Travel: Scandinavian Fashion Stalking

I spent a lot of my time in Scandinavia stalking the style of the locals.

I’ve used the term stalking because, like a deviant street photographer, I never actually approached any of my subjects and asked to photograph them. No, instead I would just casually look like I was taking a photo of the streetscape, and hurriedly snap a few shots of the outfit or accessory in question.

Of course, 90% of the photos I took in this manner were shit.

This post is the compilation of all the Fashion Stalking pictures I took that actually worked.

Scandinavians love a good tan, which I suppose Australians do as well, however Scandinavians do it better. Collectively, they have amazing skin. Now, I’ve not gone full Buffalo Bill with my stalking here, I promise. I’m just saying that on the whole, they’re a very healthy bunch, and it tends to show in their amazing tanned glowing skin.

The only downside I see to working at flawless skin like the guy above, is that tanning is really bad for your tattoos. As you can see on his leg, the colours have faded quite spectacularly, and the blacks are now greener.

The Preppy look is pretty huge in Scandinavia as well, and I can completely understand why. This guy’s outfit doesn’t exactly win any awards for originality or being the height of fashion; however he looks great because of the classic style of everything he is wearing.

Personally, I love the polished look this guy has going on, and a part of me wants to steer my own wardrobe in a similar, monochrome-adjacent direction.

This couple are actually Russian. When Russians are on holiday, apparently they get about in matching tracksuits. Mags was regaling me with tales of her Russian guide’s derision of this point, and then sure enough, this couple waked past us in Tallinn.

I actually think that this couple look great, and I have every intention of trying to find myself a stylish Ruski tracksuit. I will, however, admit that it probably has more to do with being incredibly fit, rather than a tracksuit having some sort of inherent style…

I had to take this photo. Not only is the guy wearing an entirely puce outfit (even the shoes!), but he’s also rocking complimentary patterns on both his shirt and pants! I mean, that is advanced style right there! And while personally I have no intention of trying puce monochrome for myself, I would love to get my hands on some patterned slacks.

The above outfit is pretty ghastly, I’ll admit that, but what I was actually taken with is the hair. The topknot hairstyle is HUGE for men in Scandinavia at the moment. From Helsinki to Rovaniemi to Tallinn and Stockholm; I witnessed a parade of the good, the bad, and the amazing in men’s topknot hair.

Believe it or not, this is actually why I shaved my head before I went overseas, because I am working towards a topknot hairstyle myself! The whole trip, therefore, can be taken as a sign that this is the right choice!

Rolled-cuffs on you jeans is another thing that was huge in Scandinavia, for both guys and girls. Even with shorts (as you can see in the first picture) the cuffs get rolled! I do thins fairly often to my own jeans, though usually because my jeans are far too long for my stumpy little legs.

The problem is that it looks shit when I do it, because I own a lot of bootcut jeans, meaning the fabric sort of flairs out and looks ridiculous. There’s also too much fabric length-wise, because my legs are so short. So, to replicate the Scandinavian look successfully, I’m going to need shorter-legged jeans in a slimmer cut.

Daily Outfit: Glasshouse

Quite by accident and on my second last day here in Helsinki, my sister and I stumbled upon the glasshouse of the Kaisaniemi Botanic Garden in Helsinki. 

We were lured in by the incredibly beautiful grounds, and soon discovered a small but well stocked glasshouse full of plants from all over the world. A veritable oasis of tropical, sub-tropical and desert plants all living healthily in the middle of Helsinki. 

It made for a lovely place to pass some time and explore, and of course a wonderful place to take today’s Daily Outfit photos.

It was a clear sunny day here in Helsinki, but even so the top temperature was closer to 16 degrees. Most people probably wouldn’t consider it warm enough for what I wore today, but inside the glasshouse I was positively roasting!

Today’s daily outfit was made up of:

Blue and white multi-checked button-down shirt – Trenery
Orange and navy ribbon belt – Polo Ralph Lauren
Navy shorter-length chino shorts – ASOS
Metallic blue rubber thongs – Havaianas

Tomorrow is my last day in Helsinki, and I head home for Australia at a very late hour in the evening. I plan on having an incredibly relaxed day, before meeting up with some Finnish relatives in the afternoon who have kindly offered to feed us and to drive us to the Airport. This is going to be the real cherry on top of the cake I think.

I likely won’t Blog again until I am back home in Australia. In fact, you probably won’t hear from me again until Wednesday July 2, so don’t be too alarmed at the lack of posting.

Daily Outfit: Cafe Regatta

I’ve had a really lovely and lazy day in Helsinki with my best friend Mags. She’s off to Norway tomorrow morning and My sister and I are flying back to Australia on Sunday evening. 

This means that I won’t see Mags for around 3 months :”(

We decided to check out Cafe Regatta, which we walked past on our first night here almost three weeks ago. Subsequent research suggested that it had the best Pulla (a type of cinnamon bun) in all of Helsinki, so we went to check this out for ourselves.

The cafe is on the water, and it was a 30-40 minute stroll from our apartment. I decided to make the most of the first sunny and (acceptably) warm weather we’ve had in this whole three-week period, and I wore:

Navy marle cotton-blend crew-neck t-shirt – ASOS
Orange and navy ribbon belt – Polo Ralph Lauren
Navy tie-dyed chino shorts – ASOS
Orange and blue sneakers – Puma 

We took these Daily Outfit shots after we’d enjoyed our lunch at Cafe Regatta. The food was absolutely amazing, and was the best Finnish fare I’ve has since I have been here. the view was also really lovely, and it made for a nice morning of just sitting in the sun and chatting.

Something that we won’t get a chance to do again for at least 3 months :”(

Travel: Graffiti Hunting part 2

Travel presents a great opportunity to emerge yourself in the culture of an area or areas. For me, this means seeing what is on offer in the local Graffiti scene.

