TOKYO TOURS!

HelloSandwichShibuya

The Hello Sandwich Tokyo Tour is for those who love the Hello Sandwich style and who crave the insiders tips to Tokyo! With so much to see in this city, and with many of the best places being hidden and off the beaten track, it would be my pleasure to show you the Tokyo secrets that I’ve discovered over the 9 years of calling this amazing city home.

Wander down the backstreets without having to battle with google maps, zip around to all the Hello Sandwich hotspots without having to check addresses or opening hours. Have lunch at super cute izakaya without having to worry about attempting to decipher the menu. Pop into the best shops to pick up some goodies and stop for instagram-worthy-shots as I wiz you around my favourite spots.

As I personally guide you around the city, I’ll point out some of my favourite bars and things like late night ramen haunts so you have some extra local intel up your sleeve for later on. Keen on finding out where you can do karaoke for just 10yen? I’ll let you in on the secret! And when the tour ends, if you would like me to recommend a local restaurant and make a reservation for you, consider it done. It’s all part of the service. ;) 

To find out more, click on over here to send an email to:

hello sandwich blog (at) gmail (dot) com

with the subject line TOKYO TOUR and I'll tell you alllllll about the tours!

xoxo

P.S. You might also like the Hello Sandwich Tokyo Guide PDF!

Hello Sandwich Tokyo Guide PDF edition!

HelloSandwichTokyoGuide

The Hello Sandwich Tokyo Guide reviews my favourite Tokyo suburbs including Shimokitazawa, Harajuku, Shibuya, Kichijoji, Nakameguro, Daikanyama, Shinjuku, Omotesando, Koenji, as well as some cool up and coming suburbs.

The Hello Sandwich Tokyo Guide is a guide for people who like travelling like a local and visiting hidden places off the beaten track. There are tips on where to rent a bike, the best bike path, the best coffee, the best craft shops, the coolest shops, the cheapest drinks, the most delicious pizza, the best izakaya, the cutest cafes, the best rooftop bar, the coolest hotels (and the cheap and cheerful hotels), the loveliest parks and soooo much more.

The Hello Sandwich Tokyo Guide 3rd edition lists over 150 fun places to visit! This handy 60 A5 pages PDF guide includes some favourites from the previous (pink) guide, but also includes loads of amazing new finds that I'm sure you'll love so, if you've already travelled to Tokyo on my previous guides, then you might fancy this guide, too!

This time, I've also included a 30 page PDF book-in-book supplement where I interview lovely shop owners, suggest tips on enjoying the perfect picnic in Tokyo (from where to pick up a bento, to setting up in the best spot in the park), and even some hotel room friendly craft tutorials.

It's a list of all of the places I frequent, making it a local insiders guide to Tokyo. Also included in the Hello Sandwich Tokyo Guide are language essentials and travel tips. It's the bloggers guide to Tokyo and if you'd like to visit the places seen on Hello Sandwich, then this guide is the zine for you.

Details:

60 A5 pages PDF

Plus 30 AF pages book-in-book PDF

Click HERE to get your copy!

Enjoy your trip to Tokyo, Sandwiches!

Love Love

Hello Sandwich

xoxo

YOAO.

Hello Sandwich YOAO Park

YOAO. You Only Ankle Once.

There have been so many events in my life that I’ve missed blogging about and have since forgotten the small details that make up these events, so I realise that unless I blog about it when it happens, it goes undocumented. And anyone who knows me knows that I love documenting. There’s still a trip to Copenhagen and Lithuania, and a few Amsterdam trips undocumented. And all my art residency pics.

So anyway, I guess what better time to blog than when I can’t walk, right? Okay, yosh, let’s get back to Sapporo, and the YOAO story.

I took an early flight to Sapporo to go and hang out with Kay. We had such an awesome day and even better night. Kay knows the best spots (you should see his google maps for Tokyo! Almost every piece of land covered in a colour-coded pin), so naturally we ended up at super popular lamb yakiniku restaurant for dinner. Daruma honten has been operating since 1954 and was sooooo delicious. Even the 30 minutes wait line was fun?! It started snowing as we were walking back to our hotel with our Sapporo Classics in hand and it was so incredibly fun and beautiful. We were chatting and laughing, taking videos and even FaceTiming Kay’s mum in Berlin.

