Tuesday, December 4, 2012

DIY Wall Art

I made this awesome piece of DIY wall art inspired by some creations that I found online. I finally got all my Halloween decorations put away. (Well almost all put away!) And my apartment looked so bare and sad without them. So I decided to go for a quick, easy and cheap DIY project instead.

This piece I made is about 63x35cm in size; I made it to hang on the wall above my tv which is bare. However we have such high ceilings that I’ve been thinking that I will add to it once I get more toilet paper rolls. I’ve asked some friends to collect them for me as well, I know Anne has been collecting for me.

You Will Need:
·        -  as many toilet paper and paper towel tubes that you can get your hands on. (I used about 5 toilet paper rolls and two paper towel rolls for mine)
·         - scissors
·        -  a ruler or measuring tape
·       -  pencil
·         - hot glue gun & lots of glue or white craft glue
·        -  silver metallic spray paint (optional)
·         - 1cm squares of mirror (optional)

First cover your work surface with lots of newspaper. Then proceed to flatten the toilet paper rolls to make them easier to cut. Be photo below.

Then cut 1cm strips from the roll that look like this. I think they look like leaves or flower petals.
You can either eyeball the size of the pieces like I did or for more prefect and even pieces I’d recommend using a pencil to mark lines 1cm apart.

Once you have all of your toilet paper rolls cut you can start to arrange them in any pattern that you like. I wanted to keep my design in a simple trellis pattern. To do make this patter:  glue 4 of your “leaves” together into a shape that looks like this. 

I glued one leaf at a time. Be careful not to burn your fingers if you’re using hot glue. If you are using craft glue it may be a good idea to secure your pieces together while they dry using clothes pins or even bobby pins.

Once you’ ve glued all of your pieces into groups of 4 then lay out a design. I kept mine in a simple rectangle but you can get creative, just don’t start to glue until you are sure of your pattern.

Once its glued together and dry remove any hot glue strings. You can hang it up as is or paint it. I wanted my wall art to look like metal so I spray painted it with silver metallic spray paint that I got form my local craft store. Always use spray paint in well ventilated areas, preferably outdoors. I spray painted mine outside but I had to bring it inside to dry as it was raining. So we kept out window opens. It took about 3 coats.

After my piece was dry I added an extra bit of pizzazz with these 1 cm square mirrors that I also picked up from the craft store. I didn’t like that the glue was visible in certain areas. And when in doubt, bling it out! You could also add rhinestones, sequins or beads. If you don’t want to add anything extra then just be mindful not to over do it with the glue.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Christmas is here! Almost...

Call me crazy, but this year I started christmas decorating pretty early :) I'm not usually this early, but I have a good reason; I'm leaving for Asia way before Christmas. This will be my first non-Christmassy Christmas, if you understand what I mean... I will be with my family, but we won't be having this traditional Finnish-Carelian crazy Christmas with about 15 family members. Instead, we will be celebrating Christmas with under 5 people. Don't get me wrong,I love our big traditional family Christmas, but to be honest, sometimes it has been a bit stressing. Cooking for 15 people (not alone of course) requires some work. And I think it's nice for a change to try something completely different.

My miniature christmas trees. This year's theme colours for me are white,silver and gold.

A candle holder I got from a charity shop for 50 cents.

A christmas sock I got from Tina

- Anne

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Etanapiiraat sieni-aurajuustotäytteellä

Etanat? "Hyi olkoon". Näin ainakin ajattelee suurin osa ihmisistä. Minulta on joskus kysytty miltä etanat maistuvat. Makua on vaikea tarkalleen määrittää. Se on sekoitus kanaa ja jotain muuta. Rakenteeltahan kypsä etana muistuttaa rapua tai kauan kypsytettyä lihaa. Itse olen syönyt etanoita lapsesta asti ja pidän niistä kovasti.

Tässä ohje jonka alunperin otin jostain vanhasta lehdestä, mutta olen ajan saatossa muuttanut sen omanlaisekseni.

