Sunday, June 5, 2011

Overdue!






Sorry these were actually taken months ago, but been too busy to share them with all of you. Shirts from my current collection which is untitled but were designed with different personalities attached to the styles. I have my brother in mind for the style The Jason, my boss for The Ronald, my dad for Harry (which has mostly sold-out!) and of course some are of ....

...to be continued ;)

Linen Towels






Didn't know towels can be so chic...These are mostly made in Linen, some courtesy of Deck Towels, and yes these can surely sell very well at Eleven...

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Potato Head Shop a.k.a ELEVEN Boutique

Potato Head Shop by Binhex
Potato Head Shop, a photo by Binhex on Flickr.

My shop :P

Via Flickr:
Potato Head Beach Club

Friday, December 31, 2010

My dreams are finally coming true...

Sometimes I get really nervous when strangers read my blog, some of the things I've written are so personal and endearing to me I wonder how will people react when they read it...is it too personal to share, how do I draw the thin line of sharing my inner thoughts and trying to pick which ones get audited and then hidden somewhere else under my subconscious?


Bali..yes I've written a lot about Bali in my recent posts, the charm of the little island has finally come creeping into my soul and surprises me along the way. Traveling every other week to Bali at the beginning was painful, mentally than physically as I'm not used to shorts jolts of adjusting quickly to being in a new environment...as I recently learned too (I guess I thrived in a familiar place, my comfort zone and I'm sure most people are - as much as I want to be known as the adventurous Sagittarian). As a co-owner of a recent boutique in Potato Head Beach Club Bali called Eleven, officially opened two days ago, one of my responsibilities is to make sure everything is well placed, running in order and all merchandised accordingly. We all divide our jobs (four of us) pretty equal, however I on the other hand like being the queen bee and so everything has it's sacrifice. Being the queen bee means you are the first person everyone calls for when things does not go right, you get chased by both my partners and my brother and his partner. But being a queen bee gives you power over everyone else, and that I think that is an "evil" trait I can't let go... not yet at least...for now.


The opening of Potato Head Beach Club Bali on the 29th of December attracted 5000 people in and out throughout the night! It was one of the most anticipated party of the year and boy was it a success! All the VIP guests arriving from 8 to 10 pm had to go through Eleven and OMG I didn't realize Bali has a LOT of CHIC people, I thought they would all be wearing all these sandals and khakis (there are still some)..but wow some where wearing purple linen shirts over burgundy pants, beautiful silver necklaces, checkered preppy sports jackets, leather french soles, and ahh I can't wait to post the photos! (still being edited)


I think I gave about 500 - 800 Eleven business cards to all the guests and every time I handed a card I tell them "Come next time and shop cos Eleven is now opened!" and most of them were very enthusiastic. Most guests were in party mood so I knew as much as we want to sell and sell it will take a couple of days for them to come back again. I had a lot of fun just seeing all these mix of people from all the different races coming through... My creative juice is flowing and flowing, I can't wait to release my line, it'll be men shirts for now, with a strong emphasis on fabrics the patterns with checks, plaids and a few embroidered details. It will be called yes, you guess it right "EMMELYN". I'm proud of my name, and it's very unique...don't you think so? a feminine menswear line, for someone like my brother, who is more consciously aware of fashion than I am :)


I'll be flying to Bali again the next couple of days, to make sure everything is running in order. My mom is coming with me, she said she wants to learn how to surf, sure why not... and my brother is also moving out to a new villa, and yes that includes me and I'm really excited because it's our own place, and he's getting married so it's important that he has his own enclave when wifey comes with him. It didn't feel like I was working when I was in Bali, perhaps because I am now truly doing something I really love and I can't believe my dreams are finally coming true, I have it in my hands. I can touch it, feel it and I know it's up to me to make it successful. A lot of things had happened along the way, but it was all well worth it, and it made me and my partners closer and stronger as team. I also met a lot of new people, genuine individuals who are now good friends, some are visitors of the island, and some left already to fulfill their own dreams. I can only wish that they will find their own dream catchers, grab it and truly hold on to it. The hardest part is always the process of getting there, of the uncertainties not knowing whether you are on the right path, always doubting your decisions and losing sleep over it. I'm still learning and curving my way around juggling two equally challenging jobs of maintaining Potato Head Jakarta and running this new shop. Jakarta is so different to Bali, I arrived last night and find that the city is so flat, and yet I woke up this morning and when I looked into my garden and knowing I had a good night sleep on my own bed I felt refreshed again and Bali is now just a good memory, with sweet glimpses of the best times I had with new friends and my partners.

Close the chapter they say and move on. I will be back very soon, too soon I think but it's okay, I need to get my system used to all these sudden jolts. Jolts of joy I hope and more blood, sweat and tears to come...Let's play!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Chasing The Dream...

