Creativity Is: Wonder Woman – Renaissance Garb Crossover

Arts & Crafts, Geek out!, Stunt Double

Jenn at Ms. Makes mashed up Wonder Woman and Renaissance garb with brilliant results:

Instagram Msjennmakes Wonder Woman Renaissance Full

Ms. Jenn Makes on Instagram; photo by Angela (wanderings_in_wonderland).

Instagram Msjennmakes Wonder Woman Renaissance Portrait

Ms. Jenn Makes on Instagram; photo by Angela (wanderings_in_wonderland).

It’s a version of late fifteenth century Florentine dress. Jenn describes the details:

“The outfit is based on those common in 1490’s Florence, largely documented by Domenico Ghirlandaio, and consists of a camicia, side lacing gamurra (with bead and sequin embellished neckline decoration), a set of tie on sleeves (also embellished), a velvet giornea, and a #tambourbeading embellished and faux leather belt! Other accessories include a lasso holder, faux hair braid, and a diadem […]”

She also shared some details of the costume, like the beaded collar piece

Instagram Msjennmakes Wonder Woman Renaissance Neck Beading

Ms. Jenn Makes on Instagram.

…and detachable sleeves, lined, with another set of embellishments from Wonder Woman’s costume:

Instagram Msjennmakes Wonder Woman Renaissance Sleeves

Ms. Jenn Makes on Instagram.

Absolutely breathtaking! Jenn mentions using a beading technique called tambour beading, which I hadn’t heard of before. I just love learning new things from my fellow textile geeks!

Visit Jenn’s Instagram for more views and details or the Ms. Makes website for more sewing talk and tips.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

New to Me: Illustrator Eva Vilhelmiina Eskelinen

Design & Designers, Thumbs Up

Eva Vilhelmiina Eskelinen is a Finnish illustrator living in Vancouver, Canada. Her style is colorful and stylized. It reminds me of Eastern European folk tales and another Finnish artist, Tove Jansson. Take a look yourself:

Eva Vilhelmiina Eskelinen Tumblr They Belonged to No-One

Eva Vilhelmiina Eskelinen on Tumblr.

Eva Vilhelmiina Eskelinen Twitter Rivals of Aether Worklmiina Eskelinen on Twitter.

Eva Vilhelmiina Eskelinen via Twitter.

Eva Vilhelmiina Eskelinen Tumblr Reindeer

Eva Vilhelmiina Eskelinen on Tumblr.

Oh my goodness, the light and mood of these illustrations is incredible! I’m also struck by how Nordic the woods look. And these are just three of my favorites. There’s so much more on Eva’s Tumblr site.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

My Finland

My Spaces, This Is Important

Today, my native country Finland turns 100 years. I speak of Finland on this blog now and then because it’s a huge part of my identity.

My Finland Summer Flags Naantali

Sadas itsenaisyyspaiva joulukuun 6 2017

Here, to celebrate our first centennial, are a few aspects of my Finland. All photos by me unless otherwise mentioned.

 

My Finland is woods and access to nature

Finland is among the most forested countries in the world, and people inhabiting the area have lived off of its forests for millenia. I really love woods. I would feel exposed without woods around me.

My Finland Central Finland Woods

My Finland Nuuksio Natl Park

In Finland, nature is incorporated into even the largest cities, and not only as manicured lawns or shrubberies. In addition to national parks, we have relatively untouched areas of nature almost within a stone’s throw from anywhere. And lakes – thousands of lakes.

 

My Finland invests in infrastructure and future-conscious planning

Multiple modes of transportation are an inseparable part of modern community planning. I’ve been biking to get myself from A to B as long as I can remember, and LOVE the bicycle paths. There’s even wintertime maintenance on them! I also love Finland’s clean, safe, up-to-date public transit. To wit: the metro system in the greater Helsinki region was just extended.

My Finland Bike Path

Flickr JElliott Moving in Helsinki

J.Elliott on Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0).