Resepti  9 piiraaseen

250g (3 levyä) voitaikinaa
1 rkl voita
1 purkki etanoita(n.200g)
kourallinen herkkusieniä
1 iso valkosipulinkynsi
50g Aurajuustoa

1 kananmuna

  1.  Sulata voitaikinalevyt huoneenlämmössä. Tässä kestää noin tunti.
  2. Sulattamisen jälkeen laita uuni lämpenemään 225 asteeseen.
  3.  Avaa etanapurkki, valuta etanat ja huuhtaiset nopeasti kylmässä vedessä. Painele etanat kuivaksi talouspaperilla.
  4.  Pilko etanat sekä herkkusienet pieneksi.
  5.  Pilko valkosipuli.
  6. Kuumenna paistinpannu ja laita voi sinne.
  7. Paista sienet ja etanat. Parin minuutin jälkeen lisää valkosipuli, aurajuusto,oregano sekä pippuri.Sekoita kunnes massa on sekaisin ja aurajuusto hiukan sulanut. Laita pannu sivuun jäähtymään.
  8. Kauli jokainen voitaikinalevy hiukan ohuemmaksi. Tämän jälkeen leikka jokainen levy 3 osaan, eli tämän jälkeen sinulla on 9 pientä levyä.
  9. Lisää jokaiselle levylle 1 ruokalusikallinen täytettä allaolevan kuvan mukaisesti

11. Taita voitaikina kaksinkerroin ja painele reunat kiinni. Sormien kastaminen veteen auttaa pitämään reunat tiukemmin kiinni.
12. Voitele piiraat munalla. Tämän jälkeen kaada hiukan seesaminsiemeniä jokaisen piiraan päälle.
13. Laita valmiit piiraat  uunipellille ja uuniin noin 10 minuutiksi (225c. Piiraat ovat valmiit kun ne ovat saaneet kullanruskean värin. 

- Anne

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Girly home decor stuff

I can't believe it's actually November. It feels like it was just a month ago when I came back from Toronto, but it's actually been almost 6 months... I hate the fact that the summer in Finland was awful this year! Just a few decent sunny days. I'm happy that I get to travel to Asia in about a month, there it will be at least 30 degrees celsius :) Anyways, it's getting cold, winter is on it's way and I always find myself buying a lot of candles and other decor stuff when this happens. Candles make it seem like it's actually not that dark and miserable :)

 I fell in love with this owl candle immediately when I saw it on a shelf in Stockmann. I've loved owls since I was  6 months old and got my first stuffed toy. It was, surprise,surprise, an owl :) The candle is actually so cute that i don't necessarily want to burn it. But hey, it serves nicely as a decoration too.

Both of the supergirly flower candles are by Pentik.

I was really happy to find this heart-shaped metal "thing" from Sokos for about 15 euros. I don't know what it's really meant for, but it's a perfect earring holder. Before, I kept my earrings in a tiny box and it was always very tricky to quickly get the right pair out. The holder is super light. If you wanted, it would probably be pretty easy to make a similar earringholder from wire.

- Anne

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Chewy Oatmeal raisin cookies

I've never been a real fan of cookies, but Double stuf Oreos and oatmeal raisin cookies are just delicious. I've never made "American" style cookies before, but I looked at some recipes online and changed them a bit. The cookies ended up being just what I wanted; with a hint of cinnamon and a bit chewy and soft in the middle. The best part when making these was the incredible smell that filled the whole apartment!The cookies are quite sweet, so just one cookie can definitely take away any craving for something sweet :)

Recipe for About 15 large Cookies

4,5 dl wheat flour
2 teaspoons baking powder 
1,5 teaspoons salt
1,5 dl oatmeals
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
2 dl raisins

50g butter
3 eggs
2,5dl brown sugar(I used cane sugar) 
2,5dl white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla sugar

You'll also need: 
2 bowls
A coffee mug
A baking tray 
Baking paper

1.  Preheat the oven to 175 celsius
2. Mix the flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, oatmeals and raisins in a bowl.
3. Melt the butter in the microwave for about 10 seconds in the coffee mug so that it get softer. 
Put the butter, eggs, and sugars in another bowl. After this, Using a hand mixer mix the ingredients until mixture turns into a cream. It should be lighter in colour and have bubbles in it. 
4. Mix the remaining ingredients into the cream. Now the cookie dough is ready.
5. Now it's time to make meatball sized "balls" out of the dough. This is easier if hands are a bit wet.
6. Don't put the cookie balls too close to eachother. Otherwise they will stick together in the oven. Put About 10 cookies per tray.
7. Bake the cookies for about 15 minutes in 175 celsius. They need to have a golden brown colour.
8. Let the cookies cool for about an hour. They will taste better.

