Sunday, 31 March 2013

easter greetings and a little catch-up

I hope everybody is having a lovely Easter weekend!

As to what's been happening over here, here's a brief little catch-up.

Not much thrifting; we thought it'd be nice to be able to get a few bigger things and also a food processor which would reduce the many hours of hummous- and other vegan food-making to hopefully much less time-consuming activities.

Much language learning and multiple choice questions answering; I have a big exam in a week.

Some undocumented crafting, and some documented ones, like attempting to decorate some eggs for Easter. I used onion skins and a beetroot to dye hard boiled eggs which I dotted with some candle wax and let sit in the cold dye overnight.

Then they transformed into a yummy snack for the boyfriend.

I'm still experimenting with foods after the longish fast, which are good for me and which I shall avoid. It's not easy. But the green smoothies and raw veg salads win every time, so hopefully the weather will be warm enough soon and we can turn our balcony into a salad bar.

In anticipation of the coming spring: Happy Easter everybody!

Saturday, 23 March 2013

giveaway winner!

Congratulations to Amit (check your email inbox) and thank you to everyone who has entered the giveaway!

I'm looking into a busy weekend catching up with stuff, and weather allowing we might even venture out for a longer walk than ten minutes.

Wishing each of you a lovely weekend too!

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

eleven days

I have broken my water fast yesterday with some fresh juice squeezed from a few sweet-smelling oranges. They tasted wonderfully fragrant and quite intense so I took each mouthful with great care and consideration. After eleven days on water, I'll be easing into eating again slowly so it's still juices and perhaps a few grapes or a bit of grated carrot for now.

I bought a pot of yellow tulips the other day - I'm craving spring much more than food. It's harder each day to wake up to another morning of crisp minus fifteen and to negotiate the slippery pavements everywhere, frozen solid with ice. Once the morning hours turn into lunchtime the temperature might even hike to zero and the sun does its work melting the icy snow, but by night it freezes over again. No chance for tulips or any plants to raise their pretty little heads out in the gardens yet, hence I turn my eyes from the outdoors ice to my indoor tulips when I can.

The other day all of Finland was treated to the light show of the nordic phenomenon of aurora borealis, even in the south-west where we are. I have seen them before in Iceland but it's never boring to catch a glimpse of the dancing, twisting, cold green flames in the sky. We watched them from our kitchen window. You can see some images here from that day.

I have been on and off reading my favourite blogs lately although quietly, but hoping to be more talkative now that the fast is over!

PS. Thank you for the people who signed up to following me via Bloglovin' in the last weeks! As you probably know, Google reader is going to cease existing soon so if you haven't done it yet, just click on the big Bloglovin' button in the sidebar to start following Idle Needle there.

Friday, 15 March 2013

flea friday: a mid-century Arabia vase

We went scouring for a birthday present in the better indoor fleamarkets a couple of weeks ago and came away with this vintage Arabia faience vase. It was my boyfriend's find - I'm so proud of his good taste! The recipient really liked her present too. We got it at a very bargainous price, despite it being absolutely faultless. I think this colour is less desirable at the moment by the general public here. Lucky for us - it's a design classic and we loved the colour!

The vase goes by the name ruusumaljakko which means rose vase and bears full markings on the base as you can see, which helped a lot in finding out about it more. It's design is 385-1, it was designed in 1958 and was put into production in 1963. The designer is Karl Heinz Schultz-Köln. It's shape and decoration is unmistakably mid century modern, but the design concept really comes to life when you put roses in it. Here it is in the recipient's home.

Just a little reminder for vintage lovers: don't forget about my giveaway where you can win a set of vintage preserve jar stickers designed by Nanny Still - there's still time to enter!

I hope you enjoyed seeing our find which I'm sharing on A Living Space, Young Heart and Sir Thrift A Lot.

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

a giveaway (and a lady called Nanny Still)

Time for a giveaway!

Any reason is a good reason, but I say let's celebrate the first Idle Needle post that was published exactly 8 months ago...

