Short Story: My Journey to The Yellow Violet House

4:57:00 PM Venus Fortuna 7 Comments

"Paper crafting, like any other craft, adds joy to the gift-giving process.  
 It cuts across all age groups  and can be a family activity." 
- Isabe De Guzman-Ocliasa

I've always wanted to visit this shop.
I've wished that one day I will meet its owner and tell her how much I
enjoy ordering from this shop online because of the
pretty little embellishments she sends together with my package as samples.
My sister, Luanne, introduced me to this shop way back in 2011,
and from then on, I am a certified fan. 
I was in Manila for a business trip, so I decided to extend my stay
and pursue my dream journey.
That day was a dream come true for me.
I had a map and instructions in my note,
and a good friend by my side who traveled with me from 
Makati City to Cainta, Rizal. 

Photo taken at the MRT going to Cubao

Then we jumped in the LRT 2 and dropped ourselves at Santolan Station

At the Santolan Station, we went down stairs and
 took a public utility vehicle (van) that will pass by Vista Verde Executive Village.
The PUVs are parked, so just ask the drivers. 

This is the view at the village entrance.
We entered the village and went to the tricycle parking area,
which is located at the back of a building.
We were not shy to ask around.

From there, we rode a tricycle and after about three minutes, I spotted this house with a unique color...
"This is It!", i said. 
No wonder it was called The Yellow Violet House!
The house is really pretty. 
My friend and I were greeted with vintage looking statues at the entrance.
I noticed that they've got dirt on them.
Later, I found out that the Yellow Violet House was badly hurt by 
Typhoon Ondoy and Habagat. 
And that's how the statues got their "distressed" look.

Then I finally met her, Isabel De Guzman-Ocliasa, the lady one who patiently answers
my endless queries about certain products that I want; 
the one who created all those pretty things that came with my packages.
Inside the house, she's surrounded with more pretty things. Every nook, every shelf is filled 
with handmade novelties.
 "Call me Sabe. Without the L", she says.


A month ago, Sabe ran an online search for her Best Bud
The criteria was simple. In short, Best Bud must be one who can 
In a short span of time, her page likes rapidly increased from 400 to more than 2000. 
That's how wild and exciting the contest was!
The contest was nearly at its end when I was in Manila to attend a 
work-related seminar at the Lung Center of the Philippines.
Thanks to the unlimited wifi at my hotel,  
I did not miss the announcement.....

I came to Yellow Violet House to claim my prize, a Sizzix Big Kick, 
for being chosen as The Best Bud. 
What a generous lady she is!
Loving my new toy!

Sabe and I chatted like there was no tomorrow.
Well in fact, I only have a day dedicated to this visit because I dad to go back to Makati.

Let's Talk About Bee's Knees

"GOD gave me one special gift – the gift of creative thinking-- 
that is best utilized, developed and shared in another environment. 
I had to leave to put this gift-in-action." - Sabe

The Yellow Violet House started when Sabe was given the OPPORTUNITY
to leave the corporate world where she worked for 15 years.
When colleagues ask her why it seemed too easy to leave a well paying job with travel and family
benefits, Sabe would share her favorite anecdote...

A Private Conversation Between A Baby Camel and His Mom

Baby Camel: Mom, why is it that we have thick eye lashes?
Mother Camel: God gave us these thick lashes to help navigate ourselves through heavy sandstorms and to 
                               protect us from the scourging heat of the sun’s rays as  we cross  the desert.
Baby Camel : And why did He give us long legs and thick soles?
Mother Camel:  So we may endure the painful  heat of the sand by day and withstand its cold pricks at 
Baby Camel :  Why do we carry humps in our backs?
Mother Camel: Because HE didn’t want us to go thirsty and all dried up in our long journeys.
Baby Camel:  But Mom, if GOD gave us all these to help us live a good life, what the hell are we doing inside
the zoo?
"What good is being blessed with gifts you can’t use?"

Sharing a "geeky" moment with Sabe.

Let's Talk About Bee's Knees

I asked Sabe when did she start The Yellow Violet House, and this is her story...

