Koichi Yanagimoto Exhibition

Exhibition Chewing Gum Wrappers

The Koichi Yanagimoto archivist exhibition at Six Factory was one of the best exhibitions I've seen in my life.

This exhibition showcased the prolific personal design collection of director, editor, writer and designer Koichi Yanagimoto, who sadly passed away recently. His collection was utterly incredible, and I had tears during my visit on the last day of the show.


Retro packaging, food packaging boxes, tickets, cleaning products, stationery, tooth paste, pencils, sauces, clips, airline tickets, stamps, napkins and sugar sachets were just a few of the things on display.

There were folders and folders of design inspiration that visitors to the exhibition were able to look through. I love to collect these sorts of things especially when I travel. I'm the weirdo at the Lithuanian hotel buffet breakfast wiping off the butter from the bottom of the label and slipping it in between my room key and phone to pop in my collection. But this collection was next level!

Banana Stickers

There was even an entire folder dedicated to banana stickers!

I loved the ANA folder which contained boarding passes, baggage tags, menus, salt and pepper sachets...And of course there was a folder dedicated to many other airlines, too.

Stress Stop

Even just one of these folders could have been an entire exhibition in itself.

Okay, I'm off to look through my little collection from my last trip to Amsterdam. You know I smuggled back an empty milk carton in my hand luggage because the packaging was too cute! Hah.

Love Love
Hello Sandwich

Studiomie, One Room Hotel, Ghent.

"It's the one with the graffiti on the gate". This was the last clue I received on my way to Studiomie, a one room hotel in a converted shipping container in Ghent. I was so lucky that the team at Walkie Talkie (Belgium's coolest PR agency) (Remember the Tourism Antwerp trip they invited me on?) recommended this little hotel to me.

As I entered Studiomie's door pin code a Euro-chic lady pulled up on her bicycle. This lady was INCREDIBLY cool. European, chic and cool. Dayum girl! Meet Mieke, the owner of Studiomie. Is there anything more awkward than being sprung by the owner as you let yourself into a strangers house. But Mieke pulled everything off effortlessly and warmly welcomed me. Those Euro-cool women. I can't even.

Mieke introduced herself and lead me up the winding outdoor stairs to the shipping container which would be my home for the night. Built with the idea partly of meeting new people, and also to hold up the structure of the front of Mieke's house, Studiomie is filled to the brim with joyful design surprises.  A fluoro tie here, a pastel knob hanger there, a scattering of HAY trays in the kitchen...you get the picture.

"Did it have windows?" asked my friend. Studiomie is filled with so much light even in winter, it's incredible. Mieke says she thinks of the wall-to-wall window as her moving painting. From the ground floor you can look up through this large window where "you can't see any buildings from the window, just the sky", she says, explaining how she likes to spend afternoons sitting there watching the clouds pass. In fact, Mieke says that sometimes her and her husband have a mini holiday there. Although the one room hotel is just meters away from their actual house, they pack food and whatever they might need for the weekend and staycation there. 

Inspired by Japanese 'pet architecture', Studiomie was built compact in true Tokyo style, with the most incredible attention to detail. Instead of rushing out early to explore Ghent, I spent a slow morning watching the light change and taking photos inside Studiomie. 

For such a tiny space there were so many light switches. Mieke explained how she doesn't like staying at hotels where the only lighting options are the overhead room light, the bedside lights and perhaps a floor lamp. She finds importance in creating special lighting and wanted her guests to be able to experience this same joy. The bedroom wall lights, scattered like polkadots above the bed, blew my mind. 

The butterfly mirror in the bathroom reflects a fluoro pink glow onto the white wall. Love!

Mieke doesn't offer food to her guests during the week but I would have loved to have seen what she prepared for a special weekend breakfast. On my way out to dinner the night I stayed I glanced over at her house which is across the yard from the container. In true Euro-cool form she had her windows completely open and was casually flicking through a recipe book and rolling meatballs. "She's making meatballs!" I squealed. I wasn't used to the way she was so comfortable with the curtains open. I loved this about Amsterdam, too. The way people would leave their windows open as they watched TV, sat by candlelight or cooked dinner. 

Mieke invited me into her house, which, of course, was absolutely gorgeous. Books for days. Incredible winter light which fell onto her kitchen bench and turned the foilage-intact-mandarins into a still life worthy of painting. 

Mieke was playing soft piano jazz through her MacbookPro as she worked from home on her dining table. A candle was burning, and tea was brewing. I wanted to move in. 

Mieke was kind enough to show me around her office, loan me a design travel book, and even drove me to the train station to get my train to Antwerp. If you're in Belgium you really must stay at Studiomie. Like me, you'll leave full of inspiration and with the biggest smile.