In that first post I showed off some thrifted vintage stickers which, by a loop-the-loop way, pretty much birthed the idea for this particular giveaway. Ha, how the plot thickens...!

So, those stickers. They are for your jars and freezer containers and were printed by Lindel Helsinki on Avery labels. The illustrations are 70s through and through - just look at that free, sweeping line and those colourways! They are called Hetiketti, which is a play on words in Finnish, meaning instant stickers. And they are a bit special too, because they were designed by Nanny Still.

But who is this lady called Nanny Still? At the time of finding those first labels, I was totally ignorant of Nanny Still's name and her influence in Finnish glass design. Slowly I have been discovering her fame, falling in love with her iconic pieces. But, because I can't really afford glass designed by her, I have been picking up the stickers instead. Which - needless to say - are much more accessible for a gal on a tiny budget.

Having collected a nice array of Nanny Still's Hetiketti, I'd like to offer a set to a lucky reader via this giveaway.

The giveaway

The giveaway is open internationally and will run for 10 days. To enter the giveaway, you need to be a follower of Idle Needle, then if you want you can earn extra entries on top of that. Enter via the rafflecopter widget below.

There will be one winner who will receive a set of 24 stickers - one of each design that I have collected. These glossy stickers are designed to stick on glass and plastic containers, but I have been using them also as address labels on letters...

Once the winner is announced, he or she has 48 hours to respond - if no response, a new winner will be chosen. Entries will be checked so please play fair! Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, 11 March 2013

violet march

March has arrived here too. It's still severely subzero and there are big piles of snow everywhere but the sun has been shining a lot in the last few days so it's all melting slowly.

March is violet in Colour Me Happy land, but for us here it's way too early for that colour. I have been looking and looking and not seen anything in violet... not even in the shops.

I have tried my hand at rubber eraser stamp making recently. I dreamed of a deep indigo violet inkpad to print with but I couldn't find that nice traditional colour anywhere. I managed a purpley magenta instead, which is the closest I will get to violet this month I think.

Come April there will be a lot of pretty colours around - here's last year's example of violet.

Saturday, 9 March 2013

oh rays of sun I love you so

It's wonderful to wake up to the warmth of the spring sun breaking through your blinds and making ever so pretty displays in the room!

It lends such an inspired start to the day, even if the thermometer outside the kitchen window still reads -11. Time for lots of crafting, little walks and much yoga - on the 6th day of my fasting, I have a lot of time freed up from not having to prepare food and eat.

Have a lovely weekend everyone!

Thursday, 7 March 2013

three-line thursday: BKY kid

via BKY kid
Instant playmat for the little one.
Back-massage for the big one.
What's not to love?

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

the leaning tower of procrastination

I have a stash of vintage fabrics. It's not the largest stash ever, not even close but nevertheless it keeps growing and growing and growing.

The current stack is already looking like a mini version of the famous leaning tower... and then, here is my most recent find to balance on top in addition.

Every time I fold a new old bit of textile into the pile, I think exactly this same sentence to myself:  "I must make something with these soon..." then more often than not I leave it at that.

I am a bit of a magpie, and yes I have a stashing habit. However, I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who is more of a stasher than a crafter when it comes to pie-charting one's motives and tendencies. I'm always full of make-do-mend ideas, I mean a whole series of notebooks are full of them..! With vintage buttons, I squirrel more away into jars than will ever use. With vintage fabrics, I stash more into tall piles than I will ever put my scissors to. Even though I could.

Because, you see, I also have a stash of skills and supplies! I tell you, this blog is called Idle Needle for a reason. This will sound like something out of a b-movie, but I am the Idle Needle...
The best bit is that I know exactly why I am like that. But - as Michael Ende puts it - 'that's a tale for another time'.

Well, I have news for you leaning tower of idle fabrics: I've started to make little things for the Craft It Forward challenge, and also have a line-up of simple projects which will lessen the idle fabrics and the height of the stash.

And as for that tale for another time, I'll be facing my demons in a mini series of posts about the sweet and the bitter side of procrastination.
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