Saturday, April 29, 2006
What do Alvar Aalto and Coco Chanel have in common? They're both brilliant designers! The vase behind the perfume bottle is a small version of the famous Aalto vase. It's a play on words, since "aalto" means wave in Finnish and the design of the vase resembles a wave (when looked at from the top).
My very first perfume was Nina Ricci's L'air du Temps. My mother bought it for me the first time I was in Paris - at age 12. Since then, I've used several perfumes. I've never had a "signature scent" like some women do.
Chanel Number 5 was my favourite for a long time and I still use it sometimes. Current favourites include Ralph Lauren's Ralph (lovely scent - but a horrible name for a perfume!), Issey Miyaki's Eau D'Issey, Donna Karan's Be Delicious (a lovely scent of green apples!) and Calvin Klein's Eternity Purple Orchid.
The latter was given to me by a dear friend. She had bought it for herself, but realized that she just couldn't use it - she would be a Coco girl forever! That's why I can never consider using Chanel's Coco; to me, it will always be her scent!
So I took a Chance!
P.S. The Aalto vase is filled with pebbles from our trip to Crete (see my post from March 26th, 2006).
This is a petit point needlework that I did as a kid. I don't know exactly what age I was, but I know I was less than 12, since I moved to Canada (from Finland) at age 12 - and I remeber doing this in Finland.
I think it looks nice with the purple crocuses!
This photo was taken in our backyard a couple of days ago. Crocuses are always the first flowers to bloom in spring. Then come the daffodils, then the tulips. I planted hyacinths too, but they never appeared. I still don't know what happened. Did some animal eat the bulbs? Or did I plant them upside down (my boyfriend's theory)? I guess we'll never know...
When we first moved into our current house almost two years ago, I bought 100 Euros worth of bulbs and spent a cold November Saturday on my hands and knees planting them all. But Boy was it ever worth it! Now I don't need to do anything at all and I have a garden constantly in bloom during all the Spring months. Crocuses sometimes start to bloom even when there's still snow on the ground. This year, they didn't. But, as you can see, the grass is still quite dead around the pretty flowers - rebirth!!
Lady in Pink
P.S. Why do we say cactus -> cacti, but crocus -> crocuses? Or do we? Should we say croci?!!?
Friday, April 28, 2006
I'm a bit late posting this photo, since this was taken sometime after Christmas. If I remember correctly, this plant is called "Christmas Cactus" in Finland. It's a plant that is given as a gift during the holiday season.
I got this one from a friend several years ago and - miraculously - it's still alive and blooming! I sooooo don't have a green thumb: I usually manage to kill off all flora within a 100 yard/meter radius in a very short time. Fauna prosper better - the last cat I had, Tina, lived to be 19 years old. And she did not die but had to be euthanized due to illness. I'll tell her story another time.
I had been planning on replacing the soil of all my plants (a whopping total of two!) for several years and this year I finally got around to it. And here's the result: cactus in full bloom. And pink, as is appropriate.
The moral of this story? Take good care of your assets.
I learned this from the books by Dr. Lois Frankl. She has written books such as Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office and Nice Girls Don't Get Rich. These books don't advocate that you shouldn't be nice - they advoate that you should stop being a girl and start being a woman! Don't worry about "being nice" all the time (men don't).
Dr. Frankl reminds us that in addition to taking good care of our financial assets, we also need to take care of material assets, i.e. all our belongings. This means getting clothes and shoes repaired, taking good care of jewelry (e.g. pearls) etc.
Coincidentally, Dr. Lois Frankl is descended from Dr. Viktor Frankl, developer of existential psychology and a holocaust survivor. Incredibly, he discovered the meaning of life while in a Nazi concentration camp. He writes about his experiences in Man's Search for Meaning - a truly incredible book.
He found that in a concentration camp, the ones who survived were not the ones who stole food from others - they were the ones who shared their tiny, moldy piece of bread with those who had none. It is not calories that keep us alive - it is our will to live. In order to have a will to live, our lives need to have meaning - a meaning that each one of us must discover for her/himself. We need to find the desert blooms in a forest of cacti.
The Lady with the Pink Thumb
Monday, April 24, 2006
This purse was a present from my elder brother and his wife. As I mentioned before, my sister-in-law is an artist and she has exquisite taste. Actually they are both artists. They always give me the most amazing and unusual gifts: the kind that nobody else has.
They brought me this purse from one of their trips to the Far East. I don't remember which country it's from (they've been to so many!) You'll notice that it has another tiny purse attached to it - so cute!
I only use this purse in the summer, but then I do use it a lot. It's very lightweight and the bamboo handle is very pleasant to hold.
Thanks for the lovely gift!!
The Purse Freak
A bit over a year ago, I was obsessed with the TV show Sex and the City. I had bought all the DVDs and would watch them every day. My boyfriend was really sick of it and kept asking me why I was so into that particular show.
I started asking myself the same question. What is the fascination for me? The answer that immediately came to my mind was: "I want to BE Carrie Bradshaw!" But why?
