One Day. The Castle Ball 2014, Linnan Juhlat 2014.

The Castle Ball 2014, Linnan Juhlat 2014.

6.12. was Finland’s Independence Day and the day to watch television. Why? Because of the Castle Ball that is held at the Presidential Palace. On television they send a direct broadcast from the Palace. The best part of the show is to watch the evening gowns. I did some sketching while watching.

The Castle Ball 2014, Linnan Juhlat 2014.

The Castle Ball 2014, Linnan Juhlat 2014.


Catwalk. In the Footsteps of Vasarely, Valentino FW 2014.

Valentino FW 2014, catwalk illustration

Few weeks ago I visited Emma, Espoo Museum of Modern Art. There is a nice little exhibition of Victor Vasarely (1906-1997) going on. Vasarely is the guy who was a pioneer of optical art. His artwork has influenced strongly to fashion of 60’s.

Even in today we can see some echoes of that period. Valentino FF 2014 is a lovely sample of this. The fantastic patterns really get noticed.

If you are heading to Emma and Vasarely as well, I recommend to look at the documentary films also. That certainly gives some more value to the exhibition experience.

At some point Vasarely was very systematic while planning his artwork. He had some 15 different shapes, with which he was able to create endlessly number of new artworks. He made the models in small scale at his desk and the assistants painted the final huge paintings. Vasarely had the design roots in Bauhaus. So the mass production was a natural choice to him. He pointed the idea that art belongs to people.

It was funny how the surroundings of city of Helsinki started look like pure Vasarely after the experience. The big office buildings with glass walls with thousand little square windows reflecting the light are so Vasarely.

Vasarely actually dreamed of cities that would have been covered with his artwork. Large scale. One huge house wall, one huge circle in the center. Next huge wall, next huge circle. And the same course like the whole city. Not a bad dreamer, I think.

The official artist website of Victor Vasarely you can find here:


On the Street. Bold Colored Accessories, Laru, Helsinki.

Street Style. Bold Colored Accessories. Papercut.

 It’s time to dig warm scarves and beanies from the storage against the November creeping coldness. And wind. And did I mention darkness? Yes, there is also darkness. And against darkness we would better have a pedestrian safety reflector in the interests of keeping alive in traffic. It really has saved lives. And for our mind’s sake using colorful accessories may be a good thing to cheer up. At least I was delighted to see this bold colored twin set of scarf and beanie.

If you are seeking for more ideas to avoid dark day melancholy, you may click your way to 2012 November post: November Blue Love Poem. There is some remedy for this darkness.


On the Street. Grey Pea Coat, Vallila, Helsinki.

Street Style. Grey Pea Coat.

I love pea coat. The uniform of Corto Maltese, my hero. Traditionally it is dark blue, but grey is a good option. A pea coat is perfect to wear in November, when the frost has not yet bitten our noses. And note how the beanie is set. Hip and pop in Helsinki right now. With this I am referring to the previous post.


On the Street. Evergreen Duffle Coat, Laru, Helsinki.

Street Style Helsinki. Duffle Coat.

Autumn is in a hurry to the point that the trees are beginning to be pale and leafless. The color palette of the nature becomes narrower. Sun sets early and grey tones dominate. It seems that the scenery on the street goes hand in hand with the nature. People rely on black and dark colors.

When there is not so much detail in respect of color, attention is drawn to the form. I found this man’s silhouette interesting. Small noddle, wide box coat and legs like narrow sticks. And of course I love all time classic duffle coat. It is just perfect coat for becoming November. By the way, it seems that now the right way to wear beanie in Helsinki is just like here; leaving the forehead bare.


On the Street. Monochromatic Outfit, Kamppi, Helsinki.

Street Style Helsinki. Monochrmatic Outfit.

This lady caught my eye with her monochromatic outfit. Tones from pure white to black and all the different shades of grey in between. The asphalt and the foundation of the house accompanied the harmony. Having a monochromatic outfit ready in your closet is a good idea for many occasions.


On the Street. Dandy in Kruununhaka, Helsinki.

Street Style. Dandy in Patent Leather Shoes.

A man who wears patent leather shoes during daytime goes inevitably in a dandy-category. At least if the rest of the outfit has some tones of arrogance and attitude. In Finland this kind of style is used maybe 1 % of the male population.

Skinny legs, like in this illustration, can be serious thing to some men. Once I was going to draw a live model class. There was a hard frost, -15 degrees Celsius, and no sensible person walked outdoors without long underwear, hat and mittens. The class was held in Suomenlinna fortress area. The marine environment with it's wind can make the cold even colder. Brrr.

When it was time to start drawing, our male model undressed. When it was the turn of the tight black jeans, to my horror, I noticed that he really didn't have the long johns under the pants. Oh dear, HOW do you manage out there without freezing to death? The answer was practical: "I appreciate my legs so much that I do not want to ruin their shape using long johns under my jeans."

How arrogant! I was sold.


On the Street. Dotted Scarf Makes the Difference, Kamppi, Helsinki.

Street Style. Dotted Scarf Makes the Difference

The soft – apparently woolen – straw-colored scarf with large spots turned my head. You know how weak I am all sorts dots with. The color combination of the outfit is perfect. Not too typical one could say. Somehow there is some oriental 20's vibe in this look, despite the elements are simple.


On the Street. The Sweetest Young Couple, Töölö, Helsinki.

I saw this oh so sweet young couple in a restaurant in Töölö, while I attended my friend's 50-year anniversary party. Looking at a lovely couple like this is like magic. It makes you think – sorrows, what are they, is it something eatable?


On the Street. Mixing Patterns, Lauttasaari, Helsinki.

Street Style. Mixing patterns.

I encountered this older lady on the way to the library. Mixing different patterns is one style I truly like. She sure knows how to do it. Stripes, plaid, delicate lines, polka dots, rhythmic short lines all goes in peace and harmony. If you stick in limited range of colors (black and white in this case), the pattern mix is easier to succeed for sure.