Meet the Author
Hey there, can you introduce yourself?
My name is Ebony Bizys and I’m the creator of Hello Sandwich. I’m an Australian/Lithuanian artist, designer, blogger and author living and working in Tokyo.
Tell us a bit about the book?
“Hello Tokyo” is filled with cute craft tutorials, projects, and tips, inspired by my daily life in Tokyo. It features lots of step-by-step guides for personalising gifts, stationery, clothing, and much more.
What was the inspiration behind it?
Hello Sandwich began in 2009 as a design and lifestyle blog as a place to post things that inspired me about my life in Tokyo. This book is an extension of my blog, filled with all of my favourite things and projects for a Tokyo inspired lifestyle wherever you live.
Which is your favourite project?
My favourite project in the book is the Table Decoration story on page 194. We had an amazing afternoon cooking, styling and shooting this colourful and festive table. It's brilliant working with an incredible team of stylists and photographers.
What is your craft space like?
I recently moved into my own Tokyo studio space, just 10 minutes from my Shimokitazawa apartment. It’s a bright space that's perfect for Hello Sandwich crafternoons and for planning blog posts and future projects. I started off wanted the space to be minimal (Hah, who was I kidding), but before long Hello Sandwich colour crept in and it's now my home away from home, filled with colourful homewares by Danish brand 'rice'.
Have you always been creative?
Yes! For as long as I can remember. Born to two creative parents (my mother a milliner / hairdresser and dressmaker, and my father a photographer and calligraphy artist), I suppose it comes as no surprise. I studied my Masters of Fine Arts at university in Australia whilst working as Deputy Art Director at Vogue Living magazine at the same time. Hello Sandwich was an extra little side project which turned into something bigger than I could have ever anticipated.
When did you first start crafting?
I have crafting my entire life. Each year I would curate the Christmas wrapping theme and my Mother would ask 'Ebony, what's this years wrapping theme?' Hah. From card making, painting, drawing, sewing...I'm not myself if I am not doing something creative. When I was at Art School and also designing at Vogue, I also had a fashion label that I would sell at the local markets (this later was picked up by a chain store and I began to outsource the sewing in order to keep up with orders). In terms of zines, my first zine was a Tokyo guide made predominately for my friends who were often asking me tips for Tokyo. The next zine I made was a guide to Gift wrapping and was launched in time for Christmas.
Who are your crafty heroes?
I absolutely die for Jen Gotch of Ban.do, Bri Emery of Design Love Fest and Joy Cho of Oh Joy. Kate Spade is a brand I can stand by.
Where do you find inspiration?
I find inspiration in all parts of Tokyo life. Everywhere from the supermarkets and konbinis (convenience stores) to the daily walk to my studio, there’s always something new and exciting. When I’m out exploring the city there are so many amazing photo opportunities and countless little things that inspire me day to day. It never gets old, even after living here for so long.
What's next for you?
I’d love to focus on producing more DIY and lifestyle content for my website. I'm eager to move into product design and spend more time on graphic design. I hope to collaborate with more fashion labels and homewares brands.