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CANDY PARTY

The design group of 5 mothers who love to create original projects.

CANDY PARTY is a design team of 5 mothers which was formed through a project for a mothering magazine. “I would want this! ” Their original design with such a creativity attracts other young mothers who love fabrics. Here is a special interview with two from CANDY PARTY, Marinko and Yumi.

CANDY PARTY

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Kokka-fabric.com (KF):How did you come to design textile?

Both: There was an article in a mothering magazine for a project entitled “Let’s make an original textile.” Starting with the idea of “I would want this”, each magazine issue would feature our ideas and monitored our progress. Sometimes we would meet and share materials and ideas.

KF: What kind of textiles you have made so far?

Yumi: Making fabric with woven metallic yarn and printing actual photos on fabric…. We challenged to create one by one what had been given to us to produce. The fabric with a basket photo was a smash hit!

KF: Each member of CANDY PARTY has her own personality and own style of designing.

Marinko: Since I wanted a textile with pop patterns so badly, I designed a fabric named “Pop’n Flower”. Under the theme of retro flowers, flowers and butterflies are represented in hexagonal shapes. I made sketches old-style floral patterns then digitalized them. For designing, I consider the image what it will become in the end. The reason I clung to the hexagon is because I expected it would be used for patchwork or cut out for any projects.

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Yumi: My inspiration for my design is from my love for ‘80s toys and animations like “My Little Pony” or TV sitcom series “Full House”. It is not an exaggeration to say that “Full House” was part of my life, and it cultivated my artistic sensibility. The girls’ clothes in the show were so cute. Studying about vintage fabrics stimulates my inspiration and expands my view of the world. I like textiles of antique style and collage style, too.

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KF: All five of you have small children. Do you have any struggles to keep working while raising children?

Yumi: Thanks to our families, we can keep a moderate distance from design work. We follow up with each other. If one of us is unable to be involved in an activity due to a family matter, she will support us within her capabilities.

KF: Yumi, besides working for CANDY PARTY, you are an online shop owner as well as consignment distributor. How is your daily life?

Yumi: I have a 7-year-old son and a 5-year-old daughter. After I drop off my daughter at daycare, I start sewing and working for the online shop. I sometimes have to work all through the night to finish before my deadline. However, I make an effort not to do anything while I am in a slump even if a deadline is looming. When I wonder what to do, I just stop working and go to bed with my kids around 9PM. Then I wake up around 4AM and resume with a fresh mind.

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KF: How about you, Marinko? You run a handmade variety store “Caramel Crunch”.

Marinko: Yes, I do. “Caramel Crunch” celebrates the 12th anniversary this year. I started this business from an online shopping site. Kids’ clothes were not so cute for me, so I went to Nishi-Nippori textile wholesale district in Tokyo and sewed kids’ clothes to sell on an internet auction site. My handmade lovely and decorated clothing for kids became popular. It was so fun to make clothes, especially since I had a child. I kept saying “I want my own shop!” then I got a chance to open a shop in Shimokitazawa, Tokyo. I learned that dreams would come true by continuing to have positive thoughts. I am always considering how to juggle family life and career. I moved my shop from Shimokitazawa to Chofu last year to be close to my house. The new shop is combined with my atelier. The relocation gave me leeway physically and mentally, and I now enjoy working at my own pace.

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KF: When is the most exciting moment for you in the textile production business?

Yumi: It is when I receive the sample of my fabric, of course. I was so thrilled when my first fabric arrived in stores.

KF: Thank you very much.

You can see the blog of CANDY PARTY and each member’s profile at http://ameblo.jp/candy-party-fabrics/

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