Tag Archives: Arts

Kierrätystehdas: Workshops, and my (for now) little joy

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Ok, first of all: a BIG thank you to all my friends, acquaintances and their friends and acquaintances and everyone who visited – and will return to visit – my blog after I first “unveiled” it on Facebook (and special thanks to the girls who commented and encouraged on Facebook – you give me more courage!). That was a big step for me (we are all afraid – or at least anxious – about all possible criticism, right?) and a great commitment. I hope to be able to keep your interest and to provide fun reads with some information now and then. Also, if you have any suggestions, please leave comments – they make me very happy 🙂

Now let’s get back for a very short while to Kierrätystehdas (aka Recycling Factory) because I still didn’t tell you anything about the workshops – and they were really most interesting!

There was a Sewing Club, where everyone could go find some interesting discarded clothes and remake them for themselves or any other purpose. There were sewing machines ready for the participants and professional instructors from Defender, who helped to make visions come true. By the way, check out Defender Redesign page  where they’re now showing their latest collection made from repurposed/upcycled clothes. The designs are great!

There was also a woodwork workshop where participants created birdhouses and flower boxes, and bicycle workshop where anyone could get advise and help with fixing their bike and getting it ready for the summer season (you might not be aware, but it’s a real challenge to get into any bicycle service here in Helsinki! They’re booked right up to the end of June!). Then there was a UFF workshop where participants could learn about the UN’s Millennium Development Goals and print texts on recycled t-shirts related to those objectives; and rag flowers workshop; and Vinteco workshop, where everyone could see and learn how to renovate furniture, especially with different coverage techniques; and crafts workshop were you could learn to braid empty coffee packages into purses, for example, or something else. And the best part of all this was that all the activities were completely free (well, except for the sewing club, but there the fee was only 5 euros for using the discarded clothes so you wouldn’t need to bring any)! There was no registration, no fees and no other obstacles to join any workshop at anytime and just try whatever caught your fancy!

Now two most interesting things for me were Art Book Workshop and Mosaic workshop. I didn’t have time to create an art book myself, but the idea itself is amazing! You take any old unwanted book and just use it as an album, for example, for your art. Maybe some word in a page caught your attention and you got an idea for an illustration or design, maybe you use only the cover of the book, or you use the pages to frame something… The possibilities are endless! Here are some pictures I took of the sample books that were there on display. How lovely is the “earth” book?.. And those violets! I’d love to try this sometime.

And last (but not least, as they say) – the Mosaic Workshop. This I got to try myself! 🙂 And it was great great fun! The organizers provided all participants with small wooden boards, ceramic-tile-glue and pieces of glass (I wonder, where could they fave found so many broken things like cups and glasses and plates and teapots?), and all who wanted could make their own mosaic. I once again found that I love to see colourful, “busy” designs but when its time for me to do something on my own, I’m a real minimalist! Just look at the difference between what my friend created (you can see her mosaic beside the glue bucket) and my own “masterpiece” 😀 But all in all it was a really fun experience and I’m very happy I had a chance to participate.

And this concludes my account of the Recycling Factory. Have you found any ideas you’d like to try at home? Please share in the comments, I’d love to hear them!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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And now for my little joy: I got a sewing machine! I was obsessing about it for several months now, so with my birthday coming – and having finally chosen what I really want (and what I want inside the price range we can actually afford… more or less) – yesterday we agreed with my wonderful husband that I go and buy it. He was a bit unhappy that the present won’t be a surprise (he likes preparing surprises for me. And he’s real good at them! 🙂 ), but as I wanted the machine soooo much, what else was there to do? On the other hand, this freed him from having to come up with some awesome present for me because it’s not an “ordinary” birthday – I’m turning 30! (OMG… Ok, let’s not think about that for a week more…) So I guess he was at least a bit happy and relieved as well.  And my happiness will be extended, because my great machine is now hidden from me and I’m not allowed to touch it until my actual birthday. Then I will be excited and happy all over again! But for now I can line up the myriad projects I’d “really like to make” 😀 You can look at the amazing assembly of online tutorials I’ve gathered on my Pinterest Crafts board anticipating “the time when I have a sewing machine”. The time has nearly come! Do you have any cool tutorials you’d share? I’d be very glad to add them to my line.

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Oh, what the hell!..