The Yellow Violet House started out in early 2004 as an
 "inside-the-village"  giftshop that showcases handcrafted novelties. 
The faster-moving  items pointed  to a growing market along our 
handmade paper line, which prompted me to put focus on paper crafting. W
ith a little push from the women behind DTI-Rizal and 
REMAI (Rizal Exporters and Manufacturers Association, Inc.), 
I started joining bigger bazars and trade fairs. 
This allowed me to listen to clients' "wishlists" and helped me develop fresh ideas 
on cardmaking, while online research and a few visits to craft stores 
made me realize the good blend of western arts and crafts on local indigenous craft materials. 
By the end of 2004, our humble company was into the manufacture of 
handmade paper-based novelty products like blank 
greeting cards, scrapbooks, journals, embellishments and handmade gift packages.

Display Shelf at her Workshop

There are so many pretty things inside this room!
Her View of Crafting
   "At first glance, paper crafts like making greeting cards, journals and scrapbooks are seen as projects that consume one’s precious time and entails creative thinking…a NO NO to most busy people,  How many of us have that luxury? But if you make them participate actively in the craft—
let them enjoy the moment—they end up loving their work of creativity and sooner or later, not only do they buy our products, 
but will even ask for extended/follow thru projects.   
Paper crafting is one hobby that can be therapeutic. Fulfillment is found after creating a work of art which you thought you weren’t capable of doing. 
And yes, it can help one find his balance between work and play. In several instances too, people we’ve “touched” use this new hobby as an alternative to an “other income” source".

Behind us is a wall dedicated to embossing folders and dies

"hindi ako creative eh!"

What does Sabe have to say about this line?

"I’ve heard that line one hundred and one times already—from the same people who 
now go back to our shop asking for more ideas, 
more tools and embellishments to complete a project they’re currently working on…
or to start a new project they intend to sell or gift another with. 
 They all started doubtful of their ability to create something
 unique and appealing to the eye.   
They are the same people who made their 
moms finish their art projects for submission in school. 
But with the magic spell of a die cutting machine and embossing folders, 
a few stickers and stamps, they’ve discovered they don’t have to be an artist to create a wonderful work of art.  Believe it or not, even a  4 year old kid can create am embellished card
 that will look expensive and professional—all in a matter of minutes".

In between photographs and girl talks
I couldn't help but admire her collection.....

Holding a piece of artwork, a mini album made by Iris Uy

These albums caught my attention because I've been wanting to know how to make them!

This cake stand is really cute!

Made with one of my favorite Sizzix dies

Her collection of wood block stamps

A beautiful shadow box  diorama

With my friend, Greg, who came with me to The Yellow Violet House. I never had a dull moment with this guy.

It was a day well spent at the Yellow Violet House
What a lovely day, meeting a new friend, who calls me her Best Bud.
I'd like to thank Sabe for her generosity;
For the palabok and donuts;
For sharing her story;    

Post Script 

Sabe emailed me an old photograph of The Yellow Violet House
The signage went missing during the typhoon.

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  1. ill get lost inside the store, aday would be enough to scour every nook and crany. your lucky doc venus, definitely The yellow violet house will be in our IT for 2014 vacay. actualy i know the place i stayed summer of 2000 with a friend from zambo too, just dont know if they still resides there lost contact already

  2. Wow Sis! I would have loved to go there too and enjoy the tour of Ma'am Isabel's shop and chatty with her. Maybe next time after the baby bump. :) Thanks for sharing!

  3. Wow! I want to visit YVH also Doc Venus at syempre gusto ko makita in person si Ms Sabe, she's so generous tlaga and kind. Congrats Doc Venus for the first Best Bud of YVH!

  4. Enchanting! I would love to visit! Thanks for sharing, especially the story about the camel. When we use our creativity, it's like we are going on an adventure every day! Hugs! Patsy from

  5. i just read this Doc... teary eyed naman ako... =) i had gone thru the same experience like ms. Sabe.. =) Tnx for sharing the story about the camels... now i know my purpose... =) >hugs< to you and Ms. Sabe! =)

  6. Hi! Can i use your LRT interior shot? for thesis purpose only :)

  7. I've been a fan of YVH too, but got no financial capacity. JUst through online viewing, and reading. I'd wish to have my own sizzix machine and it's dies (i mean all of them..hehe)

    Thank you for sharing your journey.


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