Tried to do some embroidery on my mom’s sewing machine over Christmas on some random pieces of fabric. Then I tried to make the fabric into pencil cases:
I quite liked the feel that the sewing machine created, but it is quite laborous work, at least on a standard sewing machine. I think I’ll see when there’s an embroidery workshop at uni next. I made a drawing based on my embroidery.
I like how this turned out and will probably print it on something, whether pencil cases or just on paper….
This teatowel was based on a Finnish saying “Elämä on epävarmaa, joten syö jälkiruoka ensin” which roughly translates as “Life’s uncertain so eat your dessert first.” I tried to use a traditional British dessert for the image, and drew a sticky toffee cake, but don’t think it quite looks it. Don’t think it matters that much though.
This was inspired by what I wrote in a previous post already… In Finnish folklore, witches are women who dress ride around on brooms, own black cats and scare children. They like on a mountain called “Köypelinvuori” and only leave it on Easter. I didn’t think “Witches only come out on Easter” was a very good text so i changed it to “Witches only come out at night”
This was inspired by traditional Finnish and Scandinavian log cabins, where people used to live. A lot of people still have a log cabin as their “summer cottage”. The text is a saying I found, that I thought was quite fitting.
I think what was missing in my earlier items was that they didn’t have a theme running across them. So I set about thinking what would my brand be about.
I thought bringing my Finnish roots to the design would make it unique and also more personal. I also always found folklore, mythology, old customs and saying fascinating and they often inspire my work.
I’ve got 2 Finnish folktales that I really like.
One is about how the Northern Lights came to be. In Finnish the word for Northern Lights is “Revontulet” which literally translates as “fox’s fires.” The story goes that there are these fox-like creatures called flamefoxes (tulikettu or tulikko in Finnish) and when their fur rubs against trees and other objects, it sends sparks to the sky which becomes a light.
Also, if you catch a flamefox it’ll bring you good fortune for eternity.
Another story isn’t really a story, but basically in Finnish folklore all witches live on this mountain called Kyöpelinvuori (literally “witch mountain”) with their black cats. They only come out once a year around Easter time and fly around on their brooms scaring people.
Last year I started to explore screenprinting and also started thinking maybe I could transfer my own illustrations on different products, t-shirts, teatowels, bags etc. by using this method.
I decided I wanted to do a businessplan for my dissertation for a company through which I could sell these products and during the summer I thought I should start “testing the waters” and see if anyone would actually buy what I’m making.
I decided to call my business Susi Apparel. During the summer I opened a shop online at BigCartel and did a stall at The PrintHaus.
These were some of the first stuff I made. They don’t really have any overall theme etc. and I did not sell very well.
So, for my first term project I thought I’d make a coherent, strong collection of items.
My personal favourites out of all the final pieces:
I think in the future I need to focus more on negative space and composition. Also less is more when it comes to colours and patterns.
I do like thinking and drawing in shapes more than lines, so that’s what I think I’ll continue doing.