Love Love
Hello Sandwich

Villeroy & Boch x Hello Sandwich

"Darling, I don't think the backdrop is big enough".

I recently worked with the amazing team at Villeroy & Boch to share how Hello Sandwich would celebrate with Villeroy & Boch's beautiful products. After having been a Villeroy & Boch fan ever since my days at Vogue Living magazine, it was a dream come true collaboration. Actually, it was rather strange to be in the showroom pulling together a look for Hello Sandwich, rather than for Vogue Living. Let me see...that's a yes to the pink floral, a yes to the pink crystal, and, yassss I definitely need those gold plated cutlery to complete the look.

Villeroy & Boch selected four bloggers to demonstrate how we celebrate the festive season. Pop your sunnies on and take a peek of the Hello Sandwich story over here. I love that they titled my one 'Flamboyant picnic". Who me? ;)

We often have indoor picnics here at Hello Sandwich Tokyo HQ. Even though it's just a mini-me, Tokyo-size studio, it's lovely to bring friends together to celebrate here in the afternoon light. To set the indoor picnic mood we brought in some astro turf, a selection of crochet blankets, and a South African plastic table cloth is always at arms reach whenever I'm entertaining. Oh, and a portable record player goes a long way to set the mood for your super cute guests.

Florals on florals on florals.

Do you know just how good these Villeroy & Boch glasses sound when clinked together? The sound of sophistication!

Shop the look here.

Shiso flower bellinis.

Have a peek over here if you'd like to see some more of the picnic.

"Darling, can you wear that coloured check shirt I love?"

"Of course, darling, and I brought some sock and bow tie options, too"

My beastie (the name stuck after a typo as I'm sure you know if you've been reading this blog for a while) is the best! He wore one of his own bow ties from his brand Thokozile.

Beastie went around taking shots of my NARS lipstick stains on the beautiful glasses. Cuteness!

Bloggers and fans of Villeroy & Boch now have a chance to win some beautiful product. To enter, simply post a picture of your festive table on Instagram with the hashtag #celebrateVB. Good luck, Sandwiches!

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Hello Sandwich


Onigiri Brunch. 1. 2. 3.


1. 2. 3.

It's so fun to make colourful onigiri. These ones were made using the radishes and radish leaves I picked up in a pack for ¥298 from Odakyu Ox. I added some shiso konbu to one of them. Sometimes I make onigiri with parsley, peas, salt and pepper and wrap them with a shiso leaf. My Japanese friends always say 'Wow - it tastes so western'. But it makes sense, no? Risotto style. Next up I need to try the taco rice onigiri. 

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Hello Sandwich

Hello Sandwich x Kate Spade

Hello Sandwiches!

I had the incredible opportunity to work with my dream company, Kate Spade, this year.

The Hello Sandwich team created 800 handmade crepe paper flowers and made a hanging paper floral photo booth backdrop for the Fall 2016 press launch in Tokyo.  I've worked with Kate Spade before (here , here , and here), but nothing of this scale. I had to pinch myself a thousand times during the process. Walking into Tokyo head office for a conference call with the NYC head office, receiving dresses / bags / accessories via courier for me to wear to the event, being behind-the-scenes during installation, a signed-by-Deborah-Llyod thank you letter and necklace...I can't even!

The brief began with a PDF outline and a series of pantone swatches. We made mock up test paper flowers and crepe flowers to see which material worked best. Once we had decided that crepe paper was the winner we hand dyed each roll so it would precisely match the pantone swatches from the NY team.

Crepe blooms in Hello Sandwich HQ before joined onto strands.

The photo booth flowers looked so divine nestled into each other.

It was thrilling to see the first batch of flowers at Hello Sandwich HQ.

The collection grew and grew until Hello Sandwich HQ resembled a florist. Each handmade petal, leaf and bud were carefully attached to a stem and finished with florist tape.

The day before the event! Installing the roses into four large vases. Two of these vases were placed on stage, and two inside the entrance, right after the red carpet.

The floral backdrop WIP.

Cuties having their photo taken at the launch party.

Cutest models. Ever.

My friend Shoko-san with the floral backdrop.

And, OMG, Deborah Llyod in front of the floral background.

Guys - I die!!!

The morning after the night before. By this stage we had been working on 3 hours sleep for a week. One time my assistant even turned up to the studio with her overnight bag! When it was all over I was too tired to throw away, let alone finish the (very glamorous) cup noodles.

This amazing job is one of my proudest moments. Thank you so much to the incredible Kate Spade team who are an ABSOLUTE DREAM to work with.

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Hello Sandwich