Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Why do we journal?

While back my friend sent me this link to the article "Why keeping a Daily Journal Could Change Your Life." and it really stuck with me. 

I journal for many, many reasons. To document. To remember. To leave a trace that we are here. To connect with myself. To let the heart speak through ink before my head takes over... To be present. 

I hope you have a moment to read through the article as you continue your analogue adventure. It could be a lovely reminder to pause... as time seems to speed up for everyone towards the end of January. 




Friday, January 15, 2016

Anthony's Traveler's Notebook [Sojourning through life]

One of my all time favorite feature of Travelers Notebook is that the system can be flexibly used for everyday as well as during travel. I am excited to see our customer Anthony's 1 year anniversary with his well loved AND traveled brown Traveler's Notebook. His Traveler's Notebook has journeyed around the world as well as his home town in New York City.  

I hope you enjoy reading his reflection of life adventure along with his Traveler's Notebook and seeing beautifully captured images of his TN. It certainly made me want to travel very very far with my Traveler's Notebook... and collect family memory all at the same time. 

xo
-wakako (who is always dreaming about big and small adventures) 




The dark brown leather, once dull and scarless, now boasts a sheen earned from hours sitting in the large back pocket of my camera bag. Surface scratches and weather blotches tell a vivid story of long treks 9,000 feet above sea level in the rugged Italian Alps. Hand drawn maps and mountain summit sketches of New York State’s majestic Adirondacks adorn the worn pages of my “Mountain Journal”. 



I use my Travelers Notebook in many different ways. To curate custom journeys to Italy for my tour company and to record those small yet meaningful moments as my young children begin to grow. 


Pulled from the pocket of the seat in front of me at 35,000 feet I jot a note about how much I miss my children. On a 200 mph fast train (Frecciarossa) moving swiftly from the wide and even flatter lands of the Po Valley to the rolling green and golden hills of Tuscany, I retrieve a printed ticket and review the itinerary of a busy travel day. I quickly stuff sensitive items, local currency and my passport into the well designed leather card / zipped pocket insert made by 1.61 Soft Goods in Los Angeles


Back at work in New York City, everyday carry like credit cards, subway pass, bank slips, stamps and a brass ruler complete a make shift business tool kit. My addiction to travel and discovery pushes me to explore each nook of a familiar Gotham and my Travelers Notebook helps me record the memory. Sketches, autumn leaves, flowers and other gifts from my children are carefully added inside - a future tactile reminder of a less adventurous day in the neighborhood park or a winter getaway on a secluded beach in the Dutch Caribbean.  

The simplicity of a #001 lined notebook insert is best for me. I like to write in a longer, story form while keeping record of the day to day. I save bullet lists and schedules for less than analogue tools. 


Methods for journaling are personal and I like to be open, allowing my style and preference to evolve. 

As I write, I’m reminded that having a journal is much more than recording daily activities. Entries are proof that I had certain thoughts, how I came to those thoughts and how I hopefully grew as an individual, sojourning my way through life. 



By: Anthony J. Carro 
Anthony is the creator of adventure tour company Sojourn Italy. 

You can follow Anthony’s adventures on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter: @sojournitaly

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Reality is relative / Cirque du Soleil "KURIOS"



Today we had a chance to visit Cirque du Soleil "KURIOS" performance at Dodger Stadium. I have always been a huge fun of the company (a definite love affair of 20 years) and was thrilled to share the performance with the girls. We don't have TV at home so live performance and event like this is really a huge source of entertainment and inspiration. I forgot how intimate the "circus tent" feels when we see the performance compared to the ones at theater. We really felt like we were there seeing all the details up-close and being a part of the moment.

I was particularly excited about the theme of this show - Cabinet of Curiosities - as we hope to continue to nurture the curiosity amongst us. Also there was a lot of steampunk reference to the visuals and story line and we LOVE that from our never ending love for analogue.

Both Satchi and Coco were really intrigued and sat through the entire show with great dose of engagement. The tag line on their website "Reality is all relative" really sums it up. Each moment was nothing like we have ever seen... and amount of creativity that went into putting this performance together was beyond imaginable. Coco kept clapping her hands with her bright eyes... and Satchi was totally mystified by all the details including amazing singer and her live performance. It was such an inspiration... that the world is a combination of what we know and what we don't know. And a reminder of how it feels when we are moved through creative force from inside... much like when we attended RISE festival last year.

They are visiting different cities this year and you can check out more details about the performance on their website! 

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Mailed with love via Baum-kuchen

As a shop owner/curator, I live and breathe the life of Baum-kuchen. It's the air I have LOVED inhaling for last 5.5 years. Most of the day... it's a beautiful repetition... rhythm of what we know. Taking orders, fulfilling... and shipping them. I love the process... it's soothing and meditating to put together something special to send out from our door. 

