Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Baltic Travelogue

Oh my! I have seen such wonders in the past two weeks as a passenger aboard the MS Rotterdam during the Baltic Quilt Celebration! I shared this adventure with Elly Sienkiewicz,
Joan Wolfrom, Alex Anderson, Christine Porter, Velda Newman and about 200 other quilt enthusiasts. Our escapade brought us to Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Helsinki, Arhus (Denmark),
Oslo, Berlin, Tallin (Estinia), St. Petersburg, Helsinki, Stockholm and Copenhagen. 

Being a Scandinavian design fanatic, this was a heaven sent journey! So, of course, the highlights of my experience are design related. I was able to visit some wonderful shops and see some beautiful places. For example, in Helsinki I got to visit Eliel Saarinen's home and several important design stores including Marimekko, Iittila and Artec. 

In Stockholm I could have died of bliss, as I got to explore the shops of two favorite designers. First we found Gundrum Sojun's boutique and got to see her beautiful clothing and interior accessories IN PERSON! A few blocks away we hyperventilated at Svenskt Tenn, the headquarters for a pioneer designer of the contemporary Scandinavian design movement, Josef Frank. For me, this was a religious pilgrimage! I could have fallen to my knees and cried, but I tried to control myself, for Velda's sake. The museums and palaces weren't bad either!

Crocked buildings in Amsterdam.

Norwegian Stave Church

Extraordinary Vigeland sculpture park in Oslo.

Windmill in Denmark

Fabulous sign in Tallin, Estonia.

Berlin fuchsias

Catherine's Palace, St. Petersburg

Hvittrask, home of architect Eliel Saarinen outside Helsinki.

Charming summer house in the Swedish Archipelago.

So this is a brief travelogue and now it's time to fondle some fabric!! My new "Prairie Gothic" fabrics arrived just before I left town! It was a bit frustrating to know the fabric was here and I was there. But this trip has fed my soul and renewed my enthusiasm and I can't wait to get started!