Friday, December 31, 2010


Markers and pen in ACEO-sized, 2.5 x 3.5 inches.
Year in year out, money in money out.
Nonetheless, here's wishing everyone a Happy New Year! =)

Available in my Etsy shop: 

Sunday, December 26, 2010


A followup to my previous 80s-inspired ACEO, this time in pink wavy hair. She's wearing purple triangle lucite earrings. There's probably one similar in my jewellery shop! And she has silvery eyelashes.

Available in my Etsy shop here: Pink-Haired 80s - Original Art ACEO

This is made with markers and archival pen. The background is more yellow with a tinge of orange, and the orange triangles are made with a new Pilot fluorescent yellow pen - the scanner ate the colours.

Before I forget, wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Friday, December 24, 2010


Last night my computer, an early-2006 iMac 17", suddenly hung from launching the screensaver and being curious, I decided to poke around the Apple forums to see what was causing the problem.

Instead, I sidetracked to a bigger problem (which I was initially resigned to accept) of vertical lines appearing on the lcd screen. The first time one line appeared was in Oct-2009 which was blogged here:

The defect affects a batch of screens made within a serial number range. At that time in the forums, people were saying Apple was not recognising these widespread defective screens and we would have to fork over $700-$1000 just to get the problem fixed, because the screen tends to fail right after Apple care or the warranty expired. There was a problem also related to the graphics card that would render these lines too, but mine is a screen problem.

I decided to give up calling them back then (it was a public holiday so the lines were closed), and save myself the trouble of venting my frustration on whoever was unfortunate enough to pick up my call lol.

Besides, the warranty was long over and if Apple was not going to recognise the problem I might as well wait till angry customers kick up enough ruckus for Apple take some responsibility.

So fast forward 1+ year later, and using the iMac much less since I have a new computer, there are now 10 lines. This may sound stupid but I was ALMOST getting used to the lines obscuring my videos! So through out of renewed hope in the forums that Apple was fixing screens on these iMacs for free even though it was almost obsolete, I called the local Apple Technical Support (Singapore toll) 800-186-1087

First step: be very polite, couldn't help my hacking cough lol; and don't take no for an answer because other people had theirs fixed for free. The ones who pick up your call - the Level 1 reps - aren't able to authorise any fixes, they just document your case and put you through to the next higher up consultant so don't scream at them. Also bookmark the threads relating to this problem just in case.

So level 1 representative was polite and I didn't mince my words just said my lcd screen has that infamous vertical lines and tried resetted PRam, total shut down (for a month as I was overseas) and it's still there and new ones being born every few weeks and it's bugging me very much.

So after searching his database for similar problems, he tried but didn't manage to get the senior advisor and I was instructed to call the next day at 8am with a Case Number in hand, and not to worry. They will ask you for your serial number and to take a screenshot and observe whether the lines appear on it as well.

And since you have to PAY to talk to any Apple rep in the call center, he said (standard protocol) this is a one time exception that it was free, and an exception that they were looking into my out-of-warranty, no-applecare machine.

I overslept and called them at noon instead and a new level 1 rep managed to get hold of a senior advisor, a nice lady who granted me a free fix... what else but an... exception lol.

So after Christmas I will send the machine to the repair center as am now backing up data and this problem will hopefully disappear forever.

Anyone with these vertical line problems I suggest you make the call NOW in case the model becomes too old and they run out of parts to fix them. Mine is 4 years old and the problem occurred over a year ago and am quite pleased they finally changed their policy. Oh and I think the call was directed to an overseas base, the lady appears to be either based in India or Australia as she was using the site to direct me to my nearest repair center.

Sunday, December 19, 2010


My friend Sam photographed a double rainbow after a downpour. Amazing isn't it? I've never seen a double, much less one that you can spot the ends within a close distance. At this time (last Sat) it wasn't raining at my place so I missed it. And from my 5th storey most rainbows are obscured by other buildings. This shot is from her kitchen on the 29th floor. I would say rainbows are an instant mood lifter.

Friday, December 17, 2010


My newest ACEO card since Sept, featuring a 80s style girl. Pen and markers on cardstock.

Available in my Etsy shop:

She's half-inspired by Jem and Creamy Mami (both 80s girly pop music cartoons), I've always wanted to do fanarts of them but never had. Love the shows as a kid. Jem is a little soap operaish, Creamy Mami is mostly cute romance. They are both magical transforming girls, one with magical earrings, one with a magical compact.

Creamy Mami


Jem was the first doll I ever wanted, although in the end had to settle for a colouring book... wondered what happened to that. I also own a Creamy Mami colouring book.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010


These beautiful handmade cards are created by the design team at Crafts & Me using exclusive Melody's series one stamps and various crafting kits. Visit their store here: Crafts & Me

Christmas Melody by Tracy

Christmas Melody by Trish

Winter Melody by Trish

Flapper Melody by Vix

Shopping Melody by Teresa

Shopping Melody by Gina

Aren't they just beautifully done!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010


Enjoy. I specially made this for my customers shopping in my vintage jewellery shop you can listen to it too! Press play to listen.