She's beautiful. She has a perfect body. She's really smart and really funny. A good friend. She is really fashionable and always has really amazing outfits, clothes - and above all shoes. She lives in New York City. She has really great female friends and an active, fun New York lifestyle. All very good reasons to want to be her.
However, then the answer really hit me: of course, I want to write!! It's what I've always wanted to do. I want to do exactly what Carrie Bradshaw does: I want to live an active life, to observe the world, and to write about it in a column. The column doesn't need to be about sex (as in the TV show), just about life. So - waddayaknow - sometimes something as trivial as a TV show can act as a revelation of a deeper need.
So I figured out what I wanted to do. However, I was not sure how to go about getting there. How would I become a writer? How would I get published? Not so easy.
It was only some weeks after I had started this blog that I realized that for me, writing a blog is living my dream. I get to write about my life.
Thursday, April 20, 2006
A Belated Easter Greeting Dear Readers!
My parents are planning on moving to a smaller apartment (in three years or so) and are already now starting to get rid of as much stuff as they can. While we were celebrating Easter at my parent's place, my mother asked me if there was anything I wanted to take! Wow! I took a whole bunch of great stuff and this adorable long-beaked creamer was one of the things my Mom gave me. Thanks!! It's by Arabia. I have the whole set of Storybirds in white, plus one big grey one (all the pieces have been gifts) but I was missing this cute yellow one. This gorgeous set of pitchers is no longer in production, but is still hugely popular. You can always try eBay...
It's such a nice Easter decoration too, goes well with the little chickies! :-)
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
Dearest Lady and Gentleman Bloggers,
Eventhough this purse is a fake Puma, made of 100% plastic and cost next-to-nothing (7 euros I think?), it's one of my favourites. Oh, how can I say that, now all the other purses will feel bad!
Like Carrie Bradshaw (Sarah Jessica Parker's character on Sex and the City) says: "You know I don't play favourites with my shoes, but these ones were really special!" (in the episode where her Manolos were stolen after the hostess forced her to take them off). I too don't play favourites with my purses or shoes, but this one is very close to my heart. Well look at it!! It's just soooo beautiful! And it goes so well with sweats, for example. It's perfect if you're just dashing out of the house in shorts or sweatpants. OK, personal pet peeve: people wearing a sweatsuit and carrying a fancy purse. I'm sorry, but it just looks gross! I don't mean to offend anybody here, but this is the reason why I personally wanted to buy a purse that looks exactly like a gym bag - it just goes perfectly well with gym clothes! Whoever invented these babies is a genius!
I bought my lovely "Puma" purse on a wonderful, wonderful trip to Rome with a dear friend. We went there on a whim last summer and spent a week there - and it was HOT! I understand enough Italian so that I made out a radio commentary where they warned people to keep babies and the elderly indoors. I saw a thermometer show something like 47 degrees Celcius (115 Fahrenheit). Granted that thermometer was in the hot sun, but in any case it was just damn hot.
So we spent most of our time shopping! Well it was just so nice and cool in those shops! I was looking for the perfect black purse on that trip, but never found quite what I was looking for (I still haven't). But I did buy this purse from a street vendor (they're all over Rome selling fake everything). I also found a gorgeous Guess purse. I'll show you that one in a later post.
To be continued....
Pink Puma Girl
Monday, April 17, 2006
Eventhough it's spring already, I wanted to post this photo of the amazing view from our living room window - taken last winter. We live in Scandinavia, but I find our view to be somehow very "Tuscan", especially in the summer (I'll post another photo then).
Bye for now!
This is another one of my pink purses. This one is by Marimekko. They also do leather purses, but they're most famous for their canvas ones.
This particular purse does not really have a story attached. It's just a really nice, practical purse to use in the summer. Very light, very fashionable, nice with casual attire. Washable too (by hand).
I had this purse with me at our company's last summer party (a major annual event). I was wearing a yellow top and carrying this purse. And my closest colleague showed up wearing a pink top and carrying a yellow Marimekko purse!! We looked like the Marimekko twins.
More purses to come, so keep reading...
P.S. The chair that I've used to photograph the purses is from China. It's beautiful, but a bit inpractical. Even though I'm tall (175 cm / 5'10"), it's a bit high to sit on. I wondered how an old Chinese chair can be so high - the people couldn't have been very tall. But then I found out that they used to sit on chairs with their legs crossed. So it's kind of like a throne!
Friday, April 14, 2006
Spring has finally arrived to this Northern part of the world! It's a gorgeous sunny day, there's no more snow on the ground - and Pink Lady can start wearing shoes other than winter boots! But no shoe blog today. Instead, the first of many purse blogs. This being Pink Lady's blog, we'll of course start with a pink purse. This one is Italian, by Furla. They have really wonderful stuff. As is typical for Pink Lady, I got this at 50% off. I guess people don't want to buy a relatively expensive leather purse in pink and that's why it was on sale. Women would rather go with a more classic black or brown, because they think that they'll get bored with pink or that it will go out of fashion. Being Pink Lady, I thought no such thing! Though, to be honest, I actually have been looking for the perfect black purse for over a year now and still haven't found quite the one I want. So I got a pink one instead! Of course I get a loss less wear out of it, since I can't wear a pink purse with every outfit.
