Saturday, 20 April 2013

Lace Back Shirt

Recently I have been obsessed with lace. Probably because I associate this material with spring, and since spring was quite slow, I had to compensate this fact. And just when I finished another lace project Spring finally arrived. At least from Monday to Wednesday you were able to spot poeple in shorts, dresses and summery skirts all over Hamburg. A good feeling. Everyone seemed to be happier and we spent our days eating ice-cream and chatting in the sunshine instead of studying for university. Well, it's Hamburg, and it seems like the sun is a rare phenomena here, so it doesn't really matter ;)

So the supplies are pretty easy. To pimp your shirt with lace you obviously need a shirt and lace.
As I wrote before, look at your local markets and thriftstores for nice and old lace.
And for the shirt, I do not know about you, but I did struggle to find the perfect basic before I looked into the man section. It has to be cropped but afterwards I have a perfect shirt for nearly nothing.

1. Decide on the length of your shirt and cut along after adding 2 cm for the seam.
2. Fold your edge twice
3. Choose the zig-zag stitch
4. And sew along!

5. Decide on the needed length for your lace trim.
6. By pinning along the edges you can mark where to cut. Cut along the middle, as if you are following your spine and along the end bit, so its a bit like a cupboard front.
7. Open your "cupboard" pin down your sides. 
8. Lay the lace on top and sew along the edge.

Pretty easy, aye? I love how subtle the effect is and I am pretty sure I will wear this shirt pretty often. As long as the sun comes out at least.

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Sharing is caring!

Last week I learnt a lot about the love for my Macbook. I never really mentioned it on here, but I've gotten myself into the whole apple-lover-clan last November with a beautiful Macbook Air. The reason for never mentioning it was probably due to my attempt of not being totally in-your-face. Well, too late, but phew. But back to business. The whole I was totally "meh" when it came to writing, every time I attempted creating some post or write something for uni, I couldn't be bothered thanks to the differences between my old and new laptop. And I had to use my old one, because my other had to be fixed. So even though this intro has got nothing to do with my actual post, right now I am just too happy to NOT mention the return of my beloved one.

It kinda has something to do with it. Mainly because I wanted to post this actually somewhen closer to last weekend, oh well.
As far as most of you probably know, my style is a mixture of my Mum's wardrobe (pieces from the mid 70s to the early 90s) , store bought goods, self-made garments and items from markets and little thrift stores, label me however you want. And even though it sometimes itches me to do differently, I always try to avoid spending too much money on clothing, because, to be honest, my wardrobe is packed. But what to do with the clothing you do not want anymore? You could throw them away (uh, no, I spent money on them after all), sell them (time consuming or no one finds you since all the websites are packed with young girls selling stuff) or just keep them hidden between your favorites. I chose the latter for a long time, but finally last Sunday I was motivated to pile up all the old stuff. And why? It was time to go clothes swapping at RauschRock TauschWert!

The concept was pretty easy, everyone was supposed to bring something between one piece and 20 pieces and an Euro for entrance. Once you entered the room, you could find several piles with certain topics, where all the different clothing types were collected. And the search started!

Another highlight of the event was certainly the area surrounding the venue. Since I am still pretty new to Hamburg I am not that familiar with every spot and without this event I am not too sure, wether I would have been able to spot the atmospheric Gängeviertel.

So when you are interested in also swapping your clothes and a private swap party does not sound too appealing to you, I got a link for all Germans, the blog Klamottentausch, for all the others: Just google your area, and I'm pretty sure, something will come up.

Friday, 5 April 2013

March favorites and all that jazz.

Right now I am 100 % back in Germany. Last week I was still struggling getting back into my everyday routine of studying, cooking and living, but with uni coming back on this week, I HAD to be back. It's surprising how stressful just for days of uni can be, otherwise it felt great seeing all the people and my weekend is filled with catching-up events (and trying to remember all the vocab from last term).
So today I thought I would give you some overview of my favorites during these few days back in my "normal" life, since you pretty much saw all my "Indian favorites" in my Bag-post. I know, it's not a lot, but it covers pretty much the last 2 weeks of being here again. And someday (after sourcing through all my 2000 India pictures I will actually post another India related post, no matter wether you want or not :))

1. Dark green Cheap Monday jeans Up to now most of you will probably know about my obsession with the jeans of this brand, so it was a must to add another pair to my collection after seeing this baby in the midseason sales. And I always dreamed about dark green skinnies.
2. Silver statement necklace Jopp, another addition to another field of addiction, this subtle statement necklace (sounds strange, I know, but this about it) was found at a local flea market and it has my love right now. I can't wait to be finally able to leave the house without a scarf hiding every necklace I wear.
3. Plant seeds I  never had a green thumb, but strangely I wanted to try growing my own salad and edible flowers this spring, so far I can say my plants do actually still live.
4. Sun glasses Since I was kinda a late one with transferring the money to my uni, I had to rely on my bike instead of the bus the past week. But cruising through the city with sunglasses is a instant boost for your will to ride a bike.
5. Urea lip balm from Balea After a long flight your skin is always really dry and especially this product helped a lot to fight the dryness. Plus it is in a tube, so you can actually still use it after having a cold, since no bacteria can come inside.
6. Good coffee The north of India is like a desert to coffee lovers and therefore I've been drinking coffee non-stop after returning.

