Crafting Abroad: Karin
You’ve already read about how it is to be living and crafting in Germany and in India. And today you can read about how it is to be in Sweden. Please meet Karin, who shows all kinds of fun crafts “that do not require a lot of knowledge, equipment or time that both kids and parent will have great fun creating” as she describes herself on her blog Pysselbolaget (The Craft Company, literally). On her blog you will not only meet herself but also her 9 year old daughter Freja, who shows that the crafts are really easy!
In your own words, who are you and what do you do? I’m a Swedish crafter with a passion for crafts for kids. I run the blog pysselbolaget.se with my daughter, who’s now 10 years old. I freelance as a graphic designer for a living and I love paper.
Where are you from? I’m originally from a suburb of Stockholm. I’m half German but never learned German properly. I have lived a year in Moscow and two years New York, but at the moment I enjoy life on an island outside Stockholm.
What is the nearest “big” city or district to you? It’s Stockholm, the capital of Sweden and a beauty surrounded by water.
What crafts do you like to do? I love to come up with small but clever craft out of thing we have at home. I feel like a winner when I complete a project without having to buy a thing.
What craft supplies do you have a difficult time finding in your area? We can get most things online. I’m a lucky girl, a friend of mine runs the web shop makeandcreate.se and she has an excellent range of craft supplies.
Are the costs reasonable or is crafting very expensive in your area? Since I get most of our craft materials out of the recycling bin crafting isn’t very expensive for me. When I shop I try to shop smart – buy large quantities or stock up on sales. I also shop when I’m on vacation. Some people buy souvenirs – I buy wool beads and printed paper.
Do you use the internet or mail order products from other areas for hard to find items? I prefer to order online if I have to buy craft material. Having the products delivered to your mail box is rather nice.
They say that with recent popularity, crafting is a revolution of sorts. Is crafting huge where you’re from? Or is it the movement gaining momentum? I would say traditional crafting is big in Sweden, but new sort of crafts, and crafters, are emerging. The new generation crafters combine traditional crafts with new materials and techniques. Very inspiring, I think.
Regionally, what type of crafts are popular? Swedes tend to be practical, when it comes to crafts as well. Knitting, wood carving and crochet have always been popular in Sweden. Swedes are also very good at following trends and if you browse through Swedish craft blogs you find lots of amigurumi, washi tape projects and origami.
Are there any projects or genres that are specific to your region? Dalahästen (the Dala horse), braided paper hearts (we made ours in jeans) and advents stars are some of the things you’re likely to find in a Swedish home.
Anything you’d care to add about crafting in your area? One of the most upcoming trends around our bigger cities is to upcycle old stuff. Classes in holstering old furniture, making new clothes out of worn out ones and turning junk to treasures is popping up everywhere. Smart and environment friendly!
Share with us your three favorite crafts/projects you’ve created! I have to say I’m still very pleased with the toy lamps we made, the candy sushi and the milk carton planters. I love to find new use to old stuff!