Saturday, June 30, 2007

Funny Japanese TV Food Shows

My favorite is when, to make the food look extra delicious, they give whatever they’re eating a big jiggle with their chopsticks or fork. I also like the close shots of people putting food in their mouths and exclaiming, "Oishii desu!"

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Return of the One-Dollar Dress

I haven’t owned a clothing article this inexpensive since we used to shop the Goodwill dollar bins in high school. Anyway, I just made this little soft cotton dress out of fabric that cost $1.00 per meter. The fabric is from an area of town here in Tokyo called Nippori Textile Town. It’s basically store after store chalk full of all kinds of super affordable fabric. It’s really a crafter's paradise. Sorry, Kspell, I wish I had discovered it before you came. Next time! Oh, and the stuffed dress lying down was an idea stolen from the boutiques around town.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Mailbox Greetings

After months of sunny weather, Tokyo’s rainy season has finally hit. It’s been hot, muggy and rainy. And like a good bride to be, I’m trying to balance out my sesame vanilla soft-serve ice cream addiction with the occasional jog around the neighborhood. Today, after a short jog in the pouring down rain and heat, I hesitantly popped by our mailbox to make sure there weren’t any overdue bills lying in there waiting to be paid. I was delighted to see our first piece of real mail. It was Robin & Ian’s baby Max announcement. It was nice for a change, to see real mail in the box. It's usually always just filled with bills, oh and of course, the daily porn ads...

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Melissa Dickenson's "Exploration"

Here in Japan, a foreign gal’s quest for friends and fun people to share common interests with never ceases. I’m not alone here. Ever since I joined a knitting club for English speakers, I’ve met plenty of others like me – women looking for some chick companionship while they’re here. It’s easy for us to get excited over a ball of yarn, knitting needles, and some English conversation between ourselves and other females with whom we share a mere three to five year age difference. Those sessions of knitting and nama bieru have landed me a couple nice lady friends to shop, share lunch, and explore this city with.

Melissa and I met at one of these knitting sessions. She’s an American artist from Baltimore, and unfortunately, I’m sad to say that she’ll be returning back to the states soon. She’s here in Japan doing an artist residency at Youkobo. I admire her a great deal because I feel like she’s a true force keeping the creative/artistic spirit alive. She applied for a grant to come to Japan and practice her art, but was denied the funding. Without any funding, she decided she still wanted to accomplish her goal. She busted her behind for a year waiting tables, saved some dough, and came to Japan. She spent a month making paper at a traditional Japanese Washi mill in Shikoku. She then came to Tokyo, where she sutured and painted these cutie, surreal nature characters and environments onto her paper. I thought her show was really nice. Her paintings felt familiar, and reminded me of Portland. I guess they also reminded me of east London, Brooklyn, and Tokyo. Come to think of it, I guess that nature/animal theme and aesthetic has been big all over the place for a while now. I'm no art critic, but if I had a steady job by now, I would have definitely snagged one of her pieces.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Hot S@#t Japanese Design Mags

Over the weekend D & I were excited to browse through one of our favorite bookstores and find some of his recent work featured in two design magazines. Of course we can't read anything in these publications, but it's still fun to see the photos and Japanese commentary. Along with D's stuff, there were some other great designs/ads that were noticed as well......