Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Graduation Gift Guide

First of all, I hope everyone in the America had a good memorial day and a nice long weekend! :) If I am not wrong, it is also graduation season over there right? I have a couple of friends who just graduated from art school. So... what should you get as graduation gifts? Here are a few ideas that are career-inspired.

For the Future Soldier

For the Future Pilot

For the Future Fashion Designer

For the Future Interior Designer

For the Future Musician

For the Future Movie Director

For the Future Doctor

For the Future Veterinarian

For the Future Scientists

For the Future Teachers

For the Future Writer

For the Future Cook

Monday, May 30, 2011

Weekly Word Picks - Trains

The wonders of the weekly word picks series is that... I will never expect what to find and what theme it would be before I start my search. :) And today's picks prove that point as I did not expect a theme such as this from the word alone at all. Today's word had been selected by Cecilia from Naked Elements, and her word is...


For the complete Treasury, please follow this link : Let's Elope on a Train

o what should next week's word be? Suggest by posting in the comments below!

This week's word was chosen by Cecilia from Naked Elements.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Around the World - Seattle

Whenever I think of Seattle, I was reminded of the movie - Sleepless in Seattle. Though amazingly, I do not remember much about that movie at all! (maybe too old?) I am also reminded of Starbucks, as they started off in Seattle. I'm recently very much in love with their chocolate cream chip frappucino with a dash of hazelnut syrup, yum yum!

The search for the best Etsy shops located in Seattle however, was interrupted by a sudden change in Etsy's Shop Local function. But it's okay, I got enough wonderful vendors for my article. :) A few interesting facts to take note of... of all the places I had searched thus far, Seattle has the most amount of underwear/lingerie shops!! For both female and male, and in many different styles too. ;D However, this is a family friendly blog (visual-wise anyway) so unfortunately I had opted to not feature lingerie shops. This is what I did find though...

Before I discovered the existence of screen-printed t-shirts, (which isn't too long ago btw) I always thought t-shirts are always printed. But now that I do, I have a whole new level of fascination to these apparels. Uzura (which means 'quail' in Japanese by the way) is quite exceptional in the art of screen printing. :) Not only that, her organic cotton t-shirts and hemp bags are very eco-friendly too! I love that blue bag with the hydrangea design, if only the hydrangea was white. It would look so lovely. :)

I am quite into geometrical motives lately, whether it is for jewelry, artworks or even sculptures. So I am quite ecstatic when I found Aiguille et fil! The french it means 'needle and thread', how appropriate is that for an apparels shop? :) One thing I love about Aiguille et fil is the consistency of the color usage. It is bright and colorful, but at the same time the palette is limited. It gives the a shop a very consistent look. I also love the way she incorporated the geometric shapes and lines to her clothing. So original!

Still with the theme of geometric shapes, Simbiotek Design Lab has some very interesting wares as well. The two architectural designers (no wonder) offers a variety of wares such as jewelry, coasters and prints of their simple geometric designs. Even though offering a somewhat large range of wares that doesn't seem to have anything to do with each other, they managed to keep their shop looking consistent due to the geometric designs they use. Very simple and effective. :)

The most interesting part of Ada Rosman's jewelry pieces is that they are influenced by her travels. Familiar patterns such as the triskele from Celtic art, floral wycinanki from Poland, the matryoshka from Russia, and even the arrows often found on road signs! I find that one particularly clever. :D It is amazing how she embodies a so many different art cultures into one shop and still make it consistent. I love metalsmiths!

Speaking of metalsmiths, JMcCormick Designs or Julie McCormick, is a self taught metalsmith with the most amazing jewelry. What I love most about her work is her rich, dark textures, and the unique look of her rings. They almost look like those plastic strip thingies that are used to tie up plastic bag sometimes, but a million times classier. Oh yes, did I mention about texture? It makes her jewelry looks almost leather-like in some instances, just simply amazing and extremely unique!

