Author Archives: NiinaMaria

About NiinaMaria

Eager to craft and thrift. Not always succesfully.

Punavuoren Patina


Hello, hello, hello. Guess who found yet another flea market/second hand store here in Helsinki? And this one is a very nice one too!

Puavuoren Patina has been open for about a year and it’s located on Sep√§nkatu 11, in the Punavuori neighbourhood. The closest tram stops are Eiran Sairaala and Viiskulma. Actually this isn’t too far from Hietsumarket, so you can visit both of them on a same trip. Very handy, if you are looting ūüėČ

Punavuoren patina, Helsinki, Finland, second hand store, thrift store, flea market

This is how the place looks like outside. They also have a small caf√© inside. With cheap coffee. Me likes. When you first go inside, you see the cash register and the caf√© area. Then there’s a room to the right, where the “booths” are located.

Punavuoren patina, Helsinki, Finland, second hand store, thrift store, flea market

They’ve put a lot of effort in the decor and I like it. Though I couldn’t find a fitting room there, which can be bit of a problem for some shoppers/sellers.

Punavuoren patina, Helsinki, Finland, second hand store, thrift store, flea market

There is at least one seller, who sells new items and the prices match but you can find items starting from 1 euro. In general I didn’t notice that the prices would be more expensive than anywhere else. Personally I’ve found a few flipping worthy items there.

Punavuoren patina, Helsinki, Finland, second hand store, thrift store, flea market

That basket weave purse is awesome but it’s over my pain point for a flea market find. But then again, similar bag at H&M would cost 29,90‚ā¨. At least this one is unique.

Punavuoren patina, Helsinki, Finland, second hand store, thrift store, flea market

There are also quite a bit vintage items too. This box is just beautiful. Actually, some of the “booths” are vintage shelving units. Puurrrty.

Punavuoren patina, Helsinki, Finland, second hand store, thrift store, flea market

Punavuoren patina, Helsinki, Finland, second hand store, thrift store, flea market

Some regular clothing items you can find there.

Punavuoren patina, Helsinki, Finland, second hand store, thrift store, flea market, vintage Emmanuelle poster

There is also a basemen, where there are more booths. You can find the stairs behind this awesome poster, that I kind of want to have.

Over all, this is one of my favourite thrifting spots now. Their website is HERE and Facebook HERE. If you are interested in booking a table, they have a deal going on, where you get two weeks for 50/75 euros, depending on if you want a table in the basement or on the street level.

Again. Not a paid ad. Just letting you know about this place ūüôā

-Thrifty Finn-

Hietsumarket, a flea market in Helsinki


Image via Wikipedia

Oh. Wow. I had completely forgotten this place exists. Everyone in Helsinki knows about Hietalahden kirpputori, which is an open air flea market, happening on every weekend during summer months. It’s cool. It’s trendy. It’s crowded. It’s the kind of place travel writers love.

But what not many people know, is that there is an indoor flea market close by and it really is something else.


Image via

The place is called Hietsumarket and I found an old Yelp-review that hits the nail in the head, when describing this place:

Hietsumarket is located at the beginning of Hietalahden ranta, between Hemingway’s and Salve. Hietsumarket is a basement flea market, that not many people know of. Don’t even start comparing this place to Hietalahti flea market, because this place most definitely doesn’t have that faux trendy feel. Hietsumarket works in its own way and I personally think there are tons of unnecessary crap for sale, but there is possible to find the most unbelievable, life changing things. Once, I found a broken pencil for 10 cents. At home though I faced a disappointment as I tried to sharpen the pencil and ¬†the lead kept dropping off. I nearly cried. This was a joke and probably a poor one but in reality, at¬†Hietsumarket you can sometimes score.

You, the people who still go to the police auction to buy a bike, just forget it. Who wants to buy granny bikes in poor condition from an over-advertised auction and pay over 100 euros, when you can go to Hietsumarket and get one for under 50? Two of my mates have recently bought bikes there. Hietsumarket 4 life. Next time you are in the area, drop in.

And another one:

Hietsumarket is a wonderfully confusing place, just on the corner of Hietalahti market, next to Salve. It’s totally lacking the trendy and retro feel of its neighbours’. They sell such a weird stuff, that I can’t even describe them and all I can do, is to suggest for you to go and see them yourself.

I don’t know anyone, who reads porno mags anymore, but here you can buy them a whole suitcase full. You can also get a half-used 80s perfume, if you happen to need such a thing. They also sell new products, such as cleaning and hygiene products from somewhere in the Baltics. I haven’t got the nerve to buy any of those things. Though I did buy two toilet brushes once. They worked pretty well, if I remember correctly.

