21 Mar 2012

Girl Gone Wild - Dita is back

Back to the 90s. 
Madonna is Dita.
 Girl gone wild indeed.

The second single and second video of Madonna's upcoming album MDNA. Girl Gone Wild. After the first single Give Me All Your Luvin (featuring Nicki Minaj and M.I.A.) I wasn't really sure what to expect of Madonna this time. But I guess that is exactly what I should have expected: the unexpected. Hello Madonna!

13 Mar 2012

Sweet feathery fluffy dreams lamp

The world is filled with people who are amazingly creative and have the greatest ideas. I am not very good at coming up with these unique ideas myself but luckily there is this thing called the internet where people share their projects and work.

Some time ago I found this blog called Ikea Hackers, a site where people share their personalised Ikea products. One Ikea product that many have made their own versions of is the Regolit lamp shade (the round paper shade, I'm sure you have seen it).

There are some pretty impressive creations made with this lamp shade. The one I fell for the most (in terms of perhaps-it's-actually-possible-for-me-to-do and that it looked beautiful) was one I didn't actually find on that blog. It might be there though since there are so many hacks for Regolit, but I saw it through Pinterest and it led me to the original blog post. I changed it a little bit. I didn't have wax paper (not even sure I know what it exactly is?) so used ordinary baking paper on a roll instead. And put on more and I think smaller paper "petals" to give the shade an even fluffier look. So I just cut pieces of the baking paper and taped them on with clear tape. Took me about four hours or so.

Now this creation is hanging over our bed. And I must say I think it looks pretty cool if you ask me!


Before (picture from Ikea.com)

Lights off

8 Mar 2012

So much cake.

Today there was cake on the menu. Lots of it. I feel like I never want to have cake again (ask me again tomorrow though, just to be sure. I might be able to squeeze in a slice or two). My boyfriend's birthday was yesterday and today we had guests over for some birthday celebrations so I made a cake (or three).

Three cakes. Sounds like a lot? Sure, but we were four people eating them after all. So there really should've been (at least) four cakes, right? Maybe I am thinking of cupcakes...

Two of the cakes were so called sandwich cakes (smörgåstårta in Swedish, voileipäkakku in Finnish). I doubt these cakes are made in many other countries but they are layered cakes with sandwich fillings/spreads. I made one with tuna filling and one with ham. The recipes came from lots of improvising and tasting. I have never made a smörgåstårta before and after trying to find a recipe I wanted to try I realised it was probably easiest just to improvise because there were as many recipes as cooks it seemed.

The third was a sweet cake which I found the recipe for in a Finnish cake blog (Kinuskikissa). She covered the cake in marzipan but it seemed a bit too elaborate for a baking beginner like me so I just made a more basic icing.

All three cakes seemed to be very much appreciated and I will surely make them again. The sandwich cakes will probably not taste the same next time since I don't remember the "recipe" but the orange cake will be as yummy I'm sure. And I'm already thinking about making orange cupcakes at some point. I'm sure the recipe could be converted to a cupcake recipe quite easily.    

4 Mar 2012

Let's follow the tracks - my first nail art contest entry

First time for everything. And this is my first nail art contest entry. Ever. Well, it's not a huge surprise since my nail art is on a pretty basic level after all. And to be honest I haven't even kept my eyes open for any contests. But when I saw this contest and that the theme was the dotting tool I thought I might as well try to do something. I've done a couple of nail art designs with the dotting tool before, this was probably something like my fifth time using the tools. So I'm not exactly a pro, but still know a bit about how they work. Well it's not complicated, you make dots! So then for the idea. I pretty much combined some of the earlier designs I've done. The flying bee and the paw prints and then I remember my friend once suggesting I make a bear design (actually that was panda bears, but a bear is a bear...).

Let's follow the tracks and see where they leads us. Or who they lead us to.

(Hmm... Should I perhaps explain what it's supposed to be? Hope you can have a wild guess if it's not obvious)

The nail polishes I used were OPI Stranger Tides, Zoya Raven, E.L.F. Chocolate, Leighton Denny Supermodel, E.L.F. Innocent and Mavala White. Base coat NailTek Foundation II. Top coat Seche Vite dry fast top coat. The tools used were basic dotting tools in a couple of different sizes bought on eBay.

The contest is hosted by Chalkboard Nails. Go and check out all the other amazing entries here.

26 Feb 2012

Owl cupcakes

I first saw owl cupcakes on Pinterest (repinned the pic here) and fell in love with their cuteness. After googling I saw many other similar takes on these cupcakes. Adorable small yummy sweet things! Tomorrow I have friends coming over for coffee so I thought it'd be perfect to try these out. I made chocolate cupcakes and covered them with chocolate mousse and then divided sandwich cookies (or whatever you want to call them, like Oreo or Domino here in Finland) and made the eyes out of them. Put a chocolate candy in the middle of each eye, and a smarties, m&m's type of candy as the beak. So simple and yet so different!

20 Feb 2012

Almost baked pink almost birthday cake

One of my dearest friends had her birthday last Friday and I promised her a pink mudcake. Unfortunately I couldn't celebrate her on Friday or on the weekend but luckily we could celebrate today instead. I cheated with the mudcake due to there being no time to bake one (I was gone the weekend and worked today) plus the fact that I've actually never made a mudcake so felt it was a bit too risky!

I bought the cake ready made! But I did decorate it. Pink! Whipped some cream that I coloured pink and then spritzed that into some sort of heart shape and around the edges. Finally added some candy, sprinkles and other cake decorations. Not very professional work but pink and cute and most importantly it tasted yummy!

