Me-made Fashion Week

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Relaxing in our hotel room

So I thought that I would share my handmade outfits from the week, since my trip overlapped with New York fashion week. Not quite in the same league I know, and my papparazi was a one man team (thanks mum!) but it was bit of fun. The first day was mainly spent in airports so I chose to go with warm layers, a new jumper and skirt, from my “new wardrobe frenzy” in the week leading up to the trip. The skirt was made a week in advance, the jumper finished the night before!

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A long day of walking later

For the next day I had a little bit more choice but it was very cold, 3 to 4 degrees centigrade with wind chill factor, so I wore another new dress, made from wool jersey, and this leather top which is surprisingly warm!

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Outside the Bauhaus archives

For day three I wore my new skirt again, it has a slight stretch so it’s super comfortable. I also wore my coat, this miracle scarf and my super cosy mittens. I wore these everyday as it was so chilly.

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Our last day in the city’s old district

For the last day I went with jeans, my tights collection had depleted, my last pair from the day before being barely better than bare legs. I combined this with my crazily warm jumper (whoever knew acrylic could be this toasty!) and a long sleeved top, the little sparkles brightening up the day.

week three in Sweden

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Our first day in Copenhagen. We spent our time between rambling the main streets and going on photographic excursions towards the outer layers of the city (meaning all around the city!). By evening time we even made our way to the famed Tivoli gardens for dinner, a spectacular lights show and some seriously cool night-time shots.

Wearing this dress.2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 569 Day 16

Another day of explorations lay in wait. We visited the national art gallery which held a rather large collection of miniature Degas statues. Then we tested out the very efficient underground system (think ultra modern Scandinavian design at it’s best) to an even older part of the city for one of the of the most delicious salads I’ve eaten. Afterwards we headed into the city’s tallest tower for the best skyline views, warning this is not for the faint-hearted, the stairs up are fine, but the final ascent is on the outside of the tower,( as seen in the image above ), however the heights are worth it as you are rewarded with a stunning view. We wound up our final night in Copenhagen with some oh-so-touritsty burgers and then took a change of pace to a bookshop-come café for dessert, for our family’s book addictions being able to sit among shelves of books put everyone at ease.

Wearing this top to survive the heat!2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 1122 Day 17

On the road again! (as my dad would say), it was time to return to Sweden, by ferry that is, but trouble was that our ferry was departing from the other side of the country, so we began our drive through Denmark. On the way we saw not one but two very long bridges (I’m officially saying Scandinavia has the coolest bridges), of course we stopped numerous times for pictures, anything else would be unnatural for us! Finally after six hours of driving (a lot of road works at the second bridge) we arrived at Fredrickshavn, our final stop before Sweden. Only once we boarded the ship did my dad tell me the ferry’s more infamous truths. For this I think I need to explain that each Scandinavian country (Norway, Sweden and Denmark) each have their own currency, so prices in certain things will differ from item to item, one such item being alcohol, so the Norwegians head to Sweden, the Swedes head to Denmark, the Danes to Germany and the German’s to Poland, the reason I’m telling you this is that we were on one of the “Swede to Denmark” boats, on a Saturday night, there were plenty of kids and families on board so it was fine but the occasional song and dance on deck to 80’s Swedish pop was rather entertaining, as was their staggering up and down steps as we disembarked. For the majority of the ferry ride I was outside though, catching one of the most beautiful sunsets I’ve ever seen. I think I took well over 300 pictures… But I couldn’t stop, it was a classic “sun over sea” horizon shot. By the time we were driving home the colourful lights of the city kept my camera on and led to some pretty “artsy” shots (i.e. blurry and vaguely interesting..)

Wearing this skirt and this hoodie to survive the Swedish dusk.

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Back home, we relished our lie-in and the simple joys of life. In the morning I made Swedish pastries for the first time, under the expert guidance of my granddad, they turned out to be quite delicious as well. After eating a few too many pastries we went on a little excursion to the picturesque housing areas (think colourfully painted wooden-clad homes with lots of flowers outside and around the area), saw a crab and I got the closest to a seagull that I’ve ever been. At home we watched a movie and enjoyed yet more pastries.

