Tuesday, November 18, 2014

What's in a name?

People often ask where the name 'bikudesigns' comes from.  To me it seems obvious, but to anyone living in another country I guess it's not that easy to understand.

As I have been living in Japan for most of my adult life (wow!), it seemed appropriate that I sent a little nod to the country I call home when I set up my little studio business several years ago.

The name 'Victoria' in Japanese translates to 'ビクトリア' which is pronounced, 'bee-koo-toh-ree-ah'. My friends shortened my long name (too many syllables) to 'ビク' (bee-koo) and added 'chan' (a term usually used for young girls or between friends). From there it was an easy step for me to take the 'biku' part and use it in my company name.

So there you have it...bikudesigns was born in Japan, and continues to grow in a little Tokyo studio.

Please check back for new work coming VERY soon or follow me on Facebook for more up-to-the-minute updates: https://www.facebook.com/bikudesigns

Mata ne!


Sunday, November 17, 2013

'New' Studio

WOW! Where does the time go? I can't believe I've been away from blogging, Etsy and the bench for so long. I've since had another baby (a boy this time), and as he is now approaching 1 year, it's time to start planning my return to the bench. Recently I've been interested in crafting in general, turning my hand to Japanese paper cutting, crochet (again!), and most recently (and most excitingly) sewing. I have a fabulous sewing teacher who is teaching me how to use Japanese patterns to make children's clothes. Learning to sew properly was a life-long ambition, especially as I come from a background of sewers. So expect to see a variety of crafty creations coming this way soon.
As well as my own craft work taking a bit of a change in direction of late, I've also been focusing on inspiring my 3 year old daughter to get creative. She has been working with me in my new studio space and has already had a try of my sewing machine and today made a copper wire necklace using pliers (under supervision of course!). It's fascinating watching her work as she rummages around in her collage box (a bunch of fabric off-cuts, random scrap-booking stuff and other bits I found).
So that brings me to the 'new' studio space. I was actually looking for a studio somewhere close to where we live, but what could be closer than a home studio? I just had to bite the bullet and clear out the 3.5 mat 'storage' room we have been stacking with unwanted things, baby equipment and Christmas decorations. It was once my studio space, but when baby number 2 was in process, became a storage space.

It is still a work in progress, but mainly, things are where I want them to be and each drawer has been sorted through and rearranged. As far as 'storage' rooms go, this one is not half bad. It has a window, aircon, electricity but sadly no water.

 The view from the door to the jewellery bench and stack of paintings ready for an exhibition...some day!

 The 'clean' table for card-making and sewing

 Ready to go. Needs a bit more sorting to get the tools in the right place.

Sorted drawers with rather uninspiring, yet functional labels

Thanks for sticking by me. Would love to hear your comments about the new space. 
Will make an update soon with new work,

Thursday, November 10, 2011

New work

It seems so long since I had time in the studio to play around with some new ideas. Here are few new pieces I completed a couple of weeks ago. Hope you like them! They are now available in my Etsy shop.

Nugget necklace
Nugget ring

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Hi everyone,

It has been a VERY long time since I last blogged, but things have been very hectic. I had a baby 16 months ago, which meant that I have had only a small amount of time for creating. My studio space was given up for baby too, so I had no time and nowhere to work!

Baby has now started school 2 mornings a week, so I now have some time to destash and organise my studio before embarking on some new creations.

I've started to list my destash items on Etsy, so if you are interested, please take a look.
Looking forward to having a few moments to blog more often in the near future. Thanks for staying with me;-)


Saturday, November 21, 2009

Etsy Weekend Feature- Hunter to the Hunted

This week I'm featuring Amy from Hunter to the Hunted. She has a wide array of items in her Etsy shop from brooches (pins), to collars, to designer fabric covered buttons. Read on to find out some more information about Amy's work.
I am based in... Torquay, a sea side town about an hour from Melbourne in Victoria, Australia.

