Saturday, September 30, 2017



The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

I’m lost in flowers. I've always liked them but after my mom's death 2016 flowers just took over. My mom loved flowers and somehow I feel more connected to her when I work with them. I’ve been organizing flower workshops in Helsinki at my workspace työhuone ovi 10 for over one year now and I always find myself making wild flower arrangements from the workshop leftovers because in the workshop I teach flower photography and floral designer is teaching the flower arrangement. But because I want to learn to make very beautiful flower works I decided to make a trip to well-known floral designer and gardener Susanne Hatwood known as The Blue Carrot. Her work speaks the language I love and I was her 1:1 student for two days in April. This trip was a gift to me from me. Creativity needs to be fed. 

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

In the workshop morning I’m very excited and a bit scared too because I’m only a photographer who wants to learn to make beautiful flower works that I can photograph and of course I’m a big fan of her work so this is really exciting. We drive to her workspace. It’s in a small stone house next to the old farm house. When Susanne opens the door, I just can’t get my eyes off her flowers. Amazing! 

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

We continue to see her garden and that is such a charming place! I’m feeling a bit envy but mostly I’m thrilled to be here. Her place is truly a hidden gem. I'm already in love.

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

First we decide to make a bouquet because I’ve never done one! She is teaching me the spiral technique. That is because we want to avoid crushing and breaking those delicate stems. It’s demanding a great deal of patience and finally my left hand fingers are starting to feel really stiff and the whole hand is hurting a bit. Susanne reminds me to relax my hand and fingers and same time to see how flowers goes in shape that is natural for them. She is so right. 

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

It’s also important to build both sides of the bouquet and that is a challenge for me as a very beginner. We step out to a light to see how our bouquets looks against simple background. It’s also very helpful to take a photo of it to see more clearly what to change and how to continue. You can also use a mirror to see.

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

Susanne has amazing skill to build a movement in her flower works. Like the bouquet she is building now. I struggle with very basic things and she is helping me out and giving good advices so I’m not in trouble at all (actually I have pretty good chances to success because next to me is very talented flower lady) But still I have this moment of frustration “Can I start all over again?” I ask. “No” Susanne answers. In creative process I often get to the point when I feel real frustration because the work doesn’t look like I want to. But (most of the time) I’ve learned to breath in and out I do something else and then go back to the thing I was doing. But now Susanne takes my bouquet and tells me loose my fingers (again - this is second or third time) - she says “Look where the flowers set. Forcing is not a good way to work with flowers.” Wise words and quite obvious too but did not come to my mind in this pure excitement, haha.

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

Fact is I did have difficulties to choose right amount of different flowers to my bouquet because there were too many beautiful and charming ones around me and that doesn't happen too often.

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

Susanne’s philosophy is charming. Her bright blue eyes and sense of humour are enchanting. She is a lady of no rules even though she is very precise in everything. She doesn’t care about numbers, green foliage, cold colours. She is all about movement, curves and autumn colors. She also keeps her arrangements quite simple if talking about amount of different flowers and colors. No mess of flowers around here but lot of laughing.

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

Suddenly my bouquet is ready to be tied up. Susanne puts my bouquet on the table and takes burlap string and ties it up tightly but not forcing. Then she takes flower tape and rolls it on the burlap string few times and then turn the tape’s sticky side up that when we add the silky ribbon it will stay there without problem. 

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

After the work is done we start to photograph our beautiful bouquets. And that you should have seen. Two ladies with their cameras going around and round those flower bouquets and how many places we tried - trying to find a perfect light and angle. But as all creatives they know their light and Susanne’s workspace window is magical before the noon. 

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

I can already say I’ve learnt many things but one of them is patience. I don’t have it always so much so it’s a challenge. It’s important to concentrate when choosing your flowers like what kind of flowers, colors, right size, right shaped stem and how to put it in the right place. When collecting ingredients it doesn’t have to be the most beautiful ones but they have to speak the same language in every level: color, shape, texture, size, contrast, movement. Seeing different shades and colors together - is it cold or warm tone - makes the difference. You might have to leave your favorite flower out from the bouquet. We are not talking about easy decisions.

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

Next day we continue with flower arrangement but the time just keeps running and suddenly it’s time to close the workshop door behind us. I’ve enjoyed two days in the middle of flower haven with talented Susanne. She has her own way with flowers and she follows more her instinct than rules. But of course she is on that level that she can work like that. She doesn’t make easy decisions, she is a bit like her favorite flower - dark colored tulip called The Queen of the Night. There is drama and tranquility with a hint of absolutely perfect sense of humour.

The Blue Carrot flower workshop blog:

Because I couldn't take the whole flower arrangement home with me I took few flowers. I pressed them between the magazine I bought from the Paddington station for the train reading. Those flowers are my souvenir from the beautiful flower experience I had with Susanne in her magical workshop in Portscatho, Cornwall.

