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DigiFest 2021: CakesWithFaces Interview!
DigiFest 2021: CakesWithFaces Interview!
1st August 2021 ē by Adam
1st August 2021 ē Q & Amy ē by Adam
Q & Amy
Last year for DigiFest, we collaborated with long-time friend of Tofu Cute Amy from Cakes With Faces, a UK-based designer and creator of original kawaii clothing, accessories, books and more! We spoke about their origins and their current projects, such as their Guide To Japan Travel Book and their wide range of colourful and humorous clothing inspired by Japanese culture.

A year or so later, we caught up with Amy again to ask them some questions and talk about their past year running Cakes With Faces, Japan travel plans, their recently released products and their future goals for Cakes With Faces!
The last year has been pretty strange for everyone - when we did DigiFest last year, we thought we might be back at events by this time! How has the past year of the pandemic affected the way you approach running Cakes with Faces on a day-to-day basis?

Amy: Iím lucky that as I have an online shop, most things havenít changed that much for me. Iím naturally an introvert so I adapted to hermit life quite easily, but this past year my world got even smaller than I ever thought possible. For about 6 months I literally went nowhere but the Post Office to post orders and the local takeaway! Itís also been difficult for my YouTube videos. What do you do when youíre a travel channel but you canít travel? Iíve kept it going with videos about Japan, but Iím looking forward to filming vlogs again.

Do you miss attending events? If so, what do you miss about them?

Amy: I miss seeing everyone at events and meeting people in real life. I love having my stall set up, with all the colourful decorations, and thereís an exciting atmosphere at cons that you donít really get anywhere else. However, thereís also a lot I donít miss! Itís really hard work setting up the stall and I donít miss hauling boxes around or the long daysĖ itís absolutely exhausting. Every show takes weeks of preparation beforehandĖ and as itís just me running Cakes with Faces it really takes over your life!
What has been your highlight of 2021 so far? Has Cakes with Faces achieved anything cool that you'd like to share?

Amy: In some ways I donít feel like Iíve achieved that much so far in 2021 Ė last year was so busy finishing my Japan guidebook, packing up 600 Kickstarter parcels single-handedly (because of lockdowns and social distancing) and then Christmas was crazy busy, so it feels like the first half of this year has been a bit of downtime for me. Honestly, the highlight is probably the new Hanami Party backpack Ė I havenít done much collaboration before and everything about creating it has just been so lovely. And I do have plans to ramp things up for the second half of the yearÖ

What was it like working on the 'Hanami Party' backpack for DigiFest? What inspired the specific theme of the product?

Amy: Iíve known Tofu Cute for years from comic con - weíve been neighbours at events several times. Iíve always admired them for having the cutest, pinkest booth in the place, and the effort they put into everything they do (plus having the best selection of cute stuff!), so itís been great to work together. Hanami Party was a theme we both liked.

Cherry blossoms are one of the biggest events of the year in Japan and it was a fun idea to have all our characters enjoying a party under the cherry blossoms. The designís more pastel and cute than most of my artwork, so it was fun to use a slightly different colour scheme and incorporate the Tofu Cute characters like Hammy and Tofu-kun. I particularly like how Seedling fits in so perfectly as part of the sakura dango!
Last year you released the amazing 'Your Guide to Japan' book to help people plan incredible trips to the country, and you frequently release videos about Japan travel. Are you planning a trip for when Japan eventually re-opens? If so, what sort of things are you excited to do there/what have you missed?

Amy: I canít wait to go back to Japan! On my cancelled trip I was going to stay in Matsumoto and explore the mountains in Nagano prefecture, cycle through rice fields, visit a wasabi farm and go to Lake Suwa, which was the inspiration for the lake in the anime film Your Name. I havenít decided whether to keep those plans or travel further afield on a longer trip! And every time I go to Japan I have to spend at least a few days in Tokyo, to re-visit my favourites like Harajuku, Akihabara and the bright lights of Shinjuku at night.

Is there any particular Japanese food or drink that you're looking forward to getting to eat and/or drink again?

Amy: There are so many! Foodís a big part of what makes being in Japan so great. Iím looking forward to golden sesame ramen at Tís TanTan, my favourite vegan ramen shop. Also okonomiyaki, because you canít get it at many restaurants in the UK and when I make it at home itís never quite the same. And Japanese bakeries Ė I love browsing all the bread-based treats to see what creations there are (like edamame mochi bread!). And of course, like many people I canít wait to get my fix of Coco Curry!
What's your favourite Cakes with Faces design/product that is currently available on your online store, and why?

Amy: The dresses are my favourite because theyíre the best thing to wear! I love the colours on my new ĎCircatboardí dress (with cat circuit boards), as well as Starry Night with the cake constellations and the Northern Lights dress.

