You know you're getting old(-er) when you use the phrase "have to go" in front of "party tonight" (instead of "get to go, yey!" or so). My sister has finished her studies and graduated and my friend from Berlin is here celebrating her 30th birthday. Lost of celebrations going on. And I'm just really tired.
But it will be fun anyway. Hope I just don't fall asleep.
The shoes, skirt and beret are vintage, top from H&M and the camée/clock necklace was a Christmas gift from Ina.
Had a nice and late breakfast, muesli, blackberries and banana. Carbs rule.
Plus some baby carrots.
Wet set my hair. Really, I hate doing that; I have more hair than one might think so it takes forever.
The cats have, in their usual manners, been chilling most of the day. This time on their own leves.
After this I danced and worked on our new group routine's choreography for a couple of hours (to be seen in February at HBF), now it's time for popcorn and cinema; the American version of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. Which original title is Men That Hate Women, which of course suits the whole triogy better.
(...is a drink at the Kokomo Tiki bar but that's not what I'm after here.)
A storm swept over us yesterday of a seldom seen strength in Scandinavia. Some roofs and pieces of buildings flew off, traffic signs tipped over and trees broke down in the hard wind. The officials sent out warnings trough the media for people to stay inside. But what do the harbour workers do? Go out in the wind and load the ships! (which were not running by schedule I can tell you). We had to close down parts of the harbour due to safety risks as some contraptions were about to burst.
After finally finishing my very long and tiring week of work I drove out to Eddi in the countryside where the electricity had been off since seven in the morning. Right after driving out of town and the suburb area everything was dark. When we left some hours ago, our place was still without power, even though the village nearby was lit. (Good thing I was busy and lazy and missed out on picking and storing berries last summer, as things in the freezer -some of those lambs you've seen in posts before...- had started to melt by then.)
Luckily we have a wooden stove to heat the house and cook food on. The house itself is not heated by electricity but by it's own wood chip system, but the system need electricity to run.
Candlelight and a burning fire is of coure cosy, but less cosy is the fact that unlike in the city, water here (from a well on the far) does not run by pressure bit the pump work with -you guessed it- electricity. So no running water and no working toilet. I've spent my summers in the archipelago without those comforts, but it's a little different in June than in December :)
I put candles everywhere. I learnt this trick with using old porcelain cups as candleholders from my friend Maiju, she again had spotted it in some store long time ago. It gives a very nice light!
Warming my feet by the oven and cooking tea.
It was not only the electricity that was not working, the mobile phone network, which usually is nothing to cheer about over there, was also pretty much down and I couldn't get online. That was it!
We're back in town now.
Up here in Scandinavia we've handed out most of our Christmas gifts already; we do that on Christmas Eve. But I know in many other places there are still gifts under the tree and hanging in the stockings. And I actually hand out quite many gifts -to friends and family I haven't had the time to see before- during what we call "the in-between days"; the days between the Christmas days and New Year's celebration. Here are some last minute tips for those who still might need it, and why not for just any other occasion too.
...I planned to post this yesterday already but I was at work (yes, on Christmas Eve and today and tomorrow too, ships leave all the fxxxing time) and there were no breaks in between to blog so let's do it now instead - I at least have many things coming up related to the holidays....
You know I think the wrapping or packing is almost half the fun. By putting the gift in a pretty box with a ribbon it's kind of like giving two gifts in one. I mean I for one love small pretty boxes to store all the stuff I have lying around everywhere. The contents do not even have to be that special to feel a lot fancier; socks, a pocket book, cookies, candles... you know, just whatever small and nice.
Or then jar it. You can give away just anything small in a jar to make it more interesting, lip balm and fake lashes for example, hair pins, those socks again. Or cute patterned cupcake molds or small candles. And of course, what works for almost everyone; sweets. Gingerbreads. If your short of time (or money), just buy some ready made of one kind or make your own mix. It still feels a lot nicer and more personal in different packing. Or, if you have the time ,make your own sweets. Just note that if money is an object and you want to make many different kinds it can actually get quite costy.