Wearing these shorts.IMGP9036 Day 18

Last day… We decided to spend our last day in spectacular fashion, visiting one local town for a last-stop wool shop, it’s for my yearly fix! Then onto one of my favourite towns in Sweden, Udevalla, the old centre is perfect for taking photos so I walked around with my granddad catching various shots here and there. For lunch we went to very quiet yet very comfortable café that served a ton of loose-leaf tea and my last shrimp sandwich… After some reading we drove on to an amazing restaurant, delicious fish, scrumptious desserts and to-die-for views, can I mention it has a swing, and that I love swings! Since we had a fairly early dinner my dad and I drove about finding a setting for our final sunset. Our night was finished with a movie and some of our favourite Swedish treats.

Wearing these shorts (cause I can) and this hoodie (cause repetition is good right…?)

week two in Sweden

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Our last day in the rental house. I took an early morning wakeup as a photo-shoot opportunity. Later on we went to the beach for our annual pilgrimage of crab fishing, we don’t eat them don’t worry, when we’re finished we return them to sea by racing them down the beach! Then we watched the football finally with pancakes and pizza.

Wearing this dress.2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 142 Day 10

We began our journey to Karlskrona! Along the way we stopped off at these beautiful gardens outside of Malmo. We also passed by miles of stunning countryside as well as some pretty awesome bridges. Omce in Karlskrona we relaxed in our room until temperatures somewhat cooled. By sunset hour we wandered the streets to gawk as the C18th architecture and the gorgeous seaside sunset.

Wearing my new mesh top.2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 650 Day 11

Another Karlskrona day. My dad and I got up early to visit the maritime museum which was actually kind of cool. They had an old nuclear submarine and a huge array of ship busts. Later that day we went on a boat trip to a nearby military base. The scenery was beautiful but the 4 hour long descriptions, in Swedish were a little bit boring, particularly as whenever you thought a particular bit of information was over you’d then hear “och so..” (meaning “and so”). The boat ride home was nice though and that day’s sunset was particularly spectacular.

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My mum and I decided to actually see the town, walking around little cobble-stoned side streets and passing through little shopping centres just for the air-conditioning. Eventually (after some fabric was bought!) we found this quaint café hidden in a little shaded courtyard, serving the perfect raksmorgas (shrimp sandwhich) and thin biscuits. We may have stayed slightly longer then was necessary… Dinner featured sushi (very nice sushi too) and our last night of street rambling.

Wearing a new camisole top.2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 1359 Day 13

The tired expression is somewhat dignified, we had to leave karlskrona and continue on our way. Our trip featured a visit to Kalmar, a large town (or small city) near Oland. A place that matched Karlskrona’s beauty. There were even more C18th buildings and every house was at least a hundread years old. There were plenty of comfortable cafes (expresso house im looking at you!) and a ton of places to explore. My dad and I went on a photography exposition for a good two hours and found no end of things to photograph! After some more fan apprecitation we drove on to another town of Carlstad, near Skana to rest for the night.

Wearing a camisole (hidden under jumper) to be blogged soon)2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 1762 Day 14

Another travel day, although our trip was littered with pit-stops, photo opportunities and sandy beaches. After navigating around the walls of a castle we headed to a coastal town to find a beach by the Baltic. Always going to the west coast of Sweden, we never get the chance to swim in the Baltic, so at the spur of the moment we took a dip. Granted it meant beachy waves all day and stinging eyes I’m glad I went in. Our next stop was a medieval tower, which was, admittedly, kind of cool. With several flights of stairs, stain glass windows and some tapestries it really brought you back to the C14th. After that we went to a really really sandy beach (see photo above), with lots of sand dunes and a light house, which gave a pretty good view of the beach and the sea.

Wearing these shorts.

Last week coming soon!