A perfect treat for a chilly sunday :)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Spinach Mushroom Sandwich

This is a super quick lunch solution.The sandwich is vegetarian, the taste is great and it has many vitamins! If you want to make it vegan, just use soy  or coconut cream instead of regular cream.

Spinach Mushroom Sandwich Recipe 
(for 1)

A big handful of Spinach leaves
About 4 small mushrooms ( e.g Shiitake)
2-3 tablespoons cream
1 garlic clove
Olive oil
Pepper and Salt
A slice of rustic bread

1.Wash the spinach and mushrooms. Cut into smaller pieces.
2. Crush and cut the garlic clove.
3. Heat a frying pan. Add olive oil and garlic when heated.
4. Add the spinach and mushrooms. Fry for a few minutes until spinach has "shrinken"
5. Add the cream, salt and pepper and stir. Let the mixture cook for about 1 minute.
6. Put the mixture on the slice of bread, and you're finished!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Pink Tip Nails with dots

Here's something fun I did today, Pink tip nails with dots. Here's what you'll need:

1. A base nail polish. This makes sure the other coats stay on longer. Apply 1 coat.
2. A Shimmery light pink nail polish for the whole nail.
3. A bright pink polish for the nail tips.

4. A black and white nail art pen. These are so nice and easy to use. If you don't happen to have a nail art pen, you can use basic acrylic paint and a small paint brush. You just need to make sure that you apply a top coat to make the acrylic paint waterproof!

Hope you have fun painting your nails ;) 

- Anne

Going crazy for peplum dresses!

Today I finally got to order some new clothes from www.asos.com.
It's good that I didn't place the order earlier as now the sales products are crazy cheap! I love the fact about Asos that they have so many different brands. The prices range from cheap to expensive so that everyone can find something for themselves. This is not advertising, just my personal opinion :)

I've been craving a peplum dress and tops for a few weeks now. I have a few already but the ones in Asos are just so damn cute! The good thing about peplum cut clothes is that they are really figure flattering if you choose the right model for your body type. They make your waist look very small but still cover up that unwanted tummy bump. E.g. if you have a bigger upper body you might want to choose a V-neck cut or a cut that gives you a little bit of cleavage. I bought this one:

 I also ended up buying the trousers. I've been looking at them online for so long. Besides, they look pretty cute with a black top. I know I'm a bit late when it comes to wearing floral print, but I don't care. I heard that there are still going to be some hot days here in Finland so... I still don't know if they will look good or just plain ridicuolous on me, so I might cut them into shorts and glue some studs on them.

The mint dress I already ordered, but it might be that in a few weeks I might buy the white one as well. It would look great with my hot pink clutch.

This red Marilyn Monroe-type dress would be a dream come true and perfect for e.g. Christmas parties! I know it's pretty early to think about Christmas, but hey, you always have to have a good reason for buying a cute dress that you really can't afford at the moment  ;)

- Anne

Monday, August 27, 2012

Coffee with my Boyfriend's Parents

My boyfriend's parents stopped by for coffee a few days ago to catch up after out America trip. We had a nice visit and  we looked through some of our pictures from NYC. Here is a photo of the table. I made a simple Greek Pasta Salad and I had brought some pastries home from the cafe where I work. I served them on this three tiered serving dish from Ikea, i think it cost about 14euros. These types of serving dishes are great for a little "wow" factor and also save a lot of space at the table.

I also put together a simple cheese plate with brie, blue cheese and gouda. They were served with water crackers and sliced french bread. I added some red grapes to fill up the plate. I though we could use the left over blue cheese to make a chicken recipe for dinner (I will post that recipe soon) and the gouda and french bread we could use for sandwiches and any left over brie is a yummy snack. Cheese plates can get pricey but since we only got three super market cheeses and planned to use them for future meals I thought it was really affordable. And of course since we're in Finland we served coffee as well. Needless to say everyone was stuffed by the end of the visit. Below is the recipe for the Greek Pasta Salad.