Not that I have had that much time on my hands, but I managed to make truffles, saffron toffee and white chocolate pralines. Want to make something yourself and get away easily? Melt some chocolate, add a little cream and butter or some fruit juice or coconut oil depending on if and what you have at home, and spice it with Christmassy spices - cinammon, ginger, clover and / or chardamom. Add dried fruit in mall pieces or chopped nuts if you have any around. Pour into praline molds or let cool and roll into balls and wrap in basic folio, or cut into chunks.
Fill your jar and tie a ribbon into a bow around it!
Another nice thing to give, especially to someone with kids, is to jar a recipe for a cake or cookies. Put the ingredients in the jar; last to be added to the dough first and the first last. Remember to add the rising agent to the flour. Write down the instructions and what needs to be added (usually butter and eggs) on a card and there you have it!
And here's me in that 'Hi-I'm-wearing-a-red-dress-for-Christmas'-photo.
(What makes this photo utterly retarded is the fact that I actually did not bake those gingerbreads, they are store-bought. I did bake some, but they were not at hand right here. But ignore that and just go along with the spirit here!)
The red dress for this year is the new Runaround Sue dress from Vivien of Holloway, and is a strong competitor for that perfect day dress I'm searching for. You see, it has that magical little detail: pockets! But I might have to shorten the hem a little bit.
Anyway, remember that my discount code for Vivien of Holloway is still up and running; you get 10% off an online purchase until January 12! The code is VOH_FreelanceF4b. Check my sidebar for more info.
And remember to enjoy your gingerbreads!
Last year it looked like this outside our windows.
Quite the difference from what we have now! But I'll spare you with pictures. Because it looks shitty and it's too dark anyway to get any photos as there is no snow to lighten things up; it's been raining for three weeks and rivers and fields are flooding over.
Some three years ago we had a snowless Christmas. But it was dry and a bit colder and I could wear my heels outside and other nice things in general (see?). Now it's just soggy and shitty. We've had rainy Christmases before, many of them, but after two years of cold and snow I actually miss it! Even the cold! Remember this? I'd rahter have than the constant rains! I mean what's the use of a warm winter if you can't dress nice?
I should probably start a new label here called "the internet" or something (or wait, let's make it Teh) - I can get stuck on a certain page I bump in to or am told about and then I sit there for hours or follow link after link for the rest of the night.. Tonight, instead of wrapping gifts and making Christmas sweets I've been watching videos over at THE AVANT/GARDE DIARIES.
When I was in design school we had the rather diffuse but also interesting courses of the philosophy of art and on the sociology of art; i.e what defines and artist, what puts a certain piece of art into a certain genre, what is considered avant garde, and so on? THE AVANT/GARDE DIARIES idea is maybe something in that direction, showcasing creative individuals view on avant garde or what perhaps could be considered that. This trough very different short movies about creative personalities, such as authors, fashion designers, musicians, artists and more. Some less, some more know to the public, like the Cobrasnake here above. Interesting; so my gift wrapping will have to wait a little while still! I you are interested in the articles/videos and persons featured, find them at www.theavantgardediaries.com.
I think that while Shabby Apple may be know to those of you in the States it is most likely a rather new acquaintance to us elsewhere? Shabby Apple has a range of vintage inspired dresses, more fancier frocks and also maternity- and swim wear. They also have such styles that I have not really seen elsewhere. The dresses are divided into differently styled collections; this is the A+ dress from the Academica collection. Many of the dresses are pictured on both a model and doll which is good - I actually prefer to see the dress on a doll rather than on a posing mannequin. Many dresses seemed a little too short for my taste though, so did this one - but it's a good thing those models often are taller than average, as the length on this dress is just perfect, enough below the knees!