Between all the normal days...  there is a day that comes with a crazy dose of excitement. Yesterday was little bit like that. Towards the end of last year, I made a huge leap of faith to place an order for Baum-kuchen original masking tape as well as our own shipping tapes. I don't know why it took me so long to place these orders... but emotionally I was not quite ready to have rolls and rolls of custom shipping tapes in our storage beforehand. 

Yesterday everything was delivered at the doorsteps after weeks of anticipation. Our masking tapes (from Lumi), new BK stamps to kraft shipping tape (from Uline). I loved that it came on Friday when we were all there at the studio. I pretty much jumped around and gave high five to everyone in the room throughout the day. 

I took some snapshots of the packages that are leaving from our studio today to share some of the new BK unwrapping experience using the new analogue BK artifacts. 

I love that all these little new artifacts are ingredients for our team to get inspired when they prepare orders. Each package will probably look slightly different depending on the items inside. But I trust that everyone on our team will be putting a great deal of thoughts and mindfulness when they seal the each package.  

I hope you enjoy opening the next BK package when the time comes... and I hope we get to continue sharing these special milestones with you. 

xoxo
-wakako






Thursday, January 7, 2016

LOVE for Analogue / personal touch with wax seal


Baum-kuchen studio wax seal from Baum-Kuchen on Vimeo.

We recently had a wax seal party at our studio! Well... it was Nerine and me learning about wax seal from Eunice and getting totally psyched about using wax seal on everything everywhere!

Before I had this little session with Eunice, I felt pretty intimidated by the idea of wax seal so I was grateful that she broke things down in easy steps and showed us tons of different ways to use wax seal in today's analogue world!

We are designing our Baum-kuchen original wax seal stamp for very very near future... and can't be thrilled more! For now.... I hope this visual story will get your creative juice going!



Here is a little introduction by Eunice followed by process images and ideas on how to use wax seal in today's analogue world. 

A LITTLE HISTORY/.
The first usage of seals can be traced back to some of the earliest known civilizations of man. Some seals have been found from as early as the Indus Valley and Mesopotamia civilizations. The very first seals were made from clay and impressed using rings or cylinders.
The usage of “wax” in seals did not take place until the Middle Ages by only eminent individuals such as bishops, monarchs and royal spokespeople to authenticate documents, by the 13th century wax seals became more widespread and were being used by monasteries, guilds, aristocrats and eventually common folk.
Each seal would be very unique to its owner and would often be used in place of a signature due to widespread illiteracy during the 13th century. Wax seals were occasionally stamped directly onto a document, but later became more common for them to be stamped separately and then affixed to the bottom of the document with a ribbon, cord or strip of parchment.
The traditional type of wax used to seal documents during the middle ages were composed of a resin and wax mixture which became very hard upon sealing. This type of “hard” wax was used during the middle ages for authenticity and confidentiality, as when one tried to peel open the seal, it would crack into pieces to ensure it had not been tampered with.
Sealing letters and documents are a historical by-gone which may seem outdated, however, the distinguished and romantic history of that era is the very fact as to why they are now so appealing in the modern century. Anyone who has had the pleasure of receiving a letter or card with a unique seal can attest to the excitement that comes with opening it… 

QUICK TIPS AND TECHNIQUES /. 
+ Parchment paper is your best friend. It is not necessary but will make the job much easier. Have one small sheet of parchment paper to cover your “working area” where you will be doing the wax seal. The parchment paper will serve as a space where you can safely drop your wax stick as soon as you are done letting the wax drip onto your desired area. 
+ The parchment paper not only will protect your working area but can be used to adhere wax to string so it can easily be removed to either make a wax seal charm on a letter, or even wax seal stickers! 
+ A wicked wax seal may seem more convenient however; the wax will drip very slowly. By the time you are done, parts of the wax you have put onto your desired surface may already have hardened. In order to avoid this, instead of letting the lit part of the wick do the job on its own, have a long lighter in hand with the flame under the wax seal to help expedite the wax melting process. 
+ Some types of wax can be stickier than others. Should you find that you are having issues with the wax adhering to your seal like chewing gum, it is advisable to have a damp paper towel on hand where you can lightly moisten the surface of your wax seal before dipping it into your puddle of freshly melted wax. 
+ Modern day wax composed of a bees wax mixture can be safely sent via snail-mail without issues as long as your wax seal is not very thick. However, just to be on the safe side it is recommended that you write or stamp “non-machinable” on the envelope and ask your post officer to “hand cancel” the postage. It will cost you a few cents more to send it this way but will protect your mail art from getting damaged. 
SOURCES /. 
Wax Seals  
Modern Flexible Sealing Wax  
Traditional Hard Sealing Wax 
Wax Seal Embellishments



1. Add a unique character to your snail mail
Make sure to use softer wax mixture (bees wax mixture) when you are mailing the envelope with wax seal. Also stamp "non-machinable" on the envelope and ask your post officer to "hand cancel" the postage! You can use the wax seal as a decorative purpose or actually seal the envelope.









