Saturday, October 15, 2011

Why I wish I was a superhero

Back of the store, pre-renovation.
Lots to do huh?
Today was a pretty crazy day, we've had a few setbacks with the store budget and as a result we've had to cut corners. Nothing earth-shattering there, every single business has had to do it on the leadup to their launch I can guarantee it, but since I'm such a micro-managing psycho I feel like every little thing is my fault.

I had this grand vision of what I wanted in my head, and it just won't actually be able to happen, not right away at least. We'll be constantly adding to and expanding the store over time, but realistically it's not going to get to the level I wanted for a good six months, and that makes the perfectionist in me go crazy with frustration. There's not a lot I can do, but the little I can do I'm doing my best to help. I'm even selling some of my brand, which I have never ever done, no matter how hard up I was financially, and there have been some pretty dire moments in my life. The one time I did it was to buy the plane tickets to fly to Perth to meet the man who is now my fiance, and that was a combination of crazy gut instinct and the fact I owned the dress in two colourways and it wasn't as big a deal to sell the one I never wore.

Opening up your own business is so hard, especially when you're only 23, unemployed thanks to an injury and depression and have shit credit history. I've always been good with business and entrepreneurship, and I have all these ideas and plans, but taking them from the idea stage to practical application is terrifyingly difficult. The support I've been getting from my fiance/business partner, my friends, my family and the people who I've met through running Tokyo Hardcore has just been phenomenal. Seriously, without the beautiful people in my life this wouldn't be happening, so thank you, from the bottom of my heart <3

The only downside to this is when things mess up I feel like I've let them down, like I should have been working harder and made it so that things didn't go stupid in the first place. That's why I wish I was a superhero, because they never let people down. The fact that I'm just one person with flaws and problems is just not good enough, in my mind it's irrelevant because I should be better. It doesn't bother me how hard I am on myself, that's the only way I'll ever be able to grow and be better, so it's worth it.

I can't wait till it's open so I can stop worrying and nitpicking every tiny detail before it's even complete.
I can't wait until I can get a full night's sleep, and have a proper routine so I eat and exercise regularly.
I can't wait to actually see friends and go raving and have hobbies.
I can't wait until I have time to sew and design again.
I can't wait till I can spend quality time with my amazing fiance.

But most of all, I can't wait till I can sit quietly on the floor in my shop after it's closed for the day, lights off so it's only illuminated by the lights outside, surrounded by beautiful things and beautiful dresses, leaning against the antique counter Heaven and I are restoring, and just smile. Because somehow, through some crazy miracle and lots of luck and love and hard work, I've made something special that makes people happy.

It's this little fantasy which sustains me throughout all the hard times, when I'm tired and sore, covered in paint and crying from the stress. Maybe it's not the most glamorous thing that I'll be doing while running Tokyo Hardcore, but I think it's little moments like that which are what really define you and make life as amazing as it is, and let you appreciate what you've accomplished.

I can't wait <3

Friday, October 14, 2011

Yes, I'm totally stuck up

This is how I roll at work
As a general rule I'm a very busy person. I run multiple businesses with my partner as well as needing a lot of creative outlets to keep myself interested and inspired enough to run my businesses effectively. For me this is an incredibly stressful but positive and empowering thing, except for in one situation.

Whenever I'm talking with people, either online or in real life, and they ask me what I'm up to or how my day's going, no matter what I say I feel like it sounds like I'm showing off. I'm am excitable person but I'm not one who likes to brag, and I always worry that people think I'm trying to act like top shit.

Unless like recently when I was sick in bed for days, I currently spend my time organising and renovating things for my store opening, dealing with brands and designers, or traveling interstate to hold club nights. My 'free time' (I use the term loosely) I spend designing clothes, modeling, running around antique shops looking for shop fittings, getting ideas for new businesses and projects, and if I'm really lucky seeing friends or spending time with my fiance. Every now and then I find time to eat and sleep too!