First I thought this dress would have to wait until spring as shirt dresses usually are of a rather thin "shirty" cotton but this fabric is actually a quite thick and stiff cotton, which adds enough woompf to the skirt and which will work well during winter with a thin slip underneath. The sleeves are full length which I've rolled up a bit. You can also button the collar all the way up but I've folded it down.
As I am always on a constant hunt for perfect day dresses this one is surely welcome in my wardrobe!
My belt is vintage and the shoes are form Mod Cloth.
Last but not least there's something in this for all of you out there too: Shabby Apple offers you 10% off a purchase with the code "freelancer10off" to use at checkout! The code is valid for 30 days; until January 16 2012.
On Thursday night I got to use my art deco jewelry, that you could read about some posts ago! (Well, I actually did get the brooch especially for this occasion.)
And now some serious posing will follow:
My dress has belonged to a relative of mine; it is from the 1930's, as are the rings with pearl and turquoise. I got one of them from my grandmother for my confirmation many years ago. The other one is from the vintage store Hoochie Mamam Jane.
Eddi and I (plus our huge name tags) at the family gathering at the House of Knights. It's interesting every time as you always meet someone you might not even be that far related to but of whose existence you didn't even know... (Btw not that it is of any relevance today; but we; in my family, are not noble. But some in the family have been. Which in some aspects probably made life more pleasant in the pre-1900's.)
The fellas posing, much to their enjoy (as you can see).
The hall of nobility and it's Finnish coats of arms.
I had made my youngest sister's hair for the evening. (Her do was in more interesting than mine, as I nowadays with shorter hair mostly just curl it more or less...)
Me and my sisters posing in front of out great-great grandfather; whose 150th birthday celebration the evening all was about.
Now it's just to wait for the next reunion and the chance to get seriously dressed up again! Or, until something else fancy comes along...
It was too cold however to go leopard all the way and combine this with my leo jacket (♥)... My dress is from The Platypus Sisters. Which, as they name says, is a shop by two sisters. Not Australian as you might presume by the platypus though, but Italian! They have a range of hand made vintage styled dresses, inspired by the actresses from the 50's. My dress is the Sophia dress which is, of course, inspired by nonetheless than Sophia Loren.
I've shortened the dress a bit as it was a little too long on me.
I've received some questions on how I style my hair like this. (Or, how I've styled it the other way, when rolled inwards.)
Which really is just that; rolling the hair outwards or inwards. Both are very simple to style - no fuzz about it. But I can add that I mostly -or pretty much only- do this on sort of dull and semi-dirty hair that has old styling products in it and with fading old, curls.
I either just brush it a lot into shape and spray, or then curl it a little more in the edges with heat. I have quite a lot of hair, so if I use heat I have to curl it in the desired direction in two or three layers (as in not all hair at once, it will look ugly unless your hair is thin enough to bend all at once). Another option to do it without heat is to brush it, spray a little and then roll it outwards (or of course also inwards, but it's harder to stay put) and secure with alligator clips, spray some more and then wait for a couple of hours before opening the hair and giving it some strokes with the brush. You can add a little wax to finnish it off. The hair just around my face is just rolled into regular curls and not bent in any special direction.
(Which in case you wonder would be Swedish and mean something like Art Deco for all the money; as in all the way. Koko rahalla. Which then again was Finnish for the same thing.)
I got myself a art deco brooch. It is from the same Chez vintage series you have seen somewhat a lot of before here; from my friend's vintage store Hoochie Mama Jane. I actually have a pair of matching earrings already.
(Let's just hope I'll get other chances to use the jewelry too... over all I have not been much of a jewelry wearer the past years, but that is slowly changing. I want bigger hair and more rings on my fingers, gold and glitter and the whole bling thing! Sort of.)
I was about to blog abut something totally different but just received some pictures from a shoot I was part of a long time ago. And as I am in a slightly glamourous mood due to the President's Independence Day Ball on TV (no 4th of July partying over here, this is a very serious and calm day mostly remembering the war those who fought in it. The ball is for politicians, officials, the most famous artists and people who in one way or another have done something for the country. Plus some randoms. Apparently my invitation got lost in the post, again...) with all it's glamourous and perhaps not always so glamorous dresses and hair do's I decided to post something a bit more glamorous myself.
