Wednesday, March 31, 2010


my silence last week was due to a well earned break. here's a short pictorial recap of my time off (warning: insane expressions galore) and some activity recommendations.

it all began with my newly found fondness for lapland. my sweetie, myself and a dozen of our friends traveled to a week in levi. our cottage turned out to be fabulous. the villa laavu created by sanaksenaho architects – who are known in finland mostly for their art chapel in turku – had amazing views down the slopes and enough space to make me feel crammed once back at home.

yours truly doing the hoppity dance in front of the "cottage".

out of 14, only a few took to the slopes. the rest of us kept busy enjoying the many activities lapland had to offer.

the ultimate high for me was tobogganing. some went down the main road, but also took advantage of the most pleasurable run with a little lift by the southern slopes. what else could please a crowd of middle-aged, slightly intoxicated kids who show significant indisposition towards sports than a rope that pulls you up the hill?

going up, coming down and, whoopee, crashing the security net...

we also went tour skating on lake munajärvi (translates to "lake *choose your preferred reference to male genitals*"), the name of which provided senseless giggles all day. yours truly got caught in some cracks in the ice and fell... ahem... a couple of times.

but it was great fun that i totally recommend anyone to try. the place even has it's own sports team called "munajärven pullistus" for which they naturally sell t-shirts. we didn't get any.

cross-country skiing included enjoying a cup of steaming minty hot chocolate at a dark cabin next to an ice covered lake. it seems the only time i can approve the inclusion of mint in my chocolate is when i am out of my element doing sports. inconsistency feeds itself or smthng. strange...

our regression continued and we headed to a lappish village to feed reindeer and ogle farm animals. the wildlife around our cottage did not fail either: especially one wacky and aggressive willow grouse with serious drag potential (hello, pink eyebrows!) kept entertaining us daily.

in the second pic my dog jorma is trying to go hunting... in her camouflage padded winter suit, fleece booties and wool beanie. credible? not.

mainly we just relaxed, enjoyed some glorious food and started the cocktail hour way too early in the mornings wearing fancy wigs...

1. resting in front of the fireplace; 2. me a.k.a. kari peitsamo; 3. playing homage to stella with a carefully rearranged wig.

totally relaxing, totally fun. looking forward to next year already. here's my theme song from the trip:

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

elfing it.

last thursday was one of those days when things slide slightly out of hand and get chaotic. i worked all morning and left for lunch in select blogger company. regardless of my firm efforts to return to work, we lost time chatting, realized it was too late to return, had some beer and continued directly to the multiple events of the evening... what a horrible choice fashion-wise.

one should know to leave home in outfits that suit every reasonably expected situation that might follow. to my detriment, i suck at that. thus, i had lunch in an exaggerated version of my current preference for loose on loose and ended up partying in a costume that makes me look like a small elf – no minor thanks to my shoes and stripey socks. i felt more uncomfortable and fidgety the later we got into the night.

don't get me wrong, i love the outfit for its foldy movement and i adore my shoes that are just a tad too ugly. nonetheless, as an ensemble, they made me feel totally out of place late at siltanen where the fashion crowd gathered to a party organized by weekday.

tee by t by alexander wang, pants by fifth avenue shoe repair, socks and belt by h&m, shoes by mm6 martin margiela.

i have many trusted looks that easily carry me from morning to the wee hours, but i am too much of an intuitive dresser to regard this as an important factor on a daily basis. thus, i still lack the ability to prepare myself for unexpected schedule changes. you can find pics from the events here, here and here, and despite my ensemble failure, i had a great time.

i expect this to be an issue again (and again) and, thus, next time you see a little smeagul sneaking around the corners of a nightclub, you know it's me wearing my morning mood. does this ever happen to you?

