Wednesday, November 30, 2011


This post is for myself... if/when I read this back.
This morning... I loved:

- seeing sun come up through my bedroom window.
- having just enough time to organize my to-do list in the morning before we got busy with our day.
- being surrounded by beautiful artifacts I adore while enjoying my morning coffee. (including this chalkboard tablet I recently acquired which PERFECTLY fitted in my Traveler's Notebook when I took it to my grocery shopping!)
- taking roo and little teddy bear to grocery shopping. 
- seeing Roo play in the kitchen while I did the dishes.
- enjoying the late breakfast for one after I put little roo to nap.

thank you...

Sunday, November 27, 2011


Wow... what a difference nine months makes. I took the first photo in February and the second one on Thanksgiving Day. Same spot, same chair and same girl with a huge growth under her belt!

She is in the phase of discovering "communication". The look on her face when a word comes out of her mouth and we can actually understand what she is trying to say... is priceless.

She is also learning good manners... saying "pliiizzz (please)" when she likes to ask for something. Sumo wrestler like squat "bow" to gesture a thank you. We weren't sure how German/Japanese/English languages are going to work out in the house but somehow she is swimming through these three languages like a little fish in the ocean.

Oh let's not forget...,  she is into accessory... so her little leather purse she got from her friend Angie and Jessie goes everywhere!

It has been such an amazing journey to see her grow and become her own person...  It is really what life is all about, isn't it?

Friday, November 25, 2011

our Thanksgiving...

We are enjoying the time at home away from home...
I love our non-traditional way of spending Thanksgiving with my family.  Japanese hot pot dinner on Thursday, playing monopoly past midnight, taking a walk to the park, crape lunch with all the leftovers from Thursday night... (I think turkey crape with stuffing and gravy is a great way of taking care of turkey leftover!).

We weren't really sure if we wanted to be anywhere near the word "shopping" this afternoon, so instead we headed out to the marina. Roo was so happy to be outside, breathing fresh ocean air and seeing all the dogs from the neighborhood... but I think the best part was to be hanging out with her favorite people in life. It melts my heart to see her experiencing the big life...

I hope you are enjoying your weekend:)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

thank you...

Today I am thankful for:

... the opportunity to witness our daughter grow everyday
... being able to find a lot of passion in what I do for living
... having family to share life with... both ups and downs
... skills and trades I have learned to craft my path
... staying connected with friends near and far
... being able to create
... fighting over yummy breakfast... (with the same family mentioned above:)
... and life we have... to live everyday.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Inspirational Investment {the Push Pin World Map}

We are finishing up with our Push Pin World Map just in time for the holiday season!

Few years ago, FB and I found a wrapping paper that was inspired by a vintage world map. We loved the map so much that we mounted it on a cork board, framed it and made a rule that we would place a white push pin whenever we travel to a new place together. Three years and 28 white pins later, we decided to take the idea to the next level and share it with everyone who has the passion for travel and adventure!

Frido, my creative, awesome, German (and I would add more attributes if I am allowed) husband took charge of the creative process. We used up-to-date world map data and designed timeless yet sophisticated aesthetics. Once the design of the map was complete (after many many weeks of tweaking the map which took over the remaining processing power on his laptop), we worked closely with a local printing studio to lithograph print the map on a high quality & very sustainable Neenah Classic Laid Hand Crafted Recycled paper.

Each map is laminated on 1/8" cork board (which will ensure that your push pins stay in place:) then framed by a master framer in Pasadena in white or maple frames. We made sure that these frames are made in the USA and are FSC certified from managed forests.

We are really thrilled to launch this map as the first product of baum-kuchen original {Inspirational Investment} collection... because you know..., it's awesome to be able to invest in inspiration as a creative individual:) I have a good feeling that we will be spending a big chunk of 2012 to develop more original items for this collection! 

I would love to hear your thoughts on the map as well as the idea of {Inspirational Investment}. 

I think that the map will be great as a part reference tool, part art piece... to bring inspiration to your home from around the world. (but again... I am little biased:)



Purchasing Information:
Inspirational Investment Map
Price: $178 for white and maple frame
Available at baum-kuchen shop

Sunday, November 20, 2011

it takes a village...

It has been so wonderful to have family, friends and more friends stay with us this fall. It started with FB's parents from Germany in October... then we recently had our really good friend Susan for 10 days.

I feel like our little roo grows so much more when family/friends are around her. It really is true that it takes a village to raise a child... seriously. Susan also stocked our refrigerator with all kinds of comfort foods in case we get really really busy during the holiday season.  So sweet, right???

We miss you already here, Susan!!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

holiday card in baum-kuchen style

I am (once again) working night shift to tackle a project. This time... baum-kuchen holiday card!

There has been quite bit of designing/prototyping/collaborating/printing/packaging this special card... so I am really excited to see them come together. I tried to simplify the design so I can produce few hundred cards without totally killing myself (or my back) but the process is still pretty labor intensive .

