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A cross-cultural meeting between two little girls and the beautiful space of intersection that exists just for them
A cross-cultural meeting between two little girls and the beautiful space of intersection that exists just for them
145 backers pledged $12,962 to help bring this project to life.

About

The Bonsai Babes:  A Love Story...An Illustrated Book project video thumbnail
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$12,962

145

Follow Luna and Nana on their journey...

A little background...

First of all, thank you for taking the time to have a look at my page.  My name is Lora Nakamura, and I'm a first time author and illustrator.  I actually had the idea of The Bonsai Babes characters about 12 years ago.  I made a hand-drawn sketch and had them printed on t-shirts where they were sold at  a little boutique in L.A. But soon after, I began a career in social work and the t-shirts, along with The Bonsai Babes, were stuffed in a drawer to be forgotten about for years.  Fast forward 10 years, and I found myself leaving my job and finally pursuing my dream of creative entrepreneurship. For several years, the experiences in my personal and professional life were culminating in a way that would eventually need an outlet, and so The Bonsai Babes finally came out of their drawer and found their voice.  And for the next two years, I began to recreate the girls from that first hand-drawn sketch to what they are today.  I taught myself Adobe Illustrator by watching a lot of Youtube videos and practicing with online tutorials.  And I believe they are now comfortable in their new skin, with their new voice, and ready to meet those of you who are interested in their story. 

Why bonsai tree hair?...

Originally, I was drawn to the bonsai tree for hair because it made each of my characters unique, as there is an art form and beauty associated with each that cannot be duplicated from tree to tree.  But while I was writing the story, the concept of the bonsai tree hair began to have deeper meaning that paralleled the experiences of Luna and Nana.  Although these two girls are young and innocent, they suffer hardships just like you and me, and the more this was revealed, the more I began to learn of the environmental hardships that affect and alter the shape of the bonsai tree when grown in its natural outdoor environment.  Yet despite these harsh conditions, these trees remain strong, and their altered form is seen as beautiful.  

What will the money be used for?...

Because this book will be self-published, I am responsible for all aspects of its production and marketing.  The money I'm trying to raise through Kickstarter will cover the printing of my hardcover books so that they can reach you and others who may be looking for a bit of inspiration, encouragement, laughter, or whatever you allow yourself to find in the book.

About the book...

The book is 56 pages, hard cover, with full color illustrations on every page. Each book comes in a matte black finish with a shiny UV varnish placed over the cover's text and illustrations to create a nice visual contrast.  The books are all individually shrink wrapped for added protection during delivery.   While it has been described as a children's book, it is really an illustrated book for all those who are interested in its story.  Seen simply, it can be a cute story for children, yet the multiple layers and humor will more likely resonate with the teenage and adult reader.  

Help spread the word...

To be able to reach my goal, I am seeking support from our community: my family, friends, and those I have yet to meet.  Although there are some who may look at this book negatively, I know there are many more who will find it a source of connection and hope. So for those of you who would like to support The Bonsai Babes, the most important thing to do is pass it along to others.   I am hopeful that you will help get the word out through social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, email, etc.  And for doing this,  I thank you very much.   

Some of the incentives*...

*(All jewelry designed/made by the author/Lora)

Friendship bracelets in honor of Nana and Luna, one made in honor of each... (Remember those friendship bracelets we wore as kids? Well these are updated to be fabulously stylish for the adult who can still access that child at heart)...to keep, to give, or to trade...

Zen bracelet in honor of Nana:  hand knotted by me/Lora and made of a variety of fun beads, from plastic/acrylic and glass to wood and semi-precious stone.  To give it a whimsical and kitschy touch, a smiling Buddha head dangles from middle.  Comes in a muslin pouch, each stamped with a message.  If you choose this as one of your incentives, you will receive a mystery bracelet with either a small or large smiling Buddha.  Here are just 5 of the possible styles you could receive.  Why not leave it up to chance? Remember the excited anticipation from the little toy machines when we were young?

Zen Bracelets honoring the spirit of Nana
Zen Bracelets honoring the spirit of Nana

Día de los Muertos bracelet in honor of Luna:  just like Nana's bracelet, but with a dangling stone skull bead.  The bracelet was inspired by Luna's yearly celebration of The Day of the Dead which honors those loved ones who have passed.  If you pick this as an incentive, you will get one of the styles below or a variation.

Día de los Muertos skull bracelets honoring the spirit of Luna
Día de los Muertos skull bracelets honoring the spirit of Luna
Drawstring muslin message bags (comes with each bracelet)
Drawstring muslin message bags (comes with each bracelet)

Día de los muertos earrings:  Just like the bracelet, they are in honor of Luna and her Mexican culture. If you pick this as one of your incentives, you will get one of the styles below or a variation. 