Mutton Yaki Niku Hello Sandwich
Sapporo Classic Hello Sandwich

When we got back to the hotel we did a spot of dancing to Shindy - Affalterbach (which has now become the theme song to this whole YOAO story) before we noticed the snow seemed to be getting heavier. We opened the window and giant snowflakes started blowing into the room. It was chotto freezing but I couldn’t help hanging over the window ledge to let the snowflakes fall over me and I was filled with soooo much joy from the magic of snow. And because Kay is such a dreamboat and could see how much I wanted to be walking around in that pretty snow, before long we were outside in the park that our hotel overlooked.

Everything was perfect. We had the most fun night, delicious food, fun chats, I’d just picked up a new iphone and was all prepped to take super cute snow photos. Looking back on my iphone gallery from the night there are so many cute snow pics and there’s a video of me laughing hysterically as Kay slipped. Karma man, it’s a bitch! Hold up, let’s go back to the story of this fun park walk.

Kay Hello Sandwich Sapporo Park
Nakajima Koen Hello Sandwich Sapporp

So we are walking through the park. I was taking a heap of photos. Kay was leading the way and I was following the scent of his rolled tobacco and the sound of his German conversations. The warm pink glow of the sky from the artificial park lights was mesmerising. And then there was that beautiful almost-silence of snow falling.

Most of the people closest to me in my life are smokers so the scent of tobacco and watching the motions of people smoking is so comforting to me. And Kay is pretty much the master of making you want to start up. He pretty much makes anything look cool. He sat on a tree stump and lit up while I filmed it for instagram stories. (You can still find all of this night on my YOAO highlight). Kay glances up to exhale, before ‘Doei’ and stood up out of frame. We met in Amsterdam so he speaks Dutch, too.

After that, there are a few pictures of a snow-covered bench seat in my iphone, and then…

Well, ugh, I still cringe and hunch into my shoulders when I think back on it, well, then I slipped on the icy snow beneath the fresh snow and, it’s so gross, but the only way I can describe it was, my right ankle crumbled under me.

We phoned an ambulance, which, in true Japanese style, arrived in about four minutes. I was still telling the emergency line what had happened when I could hear the sirens. The ambulance or stretcher couldn’t make it into the snow-covered park, so they had to bring a surfboard like stretcher and carry me out of the park into the ambulance.

Kay sat in the back of the ambulance and took photos. Lol. Poor Kay, I doubt he thought his night in Sapporo would end like this. He got some pretty good shots tho. Meanwhile I was like those medical scenes in movies - watching the ceiling and lights pass by. Kay was an amazing support, reaching out and making sure I was okay.

K: “Why are you shaking?”

These next few pics are thanks to Kay.

Ambulance Hello Sandwich Kay
Hello Sandwich Ambulance Sapporo
Sapporo Hospital
Hello Sandwich x-ray

The emergency department handed me some pain killers, did an x-ray and confirmed that I’d broken my ankle and would need an operation (I’d never had one before - soo gross - but mayyyybe more on that later), and sent us off in a taxi with some crutches. We had just popped out of the hotel with our hotel key so didn’t even have any money or ID.

K: “Do you take Apple Pay?”

It was so nice of the hospital to treat me with the promise of me returning the next day with my insurance card.

Kay Hotel Key Hack

Side note - Kay’s hotel room key hack.

The next few days were a bit of a blur. Calling airlines, cancelling appointments, jumping around the hotel room on one foot trying to somehow have something resembling a sponge bath, letting what had happened and how it would impact things somewhat set in, Kay bringing combini run wine and ice for my ankle to the room, discovering just how useful wheelchair toilets are (and having a breakdown in one so loudly that a Jetstar staff was waiting for me to wheel me back to the gate). Actually, Jetstar Japan were soooo amazing. They arranged a wheelchair and assistant staff all the way from Sapporo back home to the taxi stand in Tokyo. They even went to the airport convenience store for me with my wallet.

Hiroo Hospital
Hiroo Hospital Hello Sandwich

Then it was a matter of taxis from Narita, a visit to Hiroo Hospital where they wanted to admit me for a month minimum (~!!!), packing up my apt in Tokyo and packing for my flight to Sydney (Thanks Mama and Rob).

Hanami with Boco

Boco-chan picked me up form Hiroo hospital and took me to see the cherry blossoms near my apartment before I flew to Australia.

Hanami Daizawa
Crutches Hanami

Shige and Kay came over to my apartment with coffee and helped take my rubbish out, pack up my apartment and wheel me down to the taxi to the airport.

Raden Wheelchair
JAL

I was so lucky that Mum and Rob could get me on a fancy flight to Sydney. (Thank you so much). The JAL staff were amazing and even got out a wheelchair to take me to the bathroom inflight.