And another favorite was the whole action around "Post aus meiner Küche" (mail from my kitchen), a website where three lovely girls do initiate food swaps with home-made goods concerning one certain topic every few months. This months it was all about childhood memories and I decided to take part for the first time. I drew lots for the lovely Eva and she gifted me that generously that I felt really, really bad for my really small package, but I was actually struggling with finding actual meals from my childhood. One thing I do remember about food in my childhood has to be, that I liked nearly nothing, I was a picky child hating a lot of the things, I nowadays love: Tomatoes, french fries (really early), vegetables (in general), pineapple, salad, mushrooms, and, and, and. Still, I've got the images from the swap, just see and enjoy.
My package; Eva's package

So when you German readers are interested in the action, just head over to Post aus meiner Küche and wait for the next round.
That's it from me, I have to get to uni and learn something about History in the virtual world and about the History of the Middle East. Oh joy!

Sunday, 31 March 2013

Beanie pimping and Easter celebrations

Easter is a holiday I never really got. I grew up in a more or less ignostic environment and even though I loved searching for eggs (never the chocolate version but the hard boiled and self-colored ones), the actual context was known to me, but never from importance. Nevertheless being home alone in my Hamburg flat seemed strange to me and I was happy to take a long-missed opportunity to finally visit my very best friend in her tiny village. I should have gone earlier, seeing that it is only a 90 minute trip by car (and a 4 hour ride with trains and buses). It was a beautiful weekend (at least till now) and I do not regret not posting this earlier, because that would have meant missing some valuable minutes.

Just a week ago I finally revisited my hairdresser. And even though its practically spring, German weather decided to bring forth snow and cold temperatures, so leaving a heated environment (and a hot climate as the Indian) with a pixie hair cut and no headgear is close to suicide. Nevertheless I did this, so I had to buy a beanie during my grocery shopping. Well, I believe this beanie would have been bought no matter what climate we had, because I was looking for the prefect grey beanie for the whole past season. My newly found love for One-Euro-Stores is just about to grow with every visit (they got decent sewing machine needles, amazing leather glue, and, and, and... ) and my beanie is just the perfect traveling companion since hats are quite annoying with the brim.

I'm still working on my camera skills and I had to learn that taking pictures without a tripod is not that easy. Well, time will hopefully improve my ability to take decent pictures...
Long text, short tutorial: No beanie from Esther without some personal fix by Esther. I first thought about going completely Jil Sander and stuff, but since it was the end of March and the stores closed, I used some beloved lace trim I bought at a local market once.

Pretty easy steps:
1. Pin the lace trim to your beanie.
2. Sew it on.

And there is me, walking through a snowy landscape just before the beginning of April, can you believe it. Last week I enjoyed 45 ° C in Ahmedabad and now the temperatures are just above the freezing point. Fingers crossed I will be rocking my Indian shoes somehow this year (A update of my amazing buys will be coming anytime soon). Until then... let's see that we do not end up in a Game of Throne scenario with endless winter.

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

What's in my bag: India Edition!

Yes, it's me. I'm back. Even though my stomach strongly believes its still in India, I'm actually back. Not too sure what to think about this fact. To put it short: India was amazing. And while I'm still sorting through things and getting ready for university next week, I thought I would share my version of a pretty classic blog post: The infamous "What's in my bag" tag (not too sure, whether "tag" fits or not... too much youtube).

I never posted something dedicated to this before, because normally I pack my bag everyday and its not too exiting, especially since I rarely take any makeup. But in India I had my handful of stuff I took everyday, and luckily I snapped a picture of all my belongings being spread on my hotel bed... so see what I carried around... and you will probably learn something about India.