 

My Finland is multilingual and international

For centuries, Finland was stuck in between and fought over by two larger powers. We were first a part of the Swedish realm, then Russia took over. There’s no denying that Finland is a small country, population-wise, and a small market. That doesn’t stop us from connecting; on the contrary.

Finland is officially bilingual (Finnish and Swedish), and the Sami languages, Karelian, Romani and Finnish sign language have been legally recognized as minority languages. Apart from the newer minority languages, there are also older communities speaking Russian and Tatar, for example. Today, pupils learn the basics of a minimum of three languages besides their native one before they leave elementary school.

My Finland Turku Railway Sta Newspapers

I also happen to LOVE the Finnish language. It’s an agglutinative one, which means we can build massive words like mustaviinimarjamehutiivistepullonkorkissanikin (‘also in the cap of my bottle of black currant juice concentrate’), typically spelled as one despite the length. Finnish also employs vowel harmony, which means that for instance the back vowel a cannot appear in the same word as the front vowel ä – but because of agglutination, we can build a compound where both do appear. For example, there’s a (theoretical) word with only one consonant and seven vowels: hääyöaie (‘intention on wedding night’ – can’t really see anyone ever using that in everyday life).

 

My Finland Reads

Finns love reading, whether it’s newsprint, websites or physical books. Or Donald Duck!

My Finland Kirjasto in Helsinki

Finnish Reading March 2017

Several Finnish authors have achieved international fame.

Moomin Butt from Complete Comic Strip #1

 

My Finland designs beautiful things

Modern Finnish design has made a name for itself. Brands like Marimekko or Iittala and names like Alvar Aalto and Eero Saarinen are known internationally. I’m partial to jugend (art nouveau / national romanticism) and wood.

My Finland Natl Romantic Architecture

 

My Finland is playful

Finns don’t do just high design, we also allow our humor to blossom – check out, for instance, the huge Posankka statue in Turku that is a hybrid between a marzipan pig and a rubber duck.

My Finland Posankka

We also love games and playing. Recent Finnish game franchise hits include Max Payne and Angry Birds. I sometimes wonder if the speculative genre Finnish weird might have arisen from our tendency to play around with ideas and color outside the lines. Not to mention to innovate!

 

My Finland invests in technology

Almost as long as there’s been an administrative unit called Finland, it’s been poor. Only after the World Wars did we really start trying to improve our lot, and by and large have succeeded. From Fiskars (which started as a forge in 1649) to Nokia and Linux, to mention but a few examples, for a tiny country we’re doing darn well.

Legendary Pinking Shears

Flickr Museovirasto JOKALS4Vaa01-3 Leipomo vuonna 1998

The ruisleipä line in a bakery in Kotka from 1998. Photo by Lauri Sorvoja / JOKA via Museovirasto (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0).

 

My Finland is unabashedly geeky and nerdy

Since reading is a big pasttime in Finland and since we love our technology, it’s probably no surprise that we have an active SF/F / larp / anime community. Thanks to the efforts of the Finnish fan community plus supporters all around the world, we hosted Worldcon 75 in Helsinki this past August.

Eppu at Worldcon 75 in Helsinki Aug 2017

 

My Finland Loves Music

From traditional to tango, from classical to heavy metal – even the combination of the two! – music is everywhere in Finland. I’m not a terribly big fan of classical music, but Jean Sibelius is special. Here’s a version of his Finlandia Hymn by Cantus Vocal Emsemble, with lyrics (I believe) from a Unitarian Universalist hymn book:

The Finlandia Hymn by cantussings

The Eurovision Song Contest is popular, and various folk styles are making a comeback.

Pernilla Karlsson – “När Jag Blundar” (Finland) via escDjpo2012

Ulla Pirttijärvi is one of my favorite Sami vocalists. I’ve also grown to like the combination of traditional yoiks and contemporary music quite a lot.

Ulla Pirttijärvi ~ Lullaby via FamilyOfLightMember

 

My Finland sauna bathes

Sauna is the only truly wide-spread Finnish word. We have sauna often, sometimes multiple times a week, and many people still make their own sauna whisks.