Bali...The Island of Gods..Is it true?

We shall find out...

As beautiful as it looks, the padi fields are way too high for me to just jump and bath in all the glory. Nope, I took this picture on my morning walk on the last day, needed that high-intensity exercise and kept going back and forth the quiet road. All around our villa is padi fields and some halfly done villas and local houses of the villagers. Canggu is serene, and is the perfect location to get away from the Seminyak buzz....and the view is calming...

As my short trip unravels with a few souvenirs of aching sore throat and dry coughs, I realized that Bali was quite enjoyable as I arrived the previous days a true pessimist crying in my heart please let it be as painless as possible. Why the negative thoughts, well for a start I didn't want to go as my main responsibility still resides at Potato Head Jakarta but dream awaits and I needed to chase it.

My bestie, Revka is there with Minami whose a local girl - half jap half indo, sweet and very down to earth. Never spend holidays with Revka in Bali so we sort of treasure our little time we had downing fruit juices at Cocoon Bar which has a very nice view to the beach but I kinda felt out of place, too posh for me but hey for goodtime's sake!

It has been my full time "dream" to have my own shop, where I can take care of it and do stuff in it like my little polly pocket land. I know it kinda sounds scary but isn't every fashion designer's dream to have a long lasting legacy, a brand or a concept that they can share to the rest of the world? and hard work does pay off at the end of the day right? or are we purely now living in the age of "at the right time and at the right place?"

Potato Head Beach Club on its way to the opening on the 25th of November. Still a lot of work to be done but nothing is impossible and it will be open sooner or later so just keep at it! Big-Colosseum in the making, will be three times bigger than our next next door neighbor and no it's not the W Resort. It'll dam* well kick a** and yes I can swear on my blog.

As much as I am now in Jakarta, I kept thinking about Bali, not of Potato Head Beach Club, but of Eleven, the newly named concept shop. I guess everyone would be shouting to my ears now, of course I should be panicking and thinking about it as it would be open in less than a week! and we hardly have anything in it! hahaha we do work better when we're under pressure don't we?

Blessing Potato Head Beach Club by the local Balinese people, a traditional blessing ceremony. It was very peaceful and I think we need as much blessings as we could grab! Although we better get a priest asap as my mom would say...Hey mom since you're reading this maybe we should? Everyone was in the traditional get up too, nice to see....

But I have two lovely bosses and they are helping us all, how dearly nice of my brother to lend us his antique furniture to fill the shop and how nice of his partner to not go ballistic that the shop is still empty as of NOW! But I am losing sleep over this and my right eye is still twitching since the past two weeks and I'm getting worried....

The way to the fine dining, guess how many window panes we used...or here's a better question, is it almost 500 or 1000? It's amazing that now you can see how it all complements each other, the ceramics on the ceiling, the color of the wood, the washed green flooring, the retro railings and everything seem to be falling in love with each other.
I think my brother and his partner are both true romantics...

Every angle is photogenic.

Finally the grand entrance is on display!

Find Potato Head Beach Club at Jln Petitenget, next to W Resort, Seminyak Bali.
And find ELEVEN at the same address :)





Saturday, November 13, 2010

Between Then and Now

Image by Natalie Gunawan at her Farm in Melbourne Suburbia

It's been almost six months since I last blog, and this morning I thought to myself if I don't start again then I would forever lose my interest in lady macaron...and there are a lot of macaron bakers these days in Jakarta but you know what gotta stay true to yourself right...

Two of my closest friends, Revka & Putri with Minami whom I just met this week.
Work has been fun, intense, and has its up and downs but most of the time is really FUN/ no joke. I had my first year anniversary at work on the 21st of October, didn't really celebrate it but I had some terrifying thoughts of what I've achieved in the past year and whether this has all been worth it. Now that I'm slowly writing and contemplating my thoughts...let's see...

One of the things I love to do is exercise, and sweat it all out. It keeps me sane and it really does lift my moody mood 'slightly'. As strange as it may look I run around the pool in my ghetto 80s aerobic get-up every morning. Bikram Yoga is also a luxury and when you have the time, DO IT!

As much as my conscience is oppose to what I do at work, I am having a blast...it whispers at night, asking me why am I doing this when my passion since I was growing up is making beautiful clothes..designing, finding inspirations, and being alone in a studio...cutting fabrics, jotting down ideas and befriending my own thoughts... So you might ask what is it that I actually do at work?

Halloween Sunday Food Market at Potato Head outdoor patio.

The university of Potato Head as my mom calls it, when you graduate out of it, then you can practically conquer anything the world kicks back at ya! It is a Restaurant & Bar in Jakarta and it's one of the best place in town for cocktail, food, ambiance and everything else in one cool capsule. My second home...as I tell the occasional strangers and friends who frequently ask me "Are you here everyday? everyday??!!! really EVERDAY???!!!!