There are soooo many photography shops on Etsy, that I sometimes find them repetitive. (though beautiful) So when I do come across truly unique photography shops such as wavyshell, I get very excited. :) Her macro mushroom photographs as well as other forest floor creepy crawlies are just so enchanting and magical. I am particularly fond of the miniature photographs such as the tiny house in the moss and the table and chair under the mushroom. It was as if little people really exist!

Collages made with vintage ephemera are also one of my favorites lately. :) Unlike last week's Scrapatorium, Heidi Favour's are brighter in color, modern and a little less mind boggling. But with her unique use of colors within a certain color palette, it made her work stand out. My favorite is Specimen B, the collage with the insect in a jar. :D I'm actually surprised though that she has so few sales after so long, makes me wonder why, hmm...

Last but not least, this is probably one of the most amazing crafters I've found on Etsy! Eva Funderburgh is the creator of these really creative and lively 'beasties' as she would like to call them, with woodfired porcelain. I am extremely impressed by her imagination and how lively her beasties are, given the material. Some of them almost looked like they could move! You should read her descriptions too for each beasts, (even her sold ones!) very fun and interesting. :)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


I admit it, I am shamelessly addicted to Pinterest. It is basically like a virtual 'pin board' where I pin pictures I like into different boards/folders. I had been pinning for a while now but had never mentioned about it on my blog before, I apologize. :P Here is my pinterest board!

There is just so many gorgeous pictures on Pinterest, and it is never ending as long as people pin. I am particularly attracted to this one photo of a flower arrangement for a wedding that I saw one day, the colors just seem so unique and beautiful...

...that I decided to make a bracelet with colors inspired from it!

The flower arrangement photo is from JL Designs. :)

If you want to try Pinterest out, I can throw an invitation your way. Just leave your preferred e-mail address in the comments and I'll send you the invitation. You can choose to login with your Twitter or Facebook account once you got the invitation. :)

Monday, May 23, 2011

Weekly Word Picks - Vegan

A new week, a new word! Before I begin, I find the need to say that the similarity of this week's pick's color scheme with last week's... was totally coincidental! I guess I am in a 'black' mood lately. ;) Anyways, this week's word was picked by the gracious Susmitha from Art by Susmitha, who was featured in last week's post. Her word of choice is...


For the complete Treasury, please follow this link : Totally Cool and Vegan-Friendly

So what should next week's word be? Suggest by posting in the comments below!

This week's word was chosen by Susmitha from Art by Susmitha.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

100 Bracelets!

The first 100 pearl cluster bracelets that I had made! And right now I'm already somewhere in the middle of 100+. Maybe I will be able to reach 200 by the end of 2011. ;) Some of these sold quickly, some did not, some I retook the photos, some still needed new photos.

Funny thing is, the majority of these I was selling as OOAK bracelets, then I realized it was a lot of hassle to take photos and edit every single bracelet. Plus I've had a few requests for bridesmaids gifts and no one seemed to mind if they were OOAK or not. So that's when I decided to have them made to order, instead of OOAK. I will cycle out some of the older designs/colors eventually when I run out of beads of those colors. Hopefully that won't be too soon though. ;)

Friday, May 20, 2011

Around The World - Houston,TX

Being a non-American, the first thing that came into my mind when I thought about Houston, Texas, was the imagery of farms, cowboys and country singers. (well, basically, whenever 'Texas' is mentioned, really) Imagine my surprise to see that Houston is actually a pretty darn modern city!

You see and learn something new everyday I guess! (I also found the wiki article of the Houston Mass Murders when I'm researching on Houston, oh my curiosity with serial killers)

Cowboys and serial killers aside, Houston do come with a large variety of artists and crafters too. :) Let's see what I found...