Next week I will travel to Belgium to Golden Age : The Abundance of Autumn workshop by Fleuropean and The Blue Carrot. I can't believe this is happening but it is. You will see and hear about it during next week in my IG and later on here in my blog. It's another gift to me from me. I paid these workshops with my inherited money from my mom. I think it's well spent money.

Enjoy your weekend!


Saturday, August 26, 2017



It's been a really long time from my last blog post (too many new things going on) I've missed blogging but I wanted to come back with super interesting story and now I have it! (actually two)

First one is about our visit to Stedsans in the Woods in July. Charming project by Mette Helbæk and Flemming Hansen. They came from Denmark and started this huge project in Swedish forest. They sold their house and closed their restaurants in Copenhagen. Who has that kind of courage? And they managed to get the rest of the money with Kickstarter. I can already say it's worth it and love to support it.

We had our ten year anniversary and we decided to celebrate it by coming to Stedsans and have a beautiful dinner in the forest and stay overnight in one of their big cosy tents and I mean they were cosy. A huge soft double bed with beautiful linen.

This course was our starter. A medicinal plant salad with mushrooms and berries from the forest.

When we arrived we were shown our tent and all the important things concerning our stay on a hand drawn printed map. Restaurant, toilets, shower, boat house, floating sauna, garden and pigs with chickens ;)

The dinner was delicious even though I have quite strict diet. There were things I could not eat but I was well taken care of.

My husband can eat anything ( not envy at all) and his favorite was Peas francaise with horsebeans and lemon thyme. I don't drink alcohol so I had to skip wines but they offered lovely non alcohol drinks like Aronia-apple juice. It was very good with main course Brisket with grilled leek and flowers (flowers! love to eat flowers!) and we enjoyed a lot being there. Their charming style, atmosphere with cosyness and good service. 

Mom and daughter Kodak moment. Picking flowers together for us.

This is Peas française with horsebeans and lemon thyme. Mette styled the dish quite gracefully but in very relaxed way. I felt I had to go and shoot it in the forest and lucky me - forest was just few meters away from our dinner table.

During our six course dinner we had a lovely discussions with a couple sitting next to us Maria and Thomas. We all took few pics of the food ;) they were looking so delicious.

I found Mette's and Flemming's Stedsans in the Woods because I've been following Mette in IG. First I wanted to visit her restaurant in Copenhagen but then I read about her interesting plans. So in spring it was quite clear that I wanted to visit their place in Sweden. Do you ever feel that somehow all the things are connected ? Because same time when I was thinking about Stedsans I got an assignment - to make a speech about trends in food photography. Of course I mentioned Stedsans as one example of the trending things in the world of food.

So I gave a speech in Helsinki in April. Event was called What's cooking Helsinki - food carnival. I spoke to food bloggers about trends in food photography and why storytelling is even more important now than before. I have my own opinions about trending things (actually I don't like the word trend at all, haha. For me trend is equal to consumption which is not a good thing but the word is very easy to understand so I use it) but I decided to ask opinions from talented food and lifestyle bloggers. I wanted to hear their ideas about food photography at the moment. I combined their thoughts with mine and I got surprisingly coherent content. We shared pretty same ideas of going more natural and authentic content - less styled - simple and natural and some of us saw building community very important. We are all creative so we all have a bit different style and opinions in the end of the day but I felt a feeling of collective mind if I may say so.

I want to thank you all lovely ladies who helped me with the trend speech task in April: Aran Goyaga from Cannelle & Vannille, Nina Olsson from Nourish Atelier, Holly Becker from Decor8, Beth Kirby from Local Milk, Adelaster Food Textures, Tami Hardeman from Running with Tweezers, Sif Orrellana and Nicoline Olsen.

Here above you can see a pic from our atmospheric tent. Why I told about Stedsans in the Woods to my audience - food bloggers? I think my main point was that trends are less important. Going back to the roots and sustainable way of living with no waste is one of the directions we are heading to. Simple life with healthy and delicious local food. Using plants and flowers from the nature that is surrounding us but still eating delicious food. Luxury in the forest.

This we found from our breakfast table. Who can say no to this?

Mette made an omelette for everyone in the morning. We sat and drank our coffee and ate as much as we could, haha. After breakfast we decided to test a floating sauna. It was different compared to our own sauna. A lot of light and possibility to go swimming. The lake water was clean and very refreshing. I mean cold. But this summer has been quite cold here in Scandinavia so what can you say. Maybe next summer is warmer. I hope.

The floating sauna was made by an architect and carpenter. It was lovely.

