Happy Monday everyone! This is a somewhat special day, as it is my turn to take part in the happy blog hop that goes around blogland. I was invited by wonderful Helen Phillips, thank you so much! You can read her happy hop-post here, and I strongly suggest that you go and visit her in her blog, you'll love what you see, I promise.
Blog hop is all about introducing you to lovely blogs maybe new to you, but also letting you know a bit more of each blogger taking part in. There are four questions that each participating blogger will answer, and here go mine:
1.What am I working on?
I am a fiber-artist by heart, and even it has been really hot and humid here for the last weeks, I have been playing with my wool still. I have been creating a few custom-bird bags and pouches, and to balance those I also have been knitting and felting my beloved stripes - new bags for autumn. I am happy to make custom work every now and then, but my love and passion is creating something with my own imagination only, just playing with colors and seeing where I end up that time.
Birds are really something I love to use in my work, and sometimes it seems that more the better!
2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?
Oh, this is a difficult one. I am not absolutely sure what my genre is - knitting and felting is a huge field. But then again I have said to have my own style, my work is quite recognizable they say. That is fantastic, I really do not want (and try very hard not to) copy anyone's ideas. I use lot's of color, my animals (my work has a lot of animals!) are somewhat whimsical and naive (in a good way, I have always been a fan of naive art), and it might not be for everyone, but most people can't help smiling when they see my big-eyed creations - a mission accomplished.
3. Why do I write/create what I do?
An easy answer would be that I do this for living, and I create to get bread on the table, but it really is not that simple. I am sure I would create even no one would be buying. I used to create even I had very demanding day job, I just used to knit during nights. Now that I am older *ahem* I appreciate a good nigh sleep but my projects are far more structured, and I get more done in less time. But creating is something I love, and most likely will still do when I am gray and old
er. What, how and where is still unsure as my creative ways keep changing, or as I prefer: evolving.
4. How does my writing/creative process work?
With custom orders I work with the clients wishes. That can be very meticulous sometimes, especially with those real-bird items I have made for my Japanese customers. Those can be made with photographs for a specific bird even, and although I am very happy and proud of that part of my work, I love creating my own, unique pieces.
For me the creative process usually starts with color. I may see a glimpse of sunshine, or blue skies with many shades, a flower... It might be a photo in a magazine, a piece of fabric or simply two skeins of wool next to each other. I love colors, and I also put together not so traditional combinations, and every time it is as exciting to open a washing machine to see how a knitted piece has turned out after felting.
Once a piece has been felted and dry (it can take up to 24hours) I start decorating it with needle felting. That I usually do not plan too much ahead, I might know when I start that this piece will have flowers on it or a cat with birdies, but colors and all other details are decided while working. I write down some notes, but more things like knitting instructions and ideas than exact designs.
Once the design is ready, I finish my bags and pouches with pretty (and always matchingly colored) linings and buttons. I search thriftshops and fleamarkets for beautiful, colorful and unusual fabrics, and hand sew them to my felted creations. All are also marked with my HandmadebyMia-tag to make the pieces truly mine.
When my creations are sold from my webshop, I pack them and send them off to their happy new owners all over the world. I try to include a handmade note to all my parcels - handmade is what my creations are all about!
And then I had the pleasure of choosing a few (three it said but I found four) blogs to you to go and see! They will be posting their blog hop-posts in one week, on Monday August 11th, but oh my there is so much to see in their blogs right now, so hop hop to visit:
♥ Teje - she is one wonderful Finnish lady living in Greece (so you'll see a glimpse of that beautiful place in her blog too) who masters quilting, crocheting, jewelry making and has some gorgeous pets too. She has been ever-so-busy lately, so it is fantastic to get her along
♥ Anne - she is my dear first friend found via Etsy years ago, and among many things we both like and share we both are very proud aunts. Anne creates and sells Japanese and vintage-inspired pins and jewelry, and gets inspiration from beautiful nature around her too. She has had a lot on her plate lately, so I appreciated her hopping along with me
♥ Nova - a lovely Finnish lady whose creations you just must see! I say I use color but wow! does Nova take that on another level! In her blog you also see corners of her wonderful, colorful home and DIY's and crafts with her beautiful children - and the latest addition to all this is a monstrously cute bunny called Sulo
♥ Vivienne - a fantastic, famous rabbit-lady, whose blog shows her wonderful hand crocheted bunnies, beautiful Northern Ireland nature and her beloved garden with many cats - and she captures beauty around her in a way it really comes across through my laptop screen
This was all (quite a lot, I just noticed) I had to say for now, happy blog hopping! Sunshine to you all from Finland, and happy August!
**'Edit. Sometimes life happens, as we all know, and the blog hop-post might hop into air a bit earlier or later than first planned, but they are all coming with lovely things to see and read. So happy hopping everyone, and lovely August**