Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Etsy's Front Page!!!

Yesterday was a rough day.  It felt like the energy at work and in people in general was pretty grim.  I woke up this morning and told myself that I wasn't going to hope for a better day, but I would make it so.  Then today I got an email from Statsy.org informing me that I've made the front page of Etsy again!  AND I sold 4 pieces!  After a rough yesterday this news completely turned my week around!   Positive thinking is a powerful thing...

Have a great week everyone!!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Coming Soon...

Very excited about my lunch time excursion to the yarn store yesterday!  Came across some great new colors in recycled cotton!  Previously I made the Sunshine Scarflace from the same yarn and I am so happy that there are some great new colors! 

They'll be in the shop very very soon.  I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Biggest News Ever...

On October 9th my boyfriend and I went for a bike ride down the Hudson.  It was such an amazingly beautiful day!  We parked the bikes for a while, went for a leisurely walk and just basked in the fact that we got to spend such a great day together.

On the ride back home we put a blanket down and hung out in Riverside Park.  After some chit chat and people watching he suddenly remembered he had bought me some candy.  I was really excited because we are both currently working near Jacque Torres and visions of dark chocolate with ginger danced in my head.  He told me to close my eyes...and when I opened them...let's just say the only kind of candy present was eye candy...

That's right!  My best friend in the whole wide world and I are getting married!  I am so happy!  Now I have to work full time, run Chocolate Sushi Handmade and plan a wedding.  But all of that is alright with me!

Monday, September 27, 2010

This is me right now...

I have to apologize for not updating the blog lately.  My head is bowed in shame...

I have to admit that I am still trying to find a way to balance an 11 hour work day with Chocolate Sushi Handmade and the social media that comes along with it.  The good news is that I have some posts in the works.  Hopefully I will get it together and get them up soon! 

Thanks so much for sticking with me!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

An Honored Auntie...

I've been meaning to share this for awhile...I feel like such a slacker!

A few months back one of my lovely nieces asked me to make a couple of special pieces for her.  She is pregnant with her third child (yay!) and is planning to take family photos before the newest addition arrives.  She asked if I could make a necklace for her and a mini version for her daughter!  Honored doesn't even begin to describe it!

I wanted to make them something 'girly', but wearable for both a grown woman and an 11 year old girl.  I decided that I would choose the fabrics first and hopefully be inspired by them.  I sent the above picture to my niece to approve the fabric choices and began to brainstorm.

When I first opened my shop I was obsessed with making Yo-Yo's.  The store was stocked with them!  So I decided to revisit them since they definitely represent 'girly' to me.
After I made them I had to decide how to turn these into a necklace.  I sat and stared at them for awhile and decided to add in one of my favorite elements...braiding!
Because it's my method apparently, I sat and stared at all of the elements together.  When I could see what it was all meant to be I began assembling.
And here they are:
The best was my little great-niece thanking me and telling me that she liked her necklace!  I can't wait to see their pictures and for my newest great-niece to come into the world!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Etsy's Front Page!

On Saturday I got an email from Statsy.org informing me that I was currently on Etsy's Front Page!!!  And as if that wasn't enough I got two sales, a wonderful email from a lovely Etsian about my work and I also gained over 70 new people 'heart-ing' my shop! I am so grateful and happy that JarosDesigns chose my piece to feature in her treasury!

Needless to say...I had a great weekend!  I hope you did, too!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Yes I can...

 First week of work down!  The bad news is that I didn't have enough energy to do any CSHM work when I got home.  I'm hoping my energy will build up as the weeks go by.  The good news is that on my first day of work I made a sale!!!  I'm taking it as a sign that the universe is telling me that balancing the two will all work out.

I really hope this is true because now that I can't sit at home all day to create I'm flooded with new ideas!

Photo by Peaches and Juleps

Friday, August 6, 2010

Back to the grind...

As you know I work in the film business.  One of the things I love about the business is that it's freelance.  Freelancing is great because it allowed me to make a decision to take time off without reprimand or jumping through hoops.  And it was during this time that I was able to start Chocolate Sushi Handmade.  Although I would love to solely survive on CSHM it's not in the cards...yet.

So...the time has come that I have been both hoping for and dreading... 

That's right, Monday begins a new challenge in my life: returning to the film world while maintaining my own business.  A world where twelve hour days are the norm.  My biggest worries are that I don't have enough inventory and that I won't have the energy to create anything new.  I am hoping that since I clearly know what my fears are that I can do what I need to do to make them disappear.  I'm sure I'll be able to do it, but please wish me luck!

Oh and why a picture of  Jonah Hill you ask...because this is what I'm working on.

Photo via Harpers Bazaar

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Look at what I found...

Walking over to the new Target in Harlem I spotted this incredible sliver of land.  It literally stopped my in my tracks!  What I wouldn't give for a brownstone with this attached to it. 
It's hidden next to an apartment building and is apparently sponsored by Home Depot.  This is why I love walking around this city...you just never know what you'll find!

And the winner is...

