Wednesday, March 28, 2012

FINISHED PROJECT: Felt Babushka Doll

As you know, I'm obsessed with Russian dolls -- that's why the most recent issue of Mollie Makes totally caught my eye when I was at Barnes and Noble yesterday. I love this magazine, not just because of the AWESOME stuff inside that makes me drool, but because they all come with the cutest little craft-packs with everything you need to finish the project!

Mollie Makes Babushka

So cute, huh? So, I knew I had to buy the issue and try my hand at the little dolly.

First, I traced the patterns from the magazine & cut them out on a notebook paper.

And then I traced my paper patterns onto the felt & fabric that Mollie Makes gave me!

Starting to sew! I am NOT the best hand-sewer, but I really hope to get better with practice.

Hey, she's not looking so bad! Kind of big eyes, but that's okay..

Things started to get a little funny sewing the polka dot part on, but I was so happy with my cherries!

Her face looks scary from the inside.

The pack actually DIDN'T come with stuffing, so I just used fuzzy yarn.

And the finished product?!

stuffed babushka

Ha! She's a funny girl! BUT, not bad for a first try. And I learned a lot. And I like her. What do you think? Do you have any advice for people who want to start felt-crafting? The sewing bit.. I need some work on that one! I was just so happy to get a project done in one night -- it took less than three hours. I definitely recommend buying Mollie Makes and then showing me what you Mollie Made!

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Snowy Tokyo

The first Tuesday of our trip, Mark and I were totally surprised to wake up to snow snow snow! I think snow is very rare in the big city of Tokyo, so we were both very excited to get to experience it. It was such beautiful snow, too - big and fluffy flakes, but it was very wet and cold, too.

Snow in Harajuku
Takeshita Dori in the Snow

Tokyo, like I said, doesn't get much snow, so they also don't have much in the way of snow removal. As in, the snow wasn't shoveled or plowed or anything, so the sidewalks were awful mush and the curbs into the crosswalks had huuuuge puddles of melted slush. But, I didn't mind. I didn't mind even when I was walking home with arms full of bags from Harajuku and my 100Y umbrella flipped inside out like the movies.

Harajuku Blizzard
Looking back on Takeshita Dori in Harajuku from the Bodyline Balcony

Mark and I decided to go up to the Metropolitan Government Center to see what the city looked like in the snow. Uh, it looked like a big white nothing. The snow was so thick and windy 45 floors up that you could barely even see the other tower in the building. It was so cosy up there, though - like we were in a big cloud - and we ended up eating lunch at the cafe up there. Markie tried their curry & I had the spaghetti with a red sauce and miso.

Here are some photos from Nishi Shinjuku before we split up -- Markie went video game shopping in Nakano and I went to Harajuku, as you can see in the pictures from above.

Snow in Shinjuku

Snowy Tokyo

Tokyo Snow Storm

Shinjuku Snow

Snowy Shinjuku

Monday, March 26, 2012

What I Wore: Harajuku Shopping

Hello, loves! Here I am with another quick outfit post from Tokyo. Things are definitely changing in my life right now - which is so exciting! - but it isn't leaving me with much blogging time. It'll all come back, though, once my schedule works itself out. For the time being, here is an outfit that I wore to go shopping in Harajuku on probably a cold, rainy day!

Harajuku Outfit

Cardigan & Skirt: Forever 21 | Sweater: shop on Takeshita Dori | Hairclip & Ring: BBBee from LaFloret Harajuku | Socks: some shop in Shibuya 109 | Scarf: Homemade

I love my cat sweater that I found (it is saying "Please do something"). The little kitty was everywhere! On all different shirts and sweaters, in different colors and poses, and in different shops on the street. The man who was working the shop was a middle-aged regular lookin' dude and he LOVED my bunny scarf. It's not everyday you impress a store owner on Takeshita Dori, so I felt pretty pleased. 

I ended up buying the candy ring from a little shop in the basement of LaFloret in Harajuku. The shop girl was so nice and talked to me in English the whole time when she figured out I was from the US. The ring wasn't expensive, but I found ones just like it in Closet Child for about 700Y less. Oh, well! The shop girls at Closet Child were definitely not as friendly!