Sauna Whisks for Sale

 

My Finland cares

Finland is not perfect, but by and large we take care of each other. Finland’s women gained the right to vote first in Europe, in 1906. In the first elections where women were allowed to vote they were also allowed ro run for office; we elected 19 female members of parliament that year. We’ve already had one female President. (High time for another!)

My Finland Bunnies

This year we legalized same-sex marriage and are experimenting with universal basic income. There’s still plenty to do, for instance abolishing the mandatory sterilization of trans people, reversing the trend of cutting from the care of the disabled and the old, trying to reduce domestic abuse and making sure the social security nets already in place hold.

My Finland in the Sky

In my Finland, there’s space to be who you are.

Close Quarters: Smorgasbord of Colors and Styles

Colors

Color is the calling-card of self-taught interior designer Shauna Glenn. She incorporates lots of colors and styles into her designs.

I’m really intrigued by the dining area rug from her home:

Shauna Glenn Design Dining w Blue Bright Rug

Shauna Glenn Design.

Quite often you see bright colors combined with white, but in this case the background is composed of several shades of greyish blue, which is an enduring favorite of mine. Love the effect!

She says of her approach:

“I love anything and everything home. My style is contemporary meets your grandma’s attic–if your grandma’s attic if [sic] filled with mid-century treasures from far off places. So many different genres are represented in my home: traditional, bohemian, modern, rustic, and mid- century. It’s like a smorgasbord, really. But it totally works! Who says you have to stick with one theme throughout. Let’s be bold! Let’s be brave! Let’s make margaritas and eat cake!
“I don’t know the rules of home design. I haven’t downloaded any How-To books or read Interior Design For Dummies. I just play with color and pattern and different textures and see how it makes the space feel. That’s it. That’s my secret.
“I hope you enjoy what I’ve created here. It’s a joyride I hope never ends.”

Her work really does look joyful, don’t you agree? For instance, this combination of white with red and fuchsia in a bedroom is wonderfully cheerful yet balanced:

Shauna Glenn Design White Red Fuchsia Bedroom

Shauna Glenn Design.

And here is an office space with just the right amount of color pops contrasted with white and black:

Desire to Inspire Shauna Glenn Design Office

Shauna Glenn Design, via Desire to Inspire.

Remember what I said about bright colors often being set on a white background? The rug above is a prime example.

Another fantastic combination of white, red and fuchsia in a bedroom rug, below:

Shauna Glenn Design White Red Fuchsia Rug

Shauna Glenn Design.

The pink ceiling – apart from being lovely in itself – forms a literal counterpart to the rug, while white and grey in the rest of the large textiles stop the combination from being overly saccharine. Very nice.

Found via Desire to Inspire. Visit Shauna Glenn Design for more.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Discoveries: Geeky Rendering on Blue & White China

Design & Designers, Stunt Double

The Things Could Be Worse mugs by Calamityware are an interesting take on traditional blue and white ceramics:

Calamityware Mugs Things Could Be Worse

Things Could Be Worse mugs by Calamityware.

Robots, pterodactyls, giant animals and hairy humanoids aplenty. LOL! 🙂

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Discoveries: Woolly Thoughts – Knits with a Mathematical Twist

Arts & Crafts, Design & Designers, Fabrics & Materials, Geek out!, Inspiration

Pat Ashforth and Steve Plummer are two mathekniticians – maths people who not only knit and crochet, but present mathematical ideas through their yarn craft. And it’s fascinating!

They make afghans, wall hangings, tabletops(!), cushions, shawls, toilet-roll covers, puppets, sweaters, hats and so much more. Some of my favorites include these pillows and puzzles, for example…

Woolly Thoughts Pillow Puzzle Combo

Pat Ashforth and Steve Plummer at Woolly Thoughts. Clockwise from top right: Tangram pillow, three Hexaflexacube pillows (in pink, green and orange), and Diabolical Cube puzzle.

