Tag Archives: crafts

Inspiration: Finnish Sewing Blogs

Did you know Ottobre, the sewing magazine, is based in Rovaniemi, Lapland? My precious hometown? Well, you do now :D The bigger Ottobre has gotten,  the more and more people in Finland have taken to sewing and blogging. Which is great as crafting and hand-making make peeps happier and helps to live longer. Yay!

I thought you would like to have a look some cool Finnish blogs that focus on sewing for kids. They are written in Finnish but you don’t need to understand the text to get inspired by the amazing creations.

villa ja villa, crafty blog, Finnish

Villa & Villa is written by two women and has all kinds of sewing posts. Kid’s wear, women’s fashion, purses etc. My favourite is the T-shirt made of Roberto Cavalli- end of bolt jersey.


Made by Ulma, Finnish sewing blog

Made by Ulma does all kinds of crafts but her best work are the clothes she makes for her little toddler boy. What I have gathered from sewing blogs all over the world, inspiration (and fabrics) for little boys are hard to find. Well, here you will find it:


Tilkunpaikka, Finnish sewing blog

Tilkunpaikka has a style that I would call graphic feminine.  She sews mainly little girl clothes but there are some stuff for adults too. The best part of the clothes she does are the pattern combos.


Mutturalla, Finnish sewing blogMutturalla- blogger is a mother of five. FIVE! She also works fulltime and finds time to sew. Let’s all feel like a total under-achiever for a moment. Oh and she’s gorgeous too. How annoying. When it comes to her sewing, I’m a huge fan of her detailing and general taste level. Very good indeed.



nuutikki, finnish sewing blog, craft, DIY Nuutikki sews for her kids and makes cool things for her home too. Her style is similar to Tilkunpaikka, very graphic and romantic although she makes little boy’s clothes too. My favourite part is the variety she shows on her blog.


There are tons of more blogs to explore and these 5 represent just a small part of the sewing community in Finland. The explosion of sewing has been helped by the rise of indie-fabric manufacturers/shops. There is sometimes quite fierce competition on FB-fabric groups for some of the rarer prints :D I might have to make a post about them soon too.

-Thrifty Finn-


Pinteresting vol. XXIII

pinterest, thrifty finn

Today, I’m on an exceptionally good mood. Why? Because I had a date last night. And it went well. *insert a little butt wiggle dance here* Since I’m on such a happy mood, here are some of latest happy looking pins:

mood board, Bohème Circus, watercolour text

Mood board by Bohème Circus

This pin lead me to find an incredible paper eye candy blog, called Bohème Circus. I don’t know if the writer is French or from somewhere else but her work has been featured in Marie Claire Idée. She also writes in English and in French, so it’s possible she is French Canadian. I probably should have asked. Anyway, if you go there, you just end up drooling after every picture.

vintage trim, blessed serendipity

Image via Blessed Serendipity

Aah, vintage trim…My best vintage trim find is from few years ago, when I found tons of trim they use in Sámi people‘s traditional costumes. Naturally I made this find in Lapland, since that’s where Sámis live.  Anyway, hoarding ribbon is never a bad thing. The blog, where the image is from is called Blessed Serendipity and it’s a treasure trove of other vintage goods. Pyrex, anyone?

Charlotte Olympia Kitty Flat via Go Jo Lo

Charlotte Olympia Kitty Flat via Go Jo Lo

Now that we have safely established that I am a crazy cat lady (sans the cats), we might as well celebrate the fact with these shoes. Last fall I found a version of these at a Parisian flea market but alas, they were one size too small. But maybe it was a good thing. My compulsory gay bestie/stylist would never have let me hear the end of it if I had bought them.

He’s an ass ;) …But this next fellow isn’t:

cute, marsupial, bow

Image by GaS125 on deviantART

Eep! There’s so much cute sass in this picture that I just can’t handle it. I’m sensing a cute aggression fit is on it’s way. Eeeeeeeep! Can you handle this? I still can’t. If, however, you are a cold-hearted bastard, there’s always…

Mary Kate McDevitt, Miami Cocktail co, summer, drinks, cocktails

Designs by Mary Kate McDevitt

Alcohol! To warm your heart and/or to make you (albeit temporary) happy. I pinned these on my Branding & Packaging-board because I liked the style and the typeface. When I began reading what’s actually in them, I thought I wouldn’t mind if I could get these in Finland too. Not that I’m not talented mixologist/hostess anyway but this would take so much pressure of my summer picnics (read: drinking alone watching Netflix because I’m too lazy to put on pants and leave the house to see actual people).