The time has come to announce the winner of my first ever giveaway!  I don't know about you, but I am giddy with excitement!  I definitely get more excited watching others open their Christmas presents than I do opening my own.  This isn't America's Got Talent so I won't do the long dramatic pause before announcing the winner...no sirree...I won't...just kidding!  Here it goes:


Thanks so much for all of you that entered and spread the word!  AND since all of you guys were so sweet I am keeping all of the other names so that you will have 2 entries in my next giveaway!

{I apologize for the clearly unedited video.  I had this grand idea that I would videotape the whole event so I could show the glittering confetti I made showering down over the name, but apparently my video editing software doesn't like Quicktime.  I truly apologize because in my head it would have been on par to midnight in Times Square on January 1st!  Okay...slight exaggeration, but a girl can dream.}

Monday, July 26, 2010

Giveaway {Large AI Embroidered Earrings}...

AI Large Embroidery Earring in Tropics

As you saw from this post, Chocolate Sushi Handmade has had a major 'Yay' moment!  So in the spirit of paying it forward I am sponsoring my first giveaway!  Previously my new Large AI Embroidered Earrings were only available at Bebe Noir, but now they are in the Etsy shop!

But you're here now so why not enter for your chance to win a pair?  They come in Citrus, Raspberry, Apricot, Grape and Tropics and if you are the winner you get to choose which color you want!

To enter:

1. You must be a follower of the blog.  (if you aren't already just click the follow button over there --->)
2. Let me know in the comments which color is your favorite.
3. Make sure that I can reach you via email to notify you if you win.

That's it!

All of the entrants names will be placed in a hat and the winner will be drawn at random!  {I know, you're highly impressed by my innovative technical skills}.

The winner will be chosen next Tuesday {August 3rd} at noon.

Good luck and thanks for playing!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Home office inspiration...

Although we are still in the midst of The Great Sofa Search I can't help but focus on the office/workspace.  I'm very motivated by my surroundings so it's important to me to get it right.  I feel like I'm definitely starting to get a clearer vision of what I need the space to be.  Here are some items that I've come across that are going to find their way into the space!

Ahhh, the desk.  Well, now that I am the proud owner of a gray task chair with a colorful seat, I definitely want a white desk.  Considering that I've been working on a square folding table since I started my business I will pretty much be happy with any real desk!  But I do love clean lines so it was only natural that I would lean towards the Parson's style.

Photo from Apartment Therapy
I believe the one in the photo is from West Elm, but  Overstock has a great one, too.

I also need something to go above my desk so I can pin up various and revolving pictures that inspire me.  I came across this pretty one...
Brocade Magnetic Bulletin Board
I love that you can use either magnets or pins because I don't like putting holes in my photographs.

One of my biggest challenges has been trying to figure out how to store/display my pieces that are awaiting a new home.  I considered getting a bunch of wall mounted coat racks for necklaces. Then, while on the Pottery Barn website, I came across these beauties...
Jewelry Display Frames
I LOVE these!  Obviously I would need more than 3 of them and the thought of  a grouping of at least ten of them gets me giddy!  To be honest, I don't know that I want to spend that much money so I may end up making them myself!  If I do I'll be sure to post a tutorial.

I also want to put up some inspirational wall art and I came across some great ones on Etsy!

Or this colorful version with the same message...


Or both!  It's such an important message that it wouldn't hurt to get it twice!

Although I have a feeling it will always be a work in progress I can't wait to get the space to its most basic done state.  I'll be sure to share the progress with you guys!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

HOLY MOLY...{aka Exciting news}...

On Thursday I received what I will now refer to as one of my top five emails ever!  It was from a shopper/decorator who is currently working on a movie filming here in New York.  They were tasked to decorate "Nima's Apartment" and felt that my jewelry would fit the style of the character and wanted to dress her apartment with my pieces!  Me = blown away!

Now...I work in the film business so I know better than to get excited by an email, but then I got the order for 10 of my pieces!  YAY!  They were even kind enough to let me know that they received them and that they look great on the set!  Double YAY!  Okay, okay I also know that I shouldn't get excited until the movie comes out, but I can't help it...I'M EXCITED!

The movie is called Premium Rush. The plot according to IMDB is as follows:

"An action story set in New York City, where a
bike messenger (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) picks up a
package at Columbia University and subsequently
catches the attention of a dirty cop (Michael Shannon)."

And just so you know, the first draft of this post basically consisted of my typing 'YAY' over and over so editing it has taken some work!  Anyhow...I can't wait to see the film and I'll keep you updated if I hear anything else!

Friday, July 16, 2010

The great sofa search...

As I've said our new place is larger than our last one which can only mean one thing...new furniture!!!  Our biggest priority has been a new sofa.  Now, although our place is bigger it's still New York City.  So we decided the most seating for the space would probably come in the form of a sectional.

Once that was decided the internet searching began!  I soon came to realize that sectionals are no longer the overstuffed frumpy things that used to be in everyone's basement when I was little.  Thanks goodness!