Photos by Timo Kauppila / Indav
This was before I cut my hair; I had curled it and rolled it into a fake bob.
The photos are part of a bigger whole for a project for which we, the IBTC, modelled. We'll probably post some more on the burlesque blog at some point.
Well alright, that's it with the movie star inspired pictures, now I'll get back to the ball on TV waching the next 500 people shake hands with the president while people at home judge their appearance. For the rest of you out there, here's a piece of Sibelius for you, suitable for today: Finlandia.
I've never been a huge fan of Lady Gaga per se, but I've always found her a rather cool artist, or should one say phenomenon. In general her music is not really my cup of tea although it is quite catchy and well produced. (But I think the refrains kind of suck.) However, I've heard some a capella or acoustic versions of hers and she really can sing! And she is a rather versatile artist, as you can see (and many probably already have) here:
This is quite funny I think! And I love the turquoise bob. The lace dress is pretty cool too.
(But you know what's weird. Everybody knows who Tony Bennett is, or at least the name. But he is not the kind of performer or person that I think that much about, in fact I don't think I've ever thought about him or deliberately listened to him, just had it registered in my head who he is and what he does, sort of. So I thought it was pretty weird that I one night earlier this autumn had a dream where I had this big ceramic plate in my hands that said "Tony Bennet" on it, painted with a thick brush, in blue colour. And I remember walking around with that plate, holding it over my head. When I woke up I was all wtf what a pointless and strange dream. And then I opened the morning paper and they had an article about Tony Bennett!! About the new record of his that he's done together with all these contemporaneity artists, this with Gaga and also with Amy Winhouse for example. But it was a very strange coincidence to first have the dream and then read the article. OK bye happy Sunday!)
Some people go out and party on Saturday night.
I stay at home in mjukisbyxor* my negligée (of course) having cookies. With milk. Milk! Where has the world gone? Where has my red wine gone?
Oh well, considering I've been away most other weekends performing I am not that much of a granny yet... (although I feel rather old as I totally oppose to change of any kind in any routines especially -and pretty much only now that I think of it- when it comes to the internet. I am not fond at all of the new Layout um, mode or so whatever its called that I am finally trying out on blogger. Have all of you updated already? I'm pretty sure it'd bring more benefits in some ways but I think I'll leave my template as it is and just switch back to the old interface too. Hah! Now somebody please fetch me my wool socks! And that walking cane too.)
*) Academically correct term for soft leisure pants in Swedish
Whenever I wear this outfit I get some scholar vibes. Maybe it's the bag. In combination with the jacket. And the beret. Plus the shorter hem, don't know. (It also makes me feel a bit like this one here -or here- which btw is one of the most wtf costumes around; in my opinion.)
Another btw is that I've been looking like this a lot lately; it is one of those "in disguise" outfits - you know the ones I tend to go for when busy and working and want to be comfy and so on, hiding pretty much anything under a proper jacket and that same old beret of mine. The dress is a 60's styled a-line jersey dress with white details I got late last summer (from Seppälä) and has really come in handy at both fancier occasions and for just pulling over ones head at 5:30 AM when heading to work. (You know, I am getting really tired of those early mornings. But tomorrow it's time again, at zero five ten. Damn!)
The boots are from Seppälä too and the rest is vintage-shmintage.
About life on the burlesque stage and behind my mac. I do design, pilates and red lips, enjoy wine and beautiful dresses, am fond of high heels and fancy hair, monkeys and seamen. I love rautalanka, my cats and my car. And most of all my little Dag and my Eddi. And I don't think anyone should take themselves too seriously!. This blog is about a little bit of everything actually, mainly the good stuff. To contact me send mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org but do note that I am not interested in taking "guest posts" or any other form of advertising anything for free. Read the "Please Note" section under the header first.