I work from... Our Office/Craft Room/2nd Guest Room. And the kitchen table. And the couch...

My inspiration comes from... All over..especially other artists, nature, music, books..

The things I hold most dear are... Family, friends and my sanity...which comes and goes.

The 5 words that describe me are... Obsessive, excitable, quirky, sensitive, honest.

The 5 words that describe my work are... Unique, eclectic, evolving, raw, myself.

In the next year I... Hope to broaden my range further, whilst refining techniques. I also hope to broaden my following!

You can also find me... on twitter at http://twitter.com/HunterOnEtsy

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Etsy Weekend Feature- Whitefly

Hi everyone,
As promised (and a little early) here's the second weekend feature from an Etsy seller. Amanda from Whitefly makes the most beautiful jewellery by casting directly from real vintage lace, ribbon, satin or string into solid sterling silver and gold.

Enjoy the interview!

I am based in... Los Angeles

I work from... my home studio

My inspiration comes from... I enjoy the inherent beauty of natural materials, and metals. I love balance and the expression of ideas in a clear and simple manner. For example the idea of remembering special friends or relationships with a knotted string.

The things I hold most dear are... friends, family, experiences.

The 5 words that describe me are... loving, open-minded, creative, enthusiastic, ambitious.

The 5 words that describe my work are...
elegant, clever, unique, precious, balanced.

In the next year I... hope to continue to grow my own business and transition to working full time for my own company.

You can also find me... Southern Weddings, thebrightsideproject.com, jewelryrevelations.com, indiecraftcorner.blogspot.com, hotcolddesert.blogspot.com

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Etsy Weekend Feature

Every weekend, I will be featuring one Etsy maker on my blog. I'm looking for items linked to Japan, zen or the Japanese design ethic. If you are interested in being featured, please post a message on the forum thread here.

This week I am featuring EcoChicHandknits. Barbara makes beautiful crocheted nesting bowls from 100% organic cotton yarn.

Read on to find out more about EcoChicHandknits

I am based in... Stony Brook, New York - which is located on Long Island.

I work from... My couch! I have a very small house that I plan on moving out of in a few years *hopefully* but its really the only place for me to work from. I have all my yarns stored in boxes in the closet and keep a few skeins out at a time. Its worked out well for me so far but I dream of the day I can have my own craft room.

My inspiration comes from... things that I would want and need myself. I started making these bowls because I wanted set. I needed a way to organize my dresser and my desk that would still look great. My shop is still very new but I am planning on adding a lot more items in the future based on things that you use everyday and I also try and create things that I can reuse to replace items that I would use and then throw away. I plan on having a line of coasters (so you would use these instead of a paper napkin each time) as well as a washcloths/dishcloths (rather then using paper towels). I like creating simple practical items that will brighten up your day each time you look at them. I am also inspired by our environment and try to do my little part to help out which is why I only use 100% organic cotton yarn (although I am looking into a wonderful new yarn that is made from recycled cotton so keep an eye out for that!).

The things I hold most dear are... my family and friends. I would be no where without them. I am especially lucky for my boyfriend who has been wonderful and very understanding as I have been starting my business. He has put up with many hours of being ignored while I crocheted on the couch trying to get items to post and filling orders and still encourages me to do more to help my business grow.

The 5 words that describe me are... creative, determined, perfectionist, caring, and fun .

The 5 words that describe my work are... organic, eco-friendly, practical, lovely, meaningful.

In the next year I... hope to have many more sales and have a very successful business. I hope to have a lot of different products to offer and hope that they sell steadily and eventually get that craft room ; )

You can also find me... Since my business is still so new I haven't had time to start anything else yet (like facebook, twitter, etc). I am working really hard to get some more items up in my shop first but I am going to look down all these avenues soon. Keep checking my store for updates!

Thanks Barbara for such an interesting interview. Check back next week for a new feature.
Have a great week all.