Monday, March 29, 2010

cast your vote.

for some inexplicable reason many people hold the belief that whoever shouts the loudest can claim to have the right opinion in a democracy. majority rule might be the simplest form of democratic decision making, but fortunately is not the one nations follow when deciding on important matters. recent debates on national online behavior reassures me in thinking that there is plenty of truth in the idiom referring to flies and a pile of dung...

nevertheless, there are places where majority vote does very little harm. voting as an integral part of marketing campaigns may not be new, but running an entire store based on customer preferences seems bold and exciting – at least to me. is – despite the drivel name – a stylish online furniture store where visitors vote which designs make it to production and become available for purchase for a limited time.

although i have certain doubts about whether their line of products was to look as streamlined as it does if finns who prefer suomi-soffa had a say in the matter, i cannot help but marvel how polished a selection they accumulate by just listening to their customers. the requirement of multiple votes does minimize the number of outlandish and unconventional items, but seems to allow some trendy and innovative tokens. the downside is the obvious appearance of designer rip-offs which borderline blatant imitation.

my favorite is the completely recyclable cardboard shelving unit above right. all in all, i think we need more of this kind of retail democracy. perhaps it's the only kind where direct majority rule works... or what do you think?

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

i feel better.

imagine hot chip as a steaming hot teeny-bopper attracting boy band (instead of nerdy indie electropop types), add some wizards spewing laser breath and fierce eyes and you've got a happy little video of a great song.

and i apologize for ignoring you for some time, but i've been away on holiday. more about it laters, gators!

Saturday, March 13, 2010


sometimes the best stuff comes in packages you are already familiar with. the raveonettes have not changed – albeit you could say they've matured into feeling comfortable in their easily distinguishable skin – and i quite honestly do not mind. evolution into major success is not necessarily a great thing for a band, me thinks.

here's one reason i love these danes as they are: fuzzy guitars, innocent pop melodies, haunting lyrics and all. naturally, this was the last dance last night.

Friday, March 12, 2010


the only photo i got from last night is from the bathroom of bläk. the hors d'œuvres were exquisite – as the food at bläk generally is – but limited in number, and although i enjoyed the company of team tiger of sweden until makia's tournament at tiger, i had to leave early for some dinner or the bubbly would have gotten the best of me...

i wore a dress i also grabbed on my last intuitive shopping session at zara: this olive one-shouldered piece of mesh fabulousness is a drapey tummy tucking exercise in itself. although you cannot see, i combined it with westwood pirate boots to give it a more casual edge.

dress by zara, belt as bracelet by h&m, intensive stare by me.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

ride the rocket.

alison goldfrapp nails it every time. it does not matter whether she's going deep into trippy ambient depths of felt mountain or into delicate aerial bliss of seventh tree. it makes no difference whether her choice is boasting synth drawl of black cherry or the dance club hits of supernature. and she's back with a vengeful 80's revival dance pop gem.

love love love.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

events that make me happy.

1. monki opens a store in helsinki on may 19. i've written about them before and love their clever appreaciation of södermalm hipster fashion. this is what i call great spring news!

2. elle turns 2yrs tomorrow with a party at bläk. i look forward to cheerful toasting and fashion.

3. tomorrow also makia is holding a retailer's cup of disco shaft ball (i.e. diskosähly) at the tiger. here's the invite... that should be interesting.

4. i will be dj'ing in turku on friday. klubi, kolo. it's free so come!


i feel so proud. a brief suggestion in the comments section of a blog post where jaakko mentioned that he had come across a small book of early 20th century patterns of recession time clothing for children culminated last weekend at the opening of haaksirikkoutuneet – shipwrecked.

for some months before he had taken the time to transform the simple and frugal patterns into adult wear utilizing recycled materials. during the process his wide inspirational background took over and added depth to the garments: he approached themes of masculinity and decorativeness through adding subtle and not so inconspicuous markings of pearly queens and kings, punk aesthetic, sailor tattoos and traditional handicrafts. the collection became a sampling of simultaneous subcultural thriving and survival in the midst of economic uncertainty.

when another friend stepped in and promised to shoot photos of the collection, the entire project came full circle. tatu had explored the themes of masculinity earlier in his own video works, and he shot jaakko wearing the clothes into four(?) still-image videos. the resulting clips are stunning. here's a small taster of what to expect:

©jaakko mäkinen & tatu hiltunen, click to enlarge.

thus, we partied last friday. the small turku gallery was filled with friends and the finlandia vodka punch more than culturally intoxicating.

photos snatched from here. 1. me wearing oversize tee by mm6 martin margiela, denim from drkshdw rick owens and boots by alexander wang; 2. the artists themselves; 3. the punch.

their stuff is at galleria b until 28 march. go see!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

list of lessons.

things i learned today...