Before leaving we went to see pigs and chickens. We walked by the garden and I was feeling happy and calm and ready for the next destination: Göteborg and botanical garden.

I hope you enjoyed my blog post! Next time I will tell you about my 1:1 flower class with amazing The Blue Carrot.


Friday, March 17, 2017



creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

Welcome to see bits of last Sunday when we had our relaxed creative day with flowers at työhuone ovi 10. 

creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

We made Creative Flower Workshop together with lovely and talented Laura Syväniemi from Lovejunedesign. A day was combination of making a flower arrangement, photographing it and having a delicious lunch and dessert by my dear workspace colleague cook and book author Meri-Tuuli Lindström.

creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

Getting to know chicken wire. 

creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

It's amazing how silent it can be when all the ladies are concentrating in creating the flower arrangement.

creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

From the Laura's gorgeous flower bar students could take so many beautiful flowers. 

creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

It has been super fun to plan and make the workshop happen with Laura. Here she is telling about roses. Flowers have their own nature. Some of them are very fragile, some very straight, some very difficult to maintain and the list is endless. There are lots of things to learn. I wish I had made my 10 000 hours already but no - I'm in chapter one.

creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

It's amazing to see how different the flower arrangements are from same flowers. I have arranged already quite a few flower workshops since August 2016 and not in any of them people made the same. I think we bring a lot of our personality to our work and I think that is wonderful and THE thing. We can be creative in so many ways. In workshop we try to support students own creative process. For me one very important thing in creating is feeling relaxed. I sure you it makes things easier with better result. But we all have our own way to create so whatever works for you - use it.

creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

Be never hungry when creating - that is almost my rule number one. I get easily distracted if I am hungry not forgetting I need a good music while working.

creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

This pic above is a beautiful flower arrangement by it's creator. But when you bring it in front of the camera there are some things you see more clearly. It's different if this arrangement would be on the party table. It's backround isn't so clear and it's looked at from almost every angle. In photo you can see only one side. Together with student we made it ready for the photo. I try to help student to see the problems or the challenges in the arrangement when we are photographing it. We try to balance and shape the work as beautiful as possible.
creative flower workshop photo by Kreetta Järvenpää

See the difference?
This gorgeous flower arrangement is by Eeva.

I hope you enjoyed the post. Maybe even got excited about flowers? You are always very welcome to our flower workshops. We don't just make a flower arrangement, we want to create a full relaxed and creative experience for you. After the workshop you have a beautiful flower arrangement, a pic of it in your camera or phone, great experince of tasty food and hopefully your mind is relaxed and full of inspiration.

Quite nice don't you think?

Thank you for all our lovely students!
Have a lovely weekend <3


Saturday, February 18, 2017



Since the last August I've been organizing flower workshops at my workspace työhuone ovi 10. Why? Purely because I love love love flowers. At työhuone ovi 10 there are 5 creatives working. We all have our own room plus we share a big space where we can make different kind of things like workshops. Today I made a photoshooting with flowers. I want to learn and this is how I do it.

I did 6 workshops with floral designer Hanna Piippo during autumn. First one was with ecological lifestyle magazine Huili. It's my favorite magazine in Finnish of course. I made a blog post about the workshop, you can read it here.  Idea of flower workshops has been a success and I've noticed that now it's really trending.  Not to mention all kind of workshops. Helsinki is buzzing, people are organizing workshops a lot and I think it is a great thing because these one day or shorter workshops gives us a chance to learn something new without longer commitment. With other words - fun learning.

I had an idea of flower workshop more than two years ago before I could make it happen. I've been an independent professional photographer and artist over two years now and I have been so thrilled to develope my ideas to reality. Workshop doesn't just happen, you make quite a lot of work before it does. In January I had one intimate workshop on my own with very small group. It wasn't only about flowers it was about composition in still life. But of course we had flowers too with vintage props and fruits. Very classic.

The latest news is Creative Flower Workshop by Laura Syväniemi from @lovejunedesign She is Finnish talented stylist and floral designer who has worked and lived in Australia but now she has returned to Finland. I was happy when I found her because her work is very beautiful and she has a very good eye for colors and style. We can learn a lot from her. Her work has been in international wedding blogs like Magnolia Rouge and Adorn Magazine.  

With Laura I have planned carefully our very first workshop. We want to make your day relaxed with beautiful flowers, photography and with tasty food by talented cook and cooking book author Meri-Tuuli Lindström. It is on Sunday 12 of March. Go and see more information in FB event. You will find it here. We will have another one on Sunday 23th of April. You will find it here.

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That's all folks! 
Take care and have a lovely weekend!


ps. I will revamp my blog's layout in this spring. This look has been live about two years. This is the third one already, haha I started blogging in 2012. Can't wait to make it!

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