As you probably had known from a previous Around the World post on Greece, I am a sucker for artists that utilizes lines beautifully, and White Octopus is no stranger to that. I love that her theme is rather centralized on octopus and tentacles, although there are other types of animals too. LOVE that painting of the stag, so ghostly and beautiful! I also love the subtle textures and lines that she has going on in the background, it does makes a difference in her paintings. :)

Another artist with gorgeous lines and patterns, lisachow is no less amazing. :) She has a whole different theme and style though, as she draws whimsical and sometimes mind boggling images of houses, butterflies and hearts. I particularly love her works that involve houses and cityscapes. :) Aside from artwork prints, she sells these really interesting DIY cut-out paper buildings too! Yeap you heard that right, instead of paper dolls, they are paper buildings. ;)

My mind was completely boggled when I found Scrapatorium! The good type of boggled! I always have a keen interest on oddities and things that stirs one's thoughts. Pretty images are well... pretty to look at. But these collage artworks by the talented Angelica Paez just goes one step further by making you think. How clever is that collage with the cut out doily an a man in the center, smoking? But then you think... something as pretty and innocent as a doily is actually cigarette smoke (something negative) in this piece. Oh the irony~

Jay Marroquin's works are also extremely mind boggling! His photo series "Hate!!" sends a strong message of the darker side of mankind, very thought provoking. When I found his shop, I knew on the spot that I must feature his work! I've never seen photography like this before on Etsy. All of his photos depict a scene that was happening, instead of just a single subject. These scenes were very well thought out and every single detail is just simply amazing!

This shop would be perfect for people that loves to DIY and are looking for more interesting options instead of the free ones that people could find online and everyone seem to be doing. A Little Hut, run by the amazing Patricia Zapata, is a shop that sells pdf printables for various paper products, ranging from gift tags to candle cover! Her designs are very well thought out and the presentation is just perfect. I almost felt sad that they were only printables, as I am the type that are lazy to do DIY things most of the time haha.

I love the shop intro to this Etsy shop, "You are unique, shouldn't your furniture be unique too!" Really does makes me feel special and unique. :) Jalex Studios makes modern and contemporary housewares and home decors. I just love the simple designs of his products, they look like they would fit perfectly right into a modern five star hotel. (I hope one contact you soon ;D ) Love the Levi modern vase!

I sure do love me some cute sewn goodies! Betsy Wynn is one of them, and it is not hard to fall in love with her wares. :) Two facts that I love about her shop - The first one is that they are colorful, and I love her use of color combinations and textures, makes her purses and handbags look really cute! The second fact is that she keeps her shop consistent with her bird and deer embroideries. It does adds that little charm to her work and that much more likeable! :) Love her little deer~

Last but not least, the only jewelry seller in this post! Orange is the sun (what an interesting name) makes really interesting textile jewelry. Her designs are very simple, but made exciting with dashes of bright colors. I think this is what made her work so unique. :) I just love her color selections for some of her pieces, just so fun and cheerful!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

My First Returned Package

Just look at how tattered it is! Definitely went through quite some wear and tear considering that it traveled the world in one full round. I'm just glad that the envelope is still in one piece!

As I ship via registered mail, my packages will need signatures to be received, either by family members or the recipient themselves. When the package is undelivered the postman will bring it back to the post office. And if not claimed for one month, it will be kicked back to the return address. Which is what happened here.

I already contacted the buyer and she said she did not find any notices. I've heard a lot of stories like these about USPS's services - lazy to go up some stairs to deliver a package, so left notice to neighbor below who probably tossed it. Claimed they left a notice but didn't etc. It's frustrating really, since it probably ended up with a package being kicked back to where it came from and I need to send it again.

So had you had any bad experiences with USPS before? This is your chance to rant. :P

Monday, May 16, 2011

Weekly Word Picks - Charity

I apologize for my (slightly) prolonged absence and the missing of my last Around the World post. As some of you may had known, blogger went through quite a bit of a cough last week, which made it read-only for a while, and then they rolled back quite a bit to fix whatever problem they had. I was following them via twitter and they said they will restore all the posts that went missing during the maintenance period, but that never happened to my post. :'( And losing a post like that really killed one's drive to write or update at all... (especially since I type like a turtle) I'll retype that post later...