Graffiti has always been an interest of mine, and I love having the opportunity to see what local artists are doing. I find the work of graffiti artists really engaging and inspiring, and I am positive that the images below will be memories that stay with me once I have returned from my travel.

This hand drawn and painted paste-up of DC comics character Harley Quinn was found on a shop-front window in Old Town in Tallinn. I’m not personally a huge fan of DC, but the workmanship that went into this piece is apparent, and it is very beautifully executed.

I was really shocked to see this huge mural on the side of a building in Rovaniemi in Lapland; mostly because it is just so huge and vibrant, and the rest of Rovaniemi is a little run down. Not really sure what this is of, but I like the textures used and the over-all colour scheme.

This photo will hold a particular place in my heart, as it was taken moments after we were on the Lumberjack’s Candle Bridge in Rovaniemi to witness the Midnight Sun. There’s just something about the perfect execution of the spary-painted lettering that does it for me.

I love the story of Doctor Frankenstein and his monster, and this stencilled paste-up is a great likeness of the well-loved Hollywood portrayl of the Monster. This was one of two Frankenstein pieces found in Oulu, Finland, and I love it because of how simple it is.

This little Soviet-inspired sticker was found on a lamp post in Oulu. I was drawn to it because of the strong jaw-line on the guy on the sticker, I’m not going to lie.

This is another spray-painted paste-up from Oulu. It’s very simple, with just the one colour used, but I love the way that it looks and how boldly it stood out on the wall where it was placed.

This is a more detailed spay-painted paste-up, because it is using two colours. It’s a little creepy, which is in part why I was drawn to it. We found this one when we arrived in Turku, Finland, on the Midsommar holiday. The city was all but deserted and we were joking about how like a scene from a Zombie film it was. Finding this guy was fitting.

Finally we have this beautifully executed portrait, which is either of the TV Morticia Adams or the wife from The Munsters. This is a stencilled sticker and it was found on a post-box in Turku, Finland. This one is really beautiful, and I was stoked to have seen it.

Daily Outfit: Baltic Princess

Today we left Turku for Stockholm, by way to the Silja Line ferry ‘Baltic Princess’.

We spent the night on the Baltic Princess, and I have to say, it wasn’t exactly the best travel experience that I have had on this trip. The noise that the ferry produces while you are settling in to sleep for the night is… alarming, to say the very least. And continuous. And when the ship was suddenly quiet, you were then able to hear the pumping Euro beats coming from on-board disco… AWESOME.

It wasn’t the best night’s sleep I’ve ever had, and I arrived in Stockholm today wearing what I wore yesterday, and a grimmace. The Daily Outfit that I wore for this insane trip is:

Gunmetal blue leather jacket – Zara
Navy ‘Macho’ print T-shirt – Slick It Up
Orange and navy ribbon belt – Polo Ralph Lauren
Motor 3D embroidered jeans – G-Star
Orange and blue sneakers – Puma

Before we boarded the Baltic Princess, I got my sister to take these photos for me on the grounds of Turku Linna, a castle within the city of Turku. As it was Sunday, everything was closed and we didn’t get to go in and see Turku Linna; but the grounds themselves were very pretty and it did make a good location for these Daily Outfit pictures.

Daily Outfit: Aanekoski to Helsinki to Turku

Today we travelled from Aanekoski to Helsinki and then on to Turku.

The end result of the epic multiple city trip was to wind up in the port city of Turku, where we will be for 24 hours before catching a ferry to Stockholm for three nights.

We took a little stroll once we got here and then grabbed some dinner; but honestly we’ve mostly spent the evening relaxing in our hotel room. I did, however, find time to climb into a fountain so my sister could take my daily outfit photos for me.

For my travel outfit from Aanekoski to Helsinki to Turku I wore:

Blue cotton beanie – ASOS
Navy wool oversized double-breasted blazer – Oxford
Navy tank with multi-coloured flecking – Bellfield from ASOS
Orange and navy ribbon belt – Polo Ralph Lauren
Riley 3D loose tapered jeans – G-star
Navy rubber thongs – Havaianas

Thankfully, we have a full day to explore Turku tomorrow before we board the ferry at 6:00 PM, so I feel like we will have a chance to get a feel for the town before we leave. Maybe I’ll even find out what the go is with this fairly creepy fountain…

Daily Outfit: Midsommar Eve

Today in Finland it is Midsommar Eve, the night that precedes the Midsommar Holiday weekend, and also our last night at the Lake House in Aanekoski.

Midsommar is traditionally a time of myth and magic, with the evening hours all but stripped away by the presence of near constant sunlight. It has been said to be the best time to divine the future in matters such as love, and is to this day a celebration of surviving the dark winter that went before.

Our Midsommar plans are fairly relaxed: we’re having a sauna at the Lake House (complete with dips into the freezing cold lake!), and then rowing down stream to check out a local bonfire. 

As such, I decided to keep things light for my Midsommar Eve outfit and I am wearing:

Sailors cap – purchased from festival in Jyväskylä
Blue and white striped cotton sweater – Divided, H&M
White cotton crew-neck t-shirt – Esprit
Navy and cream Rococo print scarf (worn as belt) – thrifted
Navy shorter-length chino shorts – ASOS 

Summer in Finland is absolutely gorgeous, and I am having a fantastic time with my sister and best friend. That said, I’m also really looking forward to heading home to Australia in nine-days time.

I’m missing my boyfriend, my house and my usual routine, not to mention my full wardrobe and reliable internet connection!

Being here in Finland has been a really inspiring trip, and I am looking forward to trying lots of new Finnish-influenced things with my Blogging when I get back to Australia. Until then, I have nine-days left on this trip and I am going to make the most of it!