2. Make it shine!
You can use Wax Seal Embellishments to add little sparkles to your seal. Just tap your wax seal stamp on the pad with Wax Seal Embellishments before you use it for sealing. We noticed that the gold embellishment came out more vividly when it was used with a lighter color wax.

3. Seal a twine
You can also use the wax stamp to seal a twine or tied knot. I love how different textures come together to create a beautiful analogue artifact.





4. Make a wax charm
You can create a custom charm by adding a wax seal to a string. Tape a string on a parchment sheet to make a mini workspace for the wax seal to harden!





5. You can use different artifacts as wax stamps! 
Did you know that you don't have to use an actual wax stamp to create a seal? Anything metal that can create a unique impression could work as a template for your seal.



6. Wax seal sticker
Create wax seals on parchment sheet. Once seals cool down, you can easily peel them off and keep them as wax seal stickers for future use! We used double sided tape to add the wax seal sticker to our notebook and it worked seamlessly!


7. Of course... wax seal party won't be complete without putting some seals on our Traveler's Notebook, right? 



Tuesday, January 5, 2016

LOVE for Analogue / custom sticker made of washi tape!

A lot of our Baum-kuchen friends have told us that they have a pretty extensive collection of washi tapes that are waiting to be utilized. But they tend to sit on the table for a long (looooong) time... so I asked Eunice what are some fun ways of using these tapes.

The answer: Why not make custom shape stickers?

We shared little bit about this technique when we featured DIY custom tags during the holidays. I was so thrilled to learn this handy method and wanted to put together another post to share more images with you and the way to apply the technique in the real project.

Eunice showed us how to turn a simple card stock into a charming custom postcard. I hope you enjoy scrolling down the images. You can mix and match some interesting color themes from washi tapes when you are using this technique (the color combination I never thought of:) and as long as you use a slick paper surface (Eunice recommends kitchen wax sheet), you can easily peel off your custom washi tape stickers.

List of artifacts used in this project:









Sunday, December 27, 2015

Notes To A Friend by Yuri Chung


Notes To A Friend / hourglass by Angie Park from Baum-Kuchen on Vimeo.

Few days before my birthday in mid-December, our friend Angie invited me and Sara of Great Plain to join her at the silent auction she was contributing. The video is a mini Instagram snippet from the night I captured.

"Notes To A Friend" by Yuri Chung was one of the most moving texts I have read in a while... Below is a description of the project from their website and why this came together.

---------------------

Notes To A Friend began as a personal project by our friend and Untitled Mondays member Yuri Chung on Instagram.
A few months shy of her 4th year in remission from breast cancer, Yuri found out that her cancer had returned in the form of Stage 4 breast cancer.

Her response was "Notes To A Friend"
“This is a personal project I am starting today. Less than a month before I found out about my diagnosis, I had sent "notes" to a friend about my experience with breast cancer four years ago. Ironically, we were collaborating on a special project: mostly about being a survivor & moving forward. I still think these thoughts are valid, important, and worth sharing. I sent these to my friend in a simple word document, in no particular order or form. The designer in me went ahead and made this to share with you. I'll post a new "note" for the next 10 days.”
---------------------


I hope you have a chance to read through her notes on their website when you are ready. At the gallery where the silent auction was hosted I pulled myself together to read all Yuri's notes until I got to her parents' letters to her. Her parents' letters... I had to read them by myself at home... taking few days to get through the entire letters because it really made my whole heart opened.

Sometimes we encounter these moments in life when you are nudged to rethink the meaning of life itself. Why do we do what we do... everyday?

I was grateful that I had an opportunity to be there with Angie and Sara the night.


Monday, December 21, 2015

Gift embrace our hopes and dreams...



Every year Frido and I spend quite bit of time discussing and figuring out what to share with Satchi and Coco as Christmas gifts. We don't buy a lot for rest of the year except their birthday in June and Christams so it's exciting for us to think of something special...

On December 6th... for Saint Nicolaus day, they got a pair of vintage aviator caps and vintage binocular from Japan. I have to say... Frido is amazing in treasure hunting and discovering something unique on eBay. They have been playing a lot of "traveling" pretend game where they are on the boat or airplane made of upside down couch and pillows... heading to Yakushima or Singapore (where Frido traveled pretty frequently in last few years). So we thought these props might ignite their imagination little bit more.

As we unfolds holiday spirit which invites few occasions of gift exchanges, I love reminding myself that gift embraces our hopes and dreams for someone special. It's not just "things" that we are giving but it's the meaning behind it and how we see the person playing with it, using it, wearing it, experiencing it...

To me remembering the concept completes the feeling of holidays in a holistic way.

I hope you are doing well with holidays in and ahead... And I like to also remind ourselves... that less of everything and anything is always more:)

xoxo
-wakako

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