But Iím most proud of my Japan guidebook, because I put so much into it. I really wanted to make it the best, most useful book I could Ė the book I wanted before I first went to Japan. Itís been genuinely heart-warming to get so many messages from people saying theyíve found it helpful. I canít wait to see pictures when people finally take it to Japan, as thereís been a travel ban since it came out!


My favourite Cakes with Faces design is the 'Party of Your Afterlife' series. What inspired this series?

Amy: As a child I was obsessed with ancient Egypt. I once spent the whole summer holiday drawing an epic Whereís Wally-style panorama of the pyramids in felt pen. So drawing the Party of your Afterlife felt like going back to my roots! I came up with the idea when I saw an ancient Egypt-themed gachapon series, and realised that the kawaii art style with large eyes goes perfectly with ancient Egyptian illustration. Thereís a glamour to all the gold of ancient Egypt, so the theme is a decadent party, living it up amid the pyramids and palm trees. It started with the dress, and from there I designed the ďLive your best afterlifeĒ t-shirt and enamel pins series.
What are you looking forward to doing with Cakes with Faces in the next year?

Amy: Iím hoping to bring out some completely new products with my designs. Like Cakes with Faces pyjamas! There are so many things I want to make. But for a small brand, one of the hardest things is finding manufacturers that are good quality but also affordable. I have a cupboard full of samples that werenít up to scratch, but Iíll make it happen in the end!

Is there anything Cakes with Faces is working on for the future that you'd like to give the Tofu Cute blog readers a preview of or hint towards?

Amy: This October Cakes with Faces celebrates its 10th birthday. Iím still figuring out plans for what to do but I think itís got to involve cake, and Iíll be designing some extra special new things! I also have plans for a spooky Halloween dress!
On that note, that's all for our interview with Amy from Cakes With Faces. They make some really incredible stuff, so you should head to their website and check out their huge range of fun and cute products. They also recently collaborated with Tofu Cute on our limited edition Hanami Backpack, so if you like their style and Tofu Cute, you'll love this new backpack!

We wish Amy the best of luck with their upcoming plans for Cakes With Faces and look forward to collaborating with them again in the future! As always, thanks for reading and we'll see you next time on the Tofu Cute Blog!
Last year for DigiFest, we collaborated with long-time friend of Tofu Cute Amy from Cakes With Faces, a UK-based designer and creator of original kawaii clothing, accessories, books and more! We spoke about their origins and their current projects, such as their Guide To Japan Travel Book and their wide range of colourful and humorous clothing inspired by Japanese culture.

A year or so later, we caught up with Amy again to ask them some questions and talk about their past year running Cakes With Faces, Japan travel plans, their recently released products and their future goals for Cakes With Faces!
The last year has been pretty strange for everyone - when we did DigiFest last year, we thought we might be back at events by this time! How has the past year of the pandemic affected the way you approach running Cakes with Faces on a day-to-day basis?

Amy: Iím lucky that as I have an online shop, most things havenít changed that much for me. Iím naturally an introvert so I adapted to hermit life quite easily, but this past year my world got even smaller than I ever thought possible. For about 6 months I literally went nowhere but the Post Office to post orders and the local takeaway! Itís also been difficult for my YouTube videos. What do you do when youíre a travel channel but you canít travel? Iíve kept it going with videos about Japan, but Iím looking forward to filming vlogs again.

Do you miss attending events? If so, what do you miss about them?

Amy: I miss seeing everyone at events and meeting people in real life. I love having my stall set up, with all the colourful decorations, and thereís an exciting atmosphere at cons that you donít really get anywhere else. However, thereís also a lot I donít miss! Itís really hard work setting up the stall and I donít miss hauling boxes around or the long daysĖ itís absolutely exhausting. Every show takes weeks of preparation beforehandĖ and as itís just me running Cakes with Faces it really takes over your life!
What has been your highlight of 2021 so far? Has Cakes with Faces achieved anything cool that you'd like to share?

Amy: In some ways I donít feel like Iíve achieved that much so far in 2021 Ė last year was so busy finishing my Japan guidebook, packing up 600 Kickstarter parcels single-handedly (because of lockdowns and social distancing) and then Christmas was crazy busy, so it feels like the first half of this year has been a bit of downtime for me. Honestly, the highlight is probably the new Hanami Party backpack Ė I havenít done much collaboration before and everything about creating it has just been so lovely. And I do have plans to ramp things up for the second half of the yearÖ

What was it like working on the 'Hanami Party' backpack for DigiFest? What inspired the specific theme of the product?

Amy: Iíve known Tofu Cute for years from comic con - weíve been neighbours at events several times. Iíve always admired them for having the cutest, pinkest booth in the place, and the effort they put into everything they do (plus having the best selection of cute stuff!), so itís been great to work together. Hanami Party was a theme we both liked.