Thrifty Finn- My Pinterest profile is HERE.




Pinteresting vol. X


Hah! Finally a new banner. I had to re-download some digital scrapbook papers from Pixels & Co to get going (and bunch of new fonts from interwebs) and here’s my new masterpiece! Genius!

My obsession with Pinterest is still going strong and I have quite a few interesting things to share. Starting with:

someecards, of course it burns, exercising, fitness Yeah. I have a gym card but I haven’t gotten any exercise done in two weeks. Fine, OVER two weeks. I’m going today. Seriously, I’m going today. And I will be getting my fitness on. From my board “Funny”.

mid-length red lace dress by Dolce & Gabbana

This dress is gorgeous. It’s by Dolce & Gabbana‘s A/W14-collection. I pinned this on my Sewing-board because I have a horrible, 90’s lace dress that I was going to donate but I realize that I can do something similar to this with it. Hah. I’m so clever!

But we all know I’m never going to get around doing it. Or maybe, just maybe, this time I will.

Hah again.

you have the potential to make beautiful things, quote Hah again. Potential, yes. Ability get started, not so much. From “Quotes”.

makers gonna make, quote, temporary tattoo But then again I could re-adjust my attitude. Haters gonna hate, makers gonna make. I added this onto my board “Font Book” but I think the Quote-board would be a better fit.

vintage sheet dresses

Speaking of making and a better fit…Me loooves! Now I’m hoping that no one will make an offer on my fabric stash so I can make couple of these babies. I have few Burda-magazines from the library and I know couple of nice patterns that would look GOOD on me. And then the leftover scraps of fabric I could use for:

tie pattern, Colette patterns, DIY

Making ties.

Thrifty Finn-In a fabric and sewing and general making fever.


Vintage Or Shabby Chic

It’s challenge time! I got very excited when I found out we’d be getting sponsor images from Sugar Kissed Cottage. They are a mother/daughter team whose blog Two Crazy Crafters I’ve been following for quite long and who design these cutest vintage inspired stamps. Here’s the one I used:

Sugar Kissed Cottage, Puppy, Vintage, digital stamp

Puppy- Digital stamp by Sugar Kissed Cottage

Since I’ve been their fan for ever, I’d already designed several cards in my head using their images so putting this card together was quick. Since Valentine Day is coming around soon, I chose pink as my main colour. I have a feeling I need to send this card to a certain 4-year old, pink loving Parisian…


This is the week you definitely should take part in Craft Your Passion Challenge. The theme is Vintage/Shabby Chic and you can win FOUR images by Sugar Kissed Cottage. Since I like winning too, I’m also sharing this card in following challenges:

Make It Monday: MIM #122 with Saturated Canary
Paper Playtime: #1- Pets
Papertake Weekly Challenge: Happy New....(New to me: actually using my ribbon stash. This is a first)
Top Tip Tuesday: Challenge #93- Fur or Feathers
Tuesday Throwdown: #129- Shiny and New (new digi stamp)
Simon Says Stamp Challenge: New Something (new digi stamp) closed wta
Crafty Creations Challenges: #203- Anything Goes closed
MilkCoffee Challenge: New Beginnings (new digi stamp)
4 Crafty Chicks: Challenge #123- Ribbons or Bows closed
Pixie Dust Challenge: It’s All New To Me  closed
Stampin’ For The Weekend: Anything Goes
Little Scrap Pieces: 500th Post! Anything Goes closed
Fussy And Fancy Friday: Challenge #79- Furry Friends closed wta
Challenges 4 Everybody: Challenge #11- Anything Goes

Good luck and thanks for visiting!

How To Screenprint in 10 Steps


How many of you are still panicking about Christmas presents? I managed to send last of my presents (most of them handmade!) just today and I feel so relieved! I can finally start enjoying this season, maybe even make a gingerbread house! From ready-made dough. I want get to the decorating bit faster ;D

Even if you have only days left, it doesn’t mean you can’t make anything nice anymore. Just last week I made some Christmas themed shopping bags to sell at a boutique in Helsinki and believe it or not, it took only few hours. With some unprecedented forethought I took pictures of the printing process so I could share it here with you.

