Short of genius – Crocheted cotton pads

Category : D.I.Y. Projects
Date : 28/04/2017
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Short of genius – Crocheted cotton pads

In today’s world of Pinterest, you see very many beautiful diy ideas and sometimes you see so many that you don’t know where to start creating. Then there’s the diys that are so clever and simple, you’ll be like “why didn’t I think of that!” That’t what happened when I saw Matilda Gustafsson’s post about crocheted cotton pads. I immediately saved the post on bloglovin’ and went through my yarn bag to see if I had any yarn I could use.

Cotton pads are one of those things I’ve been wanting to find a less wasteful alternative for and I love crocheting so this diy was really up my alley. I chose to crochet my cotton pads round with double crochet using this diagram.

There are so many ways one could crochet these cotton pads. One could use different materials, shapes, sizes and patterns. In the coming months I at least want to crochet a couple of sets in different thicknesses and maybe use linnen and bamboo instead of cotton.

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At first I wanted to use linen yarn but it felt a bit unnecessary to go buy yarn when I had cotton yarn left over from other projects. I didn’t know which thickness would be ideal so I made one out of each yarn before crocheting more.

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I went with the thicker yarn, I think the thicker pads absorb more liquid. I might crochet more pads from the thinner yarn at a later point. I liked the exfoliating aspect of this test pad.

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One tip I would give is to think of shrinkage when deciding on size of the pads.

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How does one join an art collective?

That’s what I’d like to know! I was watching a mini series about the Bloomsbury Group (I blame it on that Grantchester binge watching session) and got thinking what it would be like to be in an art collective and if it’s something that still exists in today’s world. The group was not an art collective per se and I can imagine the multiple love triangles caused a lot of drama but there’s something about artistic individuals creating together that intrigues me. I envision this lively but safe space where people inspire and challenge you. Where new ground is broken and minds enlightened. In the real world however, how does a rather paranoid introvert find/join/create an art collective?

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Scarlet by Stiina Saaristo, 2004. In my art collective fantasy, it would be the place where I would find my own painting style. Did I mention that I actually don’t paint that much?

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Organs III by Renáta Jakowleff. I have always been fascinated by glass, so maybe in my fantasy art collective I would become a glass master!

‘Cause here’s the thing, every time I go to a museum, I always get really inspired and eager to create. I often find myself asking, why I’m not painting/sculpting/writing more. The most recent time I asked that question my friend suggested I should join an association of some kind. She said there’s camaraderie to be found and you can have group exhibitions! So I’m asking all of you artsy people out there, where can I find an art collective to join?



Look what the sun brought me – Shadow Studies Pt.1

As a lover of patterns it’s no surprise that I’ve developed an interest in taking abstract photographs. It’s usually images of textures and patterns taken in spur of the moment with my phone before they end up on instagram. That’s why I’ve come to associate the abstract photos with spontaneity, I can rarely plan a photoshoot in advance. Maybe that will change as I experiment more and take more images.

These images were taken with my dslr but the process was spontaneous non the less. They were taken on an unusually sunny March morning when the sun was so strong it was creating really sharp shadows. I happened to have some glass items on the table and the morning free to experiment. I love how from some angles the images look like ink or charcoal drawings. Do you agree? Or what do you see?

I have a lot of glass items at home (more on that in another post) and I really liked playing with shadows, so I think I’ll explore this theme a little bit more. I’m also tempted to manipulate experiment with these images in photoshop. Stay tuned for part 2 of the Shadow Studies.

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My Stitch Library – Textured crochet edition

I’ve been thinking about making a big and warm triangle scarf for a while now, I just haven’t been able to decide how to make it. Winter may be over (thank goodness!) but I’ve given up trying to make big projects during the season they’re intended for. Instead I get started when I have the inspiration and try not to have too many projects going on at the same time. It’s a constant challenge for me.
Considering how long it took me to knit the seed stitch scarf ( a post on that is in the works) I think I’ll be crocheting the triangle scarf. And what  do I do when I can’t decide on which stitch to use for something? I learn new stitches and make some swatches. It’s become a regular habit of mine and I have to say I quit like the process. I’m gonna start posting them under My Stitch Library, as it is in a way a collection of crocheting and knitting stitches. I used Hopeful Honey’s tutorials for these swatches. I like her tutorials because they’re clear but short.

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Mini bean stitch

Looks pretty straight forward but after a few rows I realised that my swatch didn’t have the right “slant” in the rows as it should and decided to start from scratch. I like to crochet pretty tightly which sometimes makes it difficult to see key parts in some stitches. I also wanted to yarn over before every “mini bean”, which you shouldn’t in this stitch. Sometimes I would forget and notice it a few rows later. Luckily it got easier halfway through the second swatch, for me it just required a bit of practice. I really like the 3 dimensionality and texture of this stitch. I’m thinking about making a scarf with it in the future.

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Suzette stitch

I struggled to keep my rows even, I probably skipped one too many stitches somewhere. It’s otherwise an easy stitch to crochet. I like the subtle texture of this stitch, I have one up coming project made with it.

