Saturday, 30 January 2010

Something new, something old, and something blue…

My Finnish saga continues, this week I’ve concentrated on Formydarling and Karuski, as well as introducing some new items on my shop.

Formydarling uses only materials she collects from second hand shops and flea markets, and by felting and sewing and altogether upcycling, she gives the old, ordinary pullovers a miraculous new lease of life. One of my favourites in her shop is the owl wedding cake toppers isn’t this couple just adorable? And they beat the plastic lifeless figurines by any given day!

Another artist using mainly repurposed and vintage materials is Karuski. Her sweet purses and jewellery just ooze fairy dust and feminine touch. Have a look at this Princess in me necklace

I’ve added some new styles to my shop on this week, following my new style of hats with safety reflectors. I’ve done this experiment with reflectors creating hand bag charms & key chains, as the idea of keeping our loved ones safe in dark winter months has been toying constantly in my mind. I’ve been in touch with other Finn, hard working family business Laxo Design, and created these items around their existing safety reflector styles.

White feminine butterfly reflector is designed by Paola Suhonen, and is also available in other colours at

Saturday, 23 January 2010

The Flying Finns

For the next few weeks I’ll introduce you to some of my favourites in Etsy, and in this week I’ve decided to offer you an elegant artist from Finland. Following introduction and extra pictures are from my fellow country men, all using Etsy as a platform for their art, but let me start with giving you more details about Maari and her art:

Maari, is a lady from Finnish Lapland who is using a raku technique on her ceramic designs. As she mentions on her Etsy shop: ”Unique raku art inspired by Lapland’s nature: birch vases, decorative raku eggs, Arctic animals, birch branch & bark tiles all handmade in my Arctic studio!“. Every one of her designs are unique, as are the nature’s creations, and all of the designs have their roots on the elements of Lapland’s nature – the unexpected and beautiful wilderness. Maari mentions on her web page that her biggest inspirations come from the colours, shapes and the materials of the nature around her. She also works with leather, stone and other materials.

One of my favourites in her shop is the birch eggs- and this is how she introduces visitors to her price winners:
“Which came first, the birch or the egg?
This witty raku egg set is part of my Koivu Collection. The source of inspiration for the Koivu Collection is the Birch tree, which we have a lot of in Finland. Almost every family has their own "Home Birch" in the yard, which "protects" the family, standing still while the wind blows and snowstorms rage. I created these birch eggs in honour of all the little birds that nest in the birch trees in my yard and wake me up each morning with their joyful songs.

Eggs symbolize fertility and life and make elegant favours for a wedding or a baby shower. “

I also picked these vases from her home page, they are just absolutely fantastic, bringing your home a breath of fresh, cool and mystical northern air.

I also wanted to add some other treats from the fellow Finns. When I think of my home land, I remember the forests filled with berries and other nature’s gifts– hence the berry style necklace from HappyDaysDesing

Designs which are useful but beautiful and even playful –hence the elf like design from Vaisto

We also are and have been the pioneer of recycling, having the gift of seeing beauty in used items. Tuuni has this gift of finding treasures from past, the gift of recycling and upcycling and releasing the past a new from of life- have a look at the wonderful pillow covers made by Tuuni.

Friday, 15 January 2010

New Year, New Beginnings

We've returned to the normal routines of our ordinary life! It actually feels good to be back at home, and to jump back to normality. Having said that, our lives never occure to be normal. This week we are dog-sitting (last week it was combined house-horses-dogs-sitting) for a 6 months old puppy Max, whose owner has gone on holiday. He keeps running riot around our older dog Charlie. I can forgive all the accidents, including the smelly ones, but Max has now commited the cardinal mistake of attacking my stacks of yarn, and that is a mistake that is not easily forgiven. My hopes to get a new dog addition to our family have vanished nearly completely- I would not have patience to deal with the mess just now. That is unless someone introduces me to a puppy who hates yarns and wool, my son's toys and hubby's shoes- oh and who automatically knows the toilet issues too! Having said that, I do really love them, bless their smelly socks!

I will also confirm the winner for my Christmas Pay it Forward competition- Sue is the winner and I wish her Happy Birthday as well as plenty of blessings for the surgery on 18th of Jan!

Regarding the knitting, I do have some new ideas. As a mum, my child's safety is always in my mind. When in Finland I noticed most of us wearing a good old safety reflector, and I thought to add some reflectors to my accessories as an extra additional bonus and safety measure. First item is out, second is waiting for a model to arrive and help me out (my son profoundly refuses to model for girly hat, and I can not fight with that).

These are some logistic I found from this web site, they also have some stunning reflector styles & models on sale including the ones I've used myself.

At night, the human eye only works at 5% of its usual capacity, which is a frightening fact and makes road safety measures all the more important. With a reflector our visibility can go from 100 to 300 metres with high beams and from 20 to 150 metres with low beams.
A person dies on our roads every 97 seconds – a simple gesture like wearing a reflector can help us stay safe and reduce the number of fatalities.