Anyways, hopefully I'll get my drive back this week. And I'll start off with weekly word picks that had been on a hiatus for... wow... nearly a month?? Dude, I've really been slacking too much. (or time is just flying!!) This week's word was suggested by one of my friends who had the biggest heart... Huey from Nottypooch! :) And her pick is...


For the complete Treasury, please follow this link : Charity

Such loving ad giving people they are aren't they? :) All of the listings above donate all or part of their sales to charity. It feels nice to know there are so many nice people there are in this world. So what should next week's word be? Suggest by posting in the comments below!

This week's word was chosen by Huey from Nottypooch.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

About Me

About time I introduce myself. :)

Hello! My name is Alex Kam, and I am the individual behind Skyejuice. Do not be fooled by my name though, as I am 100% female! I always find myself educating people that 'Alex' is a unisex name.

I hail from a faraway and exotic country in the Southwest Asian region call Malaysia. (the big piece of land above the tiny island that is Singapore) The best thing about Malaysia is the FOOD! Everything else sucks, lol. It is always summer here, for better or worse, and I had never seen or touch snow for real. I am 26 years of age, born into a chinese family, and I know 4 languages in total - English, Malay language, Mandarin and Cantonese.

- a Multimedia Design graduate from The One Academy of Communication Design.
- a full time motion graphic artist.
- an atheist.
- a rescuer and owner of one emaciated medium long haired orange cat named Ginger. Currently on a mission to fatten her up.
- living in a 9x9 ft space room with no windows connected to the outside world. So it is dark inside even during the day. I have 3 work desks and a bed inside this small room.

- a hardcore World of Warcraft player.
- doing art commissions.
- following TV shows on TV.
- watching American Idol.

- Starbucks frappucinos! Especially chocolate cream chip with hazelnut syrup yum yum~!
- milk tea!
- chocolate or nutella covered anything!!
- authentic Japanese food.
- browsing through Etsy and discover new things.
- getting inspired.
- having lots of colors to play with.
- flat Coke.
- Rockstar games.
- multi-tasking. I always have some TV show on when I'm painting or making jewelry pieces.
- Reading inspirational blog articles online.

- traffic jams.
- Malaysian motorcycle drivers.
- art blocks.
- wasting time.
- procrastinating. And yet I do it all the time!
- Malaysian politics.

TV shows - Dexter, CSI, Criminal Minds.
Music bands - My Chemical Romance, Linkin Park, Maroon 5, Nickelback.
Musicians - Adam Lambert, Lady Gaga, David Cook.
Games - All of the Silent Hill games, World of Warcraft, GTA IV.
Movies - Fight Club, Silent Hill, Zombieland.

- English is not my first language, and I am also the only english speaker in my family. I communicate in Cantonese at home.
- I prefer Mr Potato over Pringles. ;)
- I roleplay. (not the NSFW type!!)
- I have the utmost fascination and affinity to the sea, I just find that the sea is such a huge and mysterious place, so many things underwater that is still undiscovered and unknown. I love whales too. :)
- I used to read a lot of manga, (Japanese comic) but had since 'quitted' for a long time. Now I am only chasing "One Piece", one of my favorite series ever on pirates and adventure! I will only read other manga if it had reached the finale, and has not over 20 books.
- When playing games, I am usually the 'melee girl', preferring to go up close and personal to whack people with my steel pipe. However, I only play magic casting classes in World of Warcraft.

I started this blog originally to promote my own wares, and also because I love to write. :) However, over the course of a year it had evolved into something that promotes other crafty sellers rather than my own, and I love doing it! I love discovering new and magical things that everyone comes up with, and I strive to share them to my readers (you!) for inspiration.

I have two main series that I try to update weekly, (keyword is try) and they are the Weekly Word Picks and Around the World series. I may be adding more series in the future, but we shall see. :)

Aside from featuring other crafty things, I also blog about my life's happenings, interesting encounters while running this crafty biz, as well as sharing my own experiences. :)

Feel free to contact me if you are interested to be featured on this blog.

