Experimenting with colours


I recently discovered that Amazon sells cross stitch supplies, which is useful since I haven’t found a place in Basel to buy them from yet. In the process, I learned that Anchor does a lot more multicoloured threads than were ever available in Karlsruhe. Since I have no willpower whatsoever when it comes to spending money, I decided to buy some to play with, despite not actually having any need for multicoloured threads right now! The following stitches were all experiments and I have no idea what I’m going to do with them yet. Also, they were all taken from magazines, although I’m not sure their original artists would recognise them now!

The first one I did was a hippo, using a multicoloured thread I already had. Based on the colours, it will probably end up as a new baby card for a little girl.

Hippo cross stitchFor the next one, I knew as soon as I saw the thread that I wanted to use it to stitch a lion, so I went looking for one in all my cross stitch magazines. I think it turned out quite well!

lion cross stitchNext, I stitched two hedgehogs using the same thread but different techniques. They were actually supposed to be the exact same hedgehog, but I messed up one and had to improvise, so they ended up totally different:

I used two different threads involving green for my next two items, a stripy dinosaur and a rather luminous snake! These were quick stitches and I got them both done on the same evening.

Finally, I used a many-coloured thread to stitch this rainbow bird. I’m really proud of this one – it actually looks like it’s meant to be this way! (The wing was done using a plain green thread – I thought making that multicoloured too would be a bit much).

Bird cross stitchWhich is your favourite? I think mine is either the bird or the lion.
Fellow stitchers, what would you use multicoloured threads for?

By the way, I will soon be starting a new round of “guess the cross stitch” (as requested by Linda). I hope you’ll all join in! Those who don’t know what I’m talking about can see last year’s here.

Funchal door art

Walking around the Zona Velha, or Old Town in Funchal, you will notice that many of the doors feature art work of various kinds – mostly paintings, but some other forms of art as well. These works are part of the  Projecto artE pORtas abErtas, or ArT of opEN doors project, a scheme that aims to “open” the doors of Funchal to art… and give new life to old, dilapidated doors, often of abandoned and forgotten buildings. Here is just a small selection of the photos Jan and I took of those decorative doors.

Obviously I couldn’t possible resist taking a photo of the following door… colourful artwork and one of my favourite things combined!


Here are some of my favourites. For a few, I took close up photos of the various details because a photo of the entire door just didn’t do it justice.

Have you ever been to Funchal? Which is your favourite painted door?

35 before 35: Schwarzlicht minigolf

When looking for things to do in Berlin, I came across something called Schwarzlicht Minigolf (blacklight mini golf), which I immediately knew I wanted to do, so on to the 35 before 35 list it went. I wasn’t sure whether I would actually have a chance to do it in Berlin, but it turned out that Duisburg, Bremen and Hamburg have their own blacklight minigolf courses, so I was fairly confident that I would manage it before my 35th birthday. As it turned out, Jan was all for it, so I did get to do it in Berlin.

Basically, it’s pretty much the same as ordinary minigolf (but I like minigolf so that’s ok). The only difference is, in the words of the lady who gave us our clubs and balls, this version is “darker and more colourful” (for an extra Euro, we could also have got a pair of 3D glasses, but we chose not to). After collecting our equipment, we headed downstairs into the cellar where we immediately spotted the first hole. Colourful certainly wasn’t an exaggeration! This was on the wall by the first hole – unfortuntely I didn’t manage to get a good photo of it.

Colourful minigolf wall

Hole one was separate from the others, so after completing that one we headed into the first proper room, which was Berlin themed. Well… it had a picture of the Brandenburg Gate anyway.

Brandenbrug Gate art

I actually did pretty well in this part of the game (or maybe Jan just did badly? Either way, I ended up with a better score than him… well, one point better anyway).  Room 2 was basically just colourful (there was no theme that I could work out) and room 3 was set in a kind of futuristic desert kind of scene – maybe it was supposed to be a space station on Mars or something?

Wall art in room 3
Wall art in room 3

The decorations in room 4 were my favorite. This time there was no doubt that we were supposed to be in space… and even without glasses the planets looked 3D! My crappy photos really don’t do it justice…

One of the holes in room 3
One of the holes in room 4

Minigolf in space

Space art

Until this point, the courses had been fairly standard with just one or two more unusual ones thrown in. Then we moved on to the final room…

Crazy minigolf

My first reaction was “How is this even supposed to work?!”. Take this for example:

Hard mini golf course

The aim is to hit the ball up the slope, over the gap and have it land on the yellow bit at the other side then roll into the hole (the black dot you can just see at the back of the photo). Falling off the sides counts as having gone out of the course, but we chose to ignore that rule. Neither of us managed to get the ball across the gap even once anyway…

Jan actually did pretty well in the final room. I failed utterly miserably at every one of the courses in there. So much for my good start! The final results say it all…
Bev 78, Jan 63

Apart from the last room, this wasn’t much different to ordinary minigolf, but it was fun anyway!If you like minigolf and want to try something different, I would certainly recommend it. And I’m sure it would be great fun for kids as well! The staff give each person a gold club to match their height and we noticed they had some tiny ones so even little kids should be able to have a go. We went at night, and the place was full of teenagers (as can be expected) but there were a couple of adults too.

The Berlin Schwarzlicht Minigolf is located in Görlitzer Park, which is in the Kreuzberg area of Berlin. (Kreuzberg apparantly used to be a fairly dodgy area of Berlin but is slowly becoming gentrified, so you’ve got graffitied buildings right next to nice looking cafés, which is slighty disconcerting.) The actual address is Görlitzerstrasse 1, but Google maps apparantly doesn’t have a clue where that is and tried to tell us it was right in the middle of the park, which resulted in us going through the wrong entrance and wondering around in the dark for a while! We were even approached by someone who asked whether we needed “something!” No, I’m really not here to get my “fix”, honest…

To get there, take the U-Bahn (underground train) to Görlitzerbahnhof. The park entrance is on the corner of Skalitzerstrasse and Görlitzerstrasse, and the minigolf place is fairly close to the entrance. The building is covered with graffiti and there’s no proper sign but look out for the blackboards with “Schwarzlicht Minigolf” written on them. If you’re going at night or on the weekend, I would definitely advise making a reservation! We were unable to get through by phone, so we just turned up only to find that it was full so we ended up booking then for two nights later. During the week it might be ok as long as it isn’t school holidays.

Here, have a bonus picture of me playing minigolf (I don’t normally post photos of myself, but on this one I’m basically just a shadow…)

Minigilf girl