But, being Pink Lady, I do love pink and think that I always will. It was always my favourite colour as a little girl and right into my teens. Although in my teens I tended to wear more fuchsia. Then there was a long time that pink was totally out of fashion and I also thought that I'd never be able to wear it again or to use it in my home. Not just because it was "out"; I actually was sick of the colour for some reason.
But now that it came back into fashion in a big way, I realized just how gorgeous pink looks and went out and bought a whole bunch of pink chothes, accessories and decorating stuff. I've heard that this has happended to many women: they are happy that pink is fashionable again since they love the colour. I wonder why so many women are drawn to pink?
Is it simply because we were dressed in pink as babies and it simply reminds us of a happier and simpler time when all our needs were taken care of? Or does the colour pink have some effect on us psychologically? I'd like to look into this. I'll let you know if I find something out...
So, as I mentioned, this was the first of many blog entries about purses. I photographed many of my purses and will start displaying them here. And of course each lovely purse has a story. So keep reading!
A kiss, my dear readers - with pursed lips! ;-)
Thursday, April 06, 2006
In this photo, you can see the shape of the heels a bit better: when you look at the heels from the side, they look thin (almost like stiletto heels), but when you look at the heels from the back, they look wide. Cool!!
Ta ta for now!
Pink Shoe Lady
Here's another favourite pair of boots from my collection. When I bought these babies a couple of years ago, they were by far the most expensive pieces of footwear I had ever bought - although I did buy these at 50% off as well.
The quality of these boots is divine: they are fully lined in soft, high-quality leather; I could even imagine wearing them without any socks on. The heels are an interesting shape. You can see it better in the other photo.
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
This bears-in-a-basket idea is something that I copied from an interior decorating magazine.
Each of my bears of course has his or her own story...
One of my very first Teddy Bears was Paddington Bear. He's not in this picture, but I'll be sure to include his photo later. My Mom had been reading the story of Paddington Bear to us already for a while before I got the Teddy Bear. I wrote in my diary "For Christmas I got a living Paddington Bear". I must have been really young. I started writing a diary when I was 7. Little did I know back then that I would some day be writing a "diary" for all the world to see! Back then, a girl's diary was top secret; now we actually want people to read what we write.
But back to the bears in the photo:
- The one in the red sweater is a souvenir from Cambridge, England. What a beautiful city! I envy anyone who gets to go to University there! I lived there for about two years (many years ago) and sometimes worked in the University Library. The feeling of reading there is just completely different from being in a modern library. I wish the whole world resembled Cambridge a bit - especially Cambridge in the spring when the daffodils are in bloom...
- The biggest bear with the dignified bow is a gift from my parents (not so long ago). So he's quite a recently acquired bear, not one from my childhood. He's a very decorative bear and I often place him on our bed along with the throw pillows when we have company.
- The bear next to him on the left, however, is indeed a bear from my childhood - and one of my favourites. We were on a family trip to the South of the US (Hannibal, Mississipi?) and he followed me home from the caves featured in the novel Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain. I don't remember the name of the caves. But they did have a gift shop. I do love museums and art galleries, but the best thing about them is often the gift shop! Especially art galleries have simply the best gift shops (I must admit that I often buy "gifts" for myself there).
I've been told that Mark Twain has said: "Nationalism is an infantile disease, it is the measles of mankind". I don’t find this quote, however, in http://www.twainquotes.com/. Does anybody know if Mark Twain has really said this? In any case, it has long been one of my favourite quotes. I don't believe in nations or borders, which is why I enjoy the internet and blogging so much. Here we are all just one big, global community of people, and that's the way it should be out there in the world as well.
OK, so back to the bears in the photo again:
- The one on the left in the front row is unusual in that she is made of straw ("We are the hollow men, we are the stuffed men, leaning together, headpiece filled with straw" - T.S. Eliot. I used to memorize a lot of poetry when I was young-er. It's suprising how much I can still remember). The straw bear is from my sister-in-law. She is an artist, as is her husband, i.e. my brother and as is my God Mother and my uncle ....there's a lot of artistically talented people in my family: writers, musicians, etc. My sister-in-law always goes to a lot of trouble to find really original and unusually beautiful gifts. She and my brother travel a lot so the gifts seem to be arriving from more and more exotic locations. Lately I've been receiving a lot of gifts from various parts of Asia. I don't remember where the straw bear is from, but she sure is beautiful and unusual! Thanks!!
The bear in the pink tutu is another favourite. I've studied ballet, so she's very special to me. However, I started taking ballet when I started University, so I was not graceful and swan-like; maybe I resembled my bear with my ballet moves (just a bit thinner!). I once gave her to a friends' baby to play with and in about two seconds, the baby had torn the tutu! So I've had to do some repairs on the tutu. That of course makes her even more special to me. I do believe that tutu-bear was also a gift from my parents long ago. Thanks!
The Pink Bear Lady