Cassiefairy's thrifty lifestyle blog

Cassiefairy's thrifty little lifestyle blog – DIY crafts, sewing, food & fashion – what more does a girl need??


A gorgeous piece of artwork for my retro living room – by artist Mable Tan

I saw this funky retro-inspired photograph when I was recently browsing on artist Mable Tan’s website Happee Monkee and instantly knew it would be perfect for my 50s, 60s & 70s interior design project (here’s my mood board). You may remember that I shared an interview with Mable Tan on my blog recently and this is the piece of artwork that I chose to include in my orange retro themed room:

I love the vintage wooden scrabble tiles and the pattern and colour is perfect. When it arrived it was exquisitely wrapped and was an even more beautiful piece of art than I’d expected when looking at it on the computer screen! I’m so glad I chose this piece, although now I’m hooked and I think that any of these pieces below would go perfectly with it! Now I just need to get myself the perfect teak frame before adding it to my retro decor. Check out Mable’s other artwork, including beautiful landscape & travel photography in her Etsy Shop.

You Are My Sunshine. Fine Art Photography. Retro Scrabble. Vintage Wood Dice. Home Décor. Nurser Art. Yellow. Polka Dots. Size 8x10"

 Happy Days. Wedding Décor. Geometric. Vintage Word Dice. Scrabble. Rainbow Triangles. Neon Colors. Fine Art Photography. Size 5x7" 


One of my favourite artists – Mable Tan of Happee Monkee

As many of you know, my husband is an artist and I often get a little glimpse into the art world via him, but this week I’ve found an amazing artist all by myself and this time it was via Etsy! I was having a browse around for retro inspiration for my interior design project and luckily enough I stumbled into a shop called Happee Monkee; a gorgeous shop with a vast selection of very stylish art photography (some of my favourites are below!):

The creator of this stunning artwork is Mable Tan, a Malaysian artist and entrepreneur living in Melbourne, Australia. After exchanging a few emails I was fortunate enough to secure an interview with her and here are Mable’s inspirational responses: 

How did you come to be an art photographer – what’s your background? For a long time, I’d been thinking about what my true calling in life is and how I could make a living out of it. For about four years I worked in a magazine house as a writer and stylist. I’ve always loved photography and being in that industry taught me a lot about composition, styling, lighting and anything there is to know to make a photo ‘pop’.

When did you decide to make the career change? When my husband had a work assignment in Sweden, I jumped at the chance of living in Europe for six months. It wasn’t just an amazing opportunity to be snappy happy, it was also a good time to figure out a career change. I suppose the answer had always been staring me in the face, but I just never saw how it was possible. In the end I took the plunge and I’m really glad I did! 

Cherry Blossoms; “With the last snow melted away, the flowers have happily blossomed to a much welcomed spring. We were bike riding along the canals and saw this fabulous cherry blossom tree. So feminine and sweet!” – Mable Tan

What inspires you? I’m happiest when I’m cooking, I’m travelling, I’m meeting people, I’m behind a camera, and when I’m writing. My all-time favourite quote is: To attract something you want, become as joyful as you think that thing would make you. The joy, not the thing, is the point. Happee Monkee photography is about following your dreams and seeing beauty in every day life. I want my photos to say: “Go on an adventure! Explore and discover places you have always wanted to go.”

Where do you sell your artwork? Etsy is a great platform. It doesn’t need a big capital to start with and the commission is minimal. I love chatting with other sellers and photographers; they are an inspiration to me. Not only are they talented, they are also great business people and I learn so much from them every single day. From Etsy I have slowly branched out to other sites like Society6, Luulla, and recently, with two well-known online Australian retailers called HardtoFind and The Iconic.

How can readers get in touch with you? My Twitter account is: and my Facebook is:, or of course I’m happy to be contacted directly via my Etsy shop. I also blog at which is my playground for all things I love.

Italy; “Have a glass of wine, speak to the locals … it doesn’t matter if it’s in English or Italian, you’re bound to have a great time” – Mable Tan

I have my eye on one of her retro prints that I think will go brilliantly with my 60s/70s interior design project so I’ll keep you posted on my choice of photography when it arrives & I get it framed! In the meantime, I definitely recommend that you all check out Mable’s blog (she has tons of yummy foodie recipes on her blog and, of course, amazing photography!) and please take a look at her Etsy shop and stop by to say hello on Twitter, I know she’d love to hear from you!

What do you think of her artwork? Which piece do you think I’ve plumped for?! Leave me a comment below :)

36 Mini Cards. Paris & Versailles Collection. Two of Each. Box Set. Note cards. Gift Tags. Rococo. Marie Antoinette.


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