Sakura Lounge
JAL Sakura Lounge
Pills and Sparkling
RPA Curtains

As soon as I landed in Sydney we went straight from the airport to RPA emergency for what ended up being a 3 hour operation to place 12 screws and a big metal plate. 6 weeks with no weight on the foot and 2 months on crutches. Just the other day I watched as they took the plaster cast off and I saw the incisions for the first time. I mean it’s weird when something happens to your body when you’re under anaesthetic because you have no idea what to expect. It was so much bigger than I thought and so many stitches, ugh. Naturally the chronic documenter in me took a video of the stitches coming out - dayum it’s gross.

RPA Bruises
Stupid Shoes

Hah. I love this medical report.

CT scan

I don’t, however, love a CT scan. That injection feels pretty gross as you feel it go through your arm veins and heats up your body.

Pre Op

Your girl is off to her first ever operation to join the metal hardware crew.

RPA Breakfast

RPA hosptial brekkie.

RPA Sponge Bath

Pro tip - if you ask for a sponge bath kit (I did it myself! Lol) you get to take off your oxygen mask. BTW apparently right after the operation, in the recovery room, I was annoyed why no one spoke Japanese. Lol.

X-ray Post op

Seeing this was…chotto…shocking.

And so now I have to wait another three weeks till I can put any weight on it, and then two months on crutches. I live in a 3F apartment with no lift or not even a hand rail. So when I get back to Tokyo I’ll do the bum shuffle up the stairs again. So. Glam.

YOAO iphone

Kay made me this YOAO iphone wallpaper, and an awesome German Rap playlist. I’ve been so lucky to have legend friends and family who helped / are helping me through it all. And thank you guys all so much for all of your sweet insta DMs and comments.

Sooo…what cute / fun things should I do while I’m recovering?

Thanks for always being there guys.

Love Love
Hello Sandwich
xoxo

Wrapping Idea Book!

WrappingIdeaBookCover
HelloSandwichPicnic

Sandwiches!

My new book is here! It’s a wrapping idea book made in collaboration with two other authors! Our book is in Japanese language but all 100 projects have step-by-step image tutorials so it’s easy to follow even if you don’t read Japanese.

We’ve shown examples of how to wrap food items, stationery, cosmetics, flowers, and so on. And the first chapter is all about various ways to tie ribbons and fold paper. Oh! And there is a shop list at the back for when you’re next in Tokyo!

You can buy the book through Amazon here.

I hope you’ll enjoy it, Sandwiches!

HelloSandwichFruits
HelloSandwichCandy
Wrapping
HelloSandwichPageLayout

P.S. You can see my other books here.

Love Love
Hello Sandwich
xoxo

Togakushi Shrine Misty Forest

Cedar Trees Hello Sandwich

Hello Sandwiches!

I'm sitting next to the kerosene stove heater in my little artist in residence house in Nagano, listening to the pitter patter of rain falling on the rice fields outside my door and still finding this whole experience incredibly special and surreal.

Did I already tell you that this house, this 'exact house', that I am staying in was where a friend of a friend used to live a few years ago. Everyday the world feels smaller and smaller. In 2011 I wrote this article on my blog. And now, through the wonders of the internet, Saya-chan and I have been hanging out together in Nagano where she now lives. I feel like the biggest creep 'Haaiiiiiii, we've only just met but there are pictures of you in your bath on my website!' Bwahahahaaaaaa. Ah, the internet.

Saya-chan took me, and lovely Valentina of Danish homewares brand, rice, to Togakushi's Misty Forest the other day. There was so much laughter, so much soba, so many photos, so many sound recordings and such picturesque scenery. The perfect day.

Autumn Hello Sandwich
Saya chan Hello Sandwich

This one goes out to you, sweet Adrian, (and yeah, I know, it's not centered haha). From now on I am carrying a yellow knitted sweater in my photography bag as a prop. You guys, if you haven't seen Adrian's work (I met him on this Antwerp trip), you have to head right over to his site now! Saya-chan pulled out a light meter app at one stage. Adrian, you would love shooting with her.

Mist in Forest Hello Sandwich
Moss Hello Sandwich

This beautiful mossy forest!

Misty Forest Hello Sandwich
Hello Sandwich Misty Forest

When we arrived at the entrance to Tohakushi shrine it was clear-ish, but as time passed, the most incredible mist flowed over us and turned out photos into captured dreamlike ghibli moments.