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Lemon peel stitch

Probably the easiest of the stitches I tried this time. I would recommend this for beginners to try out. I like the texture of this stitch and how compact it is. I also have one up coming project made with this stitch.

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Primrose stitch

I kept forgetting how to start and end the rows so if I would make something with this stitch I would probably need to write down some notes in the beginning of the project. I really like the star  pattern this stitch creates on one side. I usually prefer stitches crochet patterns with identical sides but this one has a pretty reverse side so it’s worth a spot in my stitch library.

 


Mood Board Love – Antique Lemons

Category : Inspiration, Works
Date : 04/04/2017
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Mood Board Love – Antique Lemons

Image credits : The Met Rijksmuseum

I love making mood boards. So much so I’ve sometimes wondered if mood board maker could be a full time job. I would maybe get tired of it though. I usually prefer making my mood boards like my collages, by hand from old magazines. But lately I’ve been testing doing them in photoshop and I thought I’d share some of them with you. I still haven’t settled for one layout, I want to try out different ones for a while. I hope you find them inspiring.


Tokyo by night

Category : Travel
Date : 29/03/2017
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Tokyo by night

On my second day in Tokyo I got to experience the mandatory Shibuya crossing. It was on a Friday evening so there was a lot of people (probably average for Tokyo standards but massive for a Helsinkian). I think that’s when it really sank in, “I’m really here!” I felt like such a globetrotter in this cool capital city that never sleeps. Did the kiwi cider I had just had have something to do with this sensation? Maybe a little. What really happened was that we were home by midnight because we didn’t want to miss the last metro. Luckily you don’t have to pull an all nighter to see the city in this different light.

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A few days later I found myself at the Shibuya crossing again. This time I took a few minutes to observe the stream of people walking by.

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Walking through a crowd like this and not panic was a big deal for me.



I walked by so many of these small cozy restaurants. I really like the clean yet inviting design of their facades. 

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Cartoon billboards, me like!

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It’s interesting how lanterns immediately make space seem more cozy. 

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I spent a lot of my time in Tokyo in parks, gardens and quieter neighbourhoods. It was on evenings like this, during the after work rush hour that I was reminded how fast paced this city can be.

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I’m surprised I didn’t get lost while wandering these narrow neon lit streets.

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These buildings in Odaiba immediately made me think of The Two Towers!

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Taking monorail to Odaiba is an easy way to see parts of the city from a different angle. It made Tokyo feel even more futuristic to me.

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The lights and signs! I could go on another trip just to photograph them. I wonder if I would be as fascinated if I understood Japanese.


The Compartmentaliser

Category : D.I.Y. Projects
Date : 23/03/2017
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The Compartmentaliser

I’m the kind of person who really hates looking for things. This has made into an avid organiser. My space is not always clean (I’m not a big fan of vacuum cleaners) but my things are always organised. One side effect of this is that I have a weakness for what you could call organising tools, boxes, folders, pouches you name it. I probably have it worst for pouches, I mean, I have a pouch for my pouches! It’s probably because I can make them myself and I always find new uses for them.
When I was packing for Tokyo, I realised I could use a couple of pouches for smaller items that can easily get lost when unpacking a large suitcase. I also thought they could be useful for those deep bags with dark lining that seem to swallow small things like hair accessories. So I went through my fabric scraps and found pieces that matched my flea market bought zippers. My materials kind of limited the size of the pouches but I wanted to make the as pretty as possible. I thought about decorating them with embroidery but I wanted to try some new techniques. I ended up using tucking and gathering techniques from the great book The art of manipulating fabric. I can’t talk enough about how great this book is!
I’m pretty happy with my pouch trio and they’ve already been in use when I’ve gone up north to visit my family. How about you? Are you pouch using kind of people? How do you pack small items when travelling?

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Fairy tale gardens

Category : Travel
Date : 15/03/2017
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Fairy tale gardens

Yoyogi Park on a summer Sunday is full of locals and tourists having picnics and unexpected performances. When we sat down for a lunch break that hot june afternoon I felt like a local for a brief moment.  I don’t know if it was the group of teenage girls dressed like sailor moon or the rockabilly dancers that got me so distracted that I forgot to take pictures. I did have my camera ready when we visited the Meiji Jingu shrine and the surrounding forrest. There was something incredibly majestic and serene about that forrest, even though there were almost as many people there as in Yoyogi park. The shrine itself was under renovation but we still managed to “crash” one wedding. We also visited the garden with the iris flowers that were in full bloom.

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I was captivated by the shere height and variety of the trees but here I got distracted by the ladies in the lovely kimonos. 

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When you’re walking by serene ponds like this you forget that you’re in the middle of a busy capital city.

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I don’t think I’ve ever taken so many pictures of fish in my life as I did of carp on this trip. Maybe it’s the orange colour or the spotted pattern but wherever I found them I was snapping away.

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Unfortunately it’s the bright coloured carp that get all the attention from us tourists. Can you spot the other fish this picture?

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Entering the iris garden felt like entering a fairy tale movie set.

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I love the intense colours of the flowers.

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I wasn’t the only one trying to capture the beauty of this purple bloom.

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Very tired but very happy tourist.



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