Knock, knock Mr Postman is at the door

Oh, I know, that parcel is not for me. Of course not, it’s written in Chinese with our address. I highlighted this to my husband over Whatsapp.


So, I went on and did the unwrapping of the parcel aka the gift like Christmas came early 😀

Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 12.21.19 PM
*oin=pin – typo error; always happens with the auto correction

With permission, I cut open the top of the parcel, and gently tore apart the top flap of the brown envelope (it’s thick, good quality kraft paper). I don’t know why I do that with envelopes but I’m the kind of person that wants her soon-to-be discarded items to still be as neat as can be.

Yup, confirm sure. It is the certificates from the Golden Pin Design Award that we’ve been waiting for, and oh my, look at the finishing!

Gold stamping at the right places...
Gold stamping at the right places… (front, the cert and back)
Then I put two of our latest covers together with the certs
Then I put two of our latest covers together with the certs
Then, I grabbed the awards from the black cases where we put them...checking out the natural lighting from the sun
Then, I grabbed the awards from the black cases where we put them…snap snap with backup from the sun’s natural lighting

What a way to end the year! I hope to see our new friends in Taipei again. Also hoping that there will be many more designers from Malaysia participate in next year’s Golden Pin Design Award and lavish their life stories with moments like this.

谢谢金點設計獎! 我们会做的更好! (Thanks to Golden Pin Design Award! We will do better!)
谢谢金點設計獎! 我们会做的更好!

Thanks to Golden Pin Design Award!

The team at CUTOUT Magazine and TSUBAKI Studio are thankful for the recognition you’ve given us and we will do better! 😉

CUTOUT Magazine Named Best of Golden Pin Design Award in 2014, Puts Malaysia on the World Map of Design

Malaysia’s very own independent design magazine takes home a coveted trophy and international recognition for good design under the Award’s Visual Communication category

cutout magazine golden pin design awards 2014
CUTOUT Magazine with the Best of Golden Pin Design Awards 2014 trophies

Malaysia’s CUTOUT Magazine was picked by international jury members to win Best of Golden Pin Design Award in 2014. Just 21 of 416 nominees from across the huaren (Chinese-speaking) world took home the prestigious trophy in a stunning award ceremony at Taipei’s Songshan Cultural and Creative Park tonight.

Jay Lim the founder and principal design consultant of Tsubaki Studio, who won a Best Design award places high standard and quality on CUTOUT, saying, “It took us six years to produce this magazine. We put a lot of effort into this project. It’s possible to say that CUTOUT is the only dedicated Malaysian graphic design magazine, and we’re grateful that the jury members appreciate the Malaysian design industry.”

As the editor-in-chief of CUTOUT, Vivian Toh was emotional in her acceptance speech: “It is an honour to receive this Award. It is the greatest gift thus far, and we thank you for believing in us. I want to think that we’ve made our parents and our country proud for without their support there will be no today. Just like Golden Pin Design Award is a platform for competition and the exchange of Chinese design from around the world, CUTOUT is a platform for designers from Southeast Asia to gain global exposure.”

Judged by Tommy Li, brand designer and consultant from Hong Kong, who is renowned for his “black humour” and “audacious” visual designs, has this to say about CUTOUT: “Although the Malaysian design industry is still in its infancy, this magazine already possesses an international style and contributes greatly to the local design industry as a leader in the field.” Li is a multiple award winner himself, having been a recipient of over 580 design awards to date.

The Golden Pin Design Award celebrated its 33rd year by opening up the Award to international submissions for the first time, which came to a total of 1,901 entries. The significance of this Award can be felt and seen expressed through diverse range of works by design studios and agencies from the world namely China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Macau, Singapore, Malaysia, America and Australia.

And the press release begins to roll out

By morning I will have the local media receive this wonderful news about CUTOUT’s sweet achievement at Taipei’s Golden Pin Design Awards. This is only the first press release. Hopefully there would be a couple more written in different languages for different media platforms by Sunday noon.  This is worth it – I’m feeling determined.


Scaling heights of 40,000 ft above sea level to Taipei

…I knew I was in for a pleasant surprise. I wasn’t really thinking about where we were going, anyway. Honeymoon in Ximending? Okay, good! Anywhere but KL for a week. All I wanted to do was to relax and unwind – that’s all that matters to me and for my husband to have some time out from work.

Upon our arrival at the Taipei International Airport, there weren’t many people at the waiting gate. Suddenly, I heard loud voices from what sounded like they came from young boys and girls, and what I saw was heartwarming. Indeed, they were a young group and two boys were holding up a big red banner saying “Welcome Back”. They looked to me like university students and had I been the one they were welcoming, I’d be really moved by the whole camaraderie.

The street in Ximending at night. Bright lights and chatters. Sun sets early in this part of the world and day turns to dawn by 4 o’clock in the evening.

At the very least, I was constantly being reminded by him that going on this trip could make a big difference to us. But how different? The answer lies in the Golden Pin Design Award 2014. I’ve always had a strong feeling that we stand a chance. You gotta believe in yourself and believe that you can. So, this same dialogue went on and on and on until the big day arrived to announce the winners.

When you think you’re lost, you’re not even close. Just look up and translate what you see into memories in your head. You’ll find your way eventually. That’s what being on a trip is about – discovering the undiscovered!

The Songshan Cultural & Creative Park is just 5 stops from Ximen Station, which is 10 minutes walking distance from the hotel we booked in. On the way there, the streets in Ximending are identical and I couldn’t quite register my location most of the time. Every corner of a building tends to have a fruit stall and kiosks selling things. You can’t get lost in this maze; you just have to look up at the buildings and learn about them as each building has a unique build, colour and height.

Much to our delight, our Taipei friends treated us to a hearty dinner at a place not far away from Ximending the night before the Golden Pin Design Award ceremony.

One blurry take before we both joined the rest of the Design Mark winners and design masters at the Eslite Performance Hall in anticipation for opening of the Golden Pin Design Award ceremony. Celebrities turned up to show their support to design too!