Greek Pasta Salad

1 bag of al dente cooked spiral pasta

2-4 tablespoons olive oil (add more oil if the pasta salad seems sticky)
1 1/2 dl cubed Feta (I normally just buy a package of Feta in oil with herbs that are normally used for salads. Use the entire package in the pasta. If you do this then you don't have to add any extra oil or herbs other than salt and pepper)

1 small jar of black olives
Half a red bell pepper finely chopped
1 dl chopped pepperoni
1 dl chopped cherry tomatoes
Sprinkle of oregano
Sprinkle of basil
Salt and pepper to taste

1.) Cook the pasta as instructed until al dente. Drain and rinse. Pour into a large bowl.
2.) Add olive oil and feta. If you're using a feta in oil salad package add the entire package.Mix well.
3.) Add olives, red bell pepper, chopped pepperoni, chopper cherry tomatoes, oregano, basil, salt and pepper and mix well. Add more salt and pepper if needed. Serve chilled. Enjoy!

- Tina

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Gold and lace tip nails

Yesterday I decided to these gold tip "lace" nails. You can wear these on a casual day or even as a bridal nail look if you prefer your nails to be simple! These are really easy to make, I promise :) All you need is: a light pink nail polish, A gold glitter nailpolish, a top coat polish and white nail art pen.

 A while back I bought Sally Hansen's gem crush in 03 Big Money. All in all I love the fact that the gem crush polishes have different colour glitter in them so in different lighting the colour always looks different. There is just one thing which isn't that great: if you apply too much of the product( meaning more than 2 layers) the colour chips off quite easilly. So be aware :)

To get the nails, start by applying two coats of light pink nail polish on the whole nail. Let it dry. Then apply two coats of the gold glitter nail polish on the tip. If you have very short nails just "fake" the tip, nobody will notice ;) Then draw a line between the two nail polishes with the nail art pen and start drawing the swirls and dots. When dried, apply at least two layers of top coat polish.

- Anne

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

New hair cut and colour

Lately I've been craving for platinum hair. After seeing these pictures I just had to do something about it!Michelle Williams has probably the nicest short hair cuts in Hollywood :) I myself have had a pretty short haircut for the last hmm, 4 years, but lately I've been trying to grow the asymmetric cut. My hair has grown, but the model was simply flat and horrible.  I've also been trying a more natural colour for about 4 months, something that is almost like my real hair colour.

Before colouring and the hair cut

 The fact is natural hair is just not my cup of tea. More edgy and strong colours as well as short haircuts suit me and my character better :) I thought that maintaining non-brassy blonde hair is way too time consuming, but now, to be honest I think that it's worth it! A few days back I coloured my hair at home with L'oreal Paris Récital Preference 10.21 Stocholm. It gave a nice ashy tone and made the previous colour slightly lighter. I still need to bleach my hair once ir twice to get just the right shade of blonde.

 Here's some pictures of my new hair :)

As you can see from the middle picture the shade is pretty blonde already. But as I said earlier, I want it to be platinum. When I was a kid I had almost white hair so that's the reason for my craving :) 


Sunday, August 12, 2012

Shopping at Marshalls again

I visited Marshalls again only this time with the intention to focus only on home décor. Poor me I have to go back there to return a dress for my sister and I was thinking I might have a peek at clothes and also buy a couple gifts. 

First off, I bought this adorable reusable shopping bag. I put my purchases in it and I’ve been raving about it ever since. This is only one style of the many styles and colors that they had. I was thinking it would be great to use in Finland for grocery shopping or even just regular shopping. A girl can get a be a but flustered carrying too many plastic bags and if Anne and I are shopping together there is plenty to carry. Anne uses reusable maybe more than I do. I know its bad but I just forget . Now that I have this cute new reusable shopping bag maybe I will remember to bring it along to the store more often! I am planning on picking up another bag for myself and maybe a few to give as gifts. Cute, affordable and environmentally friendly- its an all around win! 

