Brand New State of Mind

I'm changing.

When I started this creative experiment back in August 2009 I had no idea what would happen.  It was an idea that came to me in the middle of the night.  And being the kind of gal who sometimes just likes to shake things up, I ploughed on in. 

I baked cupcakes, and shortcakes. 
I soldered silver. 
I rearranged my home. 
I went looking for other creative people to see what they were up to. 
I taught myself how to knit without making big holes unintentionally.
I bought a camera and started to see what life looked like through a lense. 
I painted, I sketched.
I started making tea in the pot. 
I dyed my hair. 
I cracked out the reddest lipstick I could lay my hands on. 
I wore big ole bows in my hair.

For the past five months I have been playing with how I live life.  And it has been fun. 

At some point during the early Autumn, my life started to change.  On the outside. 

And then something odd started to happen.  I started to change on the inside.

My way of viewing the world has started to change.

My way of viewing myself has started to change even more.

I've decided; I like the way creative people think.  It's about possibilities.  Learning to be fluid.   And saying "Yes!" to exploring the unknown.  This, to me, seems a very optimistic and brave way to live life. 

It also feels playful and exciting.

I remember as a child exploring my ideas, getting lost in my imagination.

I experienced the same feelings again while living in Tokyo.

Picture courtesy of

Picture courtesy of Altus at

During the first few months in the Japanese metropolis I couldn't understand the language, read labels on products, or the destination on buses.  I got lost a lot.  And discovered curry flavoured noodles by mistake.  And ended up with a very different hairdo than the one I'd hoped for due to the description getting lost in translation.  Everything I ordered on a menu was a total surprise.

Each day I found myself exploring a whole new Japanese world, with new ideas and new ways of doing things.

I wasn't afraid.  Living with so many new experiences made each day fresh and exhilarating.

Jay Z and Alicia Keyes sing about it in their song "Empire State of Mind".  Click here to listen.  It's fab.

Or watch and listen here...

I spent time in New York during my travels.  I loved it.

Picture courtesy of

Alicia Keyes tells us that "These streets will make you feel brand new, these lights will inspire you".

I felt brand new in Tokyo.

Being creative is starting to make me feel a little bit brand new again.  Excited about life.  A little bit expectant about what each day will bring.  I'm having fun. 

Being creative is proving to be very good for the soul.


  1. Oh Emma, how happy you sound. Wonderful! I'm feeling happy too! Isn't it great!!!!
    Can't wait to catch up in April xxx

  2. PS What about a post on 'Creative Cookery' ie what you have to create in order to eat nice things when you've not been able to get out of the house for 10 days because of snow!

    We made many exciting things from stuff we found at the back of cupboards, dated 1995!

  3. I love your outlook so much. It's so nice to hear positive thoughts and words. You've made me want to go back through your blog and read your story so thats what I'm off to do :)
    P.S. I started learning to knit last night :)

  4. Oh. this is a great post - so positive!
    I´m happy with you!
    I wish you beautiful and creative days!

  5. Well as promised I have just been back and read your whole blog and I love love love it! Strangly I think I'm embarking on a similar journey to you at the moment. I had my creativity flowing well a few years ago but it all got a bit bunged up recently so I'm in the process of un-bunging again and it feels great. It's amazing how a bit of knitting can change your attitude and outlook on the whole world. You blog is so lovely to read and made me laugh out loud lots (so much so my half asked me to read the funny bits to him as he felt he was missing out!)
    I'm really looking forward to your glittery, creative posts to come,
    Lizzyloolaa xxx

  6. It sounds like these changes have been very good for you, which is wonderful! It's amazing how much better we feel about things when we change our outlook!

    I love that song, by the way! Everytime I hear it on the radio, I can't help but sing along...even though I've never been to NY!

  7. The difference between creatives and non-creatives I think is down to fear. Before we embark, we all feel fear of failure and fear of ridicule. The difference is the creatives don't let the fear stop them.

  8. Wow Emma, that sounds so profound yet extremely pleasing and exciting. Different cultures have always something to teach us and I speak first hand because my lovely daughter-in-law from Japan has taught me so much. Our childhood and life experiences dictate when we become 'aware' of our true selfs and that can happen at any time and without warning. You sound aglow so I shall be hanging around you to feel that lovely radiated warmth. :)

  9. I love this blog post; good for you!~ I'm so happy for you!..,

    I have something for you at my blog my dear!..,

    Cheers from Silken Purse @ The Plumed Pen

  10. Great post! And I can totally relate to every single thing you wrote! Like you, it is only over the past year that I have really explored and discovered my creative side and it has totally changed the way I view life and myself. Before I was too scared to take risks. Now i feel like i'm the 'real me' and taking risks is now opening up exciting opportunities. You are so right when you say being creative is great for the soul.

    Looking forward to reading more of your posts Emma.

    ps. 'Empire State of Mind' was also the song that summed up exactly how I felt when I travelled to New York last October! I played it over and over again :)

  11. Thank you for sharing your inspirational journey! Keep on having fun! :)

  12. Hi Liza, thanks for the lovely comments. I'm glad you're feeling great! I think creative cookery is the way to go. I try it most evenings and it serves me well!

    Sparkly Bubble, I'm so glad you like my blog. I'm looking forward to following your journey too. :)

    Zlatica, thank you. I wish you beautiful and creative days too.

    Helene, I know, when I change the way I think, I change the way I feel. I like that.

    Thanks Kim, I'm chewing that over!

    Thanks Cleao for your lovely comments. I'm definately enjoying the journey.

    Silk Purse, thank you for the lovely award. I'll be writing a post about that over the next couple of days. Your support is much appreciated!

    Saraharmoney, I can totally relate to what you're saying. I'm wishing you a magical 2010 as you continue on your journey. Your trip to New York sounds fab. :)

    Hi C, how are you? I hope all's going well over at Vintage Finds. Sending smiles.

  13. Would love to see you with that big old bow in your hair

  14. Hi Gillian, will see if I can get a picture of it and post it here! Thanks for following my blog. Your support is appreciated. :)


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