Welcome to my blog.

After a few random posts I've decided to dedicate this blog to my life long project of Japanese food
and culture (and my life in general, especially my travels).

Since my first taste of sushi back in 1997 I've been interested in, and frequently been making
Japanese food.
My interest in the country and culture started long before and continues to evolve.
I was lucky to finally visit Japan in October 2008 and hope to be back soon.
In July 2012 I visited Japantown in San Fransisco, the next best thing!
I was lucky to be back in 2015, 2016 and 2017 thanks to the fact that we now have family living in California.
Both small and big adventures will from now on, as time permits, be shared with you.

I will post other recipes and pictures too, mainly cooking projects, plants and art projects
(including my new love - making kumihimo braided objects).

I hope you'll find it interesting, and feel free to leave a comment or ask questions!

I write mainly in English, but there will be some Norwegian too, especially posts about things
that mainly have Norwegian interest. Tutorials are bi-lingual.

Friday, 27 April 2012

The X-change

Awhile ago I fell in love with some lovely earrings and contacted the shop owner to buy them.
Her response was: I love your bracelets - let´s make a switch! I was so happy!
I already have one par she made, and waited for the parcel eagerly - she didn´t just send me one, but two pairs of earrings!
I think I have worn them every day since I got them, but finally I had the time to take pictures:

 Silver and mint ceramic pearls.

Visit the very talented Hilde-Iren´s shop here to get your own goodies:
MonoMe on Epla

And this is her blog:
I wish I wore other rings than my wedding band, because her rings are stunning!

Oxidized silver and red granates.

The bracelet I made for Hilde-Iren in return.

And this is my latest custom order for a friend:
Olive green wrap-around with pearls and crystal.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Vintage silk made into a new bracelet

I´ve had this vintage victorian silk for a while, making some attempts to braid with it, but it was difficult. But after making my thin wrap-arounds with silver details, I thought I´d try to make one with the vintage silk too.
It worked out great! I´m not sure I want to part with it, so it sits in my workroom for now. The pictures can´t show the light, silky, matt texture, but you can imagine it?
I´ve finished it with silver and copper enamel jump rings, violet Swarovski and fresh water pearls.

Color is called "plum". It´s laying on top of the empty quills that contained the silk thread.
It says "Patented 1870", so I guess the silk is produced between 1870 and 1920.

Monday, 9 April 2012

Finishing your bracelet - montering av armbånd.

Montering av kumihimo armbånd