1. when your best friend calls and tells you she's been selected as one of ten best dressed women in finland by the poshest women's magazine in the country, the correct response is not to burst out laughing. even if the first thought in your head is "crap, didn't realize we're that old..."

2. cutting recipes from magazines might induce inexplicable cravings. all i could think about yesterday was a hamburger and i finally had one late at night at morrison's grill and green (a humongous veggie burger with halloumi, recommended although they could improve the patty and the ambience in general...). the reason became clear after i tidied our dining table at home and found a clipping of a fish burger recipe with a mouth-watering picture. and no, i could not wait long enough to take the photo before taking the first bite...

3. despite your stern wishful thinking, the gym does not meet you halfway. if you never walk all the way to the gym, you'll never exercise. ahem. bye bye chanel...

4. some recent events have convinced me that some finnish companies and company representatives really need an explicit policy when it comes to dealing with blog publicity – here's an example from while back of dealing horribly (i.e. condescendingly) with especially the negative kind. i will consider this a job opportunity (consultant, anyone?! haha!) in addition to my other little projects inspired by witnessing incredible albeit avoidable messes.

5. speed shopping can sometimes be extremely gratifying. although i believe in considering every purchase carefully beforehand, i somehow shun basics whilst doing that. running into zara 15 minutes before closing time exposed my hands to this subtly pink leopard tunic/tee/dress which i would have considered for too long and left it at the store, if i had the time. now, i'm happy i just intuitively grabbed it because it's light, long enough and comfortable. leopard print rules my world.

boots and tee by zara, wax coated jeans by cos.

any lessons you want to share?

Thursday, March 4, 2010


it comes as no surprise that undeniable talent often comes with some neurotic tendencies. last night at tavastia the fences in front of the small stage spoke volumes, and the situation got slightly absurd at the bar when people were told the artist had banned glass bottles.

but florence + the machine delivered. from the start it was obvious that her singing talent is genuinely unrivaled by her contemporaries. compared to the other art school derived briton of monday night, there was maturity and completeness of art on stage with florence. it was pure strength and without a doubt it was florence herself who was the machine. awesome.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


i among many others have been forced to change my regular gear towards more slush friendly attire. stella found good old wellies, but i still trust my dr martens like aurora. i tried defying the slippery wet ground on monday when i hovered in 5 inch heels to see joss stone – only to realize that my choice of footwear had as horrific consequences as did my speedy acceptance of tickets to witness my personal hell. let's just say that miss stone's performance was not my thing and i will steer clear of heels for the time being. the puddles finally got the best of me...

people's eyes on the street are directed at their own feet, busy avoiding surprisingly deep caverns of icy water and sleet covered patches – the main shared goal of my fellow strollers is getting from one place to another in one, solidly dry piece. thus, i've taken the opportunity to wear my most comfortable items of clothing: super stretchy jeans, large soft sweaters, combat boots...

sweater by tiger of sweden jeans, tee by acne, scarf by club monaco, jeans by drkshdw rick owens, boots by dr martens.

...and large parkas. my parka is from makia, a helsinki based company that only so far produces menswear, but has adumbrated the addition of a women's line soon. their stuff consists of streamlined streetwear, and the entire brand image is so well put together i can actually grasp some of the pride sports enthusiastic finns feel when our team wins. go check out their site and if you stumble across their catalogues, take a good look. great work. fashion freak cheers for fashion, right?

although i hate hearing complaints about the weather more than the lowsy weather itself, i am ready to add my voice to the whiney choir: yes, i am ready for spring.

have you wrapped yourself in comfort gear now that the world has turned against all non-waterproofed clothing?