Materials needed:
Printing frame
Photoemulsion and flooding scoop (or whatever that thing is called)
Cardboard box + matt black fabric to cover it
Sheet of glass (mine is from an old picture frame)
Strong light source (I use construction light, 400w)
Transparent sheets (mine are by Crafter’s Companion)
Printing ink

Stage 1: Getting started!  I used my printing frame to test if it is the right size for the bag I wanted to print. I also measured the printable are, which in case was 26,5cm*37cm. It’s important that you do this, otherwise you might risk creating an image that you cannot actually print with your screen.

Stage 2: Flooding the frame! I took my frame and photoemulsion to the bathroom. Flooding the frame is easy peasy, tilt your scoop carefully, keep it in a small angle and let the emulsion flow on your screen. Basically what you want to do, since the scoop is usually smaller than your frame, is flood one section, then scrape excess off and then move on to the next section. Your goal is two thin layers of emulsion on each side. After you’re done, leave the frame to dry in a dark room. Extra tip: Don’t kick your open photoemulsion jar. That stuff can be price-y.

Stage 3: Transparent! Meanwhile your screen is drying, you can go back to your computer and finish off your design. Print your design TWICE on a transparent. You need the image you want to print to be blacker than black. The black will block the light from burning the light sensitive emulsion and that un-burned area is your printing area. Since my image was bigger than A4 I needed to use 4 sheets of transparent.

Stage 5: Burn the screen! Now your screen is dry and you should be ready to burn your it. First you need a matt black platform, which should have about the same surface area as your screen. You can make this, as I did, by covering a cardboard box with jersey. Then the order of items going on top of that is: screen, transparent (flipped over, if you have text it needs to read “wrong” and sheet of glass to weigh them all down. Then with some masterful balancing and aiming, try to have your light as close to 90 degree angle towards the screen. In this case I didn’t (usually I do) and it did work fine anyway. Now depending on your light source and how far it is from the screen you need to adjust the developing time. My distance was about 50cm and I left it on for an hour.

Stage 6. Clean the screen! Higher the water pressure, the better. I bought this handy dandy tiny shower head that adds water pressure AND makes the actual water flow sharp and pointy which makes the cleaning easy and quick but you don’t need it, regular shower will do. When all the excess emulsion is off your screen, leave it to dry.

Optional Stage 7: Making ink! Since you again have some free time in your hands because the screen is doing its drying thing, you can mix some printing ink. You can buy printing ink ready made too but I have printing emulsion and various pigments so I can mix my own colours. Usually the company who sells pigments also have recipes for different colours on their website to use for reference. For black, Emo-Tuotanto, gave a following recipe: 15 drops of pigment per 100ml of emulsion. I made a double batch. Not that I used all that but printing is easier if you have enough ink to spread on your screen.

Stage 8: Prepping Printing Surface! You have your ink and screen and you need a printing surface! I laid a vintage sheet (folded) on table, taped it on place and then laid a vinyl table-cloth on top of that and taped that in place too. You need something soft yet firm underneath your fabric when printing. At first I had a towel under the towel and as you can see from the test print, it affected the print quality. Lesson learned: the surface must be smooth.

Stage 9. Printing! Now your printing surface should be ok, but do one more test print just to be sure. You can see smudges on the test print here and that’s because I laid my screen down when I re-set the printing surface and the ink smeared. That is why you must keep you screen leaning upright between prints if you can’t do your printing serially but have to stop to make room for the next printable thing.

When doing the printing you can use your transparent or in this case the original photocopy to guide your screen. Put the copy on the fabric, hold your screen on top of it (matching the image), remove the copy and then lay the screen down. Voila, no guess work! When you’re done with printing, store your printing ink in an airtight container for future use. When your prints are dry, use the ink manufacturer’s directions on how to set the ink.

Stage 10: Enjoy your handiwork! Nothing more satisfying than seeing your own work finished! I made a small batch to sell at the boutique but if they won’t sell, I just give them next year as Christmas gifts :D It’s a win-win! If you are wondering the bag size, the bags in grocery stores are really that big in Finland ;D

Hope you find this helpful and if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to ask. You can use the image above to make some holiday gifts of your own, just click it to make it full size. Both the text and image are copyright free. I used the text from Just Something I Make’s Christmas Text Collage and the Santa, I think, is from Graphic’s Fairy.

Happy Holidays and Good Night from Thrifty Finn.