The charm of Hietsumarket comes from the unexpectedness. My favourite winter hat is from here. A red, reggae style, droopy hat with a bobble sized of my fist. Me and my hat are now inseparable. The only good thing about the winter is this hat I bought for 2 euros here in Hietsumarket.

If you want to check this place out, its address is Hietalahdenranta 11 and you can get there by tram 6. The stop is Hietalahdentori. Opening hours: Mon-Fri 10.00-17.30, Sat 10.00-15.00 and Sun 11.00-15.00. If you are looking to rent a booth over there, they have a deal going on right now. 7 days stating from 14,90‚ā¨.

-Thrifty Finn-

I Too Can Read

Hi, peeps. You know how my English has been on a steady decline, ever since my discovery of Twitter and my incessant obsession to fit everything in 140 characters? Worry no longer, as I’m doing something about it by going back to my original love, reading.

(I wish I could describe the feeling I had, when I got my very own library card. I literally shook.)

Yesterday, my friend Mikko, sent me a message asking, if I would be interested in a book sale at a certain book store in Helsinki. (We had visited it before and I had thought about blogging about it but since I didn’t buy any books then, I felt a bit stupid about doing a post. So I didn’t.)¬† At first I was like, meh, but then I thought I might find some nice books to flip, so we set a date for today. Our reasoning was that today was the first day of the sale and thus, we’d be more likely to find good books before everything would be picked over.

We so smart.

arkadia book store, helsinki

Arkadia Book Shop is located on¬†Nervanderinkatu 11, not too far from the Parliament and the Kamppi shopping centre (and Temppeliaukio Church). It’s very charming. Seems a bit small but there’s one hell of a basement down there. They even have their own chapel! Muy fascinating. Alas, I don’t have any pics of the basement but there are series of rooms, ending in that chapel, and they actually host events in there. Today they had a croquis lesson with a real nude model! And yes, I did glance at the penis. Twice. Thrice. Okay, I couldn’t stop oggling.

Sorry about that.

Interestingly, Finnish police gave their first fines, tickets (?), for sexual harassing and I’m wondering, if my behaviour today would warrant one.

Did I just confess?

Anyway, I bought fifteen books about various subjects. I feel so smart just by owning those books. Do I even need to read them? Wouldn’t it be enough just to sniff that wonderful paperiness?

Anyway, here are my finds…

Game of Thrones, Catherine de Medici, Arkadia book store

I have a very good reason to show these three together. I see a lot in common with Cersei (totally hating that bitch) and Catherine de Medici. And of course, since it IS International Women’s Day, I had to buy¬†one¬†book about a¬†power woman. Another reason for getting that book was that Catherine de Medici was a peer of Michel Montaigne, who I discovered on my last trip to Paris, and she sought his advice during Troubles.

Look at me! Showing my intellectualism already!

Andrew Miller Pure, Patronage Maria Edgewood, Jane Austen, Arkadia book shop

Okay, these two I bought because of the covers. The one on the left is a story about Paris, and I just couldn’t resist the cover design. The one on the right sold itself with the line “Jane Austen’s bestselling rival”. I’m excited to read these two. Probably on the toilet. The classy lady that I am.

The economics of Art and Culture, Arkadia Book Shop

Then some non-fiction. I don’t know, how many of my international readers know about Finnish politics, but our government is looking into cutting education funds. (Culture funds being gone already years ago. Because only fucking tech start-ups bring money. And boiling¬†pulp. Ironic, I know, considering this post is about books.)¬†Anyhoo, I bought this one in the hopes of developing my argument skills, when I defend, well, art and culture. Funny how the government is dead set against funding art and art schools, but none of them walks around naked. After all, it was art school graduates, who designed that shit.

The Victorians by Wilson, Late Victorian Britain, Arkadia Book Shop

The book on the left caught my eye on my last visit to Arkadia but as you can see, I didn’t get it until now. When I was in Paris last time, I read a book about modern (Western) world history and economics on the 19th century (can’t remember the name, would have to ask my friend about it and I don’t want to bother her at this hour),¬†and this book is, in my mind, connected to it. Then the book on the right was recommended to my by a French (?) lady hanging out at the book store with her friend, after she spotted me carrying the other book. I decided to risk it, since it was only 1 euro.

The Rose's Kiss by Peter Bernhardt, Arkadia Book Shop

This book was a total sidetrack…The Victorian’s made think of English gardens, and since my friend snagged a bitchin’ (totally my favourite word lately)¬†book about poisonous plants, I had to get something botanic myself. I’m hoping this will open up the symbolism of flowers in art for me.

Hey, there are quite a few years from my art history lessons. I need some refreshing.