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


as a pesco-vegetarian i am aware that my choice of diet rubs many people the wrong way. i am not going to elaborate the multitude of reasons i prefer vegetarianism, but will talk about how my choice has been met during the years. as background, i'll tell you i was vegan for some years and went through a strenuous internal battle of several years before i was able to begin eating fish again. i was well aware that my choice to go towards a carnivorous lifestyle was justified mostly by convenience.

during my vegan years in the mid to late 90's my lifestyle was obvious to anyone who sat down at a table with me. at home i baked my own bread and there were beans soaking in the kitchen. ordering at a restaurant was not easy and, thus, there was no way of hiding that i lived a life of decided deprivation. such a marginal lifestyle choice raised questions and i was more than willing to answer them. i gave people facts and figures when asked, and i was asked quite often.

at that point already i figured out how people respond to difficult ethical dilemmas: my sin at that point was taking photos (betcha many of you had no idea that film photography is not vegan) and after i, myself, brought it up as something to ease the pain of my fellow diners for acting too saintly in front of them, it was used against me ruthlessly. "hah, you're not perfect after all! you cannot judge us!"

when i gave up the vegan lifestyle and added eggs and milk to my diet, i became less of a threat to my carnivorous friends. it did not mean an end to the need to hear my justification for doing something "different" and discussions around my choice were still instigated by others than myself – i hardly had the need to point out the obvious to anyone. my presence created a discomfort especially among the most devout carnivores who claimed they had solid bases for their diets. they were most aggressively after my other flaws as if finding that i had imperfections was a justification for their own ignorance and negligence.

after the addition of fish to my diet i almost blend in. in many situations it is a relief: i can order at most restaurants and not cause any questions amongst my fellow diners. i've felt heart palpitations seeing the lunch menu fish option being crossed out and the only choices remaining consisting of beef and chicken – the knowledge that a need for possibly lengthy explanations will follow can sometimes feel devastating. despite vegetarians' relatively common existence these days, it's still not a natural choice among others but needs clarification.

the current debate over vegetarian school meals has stirred the views on vegetarianism the masses hold to the surface, and it isn't pretty. what bothers me most is that people seem to find the argument that no-one has the right to tell them what to do plausible – no matter what the facts are. some even go as far as saying that they'd be willing to eat vegetarian meals if they were offered, but because they are forced, they will object strenuously out of principle. because the people who suggested that a vegetarian day would be beneficial at schools irritate these individuals, they will oppose their ideas – an ad hominem, if i ever heard one.

the point is that carnivores know they are at fault. there are ethically better – even close to acceptable – ways to consume meat, but most finns do not belong to the elite niche who can choose free-range and organic. most buy whatever is cheapest even when they do not have to, and that is what bothers me. reminding them of their ethical shortcomings in any way – in my case by just acting differently – creates a turmoil that hardly counts as rational.

despite of my ability to keep my mouth shut and even going as far as concealing my diet in certain company, i cannot help but feel superior. after following the discussions of late, my pomposity has justifiably multiplied. as a former vegetarian who makes terrible consumer choices all the time i still know that predominantly my choices are better than those of people in general. tough, but it is the truth, and the truth seems to hurt. as much as some people will find me intolerably obnoxious for saying this, the lowest creature i can imagine is the person who chooses industry grown and produced chicken at the supermarket. there isn't a single justification for it. even poverty cannot justify eating those poor creatures that suffer their entire modest lives – there is always another option.

the ultimate test of your own diet is very, very simple. instead of going defensive and pointing the finger at the flaws of the many people who choose to be vegan, vegetarian or ethically aware carnivores (those snobs!), i suggest that every single person takes a critical look at the contents of their own plate. if knowing (and i mean really knowing) the production history of any part of your meal makes you uneasy, i suggest you do something about it. i already have, can you say the same about yourself?