Monday, 21 June 2010

This is - Christina

aka UmeOrigami who tells us in her profile about her motivation. Rather than copy and paste here, I urge you to read it all, in her own words - it's not often I find myself so moved by a profile!


Favourite colour?

Too many to name! I usually gravitate towards warm colors like peach, pink, and red... which is funny since I recently redesigned my website in black, grey, and blue!

Favourite smell?

The way it smells after a good summer rain in Pennsylvania. A weird answer, I know, but ever since I have moved out to California it is one of the smells that I miss the most! It is just earthy and perfect after a thunderstorm and everything has this amazing sublime quality. Now the only “rain” I get is from the lawn sprinkler...

Origami earrings

Favourite place?

Mt. Takao in Japan. It is about an hour outside of Shinjuku, Tokyo via the Keio line. It may not be as grand or as popular as Mt. Fuji, but it is a great hike and looks amazing in the autumn time.


Favourite sound?

I have a pet salamander who is aquatic and when she is hungry she likes to flip the stones on the bottom of the tank with her tail. It makes the cutest little “clink, clink” sound and she lets me know that she is there when I am all stressed out.

nifty: I've knitted a salamander (at least, I think so - is it the same as an axolotl?!

Favourite item in your shop of all time?

My Tomodachi magnetic paper doll bookmarks!


Although these are a relatively new product, I cannot get enough of them! I think they look so cute peeking out of my book. I am a graduate student so little things like that are enough to brighten my day! I keep meaning to list more, but I keep co-opting them for my own books...

Favourite shop that isn’t yours?

Can I have two? My two favorites are GiveGift on Zibbet and SesameBijoux on Etsy


I have been scheming for a long while to buy something from GiveGift because I absolutely adore the little pouches and bags made from Japanese fabrics. Her sewing looks nice and clean and I just cannot think of a cuter way to store things in my purse! Plus her work is affordable (5% off right now with free shipping!).

Nifty loves this one!

I have become a fan of SesameBijoux for her earrings. They are simple, gorgeous, affordable, and I always get compliments when I wear them. Her customer service is also amazing! I can personally vouch for her cascading crystal earrings.

What has been the most useful lesson you’ve learnt so far that you’d like to pass on to our readers?

I think the most valuable piece of advice is not to devalue your work. It gets hard sometimes when other people begin to sell similar things at rock-bottom prices, but you just need to know that your work and your time is valuable. People can buy origami all over the internet, but when my customers buy from me they know all the love, attention, and precision that goes into them. Just because it is a hobby, does not mean that you should give away your work for free--it takes years to cultivate that kind of creativity!

Nifty: Absolutely - and of course for some of us it isn't just a hobby, and maybe won't be for you, one day. Thank you for sharing with us - and if you haven't read Christina's profile yet, now is a good time!

Find Christina:

Want to join us on Zibbet? Please use NiftyKnits' referral link by clicking here.


petit bird said...

lovely blog post Nifty, I especially enjoy reading about favourite sounds and smells, it's our basic human instincts mixed up with creativity x

Barbra said...

Wonderful to learn about another Zibbeter!

Lilis said...

Hi Christina and Heather,
I'm glad you like my items ^_^
Thanks for the kind words!

Christina (Ume) said...

Thank you so much for this wonderful blog post! This Christina character sounds like an interesting gal (*snickers*)

Heather -- you rock my world. Thank you for featuring me!

Jonathan said...

Coming from her partner, living with a crafter has been a bit unusual at times, from finding scraps of paper everywhere (and I mean everywhere) to watching our cat eat half finished products, but in the end watching Christina create has been a great experience, and inspiring as well.

Heather Leavers said...

Thanks for your comments - especially Jonathon, it's not often a partner gives another perspective (though I'm not sure the cat is really giving an informed critique by eating)

Waterrose said...

I can so relate to the smell of the midwest after a always reminded me of corn fields. Here out smells like creosote after it rains....not a bad smell, just not home...

Angela said...

Great questions and really interesting answers