovely customers / friends all over the world ♡
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The newest necklace version looks like that: (Somehow a bit like something Sailor Moon would wear. LOL)
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Aaand here my newest baby – the royal choker necklace with the sun from Versailles. This statement piece shines beautifully in the light and the connection part is a metal print from an original vintage item and made in the U.S..
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Also for the head there are new variations available with different flowers or leather.

As Beanie / knit hat:
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As beret:
(Thanks to my beautiful model Natasha!)
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Natasha kept an eye on my berets for a long time and now finally took the plunge and let me design one for her. She chose a red beret and I made this one for her.
Doesn’t it look absolutely stunning on her?
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She already went to the VIP lounge of a horse racing and claimed to have had the best hat of all. Such a girl! Hahaha.

The next post will be snowy – so stay tuned!

Snowland Tokyo

Hey you little Snowbunnies.

This week was weather-wise quite exciting in the Tokyo region.
Usually snow is a pretty rare thing to see here – and if we are lucky enough to get some, it’s usually just a thin layer which vanishes in about 3 hours. This year seems different though.

Beginning of this week we had warm spring temperatures about 15°C, which made me laugh at the reported snow for the next day. Yea, the Japanese weather report promises us a lot of things that never happen..

But I was wrong. On the next day suddenly it was freezing cold and really started to snow later on. For the first time this Winter. Oh happy day!

I had to go out immediately since the snow does not last much longer than 1 day.
So I took my camera and husband out.

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Our frogs cheekily hid in our pockets because they also did not want to miss out on the snow fun!

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Snow frogs at work..
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The cemetery was snowed in as well. I wonder how a palm tree feels about snow?
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On the next day the snow had been gone already and I was sure that it was all what we would see this year.
Wrong!

2 days ago again a weather warning. The highest snow level in 40 years. We should stay at home if possible.
Ha! I thought. The Japanese again. Making a big fuss about little snow. For real..

Yesterday I woke up to a white dream world and it kept snowing during the whole day paired with wind. (In America you call that blizzard?!) I was so excited and had to go out!
A wonderful winter dream ♡♡
20-30cm of snow! Yeah!

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Time to make a decent snow angel!
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Due to the wind there were super deep snow mountains next to walls or hills. Big big fun!
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For dinner I tried to make a lasagne since years (and with anyway low cooking skills). And it even worked out! It was so perfect and yummy I was so proud of myself. What a great day!
Lasagne This morning I helped clearing the snow from the street and neighbors cars. Quite tough work but pretty fun actually. After a warm shower, some food and a banana-strawberry milkshake I feel like new born! (Can’t wait for the muscle ache..)
Tonight I’ll have a PJ Party at my friends house.
Hope you guys had a great weekend too?

Star affectations & Etsy event in Tokyo

Here I am with more news ☆

This time only smaller ones, but let’s see what happened the past week(s)..

First of all I was kept quite busy with a little bigger order: 19 pcs. of hats had to be made as soon as possible – mostly of them as an order from a HongKong based buyer. I was kind of rotating – and could not leave the house for 4 consequent days of making those hats from lunch time until 2am in the morning.
The result: 21 hats!!
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After I delivered them, I took 2 days off. (Yes, I am weak. Hahah)
I you think about how much I actually make with this amount of work, it seems almost a bit stupid. But I am always preaching myself that this is just the start and once my brand is known and spread, I don’t need to pay those middlemen. Hopefully.
Come on! Let me dream a bit!

But what kind of rocked my socks was this happening:
Singer Yumi from the girl group ‘Juliet’ went to the Avantgarde Shop in Harajuku and bought my pink beret and white leather wing earrings!!
Not only that – she posted the pictures all over twitter (over 11K followers), instagram, wrote on her blog about my products and wrote me personally and followed me on those SNS platforms!!
So sweet!! And she is very cute too!
(Here some screenshots I wanted to show you.)