1. Passport and Vaccination Certificate: You simply do not want to leave them in your hotel room, especially you never know what will happen. And knowing all your vaccinations is never wrong.
2. Refreshing tissues (Lufthansa and Drugstore): India is dirty. This sounds quite mean and racist, but the environment I walked through was filled with smog and dust. So after returning to the bus we enjoyed the luxury of refreshing tissues. Plus the Lufthansa ones are quite amazing for stains of any kind.
3. Stuff (Sugar and some receipt): General handbag stuff
4. Vocab cards: Yes, I wanted to work for university. Wishful thinking and stuff.
5. Hand detergent: Asking anyone India experienced, the person will most likely talk about getting stomach problems in some way. Disinfecting your hands before eating will not prevent you from getting sick, but it gives at least a waste feeling of secureness. Didn't help in my case.
6. Wallet: Took an old one with only the cards I needed. Typical for traveling, I guess.
7. Soap sheets: They were advertising gifts and I thought, they would be quite handy, because you rarely find soap in Indian public bathrooms. Unfortunately you rarely find a working tap. Well...
8. Swiss Army Knife: Not for stabbing innocents, but for skinning freshly bought fruit. Bad luck it wasn't mango time, but still quite handy when you spot a fruit stall along the road.
9. Mobile phone: Since my mobile phone is crappy and has a horrible battery I borrowed my mum's, especially because we shared a room with three young people and more than one socket was rarely seen.
10. Ipod: After being warned by several sources not to leave anything in our hotel room we carried anything valuable. Plus listing to music during 9 hour bus rides was quite relaxing.
11. Key chain: Advertising gift of one of the architects I met.
12. Ear phones: Essential when you want to listen to music in a bus without getting killed.
13. Hotel room keys: Sometimes we left them at the reception, sometimes not. The function should be obvious :)
14. Medicine: A girl needs her drugs!
15. Mirror: After sweating and tons of dust you did not really want to look into it, but still...
16. Pencil case + 17. Note book: India is quite a unfamiliar country, at least for a German girl with only a tiny bit of Asia knowledge, so sometimes you saw something and wanted to remember it. Therefore having something to take notes came in useful several times.

That was my handbag quite at the beginning of my trip. Be assured that I collected quite a lot of useless stuff and rubbish in it. Oh, and one time a sugar sachet broke, oh joy! While looking at it now, I sometimes wished for some hand-cream and lip balm, I also added some travel-sized sunscreen to my pile of stuff. Nonetheless I was always quite surprised how much stuff my small bag could possibly fit... and quite happy, that I never lost it.

What are your handbag essentials for a trip like India?

PS: I felt the need to write this... I've got the feeling my tone is quite sarcastic in this post. By any means: I did not want to offend anyone, I actually really loved India and the whole experience (maybe apart from the food poising I am still struggling with). 

Sunday, 3 March 2013

Enjoying freedom!

Hello my dear, beloved readers.
Note the over-enthusiams (when you didn't... read again :)). But who wouldn't be overly happy: I spent an entertaining weekend with my amazing friends and went skiing for a week (even though my legs are heavily bruised). And right now I am completely above the clouds in my mind.. and nearly physically: my plane for India departs in about 6 hours...
To put it in a nutshell: I didn't do anything huge for the past days, but at least I got some images for you all. So enjoy it...

The apartment my parents and friends rented for the week (where the fortunately had a spare bed for me) was not only located next to the ski-lift but did also have amazing view and a huge sun terrace.

A shot from our window.
After-skiing-sun terrace-chilling
Ice, ice baby!
One of my personal favorites was a visit of the "Breitach Klamm", a gorge just at the entrance of "Kleinwalsertal" in Austria. Every Tuesday and Friday during winter visitors are able to walk trough beautiful, ice-covered nature during night-time with a torch... Pictures cannot do justice.

And last but not least, a favorite of mine... even though I have to admit it is mainly due to it's German name, snow caterpillar... a snow groomer

 Well, that was my week filled with skiing and bruising. I did not take any pictures during actual skiing, because I forgot my old camera at home and did not want to bring my new one up the mountain. Nevertheless I hope you got a little peak on my activities during the last week.
Hopefully I will be able to post my prepared post somewhen during my India trip, read from you all to soon

Friday, 22 February 2013

Camera Strap Revamping + Updates!

I have a new roommate. But no, I did not swap my science liking old roomy for someone new, but I simply added a new baby to my electronics family. Until these days I was struggling with my old digital camera, a small number I bought in 2009 and which was not up to date. Especially dimmed light wasn't its best friend and after seeing my pictures from China in 2011 I decided: For my next trip I actually do want a good, expensive digital reflex camera. As you can see: It needed its time, but due to the fact, that I am able to visit India in March, I made my final move. So, say hello, to my new baby!

It's a Nikon D3200 with the Nikkor 50 mm 1.8 G and a 18-105 mm objective!
Until now no pro came from heaven and right now I am trying myself out, so not every picture looks 100 %, but I am actually pretty impressed how beginner friendly it is. The only thing I really did not like was the camera strap, it screamed "Revamp" me to me with its bold yellow letters. And as is is with children: Their wishes should be our command! :)

What we need:
Leftover fabric// your camera strap// leather needle// sewing stuff// Optional: measuring tape

1. Use your camera strap to measure how much folded fabric you will need, mark where you want to sew along. You maybe want to add some additional Millimeters, so it will slip on easily later on.
2. Sew along this line
3. Turn your inside and right side out.

4. Use a safety pin as a little helper for pulling your camera strap through your created tunnel...
5. Pull it through the tunnel.
6. Push the open ends inside and fix your work with a few stitches, use a leather needle, because it will get pretty thick. 

Now you simply have to reattach your camera strap to your camera/baby and everyone will love your camera strap... no need to mention, it needs about 10 minutes!
Have a photogenic weekend ;)