Hello everyone! I’m happy to present to you the next EVERYDAY CREATOR, Mits from MYLIFEMITS, the Youtube channel, blog, and Instagram account! Mits is a friend of mine who I met on Instagram about a year ago, but funny enough I stumbled upon Mits’ Youtube channel back when I was deciding whether to purchase a Midori Traveler’s notebook or a Hobonichi Techo as my daily planner. If you want to peak into Mits’ travel journals and colourful Hobonichi spreads, or learn more about motherhood and her life in Japan, continue reading! Without further ado, I present to you Mits, our sixth EVERYDAY CREATOR.
- Hi Mits! Could you please introduce yourself to the readers? (What’s your name? Where are you located? What do you do?)
Hello! My name is Mits and I am a mommy of 2 little ones. I was born and raised in Toronto, Canada, but currently reside in Japan. I’ve been living here for 3.5 years now and I’m loving it!
- How long have you been crafting, journaling and planning?
The earliest memory I have is of my 4th grade teacher teaching us how to knit. I remember I was so proud of myself when I completed my first knit square! 😀 Other than that, I dabbled a bit into scrapbooking a little later on in life. I always kept a planner for school and from time to time I had a “Dear Diary” type of journal as well.
- How did get you started in crafting, journaling and planning?
I would have to say that my journaling and crafting really flourished ever since I moved to Japan. I think leaving my friends and family back home in Canada left me with some free time and I somehow stumbled upon the Filofax planners for my planning.
With regards to the Midori Traveler’s Notebook, I actually gifted one to my friend before getting one for myself. After seeing her enjoying it so much, I got one for myself. That then led to the Hobonichi Techo and then it just spiraled out of control from there. Haha.
- Where do you draw inspiration from?
For me, a lot of inspiration is found online. I thoroughly enjoy Instagram and YouTube. I also enjoy visiting bookstores whenever I can. They have wonderful art and craft books here in Japan; you can easily spend an afternoon flipping through pages for ideas and inspiration.
- What do you do to get out of a creative slump?
I take a break. I take a step back. I believe that the creative process should be free-flowing and not forced. I have days when I just don’t feel like touching pen to paper, and then there are days where I stay up until 2 am getting my fingers covered in paint and glue. I think one of the greatest things about this community is that we are able to connect with one another. We are able to discuss with each other and encourage each other if we need a little bit of a boost.
- Do you think you have your own artistic style or aesthetic? If so, could you explain?
I don’t believe I do. I think the items that I create are a mish mash of everything that inspires me. At times, I wish I had my own style, something that distinguishes me from the rest, but I know that this will come in time. It does not need to be rushed. I’m enjoying the process of playing around with different things and it makes me so happy to know that others are having fun watching me play on YouTube! 🙂
- I’ve been a longtime subscriber of your YouTube channel and actually watched your videos when I was deciding if I should purchase a Midori Traveler’s notebook or Hobonichi Techo. When and how did get you started in YouTube?
I got started in YouTube back in Canada with jewelry and cosmetic haul videos. Then, when I moved to Japan, I got hooked on the Filofax planners and started uploading videos on how I decorated my weekly spreads. I initially created my YouTube channel, MyLifeMits, to discuss my life in Japan, but it has turned into a place where I showcase my love for stationery and art.
- Besides crafting, journaling/planning and YouTube, do you have any other hobbies and interests? How do these other activities tie in with you art?
Right now, my days are filled with taking care of my children, but prior to having kids, my husband and I enjoyed hiking and mountain climbing. There’s something about escaping the city and being closely connected to nature. It really grounds me and resets me in a way. I think having this outlet, along with journaling, has really allowed me to reflect and connect with my inner feelings.
- What has your journaling and planning journey been like? Which journals and planners have you used, and what are you currently using as your journal and planner?
While I was in school, I always used the spiral ring planner that the school provided. I remember collaging the front cover with bands that I enjoyed listening to. Does anyone remember Collective Soul? Haha!
Since moving to Japan, I started using a Filofax for my planning, but have now transitioned to the Traveler’s Notebook and Hobonichi Techo for both my journaling and planning.
- Your Instagram feed is beautiful. Could you explain the process behind getting the perfect photo. Would you say you have your own photography style?
I wish I had a photography style. I deeply admire individuals who have photos that have a coherent theme throughout their feed.
I usually follow these steps when taking a photo:
- Push things off my desk so that it looks clean.
- Snap photo when my son’s hands aren’t in frame.
- Apply filter! Thank goodness for the filters! Haha!
- What are a few of your favourite art supplies/stationery? What is one piece of stationery or art supply you have on your wishlist?
Wow, it’s so hard to name a few select stationery/art supplies.
I absolutely love my little travel watercolour set that was gifted to me by my friend, Maria, Palestblue on YouTube. I enjoy using water brush pens with watercolours, but have yet to find the perfect one. They either release too much or too little water.
I enjoy using fountain pens for writing in my hobonichi techo since they glide so nicely on the Tomoe River paper. My favourite fountain pen is the Pilot Prera. I also enjoy using Micron pens or Uni Pin pens for drawing and sketching.
My current wishlist is a page long, but I hope to get my hands on some Daniel Smith watercolours one of these days. Either that or a Narita Airport edition Traveler’s Notebook.
- What does art and crafting mean to you? (What a loaded question!)
For me, it is a way to connect with myself and others. I find myself being so consumed by my kids that I need to have “art time” to keep me sane. Haha! Art is not only a stress relief, but it has really allowed me to connect with so many others around the world. I am truly thankful that I found this community of such inspiring and encouraging individuals; a harmonious group of people lifting one another. It truly makes me smile! 🙂
- Lastly, do you have any tips or words of advice to anybody who wants to start a creative hobby?
Don’t give up. It can be quite overwhelming seeing so many lovely images online. People tend to post photos of their work that they’re proud of and not photos of mistakes they’ve made along the way. You don’t really see the countless hours of practice that went into creating a perfectly written quote or a beautifully drawn picture.
Explore and have fun. Give a shot at new techniques; you’ll be amazed at how much you can do. I always tell people, as long as you’re enjoying yourself and having fun, that’s all that matters.
Lastly, connect with others. Join relevant Facebook groups, like a photo on Instagram, comment on a YouTube video that you found helpful…etc. I think for me, journaling and crafting is a lot more fun when I know that I’m not alone. There are countless times where I’ve played a video on youtube while crafting; it’s like a virtual crafting party! It’s fun, you should try it! 😉
I hope you enjoyed the sixth interview of the EVERYDAY CREATORS series. It was a pleasure peeking into Mits’ creative process and journey. You can find Mits on various social medias platforms through the username MYLIFEMITS (Click here to go to her: Youtube channel, blog, and Instagram account)! Mits also runs an awesome Etsy Store called HANDMADEMITS in which she sells various Traveler’s Notebook and Hobonichi accessories. I own two of her amazing leather monkey fists bookmarks and I love them. Go show her some love and stay tuned for the next EVERYDAY CREATORS interview coming soon!