Review: Kimono-inspired On The Go makeup bag

Today I’m showing off a beautiful kimono-inspired travel makeup bag by Mandy of The Lime Green Sewing Room. Mandy is a good friend as well as an incredibly creative and talented person and I wanted to support her new endeavor.

If there’s one thing I love nearly as much as kimono, it’s makeup. I’d been looking for a travel bag with an attached brush roll and couldn’t find one that was compact enough to throw in a purse but big enough to actually carry anything useful, so I asked Mandy if she’d be interested in helping me out and I’m so thrilled with the results! She combined a few patterns together to create the On The Go makeup bag, and it’s absolutely perfect.

This beautifully mod kiku fabric was the jumping-off point for the entire bag. The colours feel especially kimono-inspired to me, I’d love to see an outfit that incorporates red, grey, and mint green like this! The brush roll section is a great accent, and I love that she went to the effort to find coordinating details like the ribbon tie and even the zipper. The brush roll part is treated so it’s easy to clean, it just needs to be wiped down if the brushes leave a mess on it and the top flap keeps them well-protected in transit. The bag itself is enormous – it holds everything shown in these photos with room to spare, and once it’s tied shut it fits comfortably in my hand and barely takes up any room in my purse. This bag is adorable and with careful organisation and planning, it will be just as practical for an overnight jaunt as it will be for a long vacation.

You can find the Lime Green Sewing Room on EtsyFacebook, and Instagram!

I purchased this item myself and chose to review it.If you have a topically appropriate craft, product, or service you would like me to review, please contact me.

Kimmidolls – A modern take on a Japanese classic

If you’re reading this blog, odds are high that you’ve got at least a passing familiarity with kokeshi dolls. They are one of the most easily recogniseable traditional Japanese art forms. The simple little dolls, with their smooth bodies and big round heads, are naive and charming, while maintaining that quintessential clean-lined aesthetic.

As you may already know, I work in a toy store and love hoarding collecting action figures and art vinyl toys. So imagine how thrilled to bits I was when I came across Kimmidolls. They are made in Australia, and remain true to the spirit and aesthetic of traditional kokeshi while also reflecting modern aesthetics and collecting. While they all have the same smooth body and blunt bob hairstyle, each doll has a unique facial expression and kimono. Rather than being carved of wood, they are made of a heavy and durable stone resin. They are all individually named, and each doll represents a positive emotion or personality trait. They are incredibly adorable and appeal to both my kimono fascination and my urge to collect things. There are four sizes, from the tiny key-chain models to the limited-edition extra-large ones, often decorated with Swarovski crystals.

My collection is small, but I only discovered these beauties late last year.

 

 

I’ve got a wishlist, and hope to keep my collection growing. They’re an affordable little indulgence, especially when I am too broke and too big to wear kimono as frequently as I’d like to.

Kimmidolls can be found frequently in Australia, Asia, and Europe, but may also be available in smaller art/collectibles shops in North America, and are easily available from online retailers such as Tokyo Otaku Mode, Chesterton Manor, City Lights Collectibles, and eBay. There is also the Kimmidoll International fanpage on Facebook, where they engage with fans and post about upcoming collections. And if you are lucky enough to find yourself at Walt Disney World, the Mitsukoshi Department Store in the Japanese Pavilion at Epcot has a huge selection. It’s where I got Airi and Chikako.

I purchased this item myself and chose to review it. I received this item as a gift.

A few photos

Not a big update today. As some of you know, one of my other passions is photography. Earlier today I went to the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre of Montreal‘s Japanese crafts show/festival, and I thought I would share some of the photos I took that I am especially fond of.

Japanese Doll

Origami box

And this is a box of wagashi for Hina Matsuri that Kansai_gal sent me a few weeks back. I finally managed to find time to photograph them before I ate them! Cute, and delicious!
Hina Matsuri Wagashi

Earthquake and Tsunami in Japan

I have turned the donation resources at the bottom of this post into a permanent page in the top link – please check there for any future updates. – Japan Donation Resources

My hopes are with the people of Japan in this horrifying time. Please take a moment to spare a thought for the culture that brought a lot of us together and the people who have lost their lives, loved ones, or homes.

If you are trying to get in touch with someone in Japan and are not having success, Google has set up a Person Finder service or you can browse the Red Cross survivor index

Live news stream from MBS, in Japanese. The beeping in the background is the aftershock alert.

Wikipedia article – may not be the most reliable source currently due to constant updates

CNN’s Live blogging of the Earthquake and subsequent aftershocks and tsunamis for Day 1

CNN’s Live blogging of the Earthquake and subsequent aftershocks and tsunamis for Day 2

Seismic activity map of the quake

Photos from the Globe and Mail

Shocking before and after photos – these really help show the devastation, if you’re wondering why such a large, developed nation desperately needs help right now.

Gakuranman’s live-blogging with links to news sources, help sites, etc

Donation resources
If you are looking for ways to help, you can:

Donate directly to Red Cross Japan via Google Crisis Response, which also has a lot of good resources

Donate to the Red Cross USA to provide much-needed first aid, water, and medication

Donate to Doctors without Borders to provide first aid as well as more intensive trauma aid

Donate to International Medical Corps to provide first aid as well as more intensive trauma aid

Donate to Global Giving to provide water, food, clothing, and many needed resources

Donate to ShelterBox to provide boxes of life-sustaining shelter supplies such as tents and camp stoves to survivors

If you are in Canada, Air Miles has set up a service where you can donate 200 Air Miles and they will give 25$ to the Red Cross.

Donate to Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and Support to help the often-forgotten and silent victims of natural disasters, the wildlife, pets, animals in zoos, etc.

George Takei (Sulu from the original Star Trek) is posting all sorts of links and donation resources on Twitter

The Poster Cause Project has a wonderful collection of original themed art prints, with proceeds going to Doctors Without Borders to aid their work in Japan.

I have turned the design at the top of this post into an item on Zazzle, they will be sending all post-production profits from the sale of it directly to Red Cross Japan. I would like to make it clear that I get absolutely nothing from the sale of this item, so I am urging you to buy it solely for the relief efforts.

Also, my dear friend Naomi is auctioning off a few of her favourite kimono and obi ensembles, with 100% of the winnings going to Global Giving through eBay’s charity services.
View her auctions here

Merry Christmas, dear readers!

Just a quick post to wish anyone celebrating Christmas today a wonderful holiday. If you’re not celebrating Christmas, I hope you had a wonderful holiday whenever and whatever it was, and that you have a great weekend! That lovely goof in my tree is my beloved Vinnie. He’s the only decoration we need!

I was a lucky duck and got a wonderful lobster tsuke-obi and some beautiful watercolour prints of traditional Kumadori makeup that I will be sharing soon. I actually have several gorgeous Japanese pieces of artwork I’ve received recently that I’ve been meaning to post – perhaps I’ll do an entry about them now that I finally have a bit of time off.

Did you get any wonderful kimono or related items as gifts this year? If so, what did you get! Please share in the comments :)