Sunday, 29 November 2009

Hopenhagen - become a citizen

On the 7th of December representatives of 129 countries will meet in Copenhagen, Denmark to take decisions regarding climate change.

By signing this UN sponsored petition you can help the leaders to realise how important climate protection is to the citizens of the world.

Don't miss out on the chance of having your voice heard. Become a citizen!

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Book Review: Beyond the Square Crochet Motifs

Full Title: Beyond the Square - Crochet Motifs. 144 Circles, Hexagons, Triangles, Squares, and other Unexpected Shapes.
Author: Edie Eckman
ISBN: 978-1-60342-039-6
Pages: 202
Language: English
Flickr Search: Eckman crochet motifs
Buy it:

Content: Imagine - Quick Start Guide - Crochet Motif Workshop: A Word About Yarn; Sizing and Gauge; Following Instructions; Reading Charts; Getting Started; Beginning the Round; Ending the Round; Color Considerations; All Those Ends!; Joining Motifs; Principles of Flatness; Taking it to the Next Level; Edgings; Make it Your Own; Designing with Motifs - Circles - Hexagons - Triangles - Squares - Unusual Shapes - Appendix - Index - Stitch Key

How the book is organised:
The book is divided into two main sections: workshop and motifs.

The first part contains a brief introduction to crocheting in general and to stitching motifs in particular. The author provides a wide variety of useful technical tips on matters such as joining blocks, ending or shaping your work. Additionally reader will find inspiring notes on choosing colours and creating your own designs.

The second part of the book focuses on particular motifs: circles, hexagons, squares, and unusual shapes - 144 instructions in total. Each motif gets its own page with the colourful picture, clear graphical diagram and text instruction. Descriptions of motifs are meticulous and very easy to understand.

Strengths of the book:
1. Clear, easy to read instructions
2. Clear page layout
3. Great tips for crocheters

Weaknesses of the book:
1. Not all designs are aesthetically well done
2. Some motifs are repetitive
3. Despite its introductory part, this book is not suitable for beginners
Edie Eckman's book is one of my favourite crochet compendiums for two reasons. First of all it is a fantastic tool for someone who, like me, loves to design their own creations. You can mix and match your favourite motifs and come up with brilliant ideas, just by browsing the book. It is really inspirational!
And second of all, you have to love a book that contains dedication: For Mom, with Love :)
These, combined with the very good quality of instructions and diagrams results in a fantastic book for intermidate and proficient crocheters.

Saturday, 21 November 2009

Shop Re-Opened!

Yey! After a few months break my etsy shop is opened again. Very exciting!

I started with relisting my old favourites. You will also find a new line of 80s style earrings.

And the best things is that if this Saturday and Sunday you spend at least $8 in my shop you will get the shipping free!

Monday, 16 November 2009

Buy Handmade Pledge

I Took The Handmade Pledge! I pledge that this Christmas all the gifts I give will be handmade. I will make as many of them as I can myself. The ones I cannot make myself, I will buy from independent artists and crafters.

I will also ask for handmade gifts from my family and friends.

If you want to ensure that handmade market is alive and kicking, do the same. Go to, sign the pledge and post the pledge banner on you website.

Friday, 13 November 2009

Silkeborg Puppet Festival: The Opening

Yesterday night, I had the chance to participate in the opening performance of Silkeborg Dukketeater Festival. Thalias Kompagnons proposed an unforgettable rendition of Mozart's Magic Flute.

Tristan Vogt and Joachim Torbahn chose an unorthodox method of communication with the audience - namely by video camera. Not only did we have the chance to see puppets acting on the large screen, but also the, usually backstage, workshop of the puppeteers.

My first thought, when I saw the screen and the camera, was: why are those guys giving up the biggest advantage that the theatre has over television - live audience interaction?!? Turned out, they didn't. Not only did the troupe interacted with the audience, not only Tamino and Papageno winked at us from the screen, but also Daniel Gloger - contre tenor, who sung almost all the parts - acted with his entire self. It was fantastic!

Thalias Kompagnons combined new media technologies, sketchy decorations, simple puppets and loads of creativity. And the result was an uncanny feast for imagination and a healthy portion of laugh.

After the performance, I found myself inspired to dive into the world of puppetry - I've got to tell you, this is a whole different kind of craft!

Photo curtsy of this website.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

Celebrating Autumn: Pumpkin Buns

Don't they just look delicious? I baked these pumpkin buns yesterday and, despite it being my first time, they came out quite nice. They are very soft and airy inside and they have this amazing aroma of cardamom (even though I added much more cinnamon and clove). They taste fantastic with smelly soft cheeses and gruyère although I must say I like them with apple and ginger jam as well.
The only disadvantage is that the pumpkin taste is completely lost in them...pity. Anyway, I found the recipe here - well of cooking and baking inspirations! I promise to translate it for you in the next few days so stay tuned.

Friday, 6 November 2009

My Creative Space and New Project

I haven't had my own, properly separated creative space since I was a school kid. But in our new apartment there is a spare room where we keep all the mess and two desks. And I've got to tell you, it feels fantastic to be able to arrange my own piece of room in exactly the way I want it. My creativity level spikes immediately when I sit in my chair and in front of my desk. It is just great!
Examples of my creativity spikes include polymer clay beads, embroidery project, textile jewellery and wild hoards of images of bags, bracelets, hats and buttons. Now I only have to sit down and work on all of this - see you in a few years :D