This is honestly just my life, no sugar coating, but when people give me a look and say they went to work then had pizza I can't help but feel bad, like I'm trying to act like I'm better than them even though I'm really not. <

Does anyone else worry their actions or what they say are misunderstood sometimes? Ironically, I actually wrote this a couple of weeks ago then forgot to upload it, and in that time a loli-secret was written about me regarding this very topic. I think its pretty lame to be honest, hence the title of this blog, and funnily enough I'm not so worried about it anymore. So thank you for all that additional peace of mind silly trolling anons, I'm just going to keep doing my thing and being better than you ;p

Hugs and love!
Saccharine xxx

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Conquering Japan and renovations

As most of you should know I'm opening a store here in Adelaide called Tokyo Hardcore which imports the best goth, lolita, cyber and punk brand clothing from Japan, as well as supporting local clothing and accessory designers who work within these styles. I'm really excited about it, I've been working on it since April with my partner and we're (finally) going to be open by the end of the month!

It started off when I spent a month in Perth with my partner Craig, I can't remember when the idea first came to me but I remember listening to a lot of Kerli and lots of long walks and ranting conversations. Before I knew it we had a business plan, a translator, a credit card, and were booking flights to Japan to go meet the brands. It was scary and exhilarating and hard freaking work, but of the nine brands we had meetings with we got every single one agree to be our stockist. It was a pretty incredible feeling meeting these people who I've looked up to for so long across a table on equal ground, I was nervous sometimes (especially for the first meeting which was with Angelic Pretty, my favourite brand) but it was a lot of fun too.

We also got to spend a bit of time exploring, here's some pictures of fun things in Tokyo and Osaka:
The alpacas everyone is so into right now! These ones were little sailors.

View of the Shibuya scramble crossing from the station.

Map of the Tokyo rail lines.
It looks terrifying until you realise for most of  your touristing purposes you only need the circle in the middle.

An empty store in Ura-Hara, I just about jizzed my pants. Oh the possibilities!

The top of Takeshita Dori in Harajuku.
They always have some kind of awesome balloon sculpture, it's  rad.

Craig out the front of the Takuya Angel store.
What a happy little cyber boy!

Oh McDonalds, Y U B so crazy?

Takeshita Dori, it's like shopping in a mosh pit.
Wolfgang Puck, the restaurant on the right, is one of my favourite Italian places to eat in Tokyo as they have  what I affectionately call GOD BURGER!!

Me eating ramen near the hotel. Really tasty.

Cat cafe!!! \m/

Don Quixote in Osaka selling a very interesting brand of false nails. 

The puppy is called Otoosan and is the mascot for Softbank, a  phone company.  That in the back? His wife.

Craig couldn't get over the idea of elephants cleaning up Shinjuku.

Weird alleyway/bridge in Kabukicho leading back to the main bit of Shinjuku, very quiet and odd but pretty. 

Craig going nuts for the giant Hatsune Miku in the Sony arcade building in Akihabara.

Some of the decorations inside Christon Cafe, Shinjuku.

A glam rock band playing in Shibuya. We came too late to see a fashion parade but these guys were hilarious!

Stores don't like you taking pictures, but because it was late we managed to get this one of Angelic Pretty Osaka.

Dotonbori in Osaka, so many restaurants!

River that runs parallel to Dotonbori, was really really pretty.

I gots me some Vivienne, woohoo!!

Coolest pockets ever, found in Urahara.

Train station near the Black Peace Now head office, isn't it just like in  all the anime?

Heading home again, so exhausted from the trip.

Before we left I had already found the shop that I wanted to rent, it's gorgeous and perfect and you'll all see when it's open. Alas, it was also in pretty dodgy condition so we've been spending the last couple of months fixing it up. The floors especially gave me nightmares, they were horrible cheap office-grey carpet and when I pulled it up the floorboards were untreated, uneven, paint-stained monstrosities! Thankfully the contractor we got in was able to fix them up and now they look wonderful and shiny and don't creak anymore.

We've also been painting and slowly acquiring all our shop fittings, getting insurance, sorting out signage and bags and all kinds of things like that. So much time and effort goes into all the little things you take for granted when you go into a store, and I love that I can spend time getting all these tiny little details perfect.

Did I mention we're wanting to throw one hell of an opening party?
I am actually Pinkie Pie by the way, did you know? 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Pinkhead goes with everything

Gangster-lolita represent! 