14 tracks of Chrismas classics including: Bing Crosby, Frank Sinatra, Judy Garland, Bobby Helms, Elvis Presley, Dean Martin, Brenda Lee, The Ronettes, The Beach Boys, Paul McCartney & Wings, Mariah Carey.

Sunday, December 12, 2010


Geminids meteor shower: 13 dec night - 14 dec morning

Don't forget to catch this yearly night spectacular if you can... Singapore not included because of our light pollution :(
I caught it in 2009 upon a mountain-top in California and it was fantastic because I was contented to see just one in my life but saw 30-40 that night.

The artwork above was made about 7 months ago in Photoshop, entitled 'Salty'. Was learning to use textured brushes digitally and getting a dreamy effect. I hope you like it! It was inspired by the Geminids and a beach in an old chinese tv show.

Friday, December 10, 2010


Have you set up your Christmas tree? I thought to share a few simple tips on decorating classy Christmas trees after my previous post on a blue & violet Christmas:

- The #1 rule is: Pick a main colour theme and stick to it. Resist adding anything that is out of the colourway even if it is your favourite ornament, if it doesn't match save it for next year.


- Main colour themes can be single, double combinations, or double combinations with an accent. 
One colour: eg. all reds family, all blues family
Two colour: eg. blues & violets, blues & greens, red & green 
Two colour with 1 extra accent: eg. blues & violets with something in same tone like aqua

- If you plan to use accents, don't use just one or two pieces of ornaments, add it at bigger intervals to balance it out and don't overwrite the main colour theme. If you don't have enough, cut it out and stick to a simpler two-colour way.

7.5-ft Red & Gold Christmas Tree

- Silver or gold are essentials, try not to add both unless you want gold and silver as the main theme.

- My favourites are clear or mirror ornaments. They are neutral, and match anything. They give an extra sparkle and can help reflect more illumination on the tree when the lights are on.


if only in my dreams

- For cost-saving ornaments use wire-lined Christmas ribbons. You can create many from a roll and they look just lavish when done big! Just stick them in the tree and be generous. You can even make the decor all ribbon bows with baubles.

christmas ribbon

- As for whether one should mix cool & warm colours together (like blue-red combination), this is perfectly ok, just stick to the colour theme you've chosen.

- Another sort of decor could be figural themes... Like doves theme, gingerbread man theme, candy cane theme, vintage theme... Identical or similar ornaments when added in sufficient quantities will give your tree a whimsical touch, don't be stingy!

Candy Cane Loops

- Sometimes you wonder why the christmas lights are never enough to wrap around the branches, actually one maximum length bulb is enough for most trees. Lay the lights adjacent THROUGH to the center of the tree. This means it goes in angles like how you would draw a star, not wrapping it AROUND the tree. This gives you space for you to dangle your ornaments without the lights getting in the way too.

11.27.05 Tis the Season

t'was the night before

- I'm not much of a tinsel user but if you are using it, perhaps metallic or transparent-single colour instead of the multicoloured ones would be easier to match. You can use them to line your cupboards, doorknobs and other furniture, besides the tree. 

Arty pic

- Avoid adding torn little shreds of cotton wool as snow. This is definitely a no-go. Snow doesn't fall in little torn tufts and more likely than not they will appear looking cobwebby. If you like to emulate snow be generous about the cotton wool.  Add a whole piece, shape it according to the shape of the branches/fir and add them on the exterior-most branches like how real snow would. Referring to photos help. However if you own a real tree don't use them, because misting and moisture will cause your fluffy wool to clump and flatten in a day or two. 

White Christmas....


That's it, enjoy your decorating!
Wonderful photography are credited to Flickr members under the creative commons license. Click on them to visit their page.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


My gut feeling for Christmas colours this year is the blue & violet combination. Why? I don't know, just because last year was pink & silver, so it has to be icy this time round. Here are some picks from Etsy:

What is your Christmas colour for this year?

Monday, December 6, 2010


There's not much happening lately so here's a photo of a forgotten old sticker I stuck as child on my parent's side bed frame. This was the age where we liked to hide under the bed to play hide-and-seek (with no one in particular) and I used to roll off my parent's bed while napping and hit my head quite painfully on the floor, so probably 3 to 5 years old.

My mom shifted her bed in a different direction lately and the usually inner side was facing outwards for the first time in eons so I was astonished to find this THING still there. Thought we changed the bed frames when we moved home, so apparently they're still using the same ones (we changed the mattresses only). It was a nice feeling of nostalgia. I doubt my parents ever noticed it because we weren't allowed to paste rubbish around, not least on their furniture lol.

As you can see my skill in welding the scissors is quite pathetic but it's funny I remember being frustrated at cutting out that blank space in between the legs without affecting the feet and it was impossible because I couldn't even handle the outer curves without mangling the sticker. He appears to be Roger Hargreaves' Mr. Happy doesn't he? Except he's not smiling because I snipped off his left leg and made him polygonal.