Día de los Muertos Skull and Roses Earrings with surgical steel lead-free ear hooks
Día de los Muertos Skull and Roses Earrings with surgical steel lead-free ear hooks

Risks and challenges

Reaching the $12,000 goal: For those of you who are unfamiliar with Kickstarter, I must reach the $12,000 goal to allow those of you who donated to get your books and other incentives delivered. Otherwise, Kickstarter will refund your money and The Bonsai Babes will not arrive to you. Please help spread the word so this does not happen.

Incentives/Pricing: The book will retail for $19.95 plus tax, so I was very conscious of giving incentives that would be equal to this. I am still accountable for tax, even though it is through Kickstarter, and I also had to take into consideration the best shipping to get the books to you in time for the holidays. All the book shipments will be sent PRIORITY which includes tracking and insurance. (The jewelry will be sent first class if not with a book package.) So this is how I determined the incentives and levels.

Shipping and Delivery Dates: I spoke with the printer and he is pretty confident that the books will be delivered by the end of November to me, so they should be at your door early December. As noted above, I will use priority mail for any packages that contain books to get them to you as soon as possible. Jewelry will be sent first class and I will aim to send those out before the books arrive. I will keep you posted if there are any changes to delivery dates and I will do my best to get them to you as quickly as possible.

International Shipping: All my incentives are currently only for US orders, but if you would like a book or multiple books and are outside the US, please message me with your country so I can get a shipping quote, and I will add the incentive level.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $1 or more About $1.00

    Every little bit counts. Thank you for taking the time to donate to this project!

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    Pledge $12 or more About $12

    One pair of Día de los Muertos earrings in honor of the book's character Luna (see photo)
    *Includes shipping/handling.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Zen bracelet w/ a muslin message pouch in honor of the book's character Nana (see photo)
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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Día de los Muertos bracelet w/ a muslin message pouch in honor of the book's character Luna (see photo)
    *Includes shipping/handling.

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    One hardcover, 8x11, 56-page, full color book *PRIORITY shipping included

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    31 backers
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Luna Gift Package: one hardcover, 8x11, 56-page, full color book and one Día de los Muertos bracelet w/ a drawstring muslin stamped pouch
    *PRIORITY shipping/handling included

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    Nana Gift Package: One hardcover, 8x11, 56-page, full color book and one zen bracelet w/ a drawstring muslin stamped message pouch *PRIORITY shipping /handling included

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $60 or more About $60

    Two hardcover, 8x11, 56-page, full color books. *PRIORITY shipping included (Because this order is too small for the box sizes, each book MAY be shipped in its separate envelope unless I can find a better option.)

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $80 or more About $80

    ONE OF EVERYTHING: One hardcover, 8x11, 56-page, full color book, one pair of Día de los Muertos earrings w/a bonus muslin stamped message pouch, one Día de los Muertos bracelet w/muslin stamped pouch, and one Zen bracelet w/muslin stamped pouch *PRIORITY shipping/handling included

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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    Luna and Nana Complete Package: Everything in both the Luna Package and Nana Package PLUS a free pair of Día de los Muertos earrings. So you get: TWO hardcover, 8x11, 56-page, full color books, one Día de los Muertos bracelet w/muslin stamped pouch, one Zen bracelet w/ muslin stamped pouch, AND a free pair of Día de los Muertos earrings. *PRIORITY shipping/handling included (MAY be shipped in two packages)

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    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    Holiday Gift-Giver Pack: Give the gift of love The Bonsai Babes style... Six hardcover, 8x11, 56-page, full color books, AND because you are SO thoughtful, I will gift YOU a free pair of Día de los Muertos earrings to keep or to give *PRIORITY shipping/handling included

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Ultimate Holiday Gift-Giver Pack: Give the gift of love, The Bonsai Babes style...10 hardcover, 8x11, 56-page, full color books AND because you are SO thoughtful, I will gift YOU a free mystery bracelet w/ a muslin stamped bag to keep or to give (bracelet will be either Día de los Muertos or Zen Style) *PRIORITY shipping/handling included

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Private Party Package: Ten hardcover 8x11, 56-page, full color books and a private visit by me for a reading/signing/discussion at the L.A. County location of your choice. *Arrangements will be made for date/time. PRIORITY shipping/handling included

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Deluxe Package: Ten hardcover, 8x11, 56-page, full color books, 10 pairs of Día de los Muertos earrings (including special wood carved styles w/vintage died beads not pictured) each w/ a bonus muslin stamped pouch, 10 bracelets each w/ a muslin stamped pouch (5 Día de los Muertos and 5 Zen), a thank you phone call, a private visit by me to any LA location of your choice for a reading/signing/discussion, AND a limited edition The Bonsai Babes: A Love Story proof of the book jacket sent straight from the printer signed by the author *Priority shipping/handling included

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Funding period

- (30 days)