This is an example of our flyer, we have a graphic team who designed the image, but all the context and ideas all comes from Potato Head.

My morning routine usually starts with me walking in to the bar- straight to the end of the bench, put my laptop on the round table, my bags down and mobile phone next to my mac. I checked the reservations for today, see if all the promotional flyers we currently have are on display on each and every tables. Then off I check my emails again... Although my business card says Public Relation Manager, I also manage our internal events with my tight-knit team and our director is very much involved in all the initial ideas right on through the implementations. As anyone successful in their profession would say communication is essential and I can't agree more. Used to be my biggest challenge as I tend to keep things inside emotionally and not let everyone worry or get stressed out but in the end it didn't help much...

This is Glass Candy performing Live at Potato Head on Saturday Nov. 6th. Ida No and Johnny Jewel of Glass Candy/Chromatics rocks! The most down to earth guy and Ida No danced her spirit away...They're a cool band I think, very psychedelic and different than the mainstream, however I find the music market here is either categorized as the indie young kids or the older types who goes for David Foster and friends...I still haven't figured out what the "yuppies" are into, and it's a challenge to bring artists here that would appeal to Potato Head young adult audience. Or perhaps they just don't care?

Since I love to write, I do most of the writing for the promotional flyers, I'm not an experienced copywriter, I have no background in professional writing, but fortunately I have a very good boss who is very articulate and checks what I write, corrects them and revise things to sound more edgy and appropriate. I make sure they are printed on time to be distributed and we do a big event check list to make sure when the artists come to town we are prepared for the big day. Why I'm still doing what I'm doing is because you get an instant self gratification when the event that your team and yourself spend so much on preparing and promoting does very well. It's jam packed, our guests are enjoying the music, cocktails, food, ambiance and at the end of the day you know it is a successful event and judged by the target sales the restaurant achieved. If I go back to being a fashion designer, there's an indefinite process of being shelled in a studio, spending similar long hours on a collection/project and at the end of the show can you really tell that the audience will love it, buy them and stocks them in their boutique. Do I want to go back living my days running around town looking for fabrics, chasing my tailor, going back and forth perfecting the right cut and at the end of the day will they sell? and it all comes down to how much do I want all that back...

This is the plan of what the shop one fine day will look like. With installations, pop up projects, artist exhibitions, and challenging the classic notion of the shopper experience. A gallery, a shared space or just a cool boutique all in one. Emotion is a big thing for me, to feel all your senses juxtaposing in all directions when you enter the space, intimidated, awed and shocked. Surprised, happy and sad.

I still have so much to learn from Potato Head, as I said I have not graduated yet, it is still a learning process and I love love love everyone at work. Why would I quit now when there are still so many things I can challenge myself, give myself more responsibilities, test my strength and lead a bigger team...Potato Head has open doors for me, I've been introduced to so many people in different genres of music, art and fashion. It's been whirlwind year, and people say I work too much, maybe sometimes I do and I need to spend more time alone and go out with my friends more often. Hopefully by getting back to writing here I can balance my life more productively and emotionally.

This is Potato Head Beach Club Bali, my brother and his partner current BIG PROJECT. A massive space with three restaurants, bars and a basement concept store (MY SECRET PROJECT). Measuring 150sqm the shop will sell everything from fashion to furniture. Think Merci in Paris, Corso Como in Italy and Anthropologie in LA. Yes that is my personal aim that it will be a shopper destination in Bali promoting Indonesian designers and produce.

So you might ask me now, am I happy, I don't know, am I enjoying my job, yes I am...isn't there a quote that goes something like if a man does not love his job than it is the saddest thing in the world...or what makes life worth living if a man does not love his job....and I could only use my brother as the perfect example. His work is his life, they embodies his spirit, joy, excitement, sadness, all the five senses and he lives for his work. And because they are all his passions and hobbies, everyone always tell me that "Oh your brother never works, or he should start doing some real job" and gosh I can tell you I hear that almost every day. But you know what now that I think about it, he doesn't need to show that he 'works' the conventional way to people because he only has himself and God to prove and the results is proven at the end of the day.

So salut to him and his partner who I have the utmost respect...and what I can only advise to you and myself having doubts at work is...


To find joy in work is to discover the fountain of youth. Pearl S. Buck.

My fountain of youth is having smoother skin and slimmer figure then I can say I am truly happy...ha ha ha

Lady Macaron Fashion



Plaids, rainbow colors, mini buttons, tiny collars...and deliciously sweet to eat..*oops* I meant deliciously cute to wear...

Available soon at Potato Head Beach Club Bali

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