This clear plastic make up storage container is great! I actually have a huge clear one here in America that I got from a yard sale but unfortunately its too large for me to bring with me back to Finland and I think that my sister really likes using it. This one was only $12.99 and will fit nicely on my small bathroom shelf or make up table. 
I’ve always wanted a diffuser. I think they are so cute and this one was $4.99 for the bottle the cute glass bottle, the scented oil (which is “simply linen”) and the reeds. With dogs its nice to have something scented and fresh. I love candles but I don’t want to burn then if I’m not in the room and I can’t burn candles in the hallway because there is no safe for be to put a candle. Can’t wait to use this cute diffuser! 

I sometimes have a love-hate relationship with my dogs, but after living with them for a year they have grown on me. We’ve learned to co-exist and I have grown to appreciate them. Its nice that when my boyfriend is working an overnight shift at work that I’m not alone, the dogs keep me company. And its sweet how every time I come home they run to the door to meet me. So in honor of my annoying but cute dogs I bought this frame. I am going to put a photo of them in it when I get home. 
- Tina

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Shopping in America

A few days back I went to a store called TJMaxx. It's similar to Marshall’s, it sells name brands and designer products at discounted, sale or clearance prices. Here are some photos of the cute stuff I found. I didn’t have much time to shop because I had to pick up my sister from work, but I will definitely be going back and taking my time to shop more. I love that everything was so affordable, good quality and there was a style to match every taste. I’ve really missed stores like this since moving to Finland.

I bought this cute black, white and teal photo album to put photos of our America trip in. At $5 it was a great deal!
I found this adorable Cynthia Rowley soap dispenser for $7. I think it will look so nice in our bathroom. I love the modern design and the white and mirror are guaranteed to match with any bathroom.
I was really excited by this last purchase. It’s a Betsey Johnson wallet that originally was for sale for $58.00 that I got only for $16.99! They also had a purse which I’m thinking I may get towards the end of my trip if I have money left.


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Outfit of the day

 I just love love LOVE this vintage 50's style dress! I got it from my mom's friend a few years back. It's originally from the 60's( if I remember correctly) and has a black palm tree pattern. The shape of the dress used to be pretty ugly so I decided to sew it into a sweetheart neckline. I also took a few centimeters off the hem. 

The belt is vintage YSL. I found it from a Luxembourgish second hand store. It's amazing what you can find from second hand stores and flea markets!

my favourite neon green ear rings :)

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Shopping and new nails in Conneticut

I went shopping with a friend from High School in Downtown Fairfield in a shop called Cargo Bay and this adorable tree was in the corner. It is literally a large tree branch with tissue paper flowers. Each one appeared to be handmade and from farther away they looked like silk flowers. The flowers were attached with hot glue and wire. This is definitely something that I will try doing myself!

I also went to Marshals which is a store that sells brand name and designer clothes, bags, shoes, home décor and other things at discount prices. I bought this pair of Guess wedges which are normally $70 for just $25! On this visit I only went to the shoe section because I was short on time. I’m definitely going back there again! 
I got a Gel Manicure while I was here. On my first day here when I was slightly jet lagged my sister and my best friend from High School took me to a nail salon for a manicure. I work in a restaurant in Finland and my hands and nails have paid a high price. Despite my job I try to always keep my nails looking nice, this means every 2-5 days I paint my nails. I also feel like the polish keeps my nails slightly stronger and helps keep my nails from cracking or breaking. I’ve had this gel manicure for 9 days and not a crack in sight. The photo below was taken today. The polish looks black but its actually an eggplant purple with slight shimmer. I should probably explain what it is. A Gel Manicure uses gel nail polish which is applied to nails and then cured under an ultraviolet light for about 30seconds-3minutes. The perks of the gel manicure is that there is little dry time, after your nails have under the UV light its 100% dry and won’t smudge at all. Its extremely durable, it won’t chip for 2-4 weeks! AMAZING! Also when you take off the polish it won’t damage your real nails like acrylic nails will. It cost me $35 plus a $5 tip so it was slightly more expensive than a normal manicure. 

 Anne and I have been talking about buying an at home kit. The kits are around $60 and I think that it might be a good investment. I have to check that the UV light box is safe to use with a converter (there are differences in Finland and America) but If it is then you may be seeing a review of an at home Gel Manicure kit soon ;) 
Pretty, don't you think?

- Tina