Wednesday, 10 January 2018

There is nothing wrong with shopping...

Mike Petrucci (unsplash.com)

Lately, a few of my friends have apologized for shopping. I feel a little bad about it, I don't want to spoil anything for my friends. I also feel a little "ok, somebody obviously thought about what I am saying and (even better) also thought about their purchase and then decided for (hopefully) good reasons to get it anyway - no matter what that old bag is saying". Well done. :)

But I thought, I'd say it anyway: Shopping is okay. Spending money is ok.

If done with reason and sense.

We live in a world that has introduced money as a means to make exchanging something of value (even if it is imaginary) easier. Because it would be so much harder to trade sheepskins, gemstones or gold. We also live in a world that is based on shopping for competence - hardly any of us can make our own furniture, kitchens, bathrooms, we don't have the material and the tools... we need people and companies who do that for us. And that's a good thing.

I think it is lovely if you furbish you home in a way you like. If you do it every 3 weeks, maybe that's worth thinking about, but if you try to create a space with furniture and items of every day use that are good and last long - why not.

There is also nothing wrong with treating yourself to a special something - but maybe not every day?!

And most important - if you can't afford it - don't.




Yes, consumerism is a weeeeiiiird thing. :)

Monday, 8 January 2018

GREED - DW Documentary - Part 2

In case you've not found part two to the documentary from last week. :)

Greed - A DW Documentary.



Sunday, 7 January 2018

A Christmas table (December 2017)




So this is our December/Christmas corner. The children's agates are on it again, the reeds went out for soft fir tree twigs (albeit in the same vase with the same sand). As you can see plenty of christmas decoration. My favourite is the little ram made from wool. I got it in a Maroccan art shop (in Frieburg, funnily) about 10 years ago and the moths have nibbled on him a bit (poor thing), but he's still very cute and I wouldn't throw him out just because of a few dents here and there. I might take a bit of wool and needle felt away his injuries before he goes into "aestanation".

A lot of our Christmas decoration we have has some link to traveling (we'll never be able to make up for our CO2 imprint...). The little metal reindeer (there are 4, but you can just see 2 stripey ones in this picture) are from Riga, The little hears (red/white and blue white) are firmly stuffed fabric hearts I got in Laos. I will never understand, why in Lao I could get a design that strikes me as swedish, but there you are, that's how it is. The Frobel Stars I made myself. The wooden Nativity scene is made in the Ore Mountains in Germany. They are famous for their skills in woodturning. These little figures are all made by hand in this technique. I got them in Leipzig (a beautiful city!!) on the Christmas market from a stall with the nicest and most patient ladies ever (they had so many wonderful little things (and big, but I couldn't get anything big...) and I was overwhelmed...). This the company http://www.firma-ulbricht.de/   (no, I don't get any cookies from them, I just love the craftsmanship). Behind the miniature figures you can see a big piece of platanus tree bark, which we found on one of our walks.

I admit, I like a bit of blingbling, too, so we've put a small piece of amethyst and a small piece of rock crystal. My grandfather (maternally) had lots of big amethyst and rock crystal pieces which I adored when I was a small child (and was never allowed to touch... but we used to look at them together, how they sparkled!). I don't know what happened to those after my grandparents died, but I hold fond memories of both of them and these two little pieced remind me of them.

The table is never as static as it seems on the pictures, the kids rearrange the figures, the three holy kings move closer to the nativity scene, stones are added and taken away, some are painted. Even the teelightholder as exchanged, sometimes we have one the children painted on it, and they, too, change places.

Eugene Grasset, La Belle Gardinière, Décembre https://www.wikiart.org/en/eug-ne-grasset/la-belle-jardiniere-december-1896

Saturday, 6 January 2018

Three Holy Kings - Window transparent




Another transparent for Epiphany (which is also my birthday...). I've made it around christmas and we put it up just after christmas and will stay there until the 3 Holy Kings have made their way to Bethlehem.

This is also made with the book "Mit farbenigen Transparenten durch das Jahr" by Michaela Kronshage und Silvia Schwartz.

I really enjoy the layering, which is something I've just recently discovered and I can't wait to make a sprint transparent. :)

Thursday, 4 January 2018

A Winter table (November 2017)




We've got a little corner in our living room, where we try and decorate a little every month, according to season. It is also known as a "seasonal table" to Waldorf or Steiner aficionados, but it is not a strictly speaking waldorf table. It's just that little corner in our living room that is decorated according to season.