Japanese UFO Catcher

I will leave you with this shot of the inside of a UFO catcher in Nakano -- I think it was NAMCO? Either way, I love Poyo, the little orange cat in the bottom, and I think of him whenever I wear this sweater. Please do something, Poyo!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic McDonald's Toys

I caught the bug. The bug is My Little Pony: Friendship is magic Happy Meal toys. Yes, I bought three tonight. Here they are, modeled perfectly with my 6%dokidoki ring:

Cheerilee MLP
Cheerilee 

Rainbow Dash MLP
Rainbow Dash 

Fluttershy MLP
Fluttershy

Have you started collecting them? How many are there? Ah, they are so cute and make me want to dye my hair pink again~

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Koenji: What I Wore & Spank!

Hello! It was actually pretty chilly while we were in Japan, but on the day that we went to bum around Koenji, it was super nice! Here is what I wore:


Dress: Forever21 | Cardigan: Delia's | Necklace: Betsey Johnson | Glasses Hair Clip: Closet Child | White Hair Clip: BBBee from LaFloret Harajuku | Stockings: Shibuya 109

Koenji was an awesome place to walk around - we went past a ton of great second hand clothing shops, markets, cool boutiques, and fun looking restaurants. Koenji is also the place where we went to go to an awesome band earlier that week.

We read about Koenji, which was only a few stops away on the Chou-Sobu line, and learned that it was the birth place of punk rock in Tokyo. You could tell, too - the atmosphere there was pretty cool to be in, and felt pretty familiar to me. When we went there the second time, we saw a group of crusty punk kids in their pyramid belts and tight black jeans skating around outside of the station. There was also one of their crusty punk friends totally passed out on the ground, just a little after lunch. Great!


Koenji

Koenji

Koenji

One thing I was really excited to see in Koenji was Spank!, the famous fairy-kei clothing store created by Japanese fashion-icon Tavuchi. It was pretty much amazing, although a bit out of my budget. I loved browsing, though, and even though I was disappointed that Tavuchi herself wasn't there, I was excited to leave the shop with my own "I <3 Spank" button affixed to my bunny scarf. 

Tokyo Spank!

Spank! in Japan

After we were done in Koenji, we started to walk around until we realized how close we were to Nakano! Less than an hour later, we were over there, walking around the Nakano Broadway Mall. That was one of my favorite parts of being in Tokyo: picking a direction and just walking. It was awesome to get further and further out of the busy streets of Tokyo and take a look at more residential areas. I really liked seeing what those neighborhoods were like. Our walk to Nakano was just that!

Peco-Chan

And lastly, here is a picture of when we got into Nakano - me with Peco-Chan! :9

Thanks for reading! I am excited to share more and more of my Tokyo adventures!

Monday, March 12, 2012

I'm Back... With Big News!

My loves! I'm finally back home as of Sunday afternoon. My vacation was wonderful, but to be honest, I'm more than a little down in the dumps today. That will pass, though. I have so many stories and pictures to show you, but first... want to know what happened two Monday nights ago?


Markie and I were visiting one of our favorite places in the city: the Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building. The building is very distinct-looking and has an observatory in each of the towers on the 45th floor. It's free to the public and you can see all of Tokyo -- totally breathtaking at night with all the buildings and street lights. We went to the observatory and while I was unsuccessfully taking the panoramic photo you see at the top of that photo, Mark told me there was something weird behind us and I should turn around. When I did, I saw him down on one knee with a ring in his hand. It sounds like such a cliche, but -- I couldn't say anything! I was so excited and I just hugged and kissed him, until he reminded me I hadn't said yes yet. It was like out of a movie - a perfect story that I'll love telling my whole life.

Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building
The TGM Building that day. 

We walked back to the hotel and I couldn't stop smiling and laughing and looking at my ring. It has a beautiful blue stone in a white gold, detailed band - it was a ring that Mark's grandma had, who gave it to his mom, who gave it to him to give to me! It fits me perfectly and I love it, and Mark, very much.

Here are some photos I took from the observatory before Mark surprised me!

Tokyo night view
Tokyo at Night
Tokyo View
Tokyo, Japan night view

Pretty awesome, huh? Japan has always been important to Mark & me, but now the place is even more special. Mark waited to ask me to marry him until we were in the window right in front of the hotel we stayed at during our last vacation. The rest of our trip was amazing - and, like I said, I can't wait to share all my stories and photos - but, I just can't help but being cheesy when people ask me what my favorite part of Tokyo was. "Getting engaged."