New addition to the 2011 holiday cards!

After a slight delay, here is the final holiday card design. This design is based off my Kokeshi Thank You card designs. The dolls are all dressed up for the holidays with their scarves, Santa hats and reindeer antlers. 

You can buy these directly through me or through my SHOP on Etsy. 

1 Dec 2011 / 0 notes

Holiday Cards Ready to Go!

Hi Everyone! Two of my three holiday cards are ready to go (the third one will arrive in a few days)! I’m so excited to be presenting these to you and I hope you will consider buying some to give to your loved ones this holiday season. If you would like to make an order, there are a few ways of going about it:

1. Purchase from my Etsy page (just click the “SHOP" button on the right). All the specifications are listed.
2. Email me ( and let me know what you’re interested in purchasing.

I know Thanksgiving just passed, but my hope is to get these cards to you in time to fill them up with sweet messages to send to your friends and family. December is right around the corner. I can’t believe this year is already coming to a close! Why not end it with one of these cute cards?

Here are a few photos of the cards:

This is a close-up of the bear. I like his bean-shaped eyes and his cheeks.

I think I had the most fun drawing her little boots and putting the fringes on her scarf.

OK. Looking forward to hearing from some of you. Have a good week!

27 Nov 2011 / 0 notes

Holiday Sneek Peek 2

Hi Everyone! Here’s another sneek peek of what’s to come for the holidays! This is part of the “Joy” card that will be on sale shortly. Dependable Letterpress shipped all three of my designs a few days ago. The cards will be arriving in just a few days to my studio and I’m so excited to see them in hand. 

In the meantime, I’m just working on weaving and kimchi-makin’, as well as mentally preparing for the cold. I wonder if this California grown girl will ever get used to the slush that has yet to come?

Talk to you soon. 

2 Nov 2011 / 0 notes

Holiday Sneek Peek

Hi Everyone,

It’s 4:45am here in NY. I juuuuuust finished preparing some holiday cards to go to the gurus over at Dependable Letterpress. I hope I’m not too late! I made it a goal to complete these designs by today (well, before the sun comes up). A special thanks goes out to coffee and my pup Miki for keeping me up.

I know it’s still October, but Dependable could be swamped right now with people like me that want things ready for the upcoming holidays. I went into Kate’s Paperie today in SoHo and saw a whole section of holiday cards ready to go! It was a sign for me to get cranking! 

The above image is just a sneek peek of one of my three (each very different) designs for the holidays. I hope you like it! I will let you know when all three are ready for sale. If any of you are eager to reserve some cards now, let me know so I can make sure to contact you when they arrive. Just email me at

Good night…or maybe I should say good morning (almost) instead?

14 Oct 2011 / 0 notes

Oishiso!* Get it? Oi-shiso?

I went to the Grand Army Plaza Farmer’s Market today and was surprised to find some akajiso (purple perilla leaves) for sale. I was so excited that I bought two bunches (for $5 total) in fear that I would never see it again. I’m sure I could just go to the Korean markets in Flushing to get shiso whenever I want, but let’s get real here…I’m in Prospect Heights and Flushing is a bit of a trek for me. 

I spent the afternoon plucking all the leaves and flower buds off the branches, and when all was done, I said out loud, “What am I going to do with all of this?” I mean, I’m not trying to prepare to hide out in a cave for the winter. 

A ton of the shiso leaves are sitting in the ‘fridge right now, but I managed to make some shiso leaf pesto for dinner and prepare some shiso leaf kimchi. Here are a few photos!

A shot of the shiso leaf bunches before I hand picked all the leaves and buds off. It took forever!

A closeup of the beautiful purple and green leaves. I wish I had smell-o-vision. The house smells so fresh!

Shiso flower buds. I didn’t want to just throw them away. I’ve had them as a tasty garnish on some Japanese dishes, so I figure I could make use of them. I’m preparing to pickle them right now, so I’ll let you know if they turn out to be edible!