I've narrowed down some of my faves (whether they're in my price range or not!):

Even though I love these I think we're trying to go for a super comfy, come on over we have the NFL Sunday Ticket vibe.  This means we'll most likely choose something more like one of these: 

This one isn't a sectional, but how incredible is this thing!?

via dornob

The hunt continues.  This weekend we'll be jumping off the internet and heading to actual furniture stores.  Wish us luck!

Monday, July 12, 2010

{How to} Make your office chair pretty...

Hi all!  I spent all last week unpacking and configuring.  I'm not completely done yet, but I'm close!  We've also been searching for the perfect sofa and dining room set for the new space.  I'm still really exhausted, but I have to say that I am loving it!

As I said before I am most excited about the new work space!  Tomorrow is officially the first day that I will be able to use it because today I bought this:

It's the Desley Task Chair from Staples.  It comes in gray, pink and blue.  I'm on a serious gray kick lately so it was a no brainer.  Oh yea...and it was on sale for $29.99!  The only problem is that it's the chair that I plan to sit on while being creative.  Yea...kinda boring.

So before putting it together I took a look through my fabric stash.

After I chose the fabric and took all of the parts out of the box I realized that I was out of staples for my staple gun!  Here's a little Niko tidbit...when I put my mind to something I have to do it ASAP or I'll go crazy.  So, instead of stopping to go to a hardware store to get staples I pulled out upholstery nails that I had from many many years ago.  Definitely not as quick as the staple gun, but they get the job done!

I laid the fabric right side down and put the seat on the fabric, also right side down.  I roughly cut the shape of the seat leaving enough fabric to reach the wooden area. 

I put one nail in the front, pulled the fabric taut and put a nail in the back.  I repeated this process for the left and the right.  I then filled in the spaces in between leaving the corners for last.  The corners are tough if you're a perfectionist like myself, but just know that it can be done!

After trimming the excess fabric I cut strips of felt and tacked them around the fabric edges making sure to pull in any fabric that would cause bulging or pleating around the edges.  I used the strips because I didn't want to cover the holes for the seat base.  I followed the directions for constructing the chair and TADA:

A brand new pretty chair for me to sit on while I make pretty things!

Now to get a proper desk, finish setting up and adding more color!  I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Exciting news...

On June 30th we made the stupidest/best decision ever! 

{stupid}We decided to move, yes, that's right the day before the start of a new month.  Fortunately it was just to the apartment directly above so no moving trucks or real packing was involved.  That being said...I do not recommend moving last minute, especially when New York City is in the middle of a heatwave!

{best}I love love love our new place!  We actually have a dining area now!  New appliances in the kitchen!  I could go on and on, but hands down, the best thing about the new place is the fact that I will have a dedicated work space!  No longer do I have to move my work so that we can eat dinner!

The space, in it's current state, is as pictured above.  I swear that is not my design aesthetic I just need to finish unpacking!  Speaking of...

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


There are so many things that inspire me when I'm creating.  A walk through Central Park alone can flood me with what feels like millions of ideas for my jewelry and knits. I'm actually inspired by the strangest things sometimes, but that's a whole 'nother post!

Being new to the blogging world I've sought out inspiration from the blogs that I love.  I found that the inspiration I got from them is not quite as direct.  The difference is that unless you want to be a copycat, these inspirations aren't necessarily in the same vein as, let's say, my Central Park example.  I'm more inspired by the fact that they are awesome...and this makes me want to strive to be awesome, too!

And as if the clouds parted and the wisdom of the heavens shone down on just me [overly dramatic...i know] one of my absolute favorite bloggers, Ez of Creature Comforts did the most amazing thing!  She began the "Guide for Better Blogging".  That's right...a successful and talented blogger is taking the time to give advice [free advice] so that we can have the tools needed to follow in her footsteps. I don't know if I'm more impressed by her blog or her selflessness!  Either way...I now strive to be more like her in 2 ways! Hopefully sharing this information with you gets me one step closer! Hahaha! Happy learning!

Photo: 'Park Benches in Central Park' by DeaPeaJay. Some rights reserved.            

Friday, June 25, 2010

In the Etsy shop...

I reached 100 hearts today!  To know that 100 people liked my work enough to click that button touches me beyond words!  Yay, yay and yay!!  I just had to share...thanks for reading!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Exciting news...

I did it!  I somehow found the courage to approach a boutique and....they said YES! So if you're in New York head to BEBE NOIR in Harlem {2164 Frederick Douglass Boulevard b/t 116th & 117th} where there is now a sampling of the AI Collection (including 3 pairs of my new large earrings in fun summer colors not yet in the Etsy shop)!
The boutique is fantastic. I've actually been a fan of the place long before I started CSHM because they saved me when I couldn't find anything to wear to the Duplicity crew screening. The owner is a really talented clothing designer so it is full of great fashion, jewelry, shoes...basically everything you need to look fabulous!

The owner is also amazingly nice and even taught me a thing or two about approaching other boutiques.  My first boutique experience was fantastic and as nervous as I was I am so grateful for that!
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