The perfect pair

2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 1747 In summer I have my basic remedy of a simple A-line top with some form of denim bottoms, I discussed colours and tones before in this post. However nearly three months later I had yet to completely rectify the problem, that problem being my lack of decent shorts. Yes I have the usual suspects, such my denim simple cut-offs and a rolled up bleached pair too, however when heading into town or into a reasonably classy establishment I needed to up my game, the surprisingly warm Irish summer was yet another incentive. And thus these shorts were made. 2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 1758 The shorts are made with a very heavy denim that was a purchase in Sweden. Made from a pattern from my early pattern drafting days, I simply folded down the humongous pleats that had simply not worked in previous versions (those versions being so unsuccessful that they never made it to this blog) to create a much more flattering shape. There is still a ton of flare at the sides but I kind of like the silhouette. I’m so used to stream-lined bottoms that having something that forces me wear more fitted tops is a good thing. Not to mention it actually balances out my shoulders as well.2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 1762 The shorts also made up quite quickly. Having decided that I needed wanted a new pair on Saturday night, I had them finished by Sunday, mid-day, hems and buttons complete! The buttons here also make me quite happy as they are a purchase from my trip to Paris in Easter. The vaguely art deco look and turquoise colour make these shorts that bit more fun, and it also means that I can cut down on my ever increasing stash.2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 1750

And last but not least I’ll tell you about where this set of photos were taken. This summer we decided to head to the south of Sweden around Karlskrona and then onto Copenhagen through Skåne. While driving through Skåne we happened upon this beautiful sandy beach, filled with soft white sand dunes that could heat your feet in an instant!
I have one last set such as these to show and also a bunch more photo’s from Sweden. Be back soon!

Again and Again

2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 014 Do you ever find something perfect, so perfect that you need to experience it again and again, such as that brilliant song, that killer blog and that new top. In my case, the repeat is this hoodie. 2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 033 Before my recent obsession with black I was in love with all things grey. I was also in need of a hoodie as the only ones I own are either logoed with “Old Navy” or Nike symbols. I had to rectify this and so this hoodie was made.2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 029 The fabric was a purchase from last year, a super soft fleece lined cotton-poly mix. The outside is nearly as soft as the inside but since I made this back in March the fabric has started to pile a little. The gold zip was another acquisition from Sweden which I simply couldn’t pass up on, it has little golden specks in the fabric of the zip and the actual metal of the zip looks golden too! The contrast between the gold and grey always makes me smile too!2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 015 I also wanna take a quick moment to describe these photos. This year the house we rented had a pier attached to it, we were also between two islands so sunset times were truly spectacular. Another thing that I love about Scandinavian sunsets it their length, often it takes a good hour between the time the sun begins to set to when it falls beneath the horizon. Thus those amazing red and yellow skies last that bit longer.2014 Pentax K-5 11 Sweden Summer 006

These photos are just the first in a line of sets and sunsets, there will be more! Also in the line of Scandinavian repeats is this song, enjoy.

Trying the midi

2014 Pentax K-5 11 006 I’m trying to branch out slightly from my usual over-sized top with a fitted bottom combo to a more sophisticated, over-sized garment. Namley a midi-length dress. Since about last summer the “midi” was a new classic and since then I’ve wanted to have a try at the style. A year later, I’ve come around.2014 Pentax K-5 11 045 Yet to break myself to this “radical” new length I made sure to stay within my muted colour palette and love of over-sized garments, I did not however use my well-loved dartless blocks. I actually used the same top as this white one.2014 Pentax K-5 11 017I origionally made this for a trip to Paris that I made in the spring, since then I’ve worn it… three times… I’m not sure how much I’ll wear this garment, particuarlly since seeing how it would look as a top, imagine the perfect loose woven tank… I may be grabbing some scissors soon…2014 Pentax K-5 11 034 In the mean time I’ll try make up my mind by lounging around some more as Ireland continues to display its beautiful bouts of sunshine!2014 Pentax K-5 11 020
In the meantime though I’ll be in Sweden for the next three weeks where I’ll be soaking up every second sea, salt and sunsets! Happy summer everyone!

Stockholm Outfits

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I don’t have a picture for that day, as I was wearing a new dress and trying to be as cool as the locals (moral of the lesson, you can’t be as cool as the locals if you’re not a local) For our first day in Stockholm we walked around and shopped a bit too. We went around the main streets and to our go-to shops. We don’t tend to do as much site-seeing as we’ve been to Stockholm several times before.

