Designer of the Year 2017 competition

2017 Designer of the Year


December 8th was the deadline for the 2017 Papercrafts Magazine Designer of the Year competition. (It is different to the one that I wrote about in a previous blog)

I had to make two cards and an one other kind of paper craft.

It has been a month now and I didn’t get a call so guess mine wasn’t chosen this time.

It was quite a challenge to make and design these three but it was a good experience and I enjoyed it a lot.

I have many regrets and thoughts about how I should have done this differently but I should just make things the best I can, practise, get experience and improve myself!

I will post some individual articles on each item that I submitted.

12月8日は”Designer of the year 2017 competition”の締め切りでした。前のブログで書いたコンテストとは別の雑誌社が主催でこちらはカード2種類とカード以外のペーパークラフトが課題でした。





3D Roses Box Card バラのボックスカード

Today is Neil’s auntie’s birthday. Neil’ s mom asked me to make a birthday card for her.

I decided use 3D box card design that I’ve wanted to try for a while.

I set the size the base so that it could be made using a single sheet of A4 card paper and 6″ matting paper. The theme is “Afternoon Tea”.

I hope she likes it. 🙂

3D バラの花束カード




Click on a photo to enlarge

3rd Place in Card Maker of the Year 2017!

3rd place

I wrote that I had entered the Card Maker of the Year 2017 in a previous post. Amazingly, I got 3rd place! I actually knew about this a couple of weeks ago but was asked not to publicise it until the results had been announced in this month’s edition of the magazine.

I dreamed about how I would feel if I was chosen but never really thought It would happen. Perhaps because I have little experience of card making, my work was a bit different to the other entries! I really want to thank the judges for selecting me,

I regret not have taken better pictures or some videos of my entries as they are not returned after the competition but these are three cards I made.

Since I applied for this contest, I noticed that there was another big competition next month and I am working on that at the moment. The contest gives me the goal to focus on which is good for me.

Now I ‘m hoping to make many various types of papercraft , learn new techniques and improve my skills. It’s also so much fun!

以前のポストで Card maker of the year 2017に応募した事は書きましたが、何と3位に入賞しました!実は連絡は少し前に頂いていたのですが雑誌が発売されたので公に発表します。





Liverpool FC themed wallet, key holder and medicine bag

These are the Liverpool FC themed leather goods I made for my husband. I made them while doing a correspondence course ‘For Bikers’ with the Tokyo leather craft school, Craft Gakuen.

こちらは前回書いたクラフト学園の通信講座(For Bikers)で作成したリバプールFCテーマのメディスンバッグ、キーホルダー、財布とロープです。


  • Biker type wallet with double loop stitch around the edges.
  • Hand stitched Liverpool FC logo.
  • The concho used for the flap is an old Japanese coin with a phoenix emblem.



Click to enlarge

Key holder

  • Design matches the wallet
  • Can be attached to the wallet by a four braided cord.



Click to enlarge

Medicine bag

  • Again the design matches the wallet.
  • With braided loops to hang from a belt.



Click to enlarge


Leather Craft “For Bikers” by Craft Gakuen クラフト学園

Craft Gakuen Magazine

When I first began doing leather craft, I started off by referring to various books and just working things out by myself. I wanted to study it more seriously but at the time there were no leather craft classes in my area. Not only that but I was still working full-time as an architect so in the end I decided to take a correspondence course.

After some research, I decided to do a course called ‘For Bikers’ (by Craft Gakuen) which, as the name implies, specialised in making bikers goods. One of the reasons for this was that they used ‘saddle leather’, which interested me the most.

We had to make 6 items using their textbook and had to mail a minimum of two items for a teacher to check and give us advice. Also, throughout the course, we were able to contact my teacher directly if I had any questions or problems. Finally, we had to take an all-day lecture at Craft Gakuen in Tokyo.

The final task was to make a wallet, which I planned to give to my husband, so I decided to use the club logo of his favourite football team, Liverpool FC. I also made a key holder and ‘medicine bag’ with a coordinated design to go with the wallet.

To be honest, I originally thought it would be cool to do the logo design using a carving technique but I didn’t have the experience at the time and so decided that it might be a bit reckless as the result might have been disastrous!

