Tag Archives: small business development

Join me on beautiful Vashon Island this spring!

I’ll be teaching my block printing workshop at Camp Thundercraft this spring!

What’s Camp Thundercraft, you ask? In short, it’s a retreat for small creative business owners. 

Throughout the weekend, they offer workshops and classes that are suitable for people at different places in their creative business.

And there will be plenty of opportunities to mingle and connect with other makers, too, of course.

It’s gonna be at Camp Burton on beautiful Vashon Island on the weekend of April 13th through 15th.

Vashon Island is the first place I’d ever visited in the states back in 1995.

I was there for a spring break for a short exchange student program (Vashon high school was our sister school)​ and fell in love with the place and people.

That led me to coming back to study in Seattle after high school in ’96 and the rest is, well, history.

I haven’t been to Vashon for many, many years (probably 20 years by now) and am super stoked to go back there!!

I’m teaching a couple of sessions of my block printing workshops there and will be attending other workshops for myself, too.

You can see the camp schedule, other speakers, and register here.

Let me know if you have any questions. Hope to see you there 👋


p.s. I’m gonna be on my mini sabbatical week, so no new post from me on next Sunday!

What’s in a name?

I’m super excited about my new creative company, Honeyberry Studios!  As you can imagine, a lot of thoughts and energy go into building a brand that represents you and your company.  Today, I want to tell you my thought process behind naming my company 🙂


I started an Etsy shop called, TeAmi Works, (te-a-me) back in 2010.  I started out by selling my hand-crocheted fingerless gloves.  I wasn’t sure where I would go with it, but I very much enjoyed my experience as a seller and the sense of community I had in the Etsy world, so I kept adding more crochet items.


Before you knew it, I started selling my illustration prints there as well.  I started doing more commission drawing work and loved it, too.  Then I began to feel a little funny calling my shop “TeAmi” because it means “hand-knit” or “hand-crocheted” in Japanese (my native language).  I did more than crochet then, and I wanted to do more.  I needed a new name and identity for my shop!


I started thinking of a new name that was as versatile as my crafts.  I thought of just using my name, Yuko Miki, but I mostly work in US, and as simple as my name is (to me), people mess up my name all the time.  So that was a no-go.  Then I thought of using an English word or words that reflected my Japanese-ness, like “persimmon studios” or “chestnut designs” or something like that.  Well, those are very popular, and there are hundreds of companies who use them already.


I literally went over hundreds of words that I thought represented my style and vision.  It needed to be simple, warm, and friendly, like my art.  It also needed to have an organic and natural feeling to it – as I get my inspiration from nature and organic things most of the time.


I really liked the word “honey” for some reason.  It’s sweet and golden, and it’s good for you!  I started jotting down words that worked well with “honey.”  Then I thought of “honeyberry.”  Many people don’t know that honeyberry is an actual berry.  It is also known as “blue honeysuckle.”  They look kind of like blueberries with oblong delicious edible berries!  Being married to a permaculture designer, I get perks of learning about unusual edible things!  And even if you don’t know what “honeyberry” is, you still get the warm and sweet feelings from it, right?  Yes!  I knew immediately that was going to be the one.


After trying out different combinations, I landed on “Honeyberry Studios.”  That encompassed my crafts, arts, graphic design, and who knows what else I’m going to be doing?  Perfect.  My research on the inter-web showed no one else had that domain name, so I claimed it right away.  Honeyberry Studios was born.


I will show you how my “spokescat” Honeyberry was born in my next post 🙂


space needle b-day card_watercolor