Day 9 (the above photo)

We around Vaxholm, one of the better known towns of the archipelago. The weather was stunning so it was the perfect day to out to the sea. In the summer it’s the perfect getaway from the city for locals and tourists alike. We walked through the island and settled at an amazing café, the most delicious cakes and cold drinks to zap the heat. We then chilled at a mini beach and explored some more until some dinner. The boat ride home provided some pretty spectacular views too..

Wearing some DIY’d denim cut-offs

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Day 10

My dad and started to hunt out some of the fabric shops (I had to sit in one of his bookshops, but it had wifi and iced coffee) We went to one of suburbs. It was still only a few underground stops away though. Well, I found the shop and it t’was awesome! So much choice, lots of jersy’s, denims and cottons! Not luxe fabrics but perfect for me, I even ended up getting some fine pleather stuff just so I could say I owned something from Dolce and Gabanna, happy customer! On the way back we found another fabric shop, though not as good as the first, and a really cute charity shop, come café. Then for dinner we went to our favourite sushi restaurant. I LOVE sushi but it’s not quite gotten big in Ireland yet so whenever we’re away we seem to always have some type of sushi, but Stockholm’s sushi, it’s so delish!

Wearing my tank top and black cardi.

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Day 11

We went around Gamla Stan, which means old town in Swedish, it’s one of the oldest parts of the city where all the streets have cobblestone and there’s lots of twisting alleys to get away from crowds. This area can be quite touristy but other areas are quite beautiful. If you stick to side alleys and outskirts you should escape crowds. It also has a ton of cafes restaurants and even two irish pubs!

Wearing black jersy wrap.

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Day 11

Went fabric shopping! I finally convinced my mum to take me to Sodermalm. It’s the more student area and really close to Gamla Stan as well. Most of the shops there are slightly cheaper but most importantly they have a really big fabric shop! I’ll do a proper post on the places I went to with addresses and whatnot (if you really need to know leave a comment and i’ll get back a.s.a.p.) The place was like a warehouse with tons of designer fabrics at quite affordable prices. I had so much fun looking at everything and picked up a few interesting pieces.

Wearing some friendship bracelets

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Day 12

We final did some sightseeing. We went to the architecture and design museum, it was such fun as we were there while there was a John Paul Gautier exhibition, it was him or the Helmut Lang exhibition, I though this would be more interesting since you got to see the actual garments, plus photography was allowed inside, photos will come I promise! Then we walked around the island for a bit, since the greenery is always beautiful. We also stopped at an amazing restaurant for some pizza things, the base had caraway seeds in it and there was goats cheese and beetroot with walnuts on top, I could talk for forever about how amazing that dish was, it’s inspired me to make some caraway seed bread.

Wearing my grey tank.

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Day 13

We went to the summer palace of the royals. The weather that day was spectacular… We walked around the gardens and then sat on the grass and read for a while, I was reading The fault in our Stars at the time so I barely tore myself away! We didn’t go into the palace itself but I’m sure it was as nice as the weather that day! Then back home on the ferry.

Wearing my broidery skirt.

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Day 14

Travel day, out of busy Stockholm on an even busier platform, but we did wing ourselves into some half price first class tickets! The journey was quick and we were back in Goteborg. Then we went to visit some old friends who live in the city. We sat on their deck for an hour just saying how it was too warm! Ha ha, look at the weather now… We then had some barbecued fish their neighbour had caught and some delicious carrot bread for breakfast the next day. The house echoed with shouts of backgammon scores and I even did some late night knitting!

Wearing my lace dress.

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The last couple of days are a bit of a blur and with no photos so I’ll just describe the day of the above photo.

We went around some shops to get my granddad a new phone. After a fruitless search we went to this old house on the way home. We go there near every year and they have delishious food. The day we went there though was the day that most of Europe experienced huge thunder and lightning storms. Sweden being no exception, the weather was still nice so we sat outside, sipping tea and eating our dinner during a thunder-storm with shelter enough from the rain while outdoors. Not quite an experience I’d recommend, particularly with my big metal camera nearby!

Wearing my denim skirt.