Tuesday 30 June 2009

Fabrics, Stamps & Tourist Tour Part 2

This will be a huge post with lots of pictures. I take the crafty ones first:

Stephanie from Loft Creations sent me this collection of fabrics in lovely autumn colours, tied with dark brown giant rick-rack, and a spool of Essential thread. Thank you, Stephanie! I'm trying to find a special project for them.

This is what I have been doing, when it was too hot to think about sewing:

I stamped logos on cotton tape, so I can sew them on my bags and aprons for the shop.

And now I take you to the second part of our tiny holiday tour. After the old book fair we drove back to Tampere (on our way home) to find a nice place to eat out. First we wanted to visit the Emil Aaltonen Museum we had heard of. We thought it would be in the old shoe factory building. It wasn't, but this monument by Raimo Utriainen is in front of that factory, which is turned into apartments and offices. You can click all my pictures to enlarge them for details.

The museum is in the house Pyynikinlinna where Emil Aaltonen lived. He started his first workshop as master shoemaker in 1889, and started first industrial footwear manufacture in 1902. The factory was transferred to Tampere in 1905. His business grew into the largest footwear factory in Finland and whole Scandinavia. He also owned a plastic factory and a locomotive factory.

Emil Aaltonen was also an important figure in Finland's national cultural and scientific development. The Emil Aaltonen Foundation has so far donated 9,200 grants, about 55 million euros.
The museum exhibits works from his art collection, masters of older Finnish painting. This link shows pictures of some of them.

After the museum visit we found a place for our late lunch. It was delicious. Then we enjoyed our rare freedom of doing what we want, without considering anyone else's needs, and decided to visit the grave of one of Mr. K's friends. On the way there we noticed we could also visit the oldest building of Tampere, the Messukylä Old Church.

The church was built as a Catholic church in the late Middle Ages, most likely during the first two decades of the 16th century. It is the second church on the same location, the first one was a small, wooden church.

Let's walk around the church now. This is the entrance facing west.

The north wall with a plain window, no glass paintings here.

The gable wall of the vestry is decorated.

Vestry window. The shake roof is typical for old churches in Finland. It is painted with tar, the link has interesting details about the use of tar.

Many different kinds of stone were used for the walls.

The east window behind the altar.

The south entrance, formerly to the arms room, now a part of the church hall.

At the end of the 18th century considerable reparation work was done on the church. The walls were raised by three or four layers of timber (you can see it in the picture below), the wooden entrance porch was built for the new west entrance, and a new barrel vault roof was built.

Now we take a look in. The wall paintings were conserved at the of the 1950s. They had been painted over during the reformation. A wedding just ended here, so the wedding ryijy rug was still there where the couple had kneeled on it.

I wonder if they are ever going to be as happy as this (young) couple still are together?

We were married in this church 29 years ago in July. The photo has changed colour, and so has my hair (and not artificially).

These wooden saint figures and the crucifix are estimated to date back to the 1430s and 1440s, and they remain from the wooden church. The figures are the patriot saint, St. Michael, St. Jacob and the Norwegian king, St. Olav. The most valuable sculpture of Virgin Mary is now kept in the Finnish National Museum.

The pulpit is beautiful with valuable intarsia decorations.

You mustn't think I know this much of all old places. I just happened to work here one summer for a week or so as a guide. The church has always been important for me also because my father worked in the conservation committee when I was little.

The stone fence around the church.

One of the few old cemetery monuments, an iron cross erected for assessor Gabriel Ashman in 1799.

This is the last picture, because the camera battery went flat and because most of you probably stopped reading a while ago. We did got to the cemetery too, and to the other one where my father is buried. On Thursday there will be old crafty books!
EDIT The iron cross is for another clergyman, Taxell, and the latest date on it is 1853. I didn't have a picture of the oldest gravestone from 1799.

Sunday 28 June 2009

Summer Holiday, Tiny but Lovely

Last Friday Mr. Kotkarankki had his work done by lunch, and we had two whole days for just the two of us. This was carefully planned in March, so we tried to make the best of it.

First we drove to Tampere to see my mother, 92. We did some gardening for her, and them Mr. K heated the log sauna for us. It's been many years since we last bathed there. Come and see, this is the path down to the lake.

My mother can't go there with her walking aid, the grass has started to grow on the path.

This is the door to the sauna cabin. The wooden steps are my favourite place to sit and watch the lake, a sunset late late at night, or the rain, or a thunder and lightning, or just people slowly rowing in their boats.

The water is taken from the lake with a pump, and heated here in the washing room.

This is the kiuas to heat the sauna, in the other room. Here is a link to very detailed information about the sauna in English.

We sit up here where the heat rises. The benches are of aspen, it is not hot to sit on (on the towel called laudeliina).