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Hi 🙂

Huh, it’s that simple, really… You know, having a blog is in some way exactly the same as having a friend. It’s so easy to talk/write when you chat on a daily basis – when you know every detail of each others lives there are so many more things you can discuss and share. But when you talk only once in a while, the range of available topics seems to shrink incredibly, you no longer know what to talk about to your best friend, and hence end up talking even less… because it’s awkward, isn’t it? As my own best friend (whom I really talk too rarely to lately… sadly) once put it: when you chat rarely, at some point the amount of details and small things to share just becomes too great to cover everything, so then you turn to the “big things” – but big things don’t happen that often in life, do they?

For us (at least up till now) the trick to getting back on track – as with most cases in life – is quite simple: we start talking again 🙂 Someone says “Hi! How are you doing?”, the other says “Fine. How are you?” and we roll from there. So I really REALLY hope that the same thing will be true with this blog of mine. It’s really been two full months since I’ve written last. With my last pair of wristers and my promise to show you all (is there anyone left out there, by the way?) the sweater that’s been torturing my mind for a while. But then I’ve knit the sweater, I tried to knit a phone case that I actually started to hate someway in the middle of the project but couldn’t make myself undo what I’ve already done (it’s still there, half-finished in my drawer)… then came Easter with all our travels (as we live in Finland currently and all our relatives are left in Lithuania, we do travel each holiday) and the kids’ birthdays (both my little ones were born in April), and then – spring, and with spring – my usual aversion to knitting and love for sewing, decorating, writing and what-not. Sooo… the time passed, the pictures of my sweater remained untaken (though I gladly wear it), and with every passing day the blog seamed to grow more distant. “It’s been so long since my last post. Everyone thinks all this venture is dead anyway,” I told myself. “And what would I even write about? I don’t knit anymore, and I so pompously announced in the beginning that I’m making a business out of knitting! I’m a disaster…” Oh yes, it wasn’t merely “I don’t know what to write about”, because I actually do – there are millions of things I’d love to write about. But none of them is related to making a business out of knitting wristers. That’s the problem. I’ve actually been embarrassed…

But for maybe a week now I’ve been feeling a real longing for  . I find so many wonderful, inspirational things every day, I have so many plans – I want to share all that! I want to have a place to share my joy that comes from the little everyday things I do with my own hands for my home, my kids or myself, I want to have conversations with you, guys (so please feel free to write comments anywhere and everywhere you feel like writing), I want to be part of the blogging community and I want this blog to be not only about knitting wristers but about all beautiful things out there in the world and here in my life.

And yes, about the business part: I haven’t given up yet 🙂 Although I admit I had (and still do, maybe) a lot of doubts about knitting wristers for sale, but I haven’t given up on this idea completely, and I still entertain the idea of having at least some small “side job” of selling handcrafts – be it wristers, embroidered pillows or hand-drawn greeting cards 🙂 So, it’s coming… sometime. But until then, as I want this blog to be alive – and I really WANT it to be alive, screaming and kicking – I will take the pleasure in writing about whatever I feel like writing.  So there… 🙂

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And now about that sweater of mine 🙂 (you thought there won’t be anything about that anymore, didn’t you?) Here it is.

I know, I know, these are so not the best pictures in the world. I just hope they’re not the worst! (though that probably is a possibility as well 😀 ) But I promised to share and this is all I have for now and if I don’t do this NOW, I will again be waiting for “when I have more time to take proper pictures”, “good lighting” etc., and the blog will continue to wither. So, here it is as it is.

I actually really love this sweater! It doesn’t look exactly as I imagined it will when it haunted me in the beginning of the year, but it’s very cosy. I knit it in two weeks (that’s a record for me! 🙂 ) and I basically haven’t taken it off for half of March and the bigger part of April. Now it’s a bit too warm to be wearing it under my raincoat and too cold to be wearing just the sweater, so it got some well deserved rest. But I still hope I will be able to find opportunities to wear it before the fall.The great thing about it is those short sleeves. I know they might look doubtful on a sweater knit of such thick yarn, but they so work – I can be warm and not too warm, the wool (it’s 100% wool) breathes, everything fits perfectly and all in all it’s my favourite sweater in the world now. And I’m so happy with that self-made knit “label” that says “IeVa”! 🙂

If you’re interested, I knit the sweater combining parts of two DROPS patterns (here is the one I took the idea of a ribbed waist from, and here is where I took the cable pattern from) and used DROPS Alpaca yarn.

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So, that’s it for today. See you soon!