Cherry blossoms are one of the biggest events of the year in Japan and it was a fun idea to have all our characters enjoying a party under the cherry blossoms. The designís more pastel and cute than most of my artwork, so it was fun to use a slightly different colour scheme and incorporate the Tofu Cute characters like Hammy and Tofu-kun. I particularly like how Seedling fits in so perfectly as part of the sakura dango!
Last year you released the amazing 'Your Guide to Japan' book to help people plan incredible trips to the country, and you frequently release videos about Japan travel. Are you planning a trip for when Japan eventually re-opens? If so, what sort of things are you excited to do there/what have you missed?

Amy: I canít wait to go back to Japan! On my cancelled trip I was going to stay in Matsumoto and explore the mountains in Nagano prefecture, cycle through rice fields, visit a wasabi farm and go to Lake Suwa, which was the inspiration for the lake in the anime film Your Name. I havenít decided whether to keep those plans or travel further afield on a longer trip! And every time I go to Japan I have to spend at least a few days in Tokyo, to re-visit my favourites like Harajuku, Akihabara and the bright lights of Shinjuku at night.

Is there any particular Japanese food or drink that you're looking forward to getting to eat and/or drink again?

Amy: There are so many! Foodís a big part of what makes being in Japan so great. Iím looking forward to golden sesame ramen at Tís TanTan, my favourite vegan ramen shop. Also okonomiyaki, because you canít get it at many restaurants in the UK and when I make it at home itís never quite the same. And Japanese bakeries Ė I love browsing all the bread-based treats to see what creations there are (like edamame mochi bread!). And of course, like many people I canít wait to get my fix of Coco Curry!
What's your favourite Cakes with Faces design/product that is currently available on your online store, and why?

Amy: The dresses are my favourite because theyíre the best thing to wear! I love the colours on my new ĎCircatboardí dress (with cat circuit boards), as well as Starry Night with the cake constellations and the Northern Lights dress.

But Iím most proud of my Japan guidebook, because I put so much into it. I really wanted to make it the best, most useful book I could Ė the book I wanted before I first went to Japan. Itís been genuinely heart-warming to get so many messages from people saying theyíve found it helpful. I canít wait to see pictures when people finally take it to Japan, as thereís been a travel ban since it came out!


My favourite Cakes with Faces design is the 'Party of Your Afterlife' series. What inspired this series?

Amy: As a child I was obsessed with ancient Egypt. I once spent the whole summer holiday drawing an epic Whereís Wally-style panorama of the pyramids in felt pen. So drawing the Party of your Afterlife felt like going back to my roots! I came up with the idea when I saw an ancient Egypt-themed gachapon series, and realised that the kawaii art style with large eyes goes perfectly with ancient Egyptian illustration. Thereís a glamour to all the gold of ancient Egypt, so the theme is a decadent party, living it up amid the pyramids and palm trees. It started with the dress, and from there I designed the ďLive your best afterlifeĒ t-shirt and enamel pins series.
What are you looking forward to doing with Cakes with Faces in the next year?

Amy: Iím hoping to bring out some completely new products with my designs. Like Cakes with Faces pyjamas! There are so many things I want to make. But for a small brand, one of the hardest things is finding manufacturers that are good quality but also affordable. I have a cupboard full of samples that werenít up to scratch, but Iíll make it happen in the end!

Is there anything Cakes with Faces is working on for the future that you'd like to give the Tofu Cute blog readers a preview of or hint towards?

Amy: This October Cakes with Faces celebrates its 10th birthday. Iím still figuring out plans for what to do but I think itís got to involve cake, and Iíll be designing some extra special new things! I also have plans for a spooky Halloween dress!
On that note, that's all for our interview with Amy from Cakes With Faces. They make some really incredible stuff, so you should head to their website and check out their huge range of fun and cute products. They also recently collaborated with Tofu Cute on our limited edition Hanami Backpack, so if you like their style and Tofu Cute, you'll love this new backpack!

We wish Amy the best of luck with their upcoming plans for Cakes With Faces and look forward to collaborating with them again in the future! As always, thanks for reading and we'll see you next time on the Tofu Cute Blog!
About the Author: Adam
Adam is the lead writer of the Tofu Cute Blog and Wordsmith person at Team Tofu. When he's not making fun content for Tofu Cute, he enjoys being a huge nerd. He spends his free time gaming, reading, cooking and figuring out ways to make Godzilla and other giant monsters real.
About the Author: Adam
Adam is the lead writer of the Tofu Cute Blog and Wordsmith person at Team Tofu. When he's not making fun content for Tofu Cute, he enjoys being a huge nerd. He spends his free time gaming, reading, cooking and figuring out ways to make Godzilla and other giant monsters real.
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