Saturday, December 4, 2010


Today I shall share 3 newly bought books, first is Utagawa Hiroshige's One Hundred Famous Views of Edo (Meisho Edo Hyakkei) ukiyo-e prints which he made from 1856-1858. The book below is released by Taschen, and at a great price. I love Taschen publications, they are always reasonably priced with quality paper. The cover is printed on satin fabric and generously sized in full colour... best way to appreciate the prints. Bought this at Borders in California while it was on sale.

It's gorgeous. I hope Taschen releases THE other ukiyo-e master's prints (Hokusai). I've been eyeing Hokusai's One Hundred Views of Mount Fuji & Hiroshige's other ukiyo-e collections for the longest time but they are currently too pricey on other publishers. 

Next are 2 jewellery research books by Julia C. Carroll. I own all of her 3 books 'Collecting Costume Jewelry' 101, 202 and 303. Actually browsed these at Borders and purchased them on Hands up if you do that too lol.

They are quite informative. 303 is thinner than the earlier books; it shares some info on vintage cabochons, materials and construction. 202 highlights on Coro, Trifari and other makers' patents. Lots of clear, coloured photographs and detailed information.

Adding the weight of these 3 thick books to my luggage made it quite hard to manage but they are worth the trouble.

Happy reading whatever you may be reading!

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Happy December everyone!

So glad I'm finally done with listing all of my vintage jewellery stock for the year, it was almost non-stop since Oct, besides doing a few illustrations. The photo above shows the highlight of my US trip finds, carded earrings unworn stock dated 1955 (yep a big pile!) and many sets which I was reluctant to part with! If you're interested they are available in my blogshop. The newspapers have been reporting about the increase of online shopping worldwide so hopefully that will create some awareness and remind people to try out online shops.

Anyhow gearing up for 2011's big event which is Chinese New Year with more jewellery waiting to be shipped, meanwhile for Dec I shall focus on making as many artworks as possible. Full of ideas but when not getting to them quick enough they flutter away especially when my notebook is not with me at the moment!

How's your december & Christmas sales doing?

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


'Psychedelic Berries'

Acrylic painting on canvas. I had a hard time doing the trees because after everything was done I decided to add in the shadows and since they were made in layers based on colour, it was just confusion amongst the twigs pretty much lol.

If you are interested in purchasing any of the 5 paintings I've talked about recently (featured in the Bird & Bear gallery art show) you can cash-and-carry in person at their store or buy it online here:
Ends 8 Jan 2011. I am currently planning more paintings but in smaller sizes, just too much things to do at the moment with Christmas approaching!

Sunday, November 28, 2010


'Pool Hat'

Acrylic on canvas, so instead of a pill box hat you have a pool hat! My original title was 'Pill Box Pool'... can't remember why I dropped that title for 'Pool Hat'. The sketch was done in Singapore a day before I flew so yes lugging my materials to California was not fun (smelly varnish leaked but under 3 layers of ziplock bags). The painting was completed there on-off in 2 weeks; the lighting in the room was dark and yellow so I'm glad that the actual colours came out the way it should be. 60s-style! The top of the hat has little checkered details if you look closely =)

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Ooh ok I'm excited about this, I have a new range of rubber stamps at Crafts & Me online shop:

Look for them under the new products page. The 'Melody's World' series are inspired by Sixties fashion, so far there are five designs ready for pre-order. Above is an example of how you can customise the stamp for greeting cards, this regal Christmas card is created by Vix; splendid job there, and a classy interpretation! The stamp used is 'Flapper Girl Melody', she is the only flapper style in the series, and versatile enough to be used for various occasions. She originally belonged to one of my ACEO illustrations created under a fashion era series. You can read more on Vix's crafting process at the Crafts and Me blog here.

Second is this beautiful creation by Amy using the 'Gift Melody' stamp, the greeting card also doubles as a gift-card holder which is a really clever idea! Melody is elegantly dressed for her 60s cocktail Christmas party. Read about how Amy created the card here!

Receive a 10% discount on the first week 23-30th Nov pre-order just by signing up for their newsletter on the website!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


In my last post I was talking about yellow-blue colour combinations and here's an antique tea cup found in an antique mall in California! Love everything about it - the matte porcelain on the outside, gloss on the inside, the hand-painted trimmings, the GOLD and the art deco lines. In case you thought this was an impulse buy, I mulled over it for days even dreamt about it and bought it on my third visit to the shop. Thank you to the vendor who offered this for sale at a bargain (and all your other stuff). I love art deco.

Next is this vintage Incolay jewelry box for my mother. It's heavy, beautifully carved and grand-looking. Grecian-style lady with a cherubim on her shoulders. Price-wise is a no brainer, I didn't hesitate at all.

Last is this glass jewellery box, it has a handmade artisan feel, because it isn't plated or super fancy. Nice and plain the way I like it. It's now used to house a portion of my vintage jewellery collection; the main reason why I bought it is because glass and stone are the only things that last in this humidity. And since my collection are all chunky, the simple open interior is perfect.