This is what I can see from the steps, our little cove where I learned to swim.

A closer look, the yellow irises in my garden are from here. They are wild.

Don't you want to try if the water is warm?

This is another favourite place, niemenkärki, the point of our tiny cape, where we used to angle for perch and roach and usually get bleak.

After the bath - lake water makes my hair unbelievable soft - it was time to go back to the house and eat a light dinner.

The weather had been hot all day, but the walk back made me remember the time when this place was my home and we would run back in when it was cold and rainy in the autumn. During winter we bathed in the other sauna in the basement of the house.

Early on Saturday morning we left for Vammala for the Old Literature fair. This year's theme was War and Love. This is where my daughter Kaija was last year awarded the second price in a book binding competetition for this book. This year there was no competition, but the weather was even hotter than last year.

This is the school where the lectures and discussions took place. There were also many of the second hand book sellers' stands.

And there was this tent. Not a religious meeting, but more booksellers, and even hotter than indoors.

We found some nice books; I will show my loot on Vintage Thingies Thursday this week.

We were there already before the doors were opened, just in time to have an icecream. When we had spent more money than intended, we decided to drive out of town for lunch. In my next post I will tell you more about it. It is too hot to sew, and I must see my dentist tomorrow morning and my doctor before lunch, so there really is nothing crafty to show in the near future.

This last scene is from the local market place, where we found the last book or two, OK, two for me and one for him. The water made the place feel fresh in spite of the heat. I know some of my readers are from really warm places, but the weekend's 27 degrees C (80.6F) was too hot for me.

Thursday 25 June 2009

Vintage Thingies 30 - Flowers for the table

Here we are again, digging in my drawers for Thursday fun with Suzanne.

This inspired me to choose this week's show and tell:

Yes, the irises are kind of vintage, too. I brought them many years ago from my mother's garden, where they had been growing as long as I can remember. They were never so beautiful here before.

Here is one of my iris napkins. I have a big dinner tablecloth as well, but it was even more in need of decent ironing, so I will show just this one linen damask napkin. They are made by Tampella Oy, a linen factory in Tampere where I come from. This pattern was designed by Siri Brunou and it was in production from 1903 to 1973. The link is in Finnish only but there are lots of pictures.

The pattern on the tablecloth is naturally bigger. I always use this set when we have big dinners with important guests :-)

This set of placemats is from the late 1960's or early 70's. I have a feeling that my mother started the cross stitch and I finished it while still living at home.

Later my mother made this set for me:

They go on the dinner plate under the soup or starter salad plate (the important guests will understand that immediately, and admire their hostess). They could be coffee cup coasters as well, I think.

This last set of four placemats is what I spent my time with when I was supposed to study for my final high school exams. So much more interesting than Math or History!
The cross stitch patterns are all from the Danish Clara Waever. The package came with linen fabric, DMC embroidery floss and colour chart, and a pattern sheet of course.

This was all for this week, go and check the other blogs on Suzanne's list now.

Wednesday 24 June 2009

Bags once again & walks

I have had a productive day or two, and now I can show you the results. This is a new product, a multi-purpose necklace to carry your key card, mobile phone, keys or whatever little thingies people need to carry with them. It is made of a pillowcase from my sister P's paper bag, and some parts I had lying around in the house. The snap lock is there so you can use the keys more easily.

The necklace didn't use up the whole pillowcase, so I made this shopping bag from the rest of it, and still have material for other small projects. The other pillowcase ended up like this but with light blue bias tape. The bag is cut like our grocery store's plastic bags, but you can use this one over and over again, and wash it in the machine if necessary.

Her bedsheet was full of bright flowers, and I made this shopping bag of it.

It was a nice sheet with lace and all, so the top ended being the double bottom of this wider bag, and the lace is still there. There will be a smaller bag with lace, and another without lace like the one above, and still some fabric left for other bags. I try to make them light so they can be folded and carried in the handbag, and used instead of plastic bags from the shops.

You may remember Melanie's lavendel hedge, and Eileen growing her own tiny lavendel from the seeds Melanie sent her? I have always liked lavendel. When I was very young, my mother made small pouches of wide silk ribbon and lace, or of linen decorated with cross stitched flowers, and I filled them with dried lavendel flowers for the school fundraising fair. A while ago the florist next to "my" cafe in Järvenpää closed for the summer holidays and sold the last flowers with 70 % off, and I couldn't resist any longer.

I have my own lavendel plant! It needs a nicer pot to live in, but I love it even so. This will probably be a short relationship, because we don't have the right kind of climate, but I'll try to keep the lavendel alive over winter in the storage shed.

Tomorrow will be my vintage day, so I'll report my Movements today already:

Today's walk to the bank and grocery store brought the last point needed for this third week!