Tuesday, 24 July 2018

Tampere and amigurumis

I've become a rare guest here. For a number of reasons. The main one, I haven't designed anything new so far and has been destashing with someone else's patterns. However, I have plans for upgrading some of my old patterns with new pictures or just pictures (yep, Boho Fingerless Gloves are the first on the list) and, probably, editting.

Meanwhile, I went on vacation guess where. Finland!!! Yes, again. Yes, I love it. The destination was Tampere this time.

 
Those views are hard to compare to anything. Lakes and forests are what always pleases my heart and eyes. And Piggy enjoyed them, too.


Just look at those little wild strawberries we found in the middle of the city. He enjoyed meeting Moomin, his family and friends as well. 


Unfortunately (or fortunately), I didn't take many photos, but there are plenty of videos over on my IG.

I really loved some obscene contemporary porcelain statues which I can't help sharing.

And eventually there was a day in Helsinki with street food at Kauppatori and tram rides, and blackbirds at night, and late night crochet.


During my trip I finished a cowl, started another and partly made 13 piglets. There has been a little pig detox going, thus, I'll show the finished amis in a week or so along with the finished detox object.


Right before the trip I managed to finish 7 amigurumis in about a month (which is a lot for me). I've been really inspired for a while and it was pretty mild/cold for the summer to crochet. So, here they are:


 

I can now officially state that I'm not a mere pattern hoarder and that I actually used at least a third of the patterns I bought/downloaded.

In case you want to make similar amis for yourself, here are the links to the patterns (all of them can be bought from Ravelry, Batman and Pocket Earl Dog are free):
1. Pocket Earl Dog by MoRAmadePattern
2. Earl Dog by MoRAmadePattern
3. Zombie Boy by Mila Kralina
4. Batman by Serah Basnet

Speaking of crochet I could really touch upon my overall well-being. After finishing the said amis and packing the yarn for the trip, I realised that my left arm would hardly move. All of my joints were sore. I would pick up the pan lid and drop it because my fingers would be unable to hold it. 

The solution came unexpectedly (like, literally, all best things in my life): I subscribed to the Mobility Flow week by Dr. Jen Esquer. And it worked miracles. Bye-bye, carpal tunnel syndrome, hope we'll never meet. Since then it has become part of my daily, and especially, crocheting routine. To help my joint and nerve pain (not crochet related), I decided to add a low-carb diet to the stretching, aiming at 20 to 30 g of carbs a day. 3 weeks into it I can say that it's been one of my best decisions so far. A sugarholic has stayed away from sugar for 3 weeks and going strong. I won't demonize sweets, as I will return them to my diet again at some point, but the unhealthy addiction is gone. I walk past the ice-cream and don't buy any, no chocolate, no cookies, almost no fruit. And no feeling of deprivation. To crown it all, as I go down or up the stairs, my knees still click but don't hurt, yay!

I'll keep you posted!

Thursday, 25 January 2018

A little catch-up

It's been pretty quiet here for a while. And I've been struggling with the update. Not that nothing happened, I just didn't feel there was anything to share. This blog hasn't become either a personal blog, or a totally crocheting blog, so, most of the time I just don't know if something is worth being published here. Except for the patterns. I discovered Instagram in 2017 and it turned out to be a more convenient means of showing crafts or sharing pictures, especially when I didn't have much to say.

I tried to make 2017 a year of destash and it started working this way in the context of crochet: my blankets have been growing and my yarn stash has been decreasing so far. I managed to travel and, on the one hand, satisfy my wanderlust, but, on the other hand, the hunger for travelling has been growing since the first trip. I finally visited Finland (which technically happened at the end of 2016). While studying at university I got a Finnish penpal who invited me to this country and who at that moment was picturing the job opportunities for a person speaking English and Russian. I screwed all the opportunities up then, but rehabilitated partially later. So, there were Espoo and Helsinki last winter and summer and Chicago a month ago. And there's Tampere planned for this summer and Springfield for this autumn.

Chicago didn't fascinate me as much as the Finnish cities, but the company improved the stay greatly. So, nowadays, if you ask me, I will recommend you to experience Finland: in summer, because there are more museums open then, and in winter, because the snow is white and fluffy, the frost bites your cheeks and the deer look really sweet. You are close to the nature everywhere, even in the middle of the first and second largest cities in the country: granite rocks, forests, seagulls and squirrels. The Baltic Sea or the lakes. Korvapuusti and coffee. Man...

The Windy City was frozen. And huge. Huge museums (the Field Museum almost killed me - 5 hours!!! and only half seen), huge skyscrapers, huge distances. And I felt like an ant out there (and I don't like feeling like an ant). Thus, I realised I'm not a large city person. Again. So, no more large cities. Only in case of necessity.

 
Crochet-wise, the year was not too filled with new ideas. I made amigurumis for the World Amigurumi Exhibition vol. 4. Most of them were based on my previous designs, several ones were new, but the patterns are in the form of scribbles. I realised I had been hoarding other designers' patterns, so, the aim is to make at least one item from each of them. Plus, there will probably be more accessories and garments, since they seem to be calling me. But, strictly from the yarn I already own (especially the large box of colourful cotton) or, occasionally, strictly for the project.


I plan to finish the pattern for several brooch sets. The bunnies had a separate debut at the exhibition, their pals will be available only as sets.
 
Guess, it's all for today. I don't know if there should be more detailed travelling posts with my personal tips and recommendations. If you are interested, just let me know ;)