I am also the occasional contributor to the Etsy Malaysia blog.

Other places you can find me...

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Around The World - Turkey

Turkey mmm delicious turkey~ ....wait! That's the wrong Turkey!

Republic of Turkey, or more widely known as just Turkey by people all around the world, is a neighbor to Greece, as well as 7 other countries. Interesting fact, that Turkey is considered as a Western Asian country while Greece is considered as Eastern Europe, although they are just separated by a border.

Before I started this series, one of the facts I found out on Etsy really intrigued me about Turkey. There are *a lot* of beautiful bag shops on Etsy where the seller hails from Turkey! But when I did a search on Etsy for this post, I found a lot of other similar things that Turkish shops sell as well. Among them are crochet goods - scarves, shrugs and gloves etc. Bath towels! And of course... bags! So let's begin with one of the above shall we?

Ayca is probably one of the most beautiful shops I encountered on Etsy. I mean, just look at her photos and her wares! Ayca makes gorgeous high end knit and crochet goods, and her craftsmanship just looks impeccable. (her photography skills too!) It's just such a pity that there is no use for scarves here in Malaysia, since it is summer weather all year round here. :( Or else I would've gotten that brown rose neckwarmer already!

Do you want to bath in style? Well, with towels from bathstyle, you definitely could! *shot for lame joke* So I learned today that there are a type of towels specifically originated from Turkey that are called peshtamal. I guess you learn something new everyday eh? :) I love how bathstyle presents the peshtamals in different range of colors and styles. What can I say? I love stripes!

One of the reasons that I found out about that particular fact that Turkish people make gorgeous bags, is that I was looking for one at that time, and couldn't help it but notice I keep stumbling into Turkish shops. Starbags is definitely one of them! I had been eyeing that blue striped bag for a very very long while now... What I love most about Starbags is the variety and uniqueness of their bags, as well as the super fun jumping pictures! :D Just makes the whole shop that much more fun and bright. Aside from bags, they make belts too. :)

Renkli Tasarimlar is another really unique bag shop that I found. Her designs and shape are a bit 'harder' than most shops, but at the same time very 'rounded' too.It is what makes them unique I believe. I love that striped messenger bag above! :) That owl bag looks really badass too. You should check them out for more unique and cute bag designs.

Still in the sewing category! Secdus makes some really cute cushion covers. :) I like that there are 3D elements on the cushion covers, like the lovely ribbon and the dress on the mannequin, very shabby chic. I also love the postcard pillow cover, so clever! :D Check out there shop for more variety of vintage and shabby chic inspired pillow covers for your lovely home! Aside from pillow covers, they sell other sewn housewares like place mats and napkins too.

Being fairly new on Etsy, Poplin Homewear have few sales so far, but I foresee them being propelled to stardom in the very near future. It's just a matter of time before people find and fall in love with this lovely shop. They have a great niche (gorgeous sleep and home wear!) and simply beautiful photos! I love love love that balloon nightshirt! Although it is intended for home wear, but I think if worn with some black leggings, it would be wonderful to go out and have a stroll in it too. :)

Aside from having a very memorable name, Star of the East is also a very unique and successful shop. I think I first remembered them from a Quit Your Day Job post on the Etsy blog. I love their sea urchin jewelry and it made me extremely fascinated with the little sea creature for a while back then. Their photography as well as their wares really make their shop stand out from the crowd. And most interesting of all, they make wedding bouquets with sea shells and urchins as well! So if you're planning a beach wedding and needed an appropriate bouquet that you could keep for a long time, look no further. :)

And how could an Around the World post be complete without a photographer's work? I am completely infatuated by Sunshine Art Design's fine art nature photography. Some of her photos look so surreal and almost like it is painted! Such as the photo of the bumble bee above. The close up of the dandelion is one of my favorites too, LOVE that shade of teal. :D There are just so many, so so many talented photographers on Etsy, all over the world!