I am including a little gift inside as a surprise... just to say "thank you" to my awesome customers. Despite late night work hours, it makes me happy to be able to do this. To really think of... and design  all the details, having 120% of creative control over one project and physically making things that matter.

I was able to mail the first batch today (thank you Frido for making so many trips to post office!!!) and am planning to get through the big chunk of production this weekend... so hopefully most of cards arrive before Thanksgiving holiday.

I can't wait to share what's inside with you in a few weeks:)

have a great night!
(hoping to make it to hot yoga tomorrow morning... we will see.)

Friday, November 18, 2011

thankful for {my work day}

Today was my work day. I love my work day...

Being productive at my desk, creating something out of nothing, being surrounded by my favorite products, and having a moment to be thankful for what I do to make living.

FB and I were talking about what's next for us and our shop. You know... the kind of big dreams. Maybe we will tackle it in 2012... or maybe in 2013.

But for now, we're pretty happy doing what we do with just 2 of us (+ little roo)!

Happy weekend!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

baum-kuchen pop-up shop: Good Karma:)

Okay... I can't believe we are already half passed November.

We have been super busy at shop. I can feel that the holiday season is slowly getting close by the way orders are coming in.

Since we just finished our November pop-up shop at the Rose Bowl Flea Market, I would love to share some pics and stories from the day with you. I have to say...  compared to last month (which was a total defeat), we did amazing this past Sunday.  I am starting to figure out that "location" has a lot to do with the success at this kind of market. This time we had a little corner spot in the antique area of the flea market facing the main circulation traffic. It was so nice to be noticed and hear a lot of compliment on the booth layout as well as the selection of items.

My favorite part of the day was when I helped my customers create THE perfect Traveler's Notebook for him/her based on how they were thinking of using them. It felt like I was totally spoiling them with good care and it felt nice:)

Oh and multiple customers told me that I must be from Art Center... just the way I presented the products and organized the information. I took it as a compliment!

After 12 hours of being on my feet (including loading/unloading at the market then at home), we were exhausted... but at the same time so grateful to have had the opportunity to actually share our items in person. We are up for two back-to-back shows in December. We will be in Culver City on December 10th Remodelista Holiday Market then another pop-up shop at Rose Bowl Flear Market on 11th. It's going to be a BIG weekend for us but I am looking forward to making additional improvement based on last Sunday's experience:)

Susan, thank you so much for being my partner-in-crime at the market and taking all the great photos!!! xo

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Rainy and cold outside... fun and cozy inside.

We are having very cold days here mixed with plenty of rain. It's pretty rare in Los Angeles to have this kind of weather... We are doing our best to keep ourselves occupied and creative.

One thing I (we) did was to sprinkle left over garlands from little roo's birthday party to make a colorful flag for "roo's spot". As you could probably imagine..., she wants to open and close every single drawer and cabinet in our house. She does know that most of these drawers don't belong to her because she says "papa" when she opens them. She open them anyways and sometimes grab whatever she can find inside to play with... and I go..., "no little roo. It's papa's."

I figured a good alternative to our routine would be to have special drawers for little roo so I can guide her to "her" drawers when she feels like exploring the treasure. So here they are! We got one in our office area and one in the kitchen. 

I think we will fill our afternoon with more drawing session and a walk with shep since cloud is moving away (and taking a walk with shep while holding his leash is her favorite activity she picked up recently).

Happy Sunday to everyone:)

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Hello {Midori Kangaroo Spiral Notebook}

I am pretty flexible when it comes to "how" I use my sketchbook. I doodle, lists, collage, capture... anything and everything that comes to my way that is inspiring and thought provoking... so it wasn't hard for me to completely fall in love with these Midori's Kangaroo Spiral Notebooks when I found them!

Isn't it clever? It's like they are the perfect hybrid of a sketchbook and envelopes. A match made in heaven... and it totally hits the sweet spot!! 

I am definitely taking one (or more) to my next trip and FB suggested that I would use one just to keep our little roo's memorandum... which makes me wonder if this would be a pretty cool gift for a baby shower. Maybe customize the cover and a few inside pages for specifics like "first name tag at the hospital"... etc. etc.  I think its potential is endless.

I decided to carry them in two sizes at my shop. A5 in a vertical format and B6 in a horizontal format. Let me know what you think:)

Purchase Information:
Midori Kangaroo Notebook (Vertical/A5) Price: $13
Midori Kangaroo Notebook (Horizontal/B6) Price: $13

Friday, November 4, 2011

Our office equipped!

We had an adventurous morning - another local estate sale visit! This one was unique because it was all vintage and collectibles. The sale started at 8am and we were there at 8:10am to find an warehouse full of like minded people hunting for their treasure! Seriously... people were buying cars full of goodies.

We were looking for some kind of storage for our office space as well as clever ways to display our items at pop-up shop. I am glad to have found a few wooden crates, a wire basket... and this fabulous foldable trellis shelf that becomes super compact when it's not used. It will be so perfect to hang our Message Bags as well as SIWA bags. I had to fight hard for this... negotiating until the very end with a lady who first found this shelf in the corner. A part of fun for an estate sale:)


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