Thursday, December 17, 2009

Snowflake Mobile & Matching Blizzard

Here are the results of my Christmas decorating. They are doilies stiffened with sugar water and hung as a snowflake mobile in the living room. Quite cozy.

Quite cozy considering that this is what it is like outside these days...

Monday, December 14, 2009

It's beginning to look a lot more like Christmas than it did

I couldn't take it any more. It seems like every window in Sweden has decorations, so I ventured out at lunch, slipping and sliding my way to Myronas (a second-hand store) to find some festive stuff. I purchased a wooden Christmas star that lights up to hang in the window, and I found some small crafty looking doilies that might pose as snowflakes. Stay tuned for pictures of the resulting Christmas cheer.

Snow for Real

It's started snowing, and it's not stopping. I must perfect my "no-slip" shuffle.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Universal Truth: The Pitch

Sorry to be MIA on the blogging. We were in a pitch at work. I can now safely say that pitches are the same everywhere. Long, late hours, junk food, last minute freak outs and printer worries. And I can also safely say that you feel exactly the same after an all-nighter in Sweden that you do in San Francisco - freakin' tired. There are some serious pitch warriors here in the DDB Stockholm studio department. Thanks guys.

One fun difference about this pitch was that I got to help translate all of the Swedish copy to English. There were going to be some non-Swedes from the company in the meeting so most of the presentation was to be given in English. Translating Swedish to English is not always and easy task (but it is always funny), and sometimes there really isn't a direct translation or there are major differences in the way the words are used. For instance, the Swedish word skepparkrans means this certain type of beard that fishermen often have. When literally translated to English in pieces it means ship wreath. Hmmmm. Not exactly catchy ad copy. We ended up just saying fisherman's beard.

Also, we came up with a headline in English with the phrase "taking the scenic route" in it. And there was really no equally good way to translate it into Swedish. Apparently "taking the scenic route" is a pretty American concept? Maybe in Sweden taking the scenic route is an inefficient way to get from point A to point B in the cold or maybe they feel that every route is the scenic route? I'm not sure. Maybe I should ask if "stopping to smell the roses" translates.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Christmas Goes On and On

Christmas is a month long celebration here. Advent candles start showing up in windows, Christmas trees are lit in neighborhood parks, people start having glögg parties and saffron buns are everywhere.

Two weekends back we went to a Christmas market at Skansen an open air museum in Stockholm. Skansen is pretty impressive on it's own without the holiday flair. They have over 150 traditional homes, schools, buildings that they moved to the island from various parts of Sweden. Most of them date from the 18th and 19th centuries. There are traditional craftsmen who throw pottery and practice glass blowing. And it addition to all this they had a big Christmas market with traditional booths, dancing and, of course, LIGHTS! It was actually pretty cold and foggy, but the lights made eerily beautiful. I felt like I was in a Charles Dickens novel. In Sweden.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Save Saab

The tone toward recent events involving Saab is still positive here in Sweden.
I'm virtually crossing my fingers for the iconic brand and 4,000 Swedish jobs, by posting these amazing vintage photos.

All photos are pulled from a gallery on The Local. I chose some of my faves. The colors are amazing! If you would like to see the full gallery from 1947 to present, check it out. But BEWARE, the good photography drought of the 80s and 90s seemed to be a worldwide phenomenon.