19 Feb 2012

Winter walk

We spent the weekend further up north in Finland, and there was lots of snow there. Much more than here in Turku before we left on Friday. When we returned today this was not the case anymore. So much snow! And it just kept on coming. Beautiful. The first thing we did was shovel snow for about 15 minutes to clear a parking space for the car. Then we went for a long evening walk in the beautiful snowy city landscape. I (of course) had to stop every two minutes to snap a picture with my phone. Here are some of them.

The main library

Pharmacy museum

Someone had built a snowman on a bridge

Benches covered in snow by the Aura River

The flash made the snowflakes look like falling lights

A shrub with some dried flowers lit up by the flash

15 Feb 2012

Revamp of a lamp

A long time ago I've bought a lamp from Ikea (where else) on sale for pretty much nothing. The lamp shade is pink which is a nice colour but not really my colour. So I had an idea of redoing it. My initial idea was to glue buttons on it. I have a lot of different random buttons that have come with clothes I've bought so this might be a way of actually using them for something. That idea I saw on Pinterest.

But then it would still be pink, right? So maybe somehow paint it before I glue on the buttons? I have absolutely no idea of how you are supposed to paint a lamp shade in the "correct" way but since this one was made out of thick paper I thought something that you paint on paper will probably do.

At this same time I had this brilliant idea of doing some paintings for the bed room. I know! Crazy. I blame my friends in Denmark who introduced the thought in my brain when I visited them and managed to get me painting by pouring enough red wine in me. It was so much fun! Who cares if the so called paintings look like a five year old made them? (And this is why they would be in the bed room, hidden from most people's eyes...).

Okay so ideas of lamp shade decorating and red wine fumed painting combined equals me buying some acrylic paint and painting the lamp shade. I painted it twice to cover all the pink in a matte grey shade. The lamp shade had some holes that I made a bit bigger using a pin once the paint had dried. I also changed the lamp bulb from a bullet shaped to a globe shaped one. Once it was finished I didn't want to glue any buttons on it anymore since I really liked how it looked. Simple and perfect for my vintage bedside table.

Some pictures of the lamp follow. And yes, now I realise the lamp is crooked... Oh well, no lamp is perfect. Or maybe it's the wall. I'm sure it is the wall. Or... the camera!

Before and after

23 Jan 2012

Not splitting, but splatting nails

I keep seeing these really cool nail designs, called splatter nails, and even though I haven't been doing much nail art lately I wanted to have a go. Since I pretty much knew I would make a huge mess and not be satisfied I made them with some cheaper nail polishes. Turned out quite funky though.

Base colour is L.A. Colors Color Craze in Tahiti Sunrise. The splatter is made with three small H&M polishes that may or may not have come in some set, they are called Dazzling Jade, Yellow and Purple.

My nails were already painted when I started so didn't have to do the base now. Then what I did was pour out a small amount of polish on a paper plate. Then I took a slim plastic drinking straw and put it over one of the nails and blew in the other end (obviously not the end with the polish!) of the straw. Did this with one colour on each nail and then waited a while for it to dry a bit. After that I repeated the same thing with the two other colours. Finished everything with a top coat.

After that... I had to clean up a huge mess on my fingers. Next time I might put some tape around the nails to cover and protect the skin and cuticles at least to some extent.

18 Jan 2012

"I know there’s no need for me to panic"

Hello, how cool can you get? I mean look at her. She makes me want to quit my hair growing project (that isn't going well at all, my hair looks horrible at the moment) and just cut it again and dye it blonde again (I'm a boring brunette now). And she's Scottish!

I am talking about the lovely Emeli Sandé. I heard about her a while ago but now it seems she has exploded in popularity. And no wonder. I saw the video for her newest single today. At least I think it's her new single, I can't check because of the Wikipedia black out for 24 h in protest against SOPA and PIPA (two abbreviations that are words in Swedish btw, sounds a bit funny). There are probably other pages with this information, but I am too lazy to check.

The song is called Next To Me. It always makes me happy to find a new song that speaks to me and makes me happy. This is definitely one of those songs.

I know there’s no need for me to panic
Cause I’ll find him, I’ll find him next to me

17 Jan 2012

The slow awakening of (P)interesting inspirations

The blog was a bit tired. So the blog slept a bit. A long bit. Half a year bit. Now the blog hits the snooze button. At least once. But like its owner often does in the mornings, it will probably hit the snooze button again and again for quite a few times before maybe finally waking up, or then (which is far more likely) fall asleep again.

What woke up the blog and (probably more importantly) me was the new(ish?) website Pinterest. I have been aware of it for a while, but thought that since I don't seem to have the time nor the inspiration to write any blog posts or spend much time socializing on the internet, I should probably just stay away from it. But then yesterday I had a closer look and was hooked. Since I only started using it last night there is not much to see on my page yet, but hopefully soon.

In case you are now wondering what I am talking about here is what they say themselves about the site:

What is Pinterest?

Pinterest is a virtual pinboard.
Pinterest allows you to organize and share
all the beautiful things you find on the web.
You can browse pinboards created by other people
to discover new things and
get inspiration from people who share your interests.
source: Pinterest Help

At the moment there has been talk about redecorating the home. Apparently someone else might be moving in (shh! quiet... it's not "official" yet and no, it's not another cat this time, although this one is somewhat hairy too) and it'd be nice to have a home that isn't just "my" home, but "our" home. I see Pinterest being a great tool to help out a bit with this project. A way of collecting and storing ideas and inspirations in one place. And last night I noticed it will work as a great "shopping list" too. Not to mention for travel, nail, style, hair, photography, baking... ideas and inspirations. One minor problem will be to find the time and money to make reality of these inspirations, but I can at least start by dreaming and then something will eventually become reality I'm sure.

In case you feel inspired: Follow Parakeets Place on Pinterest

Follow Me on Pinterest

P as in Parakeet!
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