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Posts tagged ‘craft’

Gingerbread house in Our Place

We have been hearing about a (large!) gingerbread house which word on the street said had been constructed inside Te Papa Tongarewa (meaning Our Place – New Zealand’s National Museum, situated on Wellington’s waterfront). We always love hanging out at Te Papa – regardless of what special exhibitions are on, the long-term exhibitions and art are consistently engaging and interesting – but put baking, Christmas and museum altogether in one, and we knew we had to get down there and check it out for ourselves. So that’s what we did tonight (long may Te Papa’s late nights on Thursdays last!). The house has been constructed to encourage donations to the Wellington Children’s Hospital – gingerbread house making kits are available to buy at the museum. Click on the photos below to check out what we found… (look for the photos with the details of the building and baking, quite astounding!)…

The gorgeous Te Papa gingerbread house was baked by Te Papa’s Executive Chef, Bernd Lippmann and constructed, installed and decorated by the chef along with a dedicated team – see how they did it in the video below! The house fills the museum with a delicious “it’s Christmas!” smell of warm spices, and it is clear that the team who decorated the house has an eye for detail.

The house bought a huge smile to my face when I saw it, and was a nice reminder of the European Christmases we have the pleasure of enjoying for the past two years in the Netherlands. Seeing this gingerbread house also took me back to very happy memories of the gingerbread house competition which takes place annually in Sweden with a different theme each year and is exhibited at the Arkitekturmuseet in Stockholm. Read more

Should have got it

Recently when we were at the lovely Whitechapel Gallery in London, we discovered their amazing bookshop. For an incredibly compact space, this little shop packs a real punch, with an amazing selection of books spanning art, design, architecture, crafts, politics, philosophy, literature and the list goes on. I’m still dreaming of it, and would like to return one day when I can afford to pick up a few titles… This is one book I really should have bought to take home with me that day though.


Photo by CIA, Whitechapel Gallery, London, September 2012.

A sparkling piece of Slow Art

If you have already read my post from yesterday, you will know that Slow Art at the Nationalmuseum in Stockholm made a huge impression on both of us. I promised that today I would share with you the piece from the Slow Art exhibition that really stole the show for me. In fact, I think Mafune Gonjo‘s Beauty has a thorn is the most beautiful and innovative piece of sculpture I have ever seen.

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Not seeing how long it took is part of the intrigue…

Last week, PJD shared an in-depth glimpse into one of the art exhibitions that we have been most impressed with, ever. This was the incredible Slow Art exhibition at the Nationalmuseum, which we were lucky to find by chance when we were in Stockholm recently.

We were so surprised at the beauty of the pieces collected together in this small exhibition. In keeping with the theme, due to our captivation with what our eyes saw, we slowly took it all in.

Slow Art has really lingered in our minds; we have discussed many of the pieces we saw in the exhibition a number of times since we returned home to Leiden, reflecting on the fact that an overarching characteristic of the works was their exquisite beauty and uniqueness. So, today I thought I would share a few more of our favourite pieces. Sure, we loved them all, and the ones that PJD has already documented in his post were certainly amongst the most impressive. Yet, the depth of the quality in this small collection was quite astonishing, and these pieces really are quite something… Read more

Weekly Photo Challenge: Purple

Colour themes are tough. So we went looking for a twist. A look around swiftly brought inspiration to us. The name of the blog is a clue, and there have been requests for instructions. We realise that we are not best placed for instructions. PJD taught CIA how to fold cranes over noodles in Wellington. PJD is perfectly happy to share his crane-folding knowledge. But writing the words? That’s really tough.

Still, here’s purple:

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foldedcranes (or, what is in a name?)

Probably everyone has some kind of story about how they came to be called something.

Sometime early on in our relationship, over Mee Goreng at Chummeez I taught CIA how to fold a paper crane. It’s something I taught myself at some long ago stage of my life, and something that is really therapeutic (one day maybe we’ll post a video?). What used to be a hobby has gradually become a little obsessive. We’ve folded hundreds now, and there is something wonderful about the reaction that people have to creased paper.

When we arrived in the Netherlands, we were walking along Noordeinde, Den Haag and found an amazing paper shop. We immediately purchased (in our hilarious Nederlands) some beautiful origami paper. We each folded a crane every day, as we adjusted to the new way of life, in a new country.

It became something of a ritual, and when our Japanese friend visited us, she was very impressed. So much so, that when she returned to Leiden from a trip home she brought back as a gift some even more beautiful Japanese origami paper. If you have not tried folding the real thing, I can really recommend it.

We have many cranes now, and we think that they look particularly good en masse, in the grass.

The cranes have really come to represent us, in so many ways. They are not as fragile as they look, but they are elegant, graceful and always colourful.

Our garden is also looking particularly nice, as summer starts to make its presence felt, and the cranes seemed right at home.

At our wedding, the cranes became our wedding favours – a gift of time and care – something that stands for us. More on this, in due course.

When it came to naming our blog, in the end, what else could it have been, but foldedcranes?


Photos by CIA and PJD, this evening, in the garden.

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