A photo of what was left of the shiso pesto pasta we had this evening. The pesto sauce included shiso leaves, olive oil, pine nuts, fresh garlic, a little salt, and some umeboshi (pitted). I used the umeboshi instead of more salt to help cut the bitterness of the leaves. Not all shiso leaves are this bitter (kind of mint-like), but these ones in particular were from an overgrown batch (and when shiso leaves get too big, they get more nigai (bitter) and tough. 

The beginnings of shiso leaf kimchi. I can’t wait to eat it, but it won’t be ready for another day or two. These leaves are pretty fibery, so it will take a bit of time to break down. 

*Oishiso or oishisou (おいしそう) means “It looks so tasty!” in Japanese. 

8 Oct 2011 / 0 notes

Currently Working On: Dyeing

I recently started studying the art of saori weaving, a free form of loom weaving founded in 1968 by Misao Jo. Saori can be very meditative and revealing of one’s personality or mood. It can also serve as a practice for everyday life. Saori is very freeing and I really like that I’ve found a space in NY that’s peaceful but creative. The head instructor, Yukako, of Manhattan’s Loop of the Loom (located on 87th St) used to actually be a graphic designer like myself, but decided to pursue saori weaving because it was more meaningful and joyous. I feel like we have many things in common. 

About two weeks ago, I attended my first dye session at Loop of the Loom. Since I’m new to saori, I figured I would focus on making a scarf. I really had no idea what colors I was going to use, but just followed my gut and grabbed some yellows and oranges. I also used chartreuse, which I thought would be more yellow, but actually turned out more green. Though I’m not normally into greens, perhaps it was a sign that I should be more open-minded to exploring the color? 

Here are a few shots I quickly took of our dye session:

One of the members dyeing some wool. The process of dyeing wool is a bit different from dyeing cottons. 

Another member adding a final pop color to her fibers. 

Here’s what I did. It reminds me of a calico cat!

When I was done dyeing, we talked about how this reminded some people of vegetables. Maybe when I’m done with the scarf, I’ll call is the “Farmers Market” scarf?

So this is how the yarn looks now that I’ve rinsed the excess dye out of it. A lot of the dye washed away, and revealed a less saturated look. Actually, this was when it was still a little damp. Now that it’s completely dry, it’s much lighter than this photo, almost pastel greenish-blue and yellow. I’m excited to start working on this piece, but first, I have a saori project before this that I must focus on for a soon-to-be mommy (not me of course). Will keep you updated. 

If you’re interested in saori weaving, check out Loop of the Loom in Manhattan. If you’re not from NY, you can also try checking out, which seems to have a good list of saori studios. 

6 Oct 2011 / 0 notes

First Post!

Hi Everyone! It’s me, Mari! Welcome to my new blog for Sanjuhachidoº, my very own line of letterpress (and non-letterpress) stationery and textile designs! I’ve been meaning to start a line of my own work for a long looong while, and I’m proud to say that I finally got off my fanny! I’m really excited to share my work, process and inspirations and I hope I can bring to you something cozy, something cute, something sweet, something meaningful, something delightful, something joyful, something special. 

It’s already getting kind of late here in Brooklyn. Well, it’s 1:14am and even though I usually hit the hay around 2 or 3am, I’ve got an early day tomorrow. I spent most of today setting up my new shop on Etsy. My first three designs have been posted, so I hope you’ll go to my shop to take a closer look at them.

Below are some photos of the Kokeshi Thank You Card Series. I initially made these designs for an Obon festival at Higashi Honganji Temple in Los Angeles, CA. I decided to clean up the illustrations and make them into the cards you see below. 

"Kokeshi Girl"

"Kokeshi Couple"

"Kokeshi Trio"

All of these cards have been letterpressed on 110# Natural White and are accompanied with a red envelope. These were printed in my hometown of San Francisco, California at Dependable Letterpress. Those guys and gals are awesome and they produce beautifully crafted work. I’m lucky to have found them. 

OK. Time to take the pup out for his last walk of the evening. Good night!

23 Sep 2011 / 1 note