Posts tagged ‘frosted fleur de lis’

Five Year Old Kimchi: Part 2 – What’s in a Name?

Original design for the first promo card when I was working under Soy Happy.

Original design for the first promo card when I was working under Soy Happy.

When I first started the business, I chose the name Soy Happy. It came from one of my first designs of a happy soy sauce bottle and happy sushi sitting together. Wanting to be ‘legit’ I quickly made promotional post cards with my shop name and link on Cafe Press. I had done promo cards like this before at my full time job, but this was exciting for me cause they were going to be MINE and about MY shop! I operated under this name for about a year and then discovered that there is so much more to picking a business name than just randomly selecting a phrase or words what you like.

One day, I got an email from another business who said that they actually owned the trademark to Soy Happy. They were totally polite about it, but I was still kind of upset that a whole year’s worth of promoting was going down the drain. This was my introduction the US Patent and Trademark Office’s site. I checked their database search and sure enough, this person was for real so it was back to the drawing board for me. Since my marketing efforts had largely fallen short, I wasn’t totally heartbroken.

Second Promo Card

This was my second promo card made for when I changed to Kimchi Kawaii.

So I started brainstorming again and eventually came up with Kimchi Kawaii, the name I’ve stuck with ever since. I like this one so much better. It represents my Korean heritage and pulls in the Japanese ‘cute’ inspiration in the use of the word ‘kawaii’. Plus, I’m just a sucker for alliteration, lol! I changed the name of my shops (I had now jumped on board with Zazzle in addition to Cafe Press), and also purchased my domain name. I also filed for my trademark once I had sold at a few anime cons and had some money to afford it (trademarking isn’t cheap).

I came up with a new mascot, my Korean tiger who was named Roary through a fan contest I held on Facebook. Originally, he was sitting in the lucky cat pose with one paw up and one on a traditional kimchi jar, but no one knew what that was. I also wanted something more lively and dynamic to represent my artwork. I knew I wanted to do other pieces with Roary in them, not just reserve him as a logo for business cards only. One day, I did a design with Roary leaping in the air and looking totally happy. I liked it so much that I now use that on all my promotional stuff like my business cards, banners and social media imagery.

About two years ago, I found that I was doing a lot of sweets crafts in addition to my digital art designs. It was becoming a bit hard to market them as those appealed to a different crowd than my punny art. I decided to split the crafts part off into a sub brand under the name Frosted Fleur de Lis. When I got the new website done, Fleur got it’s own sub-page. I also created a FB page for it and a new business card design which I currently print on the backside of my Kimchi cards.

So there is the break down of my name and why I have this other brand that I mention from time to time. I don’t anticipate any more splits, mostly cause I have my hands full keeping up with just these two!

This is the current business card for Kimchi Kawaii.

This is the current business card for Kimchi Kawaii.

Frosted Fleur de Lis Business Card

Frosted Fleur de Lis Business Card

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August 15, 2013 at 6:30 am Leave a comment

Giveaways on My Facebook Pages!

We interrupt this program to let you know that I’m running two giveaways on my FB pages to celebrate Kimchi Kawaii’s 5th birthday! So I guess this isn’t too off topic here, lol!

Anyway, Kimchi Kawaii’s giveaway has lots of fun items like prints, pins, a bag, etc.

Fleur’s giveaway, in keeping with the lolita/sweets theme has some prints and lolita accessories.

One person will win all these items: 2 prints, 2 sticker sheets, charm, pin, button, key chain and zipper pouch!

One person will win all these items: 2 prints, 2 sticker sheets, charm, pin, button, key chain and zipper pouch!

The winner will get 2 prints, a necklace, hair clips, ring, hair bow, pin and a mini fake cupcake decoration.

The winner will get 2 prints, a necklace, hair clips, ring, hair bow, pin and a mini fake cupcake decoration.

August 9, 2013 at 2:51 am Leave a comment

Five Year Old Kimchi: Part 1 – The Shops

I can’t believe it’s been 5 years since I started this whole venture. This will be the first in a multi part series about all the things I’ve experienced in those 5 years as a small business owner.

I’ve always wanted to make money with my artwork. Over 5 years ago, my mom saved me a newspaper clipping about this site called Cafe Press. It was a print on demand site where you could upload your original designs and put them up for sale on various items like shirts, mugs, buttons, etc. She thought it would be a really good outlet for my artwork and I agreed. However at that time, I was busy with other things in my life and so it got filed away as ‘something to do in the future’.

One of the items available through Cafe Press.

One of the items available through Cafe Press.

I had some things change and suddenly, I decided to tackle this and take a step out to see if I could make some money off this. I did a little research to find out what I needed to do to get started (and probably over researched and over prepared as I tend to do, but it put me ahead of the game in the long run) and set up shop. Cafe Press was the first public outing for Kimchi Kawaii – though at the time, I was called Soy Happy (more on that in another post). I also bought my dream computer iMac and Adobe Illustrator – which freaked out my credit card company who then froze the card and called my land line to make sure it was really me doing this fatty purchase. That in turn freaked ME out at the Apple store cause I thought someone had taken all my money, lol! Thanks to my friend and her cell phone (was cell phone less at the time), we got it all sorted out and I went home with my computer and got to work on all the bad puns and kawaii style art Kimchi has become known for.

About a year later, I heard about another print on demand called Zazzle and decided to open another shop there to reach as many people as I could. While at times it’s been a bit of a pain to maintain both shops, there are some things in each site that are not carried by the other. I really like the cocktail dishes through Cafe Press and love the messenger bags through Zazzle.

