Yes, this is my second featured artist this week because I needed to catch up from being on vacation last week!!!
I hope you enjoy this one, as much as I did…..Great ideas and soooo clever!!!!!!!
Hi! It’s great to be here on Slave To My Needles! I’m blogging to you from The Cardboard Collective on the other side of the world: Tokyo, Japan! My name is Amber and I’m a former international school teacher. I have been living and working abroad in Asia and the Middle East for the past 11 years. I now call Tokyo my home and I live here with my husband, my two young daughters, and the occasional *guest* worm or caterpillar.
Three years ago I became a stay at home mom, and I started to have the time and ability to make special handmade clothes and toys for my daughters. It was a wonderful experience being at home and I really enjoyed the opportunity to design items that were specially tailored to the interests and development of my two little girls.
However, it seemed like we were quickly filling our small apartment with lots of baby and kid stuff and I wanted to make more physical AND creative space in our lives. I started looking for ways to increase our living space and decrease our consumption. We do not have a charity infrastructure with organizations like Goodwill, The Salvation Army or Habitat here in Japan, and very few home items like furniture and household goods are able to be recycled, so most of it ends up in the trash. Throwing away perfectly good baby items that we were unable to pass on to friends and acquaintances was too much for me to bear, so I swore to find a way to bypass this system and make as much as I could out of reclaimed materials that I could also recycle when we didn’t need them anymore.
When I found a Japanese book at a local community center about making cardboard furniture for children, a spark was lit. My husband and I got a hold of a copy for ourselves and collected enough discarded cardboard from local stores in our area to build a set of table and chairs for our then 1 ½ year old daughter. The table and chairs came out beautifully and we had so much fun making them. I began thinking about all the different things I could start making out of cardboard to replace things that I would have otherwise had to buy. I started doing some research on the internet and realized a lot of other people were starting to build modern furniture, toys and other items out of cardboard too.
Time passed and I eventually started The Cardboard Collective with posts about a few little cardboard projects that I had done with my daughters. Later, I got organized and took a class about blogging with Dianne Gilleland of Craftypod fame, and learned enough to start getting exposure for some of my ideas on my blog, twitter account, and blog features like this one.
It’s been a wonderful journey building a small business for myself and it’s brought me so many new skills and so much confidence. I love creating and communicating about my cardboard work, while still having the time to spend a sunny day chasing butterflies at the park with my two little girls.
I hope you visit my blog to learn more about ways that you can decrease your environmental footprint and utilize your own creativity to make something out of cardboard. Whether it’s a unique piece of cardboard furniture for a child or friend, or just a toy created from a few newspapers or cardboard scraps you have lying around, we can all take part in the environmental solutions AND the creative solutions that bring more meaning into our lives.
Amber @ The Cardboard Collective
There you have it! Isnt’ it just amazing what one can do with cardboard and determination? I am so into the recycling aspect of it all.. How wonderful to make something not only useful, but also beautiful out of something others might discard! I think it totally rocks!
I hope you will visit her blog! You will NOT regret it! It is awesome and gets your creative juices flowing. 🙂
If you are an artist, or know of an artist you think deserves to be featured, please let me know by leaving a comment here.
My featured artists will go on to be featured on two more blogs this month. Next, on Karen’s blog and then, on Indie Mosaic blog and was just featured on Bridgett’s blog! So you get maximum exposure! Since we all do different things you will reach different readers on each of our blogs and you really get your name out there! It’s really great. And best of all: It’s free! If you enjoyed reading this and want to be featured, or know of someone that you think should be featured, leave a comment on this post, or email me at SlaveToMyNeedles@comcast.net.