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yumi from juliet

Ah, and she even wore my beret on stage at a live performance in Okinawa. ☆★
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Her Blog entry:
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She wrote:
‘This is a cute veiled beret from my favorite designer onegai kaeru, whose products are being sold at Avantgarde in Harajuku. I love the items from her because they feature exact the things I love. Further I love her happy aura. She also postet photos of me on her Twitter/Instagram so please have a look.’

No kidding! I did not pay her nor gave her anything free. This all happened out of sudden!
I am very happy and thankful. She even wrote me directly and seems to be a very lovely person. ♡

Then a week later – the next ‘surprise’ while I was scrolling through Twitter:
She went to the shop again to also purchase my veiled beanie with wings. Yaaaaaay!
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And again a lovely entry on her blog:
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Shortened a little:
‘I also got myself the veiled beanie from onegai kaeru. This one is also so kawaii with its pastel blue color and the wings on the side, you could almost lift up into heaven.
The veil hast been importet from the U.S. and everything is handmade. So lovely♡’

Yep. Also Anji almost lifted up into the sky with so many lovely comments and kawaii-ness. Hahah.

Now a hard topic change after so much praise on ‘myself’. Sorry to bore you with all this blabla but I was just so excited that I just had to tell you. It’s like an explosion of a huge bunch of balloons filled with glitter.. If you can follow.. LOL

So on Friday I took my husband to an Etsy event in Tokyo.
For everyone who doesn’t know Etsy – it’s an online marketplace where crafters/artists and vintage sellers gather and have tiny online shops. So apart from my own online store here on this homepage, I also do have one on the Etsy platform.

2 people from the Etsy Management flew all the way over to Tokyo to host this small event for Etsy sellers. Actually I couldn’t really imagine what such kind of event would be like, but I thought of it as a presentation of Etsy and a discussion while sitting in a chair circle..

On the way..
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I needed to have a dress-code photo with my new Tokyo Bopper shoes which I got myself as a treat for my hard work. Hehe. (Always need to make up an excuse for myself to purchase little more expensive stuff.)
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The event was hold in a small cosy room which they rented out in Harajuku.
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Even finger food was prepared.
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And drinks. (Unfortunately no alcohol for me.)
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The event was a little different from my expectations. There was no presentation. Everyone stood just in the room and was chatting. And we were basically just questioned by the Etsy staff about our usage, experiences and ideas on how to get Etsy up on its feet in Japan.
Of course these guys don’t come all the way over to tell us strategies on how we could sell better, but I was actually hoping that they would give us a few hints and tweaks – but nothin’.
Apart from ‘successfully selling on Etsy is no magic’ I could not get any advise.
However at least I used the chance to let out what is pissing me off a little about the platform/the carelessness of Etsy itself. Let’s call it constructive feedback..

Well, it was interesting to visit such an event. Just experience-wise. I guess many folks use this opportunity to do some ‘networking’ with other crafters/sellers but I am not very fond of such things. (I might be a little unsocial at times..)

The room was lovely though. Kind of ‘urban chic’ or however its called nowadays. LOL
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On the way back the famous Takeshita Street was calm and empty.
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And because the finger food was not enough, we had a parfait as a night dessert. (You can see me hard working on networking all my SNS platforms. Snap a photo of my food – aaand put it on instagram. (Story of my life.)
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Have a great start in the week, lovelies!
It’s February already btw. Ugh!

New veiled hat creations

January is already coming to an end.. Where has all my time gone?

Things are moving fast these days and I am working a lot on new creations as well as restocking the Avantgarde Shop in Harajuku as my hats and accessories are selling quick these days.
It’s a great feeling that people like my creations! A real blessing!

Well, even it is still cold cold Winter, I am feeling a bit Spring-ish already.
Or let’s say I am eagerly awaiting Spring to come. (Hurry up!!!)

So I made a new beret collection with flowers to speed up the process myself and put some Spring feelings in the peoples’ wardrobe. Let me show you what I mean.