Misty Forest Hello Sandwich
Autumn Leaves in Misty Forest Hello Sandwich
Nagano Misty Forest Hello Sandwich
Misty Cedar Trees Hello Sandwich

I took some sound recordings, too. I'm hoping to try and make a track before the end of my residency. Little sound snippets to transport you to Nagano from wherever you are.

Looking up at Autumn Hello Sandwich

Nagano is truly beautiful and if you ever have the chance to visit, I would definitely recommend it! I'm forever saying how I'm a city girl but each day here I'm becoming more and more country life savvy. There was an announcement on the local 'intercom?' that is in every house here, that warned us residents that a bear was sighted in our area so we should be very careful. Apparently there are wild boars, too. Hmmmm chotto...

If I get eaten by a bear and this is my last post ever, love you guys loads!

Just kidding! I won't get eaten by a bear!

Stay tuned for more inaka Nagano photos!

Love Love
Hello Sandwich

xoxo

Oh, and before I go! You guys, yesterday, the other artist in residence and I popped into the shrine next door to our houses to see the festival, and then we ended up at the enkai!!!
 

Enkai Hello Sandwich

OMG! How did I end up here?! Life is crazy!

Artist in residence in the rice fields!

Hello Sandwich AIR

Sandwiches!

I'm writing to you from a little rice field in Nagano where I am currently doing a 2.5 month artist's residency! This is the beautiful view from my tatami room.

Some of you might know I studied painting and drawing at university in Australia at the same time as working at Vogue Living magazine as a designer. I majored in painting and drawing for my masters degree at COFA (College of Fine arts, UNSW) but it has been such a long time since I've been able to take this time and focus on my drawing and a different sort of creativity. During my stay here I will be making a series of drawings, paintings, photographs, installations, and if I can, maybe experiment with making some music!

Hello Sandwich AIR House

This shot of our little houses was sent to me from the residency organisers before arriving. I was selected along with one other artist and we each have one of these little homes to ourselves for the duration of the residency.

AIR view
AIR view from room

The two above shots are taken from my front door. The natural soundtrack is little frogs and crickets! When it rains, it's so utterly beautiful. This is as close as I've been to camping since a trip to the Australian outback during my honours degree.

Around Nagano View
Around Nagano Tori

The artist's residency organisers have very generously taken us sightseeing around Nagano in a little van. It's ridiculously pretty out here. The air is so fresh and I feel like I'm living in a Ghibli animation.

Cloud Nagano
Walk to Combini view

The local combini is about 15 minutes walk away, but check out this view on the way! Soooooo different to my everyday Tokyo life.

Hello Sandwich Bus Stop cuties

I wandered around on one of my first days here and heard some chatter coming from this little bus stop.

"Are you waiting for the bus?", I asked, but these two cuties were just chilling out in the bus stop with their mismatched pattern outfits and apple juice cans. I really want in with this crew.

Local Supermarket

The local supermarket.

I introduced myself, but being a lovely little local town they already knew of us two artists staying here.

Local Kome

Although it's almost as if you don't need to visit the supermarket here because the local farmers keep dropping off vegetables at our doorsteps. Upon arrival I received this bag of beautifully packaged local rice, and below you can see the tomatoes that were dropped off this week. I just finished simmering them down into some fresh tomato sauce. The other artist, Yukari-chan, who lives in the house next door to me, brought along the set up for a pizza oven, so we will use this sauce for our pizza party. Soooooooo different from sitting in my Shimokitazawa apartment clicking refresh on the Dominos pizza GPS delivery website. To be honest, I'm so surprised at how differently I'm adapting to this slower pace life. I thought I would really struggle. But let's not get ahead of ourselves here. It's ten days in and I've fallen over twice (I was warned NOT TO GO OUTSIDE AT NIGHT), and I've developed quite a sophisticated bug check patrol after seeing mukade (a kind of poisonous centipede) and spiders that frighten even Australians.

Local Tomatoes
Kitchen in AIR

Getting set up in my little 80s kitchen. The morning light is divine. And I love cooking on a gas stove with a window. And I've been dyeing some fabric with these little berries.

Sunset in Tatami room

The afternoon light in the tatami room - I just can't!

Futon

And I spend my nights recharging here on this little floral covered futon. The organisers also gave me a kotatsu to use during my stay. I've wanted one for all of the 7 years I've been living in Japan!

I really want to keep a diary of this amazing residency with you all so I'll try and show as much as I can with you. At the end of each day my mind is kind of blank though. So much inspiration, and using Japanese language. I kind of blank out at the end of the day. But I'll ganbarimasu!

Love Love
Hello Sandwich
xoxo