In the end, I used stitch pattern for the logo. It was simple but my teacher was full of praise for the result and used my design in an advertisement for the school in a well-known Japanese leather crafting magazine!

I learned so much while doing the course so I can’t thank them enough. If you are looking for a leather craft course in Japan, I highly recommend Craft Gakuen.


中でも私が一番興味があったサドルレザーを使ってバイカーズグッズが作れる “ For Bikers” (クラフト学園)というコースを選びました。






Flower card お花のカード

Pop-up flower card

Today is my sister’s birthday and this year I decided to make her card myself.

After some research, I chose to make this flower card. There are various examples of people making similar cards on the internet and YouTube. Please check out the links at the end of this post if you are interested.

The technique requires some effort and a lot of patience but result is much better if you take your time with it.

When you open the card, the flowers bloom. The effect is almost like time-lapse photography. I was really pleased with the results but as I said, it took a lot of trial and error to get it right.

I also added lace finishing to the petals and dancing butterflies with acetate. In retrospect, I should have made the flying butterflies larger.

It was difficult to show the card’s effect in pictures,  so I made a video this time!

I hope she likes it. Happy birthday my lovely sister!








YouTube Link

Pop Up Bouquet Card by Collette Mitrega

アジサイのポップアップカード Hydrangea Pop-up Card by tsuku  cafe


Flip Card フリップカード

Flip Card

After finishing my three cards for the competition, I breathed a sigh of relief and then started making my next card. I’ve made it for a neighbour of my husband’s parents because she also does handicrafts and has given me some card making magazines and other craft materials. I think that I became interested in card making because of the many nice magazines she gave me. I wanted to thank her for this, so I made her a handmade card even though I’m not very good at it yet.

I was thinking about what kind of card to make and discovered flip cards. The method was quite simple, so I decided to make it with the tools and materials I already have. (Once again, I was able to utilize the Flower Fairy materials I got free with Cardmaking & Papercraft magazine!)

At first glance, the process of making the flip card seemed quite simple but when I started making it I realized that there were so many things that you have to consider. The fact that it was a lot more complicated than I expected made it more enjoyable. And now it’s done, I hope she will like the card!

コンテスト用のカード3作を作ってからほっと一息ついた後、次のカード作りにとりかかった。贈る相手は主人の両親のお隣に住む方… 彼女もクラフトやカードメイキングがご趣味なようで読み終わった雑誌や道具、材料をくださっていた。私がカードメイキングに興味を持ったのも彼女がくださったたくさんの素敵な雑誌があったからだと思う。そんな経緯から彼女にお礼が言いたくて、まだ上手ではないけれど何かハンドメイドのカードが送りたかった。

どんなカードを作ろうかと色々調べているとフリップカードというものを見つけた。仕掛けはシンプルだったのでこれなら私の持っている道具と材料で作れそうと作ってみることにした。(またまた登場する Cardmaking & Papercraft のフラーワーフェアリーの付録!重宝してます)


Card Maker of the Year 2017

Submissions for Card Maker of the Year Competition

I wrote about Card Making & Papercraft magazine in an earlier post, Craft Making Magazines. I have been buying it fairly regularly since last year and was attracted to the August issue because it included Cicely Mary Barker’s Flower Fairies’ card making collection with die-cutting cards and a paper set. I bought it immediately!

But this story is not about free gifts! What caught my attention this time was a page advertising the Card Maker of the Year 2017 competition. Once I’d seen this I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Even though I’d never made any serious cards before, my mind was a whirr of ideas for different designs.

Having seen how great last year’s winners were , I don’t think I stand a chance. But what the hell, I don’t have anything to lose. (Although I have bought a new stamp and embossing powder etc., which cost a lot of money! Haha!) Anyway, I decided to go for it!

Once I started the project, I really enjoyed it and somehow I managed to finish the 3 cards I had to submit for the competition! I am relieved that they have finally been posted because I’m off to Scotland soon. Incidentally, it seems that the winners will be contacted within two weeks.

Whatever the outcome, I was pretty much able to produce what I had in mind, so I am satisfied. It’s made me want to keep on learning new techniques and to continue making cards and other paper craft designs.