Here you see November/early December. We have a lot of reed growing next to a footpath close to our home so I cut a few and put them in a vase, together with some sand. The cloth is light blue linen (which should be dark blue or violet, if I understand the colour circle the Steiner year follows, but I haven't got that in the stash ans light blue is so matching...). The children found some pink and white Symphoricarpos (snowberry), which I now know is poisonous, and we've put them in a little vase. Around it are a few stomes and 2 small agates, which they got on a christmas market. My favourite candle holder (which I've had for at least 15 years), from Kosta Boda. It looks like an icy igloo and has the most beautiful shadows ever. Kosta Boda has the famous "snow ball" teelight holder (and a lot of other beautful things https://kostaboda.co.uk/)

We have a fixed set of postcards we use for every month - "La belle Jardinière" by Eugène Grasset (Art Nouveau). They are so beautiful, i love looking at them again and again. You can see art of him here https://www.wikiart.org/en/eug-ne-grasset/la-belle-jardiniere-november-1896 



This table was slightly changed into December, to then turn into our December/Christmas table. Which I am going to try to post, too, before Christmas is over.

Monday, 1 January 2018

GREED - DW Documentary -

My husband pointed out to me this excellent documentary.
Learn about greed and its sources and what drives humans.




Sunday, 31 December 2017

Winter landscape - window transparent




As I don't find much time at the moment for big (sewing) projects, I made this transparent for January.

The carton is actually light blue, but I didn't manage to get the colour right AND show the transparent's layers.

I have the book "Mit farbigen Transparenten durch das Jahr" by Michaela Kronshage und Silvia Schwartz, which offers 15 or so transparents with detailed decriptions. Not all of them are 100% to my taste, but they are all really good to learn about the layering and how to achieve certain effects.

Thursday, 28 December 2017

Aliena for Isabel




One of my best friends from waaaaaay back in schooltimes has an adorable little daughter called Isabel. So of course I wanted to make a doll for her, too. And the name for this one was clear from the very beginning. Aliena. Like one of the main characters from "Pillars of the Earth" by Ken Follet. Of course there is a story behind this. When I was about 15 or so, I was given this novel from my friend and I was dragged into the story of love, hate, passion, drama, history - I was hooked and in a way it was a novel that a huge impact on me. But enough on the name.

I wanted the doll to have a sort of "earthy" feel so I chose dark brown hair (which the character in the book has, too, and dark eyes). The clothes are a dress made from layers cotton batist in curry yellow and a grey/mud brown. Her hat and her shoes are a crocheted from a dark burgundy cotton and the coat (with hood) is knitted from grey wool that is just the sligthest but irregular in the shade of grey.

To make the doll, I followed Mariengold.net instructions. As well as for the clothes. I love those instructions (she sells them in English and in German and if you have questions, she's answering them really quickly via Email and she's really friendly, too!). The material for the doll is from www.wollknoll.de, they have wonderful jersey knit for the skin in I think 5 shades. This one is called "haut hell" (light skin). The hair is made from Dolly Mo Woolly Mohair in dark brown. And the filling is wool fleece (from sheep from Southern Germany... and I LOVE the smell of wool!). All the dyes and fabrics  are ecofriendly/organic and non-poisonous so it's entirely child-safe.

I made the doll as a Christmas/Birthday present.





Tuesday, 26 December 2017

Leevke - another baby doll




And yet another doll for christmas - for little Miss No 2. Who didn't get a self-made doll so far, so this is her first one. Again, I made the dolly following Mariengold patterns, also for the clothes (shoes, coat and dress). The dress is a variation on a tunic shirt in her clothes book "oh girl". It is a little longer and has a ruffle and velvet ribbon attached at the bottom, so it is more a dress than a tunic.
The hair is made from off-white mohair wool (from wollknoll.eu) and I then attached two pleats on the back which i tied around the head, so it is like one big pleat around the head. (because of the big ribbon around the head, you can't really see this...) Maybe I manage to take another picture when it is warmer.

Making these little dolls is so addictive!



Monday, 25 December 2017

Wencke - a baby doll.





This little cutie is called Wencke. She was this year's christmas present for my not-so-little-any more Miss No 1. And she adopted her with delight saying "finally I have a little baby, too!".

Anyhow, I made this little dolly following the instructions for "Mariengold" dolls (www.mariengold.net) which i really like. The hair is made in a special crocheting technique with Dolly Mo Wolly Mohair in dark brown.

All material is organic and non toxic (including the dyes). The filling is wool fleece from local sheep. :)

The clothes are made following Mariengold "Oh girl" patterns (shirt, hat, suit, shoes), only I combined a dress and a trousers pattern to make this overall. They were farbric remnants from shirts and trousers I also used to make clothes for the kids.

This was my second attempt at dollmaking. And again, I really enjoyed it.