Sex Bombs and Burgers by Nowak, Poorly Made in China, Arkadia Bookshop

These books mean business. Again, I bought them to improve my arguments and bring more insights. These two are also connected to the next three books that I bought about the world powers, China, USA, and Russia:

The Kremlin Conspiracy, The Untold History of United States, The China and The West in the 21st Century, Arkadia Book Shop

Very doom and gloom the covers, don’t you think? As you know, Finland is right next to Russia and it’s not too happy about USA’s military practices in Finland. Of which I’m not too happy either. Last week I attended a citizen’s info meeting at the Parliament about Finland’s security politics. There were a discussion about joining Nato and barring 1-2 people, most of us were dead set against that idea.

My blood is boiling with just these covers. Might take some time for me to be able to finish them. I get so invested in them. I once tried to read Chomsky but couldn’t get past the third page as I got so angry.

Injustices. Injustices everywhere.

Wow. This took a dark turn. But I DO have a happier end-story…

As I carried my pile of books to the cash register (operated by the owner, wonderfully British Ian, who sounds so sarcastic no matter what he says. He, btw, says buy books, not drugs. Wine is debatable),  I spotted one book leaning on his computer. I asked, if could have it for the paperback sale price of 1 euro and delightfully, he said yes. And the book is this one:

The concise Oxford Dictionary of Quotation by Oxford Press, Arkadia Book Shop

My reason for buying the book, is to drive everyone insane on FB and Twitter by sharing quotes from this and then acting all superior about it. It will be hours of fun for me. Good times!

If you are interested, the Arkadia sale has paperbacks for 1 euro and hardcovers for 50% off. The sale will last till Saturday 19th of March. Plenty of time to replenish you bookshelf with something new to read. Oh, and again, this is not a paid text, I just really like books.

-Thrifty Finn-




Teos 2016

kaapelitehdas, teosvälitys, teos 2016 logo

Today is the last day of the annual art sales exhibition, Teos 2016, at Kaapelitehdas, organized by Finnish Sculptors Union and Finnish Graphic Artists (translations my own, probably not correct). I visited it on the opening weekend with my friend for the second time and¬†I must say, this year wasn’t as good as last year. Meaning, I didn’t get those small little insights and/or ideas you get, when you see inspiring art.

kaapelitehdas, helsinki, teos 2016

I love the Kaapelitehdas. It used the be a cable factory and there are a lot of creative companies based there.

teos 2016, grafiikka, graphic art

teos 2016, Helsinki, art

teos 2016

Here are few shots from the displays set in there. The neon art was shown last year too, and he/she was my favourite then too. A random thought…If I like the artwork so much, I might want to try to remember the artist’s name too.

button graphic, pixelated art, teos 2016

This was also one of my favourite pieces, basically because of the crafting potential. I love the systematic nature of this. However, usually I’m more drawn to pieces with colour. Lots of it.

teos 2016, vanerivedos, Finnish art,

This artist was also presenting last year but if I remember correctly, last year’s pieces were smaller. She (?) does these photographic prints on¬†plywood. It’s all very dreamlike and I like it.

Teos8 teos 2016

This is another one of my favourites. The commercial side of me thinks, that this artist should do a collaboration with Anno (A Finnish home decor company) and produce an inexpensive series of home decor art. It could become a future collectable for the rejoice of flippers in Finland ūüėČ

teos 2016

One of the reasons I was so disappointed at this year’s exhibition, was that it was so devoid of ¬†colour and light. Even though it is supposed¬†to be about art itself the reality is, it’s March, people are decorating their houses for spring and they want light in their homes. And there were a lot of pieces that were shown already last year. If it didn’t sell then, it’s probably not going to sell this year either. Also, another thing that bothered me…It’s understandable that artists use their medium to process their thoughts and feelings and whatever is happening in their lives, but do they have to do it in every single piece they do?

teos 2016

teos 2016

In the end of tour (or in the beginning, depending where you start the tour) were 5¬†or 6 folding displays for prints. Most of them were very gloomy ¬†but this one was a nice exception. Again, the commercial side of me thinks that this could be worked into William Morris’esque wallpaper. Or a set of dinnerware. Hmm.

So there you go. The event is annual. The next similar sales exhibition will be the Finnish Jewellery Art Association’s one on 12.3- 20.3.2016, where you can buy unique jewellery by 22 artists. Details HERE.¬†At the same time, there will be¬†also a sales exhibitions by the Finnish Painter’s Union and Ornamo, the Finnish Association for Designers.

If you want to see all the events coming up at Kaapelitehdas, they are HERE.

-Thrifty Finn-