私の初めて購入した雑誌については別のコラム、”ハンドメイドマガジン”で書きましたが今年の夏も購入しました〜同じ雑誌 “Cardmaking & Papercraft”を。恥ずかしながら理由はやっぱり付録につられて。Cicely Mary Barker のフラワーフェアリーズのカードメイキングコレクションでダイカットカードやペーパーがセットでした。即買い!

でも今回のお話はそこではなく私の興味を引いたのは雑誌の中にあったコンテストの募集ページでした!その名も “Card maker of the year 2017” これを見つけてからいてもたってもいられず、カードメイキングなんて真剣にやったことないくせにどんな作品を送るか一生懸命考えました。昨年の受賞作品を見ると『私なんかどうせ無理』と思わされる素晴らしい作品ばかりなんですがダメでもともと、失うものは何もないで挑戦してみることにしました。(とは言えスタンプやエンボッシングパウダーなど新たに購入したので結構お金はかかりますね。笑)作り始めてみるとこれが楽しいのなんのって久しぶりに集中して何とか3作品仕上げました!無事に郵送も完了してホッとしています。(この後はスコットランドに行ってきます)


Craft Making Magazines ハンドメイドマガジン

Card making and Papercraft Magazine

One thing that surprised me when I first came to England was how many handicraft magazines there were. You don’t even need to go to a bookstore, as you would in Japan. The supermarket magazine shelves are overflowing with them! There are at least ten magazines related to paper crafting alone and probably 40 or 50 covering everything from quilting, cross-stitching, knitting, sewing and so on.

The great thing is that these magazines are fairly cheap, around £5.00 – £8.00 (¥750 ~ ¥1200) and astonishingly include some kind of free gift in every issue! (They are even cheaper if you go for an annual subscription.) These are often good quality and I have used them in my own crafting. Of course, the contents is full of ideas and techniques and it is tough to read, especially because they are in English!

The first craft magazine I bought in England was the April 2016 issue of Cardmaking & Papercraft magazine. At that time I had never done card making, but I am ashamed to admit that I was attracted to the free gift! It was a very luxurious set that included a stamp, embossing folder and design paper by one of my favorite British artists, Cicely Mary Barker. I was happy to just to look at it and didn’t even want to use it for a long time! This is how I got started with card making.



私がイギリスに来て初めて購入したのは去年、2016年4月号 “Cardmaking & Papercraft” でした。その頃はカードメイキングなんてしたことなかったのですが、恥ずかしながらこの”付録”に惹かれたからです。それは私の好きなイギリスのアーティスト Cicely Mary Barker のスタンプとエンボッシングフォルダー、デザインペーパーまでセットになったとても豪華なものでした。もう眺めているだけで幸せでした。

Welcome to Nozomi Design 私のブログにようこそ!

steve toadstool

I haven’t blogged in over 10 years and have barely touched social media in that time either. Since I moved to the UK in 2013, I haven’t worked because my Japanese architect license isn’t valid in this country. This means that I don’t meet people much on a day-to-day basis and I’ve become a bit of a recluse. I can’t be like this anymore!

I’ve resolved to change things and with the help of my husband decided to start this blog. I don’t know how long it will last but I want to take it easy and enjoy doing it. Sometimes I can be a bit obsessive about new projects which causes me to lose interest over time.

I’m a little embarrassed by the title of the blog, Nozomi Design. To me, It feels a little ostentatious and a bit too proud! I guess it’s a Japanese way of thinking! My husband is British and he chose the name because he thinks it sounds good in English. Perhaps he thinks too highly of me but I will bow to his judgement! Haha!

To anyone who stumbles upon this blog by chance, I would like to say, ‘Pleased to meet you!’

もうかれこれ10年以上もブログしてないしソーシャルメディアも放置状態。イギリスに移ってからは仕事もせず人にも会わずほとんど引きこもり状態の私、こんなんではいけない!と思い立ち自分にムチ打ちながら旦那の助けを借りてブログを立ち上げた次第です。そんなんだからいつまで続くかわかりませんが、今度はあまり根を詰めず気楽に楽しみながらやっていけたらいいな〜と思っています。ブログのタイトルも”Nozomi Design”なんて自分では小っ恥ずかしくて大層な名前の気がしますが愛する旦那様が授けてくださった名前なのでありがたく使っていこうと思います。(爆)何かの縁でこのブログを目にしてくださった皆様、どうぞよろしくお願いいたします。