…and the square root afghan:

Woolly Thoughts Afghan square root

Pat Ashforth and Steve Plummer at Woolly Thoughts.

Their conjoined Möbius hat and the penrose table are also really, really awesome and neat; please have a look. Also visit the Woolly Thoughts website or design collection at Ravelry!

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Handtufted OOAK Rugs That Look Like Landscape

Arts & Crafts, Design & Designers, Thumbs Up

Artist Alexandra Kehayoglou from Buenos Aires handtufts one-of-a-kind wool rugs that evoke landscapes with outdoor surfaces like water, snow and sand, or fluffy plant textures like grasses, moss and trees.

Alexandra Kehayoglou nieve-laguna-pasto

Nieve Laguna Pasto. Alexandra Kehayoglou.

Some of the rugs are meant as multi-surface coverings (wall to floor), or work as chair covers.

Alexandra Kehayoglou refugio-web

Refugio para unos días felices. Alexandra Kehayoglou.

Alexandra Kehayoglou silla-web

Silla para atravesar el invierno. Alexandra Kehayoglou.

Wow. Wow! See more on her website or Instagram.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Discoveries: Quilling Artist Sena Runa

Arts & Crafts, Colors, Design & Designers

Artist Sena Runa from Istanbul makes quilled paper art so delicate and detailed there can be no doubt whatsoever they deserve to be called art. She combines sketching with paper quilling to create the finished pieces – all original designs.

I just love the combination of colors and shapes! Runa’s pieces are so fresh and bright. Some of her designs inside the letter shapes even remind me of illuminated medieval manuscripts in their intricacy. Below are just three of my favorites – there are so many more!

Snoopy:

Sena Runa Snoopy Dream Big

Sena Runa: Dream Big.

N:

Sena Runa N

Sena Runa: N.

The Dragon:

Sena Runa The Dragon

Sena Runa: The Dragon.

See her Instagram and Facebook accounts or Etsy shop for more!

Found via Colossal.

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.

Back to School with a Harry Potter Theme

DIY, Geek out!, House Tours, Room of Awesome, Thumbs Up

Reddit user 86thdj shared their wife’s classroom, which she decorated with a Harry Potter theme. And it’s magical!

Reddit User 86thdj Imgur Potter Classroom1

Reddit User 86thdj on Imgur.

Reddit User 86thdj Imgur Potter Classroom2

Reddit User 86thdj on Imgur.

Reddit User 86thdj Imgur Potter Classroom3

Reddit User 86thdj on Imgur.

Reddit User 86thdj Imgur Potter Classroom4

Reddit User 86thdj on Imgur.

Make sure you see the rest of the photos on Imgur.

I just love the 9 ¾ door and the flying envelopes – very low effort but big impact. And that’s not all – first of all, every student will get their Hogwarts letter, and, later in the year, the kids will be quizzed and sorted into houses. The discussion on Reddit also touches on the kind of teaching that this room is meant for, so it should be helpful for other teachers.

Looks like it will be a lot of fun both for the teacher and the kids! I can’t but echo one of the commenters – “So awesome!! Keep being amazing!!”

Cross-posted from Co-Geeking.

Creativity Is: Star Wars at Pooh Corner

Books & Mags, Design & Designers

Illustrator James Hance created a whole series of delightful Winnie the Pooh – Star Wars mashups. His series is called Wookie the Chew, and you can buy individual prints, a set or a book. A few of my favorite prints include Stay on Target…

James Hance stay-on-target-THUMB-500x500

James Hance.

…and Always Thinking with His Stomach:

James Hance WTC-Always_Thinking-500x500

James Hance.

Other mashups Hance has created involve the Muppets and superheroes, Muppets and Firefly, van Gogh and Batman, and E.T. and Doctor Who, for instance. He also makes beautiful portraits in several styles. Check it out!

Note: I wasn’t paid or perked to mention this; just passing along a good thing.