Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Purple Marquise Platter

    As I wrote in my first blog post I started porcelain painting about a year ago. I was lucky to have the best and nicest and most skillful teacher that I could ever hope for. A while ago I was thinking of starting a design inspired by baroque and rococo costumes. I love baroque art in all its forms! Especially music! Bach is my all time favorite composer. I can listen to his Brandenburg concertos from now till eternity and never get tired of it! Here is an example of Bach's greatness: Brandenburg Concerto No3, First Movement. Have a listen and let your soul enjoy!

     I also love the architecture and decorative motives of rococo and baroque eras. They are so majestic and luxurious. When I think of how simple and streamline our modern day design has become I can't help but feel a little bit of pity! I think we are the poorer for it! The craftsmanship and skills of the baroque artists are just amazing especially that they didn't have the fancy tools that we have today!


     I was interested in coming up with a design inspired by the fabulous baroque costumes. I just love the puffy skirts of ladies, the powdered wigs and all that feather!!! All very dramatic!


      So eventually I came up with this.

    I decided to call this platter "The Purple Marquise". I got my blog pen name and my logo (displayed on the upper righthand corner of this page) from this design which is now displayed on a shelf in my living room. I hope you like it!


Saturday, March 24, 2012

Hello Kitty Birthday Cake

   In my first blog I did not mention that I am also a lover baking and cake decorating. I am always just waiting in the wings ready for a birthday or occasion to come up that can give me a chance to indulge in baking a fancy cake and decorating it! My little daughter turned 3 last week and that was a perfect occasion for me to indulge in my cake passion thoroughly. My daughter is a sweet little girly girl who is an avid fan of non other than Hello Kitty! So for the longest time she had been asking me to bake and decorate a Hello Kitty themed cake for her birthday.

   I am not a fan of shaped cakes which are baked in shaped baking forms. So I decided to bake a regular
round cake and just put a hand made marzipan and sugar paste Hello Kitty on the top of it.  Here is the marzipan and sugar paste Kitty and decorative flowers all ready the night before the party, ready to be installed on the cake.

hello kitty, sugar paste figurine, birthday cake
And here is the figurine and flowers installed on top of the cream cake just ready for the birthday party!

Hello Kitty, sugar figurine, cake, sugar paste, birthday
Hello Kitty Birthday Cake

       And here is the back of the Kitty figurine which is the same as the one that I saw on YouTube. I found the fashionable back of this Kitty Figurine's gown rather charming!

Hello Kitty, Cake, sugar paste, figurine,birthday
The Back of Hello Kitty's Gown

    And here is the Hello Kitty cake with the birthday candles and all.                                                      
hello kitty, birthday cake, sugar paste, fondant figurines
Hello Kitty Birthday cake

    My little girl was very pleased with her Hello Kitty cake! Mommy kept her promise:)

   Here is the cake that I made for my daughter's 2nd birthday last year. Then she was too small to decide what kind of cake she want. So I chose the theme myself. A fairytale castle! She loved this one too!

birthday cake, castle, sugar paste
Castle Birthday Cake


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Iranian New Year (Nowruz)

       In my earliest post I wrote that I live in Kerava, Finland. But I am actually born and raised in Tehran, Iran. Here are a few arial photos of my hometown:

The freedom Tower

Arial photo of one of Tehran's many highways

The National Garden Gate (Bagh-e Melli)

The Alborz mountains visible in northern horizon of Tehran

Well.... Teheran is a giant megapolis, nothing like the quiet and peaceful little town that I live in now ;)

Anyway... in this post I would like to introduce you to a very old Iranian tradition: The Iranian New Year celebrations or Nowruz which we Iranians celebrate today. Nowruz is originally a Zoroastrian feast which marks the vernal equinox or the very beginning of spring. It happens usually on 20-21st of March and  it marks the beginning of Iranian calendar. Nowruz in Farsi (the language of the people of Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan) means "The New Day", and it symbolizes renewal and rebirth. The nature wakes up in the spring after a long winter slumber. The trees regrow leaves and blossoms and everything smells fresh and full of life. 

I love this tradition! It is so meaningful and beautiful! I have so many fond memories of my childhood during Nowruz holidays! Right before Nowruz arrives Iranians clean their homes thoroughly and set a beautiful symbolic table arrangement called "Haftseen" or "Seven Seens". "Seen" is the name of the letter "S" in Persian alphabet. The "Seven Seens" table consist of several items seven of which start with the letter "Seen" in Farsi language. Each of these items symbolizes a blessing on your house. One element for example is spring flowers like hyacinths which in Farsi starts with the letter "Seen" or the sound "S". The other is a coin which of course symbolizes wealth. There are also apples, garlic, vinegar, a pot or tray of grass, etc.... Here is the picture of my tiny little Haftseen table this year:

My Haftseen table

Here are a few more photos of more Haftseens that I found on the internet and some A photo of Iran at Nowruz time where venders on sidewalks and shops sell spring flowers, pots of grass and goldfish which are all items which belong on the Haftseen table.


   Iranian families gather around the Haftseen table at the start of the new year while praying and meditating for a blessed and and successful new year. After the new year begins the families start a long visiting tour of all the elder members of their extended family. People go from home to home and everywhere they are greeted with hospitality and warm welcomes, warm tea, nuts, sweets and fresh fruits! The Nowruz holidays last for 13 days and on the 13th day it is customary to spend the day outdoors on a picnic. 

So to all my readers: Happy Nowruz! May God bless you all and bring you happiness and success in this Iranian New Year!


Monday, March 19, 2012

My First Post!

Hi everyone! My name is Nima and I am a 34 y.o. mother of a beautiful little 3 y.o. girl.  I live with my husband and daughter in a little dreamy town in Finland called Kerava. Here we have icy-cold white winters:

And wonderfully bright and green summers.

                                                        And colorful autumns.                                                       

I am a graphics designer and choral conductor by training, but recently I have been a stay at home mom. I love being home with my little girl. But I always try to keep my creative juices flowing. So recently I have started to design fabrics on and also since a year ago have started hand painting porcelain. You can visit my fabric shop at  Nimochka's Spoonflower Shop.

I can describe my style as "grandma's style with a modern twist"! I always loved vintage and old-fashioned designs with lots of flower motifs and laces and charming needle work, but I find the old-fashioned colors a little bit too dull for my taste. I am nothing if not an aficionado of bold, bright, strong colors! Pink, turquoise, bright red, lavender, green, purple, you name it!!! I cannot live without a lot of color surrounding me! So much so that I painted a whole wall in my living room bright purple! Here! Take a look:

So the concept that I follow in my designs is to build upon old-fashioned and vintage pattern that people can find in their grandma's house, but use more bold and bright and modern looking colors and combinations. I hope there are enough people who share my taste and would appreciate my fabrics and other creations.

        This is my kitchen dinning table and my style of "Grandma with a Twist" is pretty apparent here! Although my table cloth is not my own design. It is from Pip Studio, one of the brands that I love very much!

So here I am! I am going to be blogging about my projects, my creations and my adventures while creating my projects. I will also be posting beautiful pictures of interior design and other beautiful things that capture my imagination. I hope you will follow me in this journey and enjoy my posts and photos. Make sure you take a look at my fabric collections on Nimochka's Spoonflower Shop.