A lot of people have one thing about themselves which defines their self-image, that they use to tell the rest of the world: "This is me." For me it's my hair. No matter what I'm doing or wearing, I like my hair to be perfect, and if it isn't I get really cranky and self conscious, and anything over a centimetre of regrowth has me wearing a hat 24/7. My fringe in particular, if it's not right it can ruin my whole day, it sounds silly but there you go.

I recently redyed my hair bright pink again, and I haven't felt so much like myself in a very long time. I bleached my hair back to blonde at the beginning of the year after losing my job due to depression, and it was kind of the symbol of me losing my way. Recently, it's like the harder I've been working on Tokyo Hardcore the more I've been proving that I'm myself again, and finally the hair is back to how it should be. My pink gets me a lot of stares and a lot of shit from randoms but I wouldn't change it for anything, it's the purest symbol of who I am and who I want to be. Just seeing a bit of pink out of the corner of my eye brings a smile to my face, and I treasure it.

Do you have anything that defines you, or is your armor against the world? A bit before taking the above picture an old lady on the tram laughed at me and told me I must actually be stupid  to wear this. The blatant rudeness of her comment aside, it just made me laugh. I think I'll take my fashion advice from someone NOT currently wearing cheap jeans and a daggy parka thank you very much! When I'm rocking my pink nothing can bring me down.

Hugs and love!!
Saccharine xxx

Hospitals and Pokemon

As a lot of people probably know by now I ended up in hospital a couple of weeks ago with a chest infection. It was pretty nasty, I'd only just recovered from the month-long Manifest plague and I get bronchitis!

Craig took me to the hospital because I was having trouble breathing, and we ended up waiting four hours till we could see a doctor which was four of the slowest, most horrible hours I've experienced in a long time. Eventually we got in and they put me on a drip and an inhaler with Ventolin. I also got an xray, an EKG and blood tests just to be on the safe side. Lucky me huh?

Regrowth and blood loss ftw!

It was pretty intense, we didn't get home till like 4am and I don't know if I've ever been so happy to be in my own bed, regardless of how much pain I was in. Craig was so amazing, looking after me even though he was tired and behind on his work, and doing everything he could while I was sick to keep up with my work too. He's the most amazing guy a girl could have, I'm dead serious.

Over the next week I spent most of the time in bed asleep, staring at the ceiling, playing Pokemon (I defeated the Elite Four and Team Plazma, yeah!) and watching anime when I could finally look at a laptop screen again without feeling nauseous. I watched the entire series of Gosick, it's seriously one of the best series I've seen in ages too, the story, the characters, the art style, everything was fantastic and engaging.

It was the first time I've had that much time off in a very long time, probably since last December-January. It was kind of nice, even with the coughing and constant fever, but for someone like me who's used to being super busy it was also really frustrating to waste so much time. Most of the time I schedule myself specific tasks for every day, busier days I sometimes even schedule my time in half hour blocks, so this 'bed rest' thing was a bit of a novelty/mixed blessing.

Thankfully it's clearing up, I'm still coughing my lungs up regularly but at least I can function again and that's the important thing. Tonight and tomorrow I'm hopefully finishing up a bunch or paperwork and admin stuff, then Thursday we'e getting painty and finishing painting the store! After that we just need to get a wallpaper guy in to do the feature wall and then it's just a matter of getting in all the shop fittings and decoration, which is seriously the funnest part of all of this. I've set the deadline to open by end of the month and that is exactly what's going to happen.

Thanks to everyone who's been sending me well wishes while I've been sick, it really meant a lot that you all care so much and I am bouncing back like crazy so expect lots of productivity in the next few weeks!

Hugs and love!!
Saccharine xxx

Welcome to the carousel

Hello darlings! <3

Today I was just struck with the thought of how much I love how my life is going, the people in it and the things I get to do and experience. The fact that all this awesome stuff is happening and I'm not recording it just seems kind of wrong, I want to be able to look back and relive these great experiences.

So you know what that means:
Blog time!! 

I make no promises as to the content or regularity of my updates, this is kind of an experiment for me as I've never kept a personal blog before. But expect a lot of posts about my work behind the scenes with Tokyo Hardcore and Neko Nation, as well as random ranting, fangirling and gratuitous outfit posts.

Hugs and love!
Saccharine xxx