Fast forward to another year or so down the line when I started crafting items. Zazzle and CP have their items that are available to the shopkeepers, but if I wanted to create my own crafted items, I had find another site to sell those items through. I looked at some sites including Etsy, but honestly didn’t really like their fee structure so I went with Art Fire. I started selling my acrylic charms, jewelry, and Frosted Fleur de Lis (sweets and lolita related items) there. Basically, it was the same stuff that I was selling at anime cons, but this could reach beyond the one city I was in for a con. I had a some what good run there, but in the end, it just wasn’t working out for me, so I closed that shop down and moved to Storenvy this year. I’m still building things up in there, but I’m hoping with some marketing and the fact that Storenvy is getting more well known, I hope it can do well.

And finally, I started selling my original fabric designs through Spoonflower under the Frosted Fleur name. I love making original lolita dresses, but let’s face it, cute boarder prints are super hard to come by here in the states unless you want country kitsch. Which I didn’t. So, you want something lolita, you gotta draw it yourself 🙂 As I’m trying to pack a lot of detail into my designs, progress is slow there. I have a huge list of designs I want to do, but not enough time to do them in. I’m hoping to get some more done during Christmas break which is when I tend to do most of my art for the year.

Yep, I’m pretty much all over the place with my shops and always looking for more ideas/products to do under the Kimchi or Fleur name. Btw, if you want to keep up with everything going on, the best place to do so is on the Facebook pages listed below. I update there the most about all the various shops.

Kimchi Kawaii Facebook Page

Frosted Fleur de Lis Facebook Page

Ok, that’s all from me for this first post. Time to call it a night!

August 6, 2013 at 6:11 am Leave a comment

Kimchi Kawaii is Headed to SakuraCon!

ImageCome see me this weekend at SakuraCon in Seattle, Washington. I’ll have lots of Kimchi and Frosted Fleur de Lis items up for sale, some of them you can’t get online.

March 28, 2013 at 4:24 am Leave a comment

Fabric Designs – Ice Cream Dream

It’s been quiet here in Kimchi Land as I continue the never ending shop update (sing it with me, ‘Neverrrrrrr endinnnnngggg shop UP-day-et, ahh, ahh, ah, ah, ah’), but over in Frosted Fleur de Lis on deviantART I did upload my two fabric designs that are now for sale in Spoonflower. Finding cute, lolita style border prints is nearly impossible in the States cause we don’t seem to like sweet or pastel (looking through the fabric store has been so uninspiring lately). I decided to start designing my own fabric patterns. As of yet, I can’t draft my own dress patterns to sew dresses and stuff, so it’s just fabric for sale. But I figure it leaves the style totally open to all DIY lolitas and people who just like cute fabric. You can make it your own!

Ice Cream Dream was my first design, but took the longest for me to find a design that I was happy with. The first version was kinda plain and I wasn’t too happy with it so it kind of sat on the back burner a bit. I went back and tweaked it last night and now really like it.

Frosted Fleur de Lis uses my logo for the lolita branch of things. I was originally going to do it lavender and pink, but then I randomly threw in the minty/blue and really liked it. I have too many pink dresses anyway, lol!

These are only the first in many design ideas I have. They take a bit longer than my Kimchi designs so they will be coming out slowly. I also have to proof them – order a swatch – before I can post them for sale, so that slows things down a bit too.

Sadly, the fabrics are a bit pricey for a full lolita dress for me right now. It’s printed on Kona cotton, so it’s not some cheapy fabric, but lolita dresses take up so much yardage. I hope people like the fabrics and I can get some sold so that I can use the credit towards a purchase of my own! I would like to buy some and make a dress for my birthday in November, but we’ll see. I need to also start restocking inventory for 2013 anime cons that I want to go to starting in February.

I was joking with a friend last night about the artist dilemma and how it’s sad that I can’t afford to purchase my own art on stuff and then I modified the Genie quote from Aladdin: ‘PHENOMENAL ARTISTIC TALENTS! Itty bitty living budget’.

September 12, 2012 at 1:46 am 1 comment

Shop Open!

Well, that only took me over a year, but I finally launched the Art Fire shop last week. Why did it take so long? Part of it was my totally anal need to follow the rules. My state makes you wade through a snow drift of paperwork to open a small business. It took a lot of patience for sure! The other part was because I had this crazy idea that I needed variety, variety, VARIETY at the outset. So I was frantically hoarding up all my crafted items so I could launch with the full line. Silly me. Anyway, you can find the shop in Art Fire.

I was finding that my crafted items tended to fall into the sweets range and also was branching out into lolita accessories. It was just not meshing well with the art style I do under the name of Kimchi Kawaii. So I created a sub-brand called Frosted Fleur de Lis by Kimchi Kawaii. I know, super long name, but for now I have to do it this way as my Art Fire shop can only have one name and I don’t want to pay for another shop on there at this time. Of course, my dream is to eventually move everything to kimchikawaii.com. Right now, that’s just a landing page to house all my links to stuff like Cafe Press, Zazzle and Facebook.

So what’s in the shop right now? There are a few Kimchi designs on acrylic – earrings and phone charms. I recently uploaded my polymer clay cookie necklaces. They are perfect accessories for a sweet lolita outfit. You can also find my fake cupcakes. Lots more will be coming soon!

Side note: I will also be selling at Fanime in San Jose this year (Memorial Day weekend) and Anime Expo in Los Angeles (last weekend in June) so stop by if you’re there!

March 13, 2012 at 3:06 am Leave a comment


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