Since the trend color of 2014 is told to be yellow, I had gave it a try and decorated this veiled beauty with same pastel toned withery flowers.
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‘Spring tulips blooming in the snow’ beret. (Well, that name is a little long maybe.)
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Here a stupid person for your refreshment.
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‘Daisies in your hair’ beret version
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‘Rose garden’ beret
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Actually I made those hat names up. They just popped in my head and I thought it’s funny..

Recently I am making so many hats in different colors and designs that I even forget to take pictures at time, or have no time to do it because I need to deliver the Shop in Harajuku.
Therefore my homepage gallery and shop are not always up to date – so if you see something you like – just let me know in the comments or via mail/Twitter/Instagram/Facebook?
I can make also a hat in your favorite colors or design. Yes, I’d like to create a special item any time.

Just for fun I also tried a knit beanie in the ‘pastel goth’ style.
pastel cross knit

Other color combinations of my veiled hats:
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Royal-blue with gold.
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Also I made a pastel pink beret with white leather hearts holding the veil. Forgot to make photos of it, but the shop manager Momo-san did a snap for me.
Momo wearing onegai kaeru berets
She looks so lovely!!

Ah, and I made this flower crown for myself quite a while ago. End of 2013 actually.. I have no clue why I did not post this earlier. Ha!
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At the moment I got a bigger order of 19 hats from a buyer in Hongkong. Haven’t actually left the house for 3 days now.. Uuuuh. I am tired, but also very very grateful of course.

That’s enough for now. Gotta get back to work. Hehe.
Will keep you posted. In the meantime feel free to write me in the comments. (I am not sure if anybody is reading my English blog posts.. but oh well, I’ll just keep talking to myself.)
Have a good one! Kisses from Japan ♡

Happy belated New Year!

Hey lovelies!
I hope you had a good start into the new year 2014? Wishing you all a successful and happy year!

2014 harajuku fashion

My new years eve was quite boring, but I finally got my one and only Christmas present:
A sexy new iPad Air ♡
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New Year in Japan is very quiet, but to get some feeling of home I got me some small party crackers at least..
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On New Year’s day we went with the family to Outlet Shopping Center and I found a superb designer skirt! Price reduction from $400 to $70! If that’s not a great catch?? I was craving such a spacy skirt for a long time already!
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In order to make full use of my iPad in terms of work and design I purchased a proper App for drawing/sketching.

Usually I try to prevent spending money in the App Store, but why being cheap about $7 if the iPad itself cost so damn much? And since you can’t draw proper with the fingers only – I also got my hands on the touchscreen pen by Wacom..

I have to say I am really delighted!
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(App: Paper by fiftythree and Bamboo Stylus solo 2 by Wacom)

My first try looks like that.
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To protect my iPad I was actually planning on getting those fold-able covers by Apple (which can turn into a stand as well) – but who the heck want’s to pay $100 for that? It’s crazy!! So I thought I make my own iPad bag…

Said. Done.

The first job for my sewing machine (and first time to sew leather).
Here is the result:
A thin leather iPad Air bag with blue inlet and hand painted on the outside by me.

leather ipad bag

mathilda leon ipad bag

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ipad air leather bag

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handmade ipad bag

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Not sure if you have recognized, but I took Mathilda from Leon the Professional as a color inverted interpretation.
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So I have started my new year already with the resolution of being positive and with the goal to build up my brand onegai kaeru to a proper extend.

Let’s hope I can keep up with my dreams.

Wing collection & Avantgarde Harajuku Shop Display

Merry Christmas!

I hope you all had lovely holidays and a relaxing time with the family so far?

Since it’s the festive season, I am happy to announce that some of my new handmade accessories are now being sold at AVANTGARDE Japan – a famous and stylish shop in Tokyo’s heart of fashion, Harajuku.

So let me introduce my new items straight away. If you are in town, make sure to have a peek at AVANTGARDE (アバンギャルド) in Harajuku! They sell cool print tights, harnesses, hats and other handmade items from different artists.

So let’s start with the head wear:

For a casual-chic look I decorated berets, beanies and basecaps with russian veil.
I am importing the veil from the U.S. since the quality is wonderful and the veil very soft and well made.
Everything is kept in place with hand crafted and painted leather wings, hiding a pin behind. The pin enables you to adjust the position of the veil fitting your style and needs and also allows you to remove everything if you want to.

At the moment the beret is available in black, blue and red, but I am working on pastel colored berets at the moment.

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red veiled beret 1

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(Thanks to my beautiful models: Kaoru, Misato and Akane.)

Also I have tried this style with knit beanies aka knit hats. Black and red is available with black or gold veil. Pastel colors are on my list though..

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Just for fun I decorated some flatback baseball caps with veil as well. Isnt’ that cute? The veil here has been sewn by hand into the inside of the cap and can not be removed.

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A photo with the shop manager of Avantgarde:
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And a friend of mine got her hands on the knit version before I could place them in the shop. Ha ha! She looks adorable!
Kaori veil hat

My question to you: Which head wear do you actually like best?
I love berets, but what’s your favorite? Beanie, caps, berets or ..?

Generally I really have always loved leather. The feeling, the smell, the durability – leather is a wonderful material and so fashionable.
That’s why I thought up some new accessories in shape of angel wings – made from soft leather. Each piece is cut, painted and crafted by hand.
You have seen them already on the hats above, however I also made some earrings, choker and necklaces in different colors.
Of course those are on sale in Harajuku now too! Yayyy! So let me introduce them to you now:

wing pierce black

wing pierce white

wing pierce white front

Currently available colors are black, white, gold, pastel pink, pastel blue and red.
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And am so proud of my new product tags – but I tell you more about it later. .

Since I also want to show you the choker necklace:

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Closeup:
wing choker white front

wing choker gold

Rainbow special edition:
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In general you can get them in the same colors as the earrings – plus the rainbow one.
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This rainbow necklace is completely hand colored and attached to a gentle metal chain.
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Can you still follow? Sorry for the long post, but I wanted to show you all together.

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For the shop display I also designed and had proper product tags printed. I hope you like them.
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DSC05736Actually I also got fabric tags for the hats and clothes, but don’t have a photo at hand now.

Before I show you the shop, I will make a topic change again so you don’t get surprised: I changed my hair color again. Back to blue for winter. It’s a lovely watery light blue.

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…and a fluffy pimp coat for winter. You might have realized it already.

So last week I met my friend, since she wanted to see my shop display. On that occasion I got the chance to take some pictures for you.

Here a sneak peek into the AVANTGARDE JAPAN Shop in Harajuku, Tokyo:
(A shop mainly known for its amazing print tights and cool accessories.)

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My hats:
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And here the glass case of my dreams:
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With my friend Aoi ♡
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On the first sales day a beret and some earrings and choker sold immediately. So happy!

Thank you so much!

Aoi and I had styled ourselves a little ‘darker’ in a gothic style, because Aoi’s twin sister Akane was having a live concert with her band in Shibuya.
Since we still had some time, we took some Harajuku Street Fashion Snaps in Omotesando.

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In the evening we finally enjoyed Akane with her rock band IRIS MONDE !
If you like you can keep an eye on them via Facebook / Twitter or such.
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Colored hairrrrrrrrrr!
color girls

Talking about colors. I made a collection of my hair colors in 2013:
hair colors in 2013Many people say that blue suits me best. I wonder if that’s true?!

 

Thank you very much for reading!

I wish you happy holidays and a great new year 2014! Let it rock and enjoy your life!

On a side note: I am always grateful for critique, ideas or suggestions. So feel free to write me which are your favorite items or colors so I can learn from you. My shop is also finally up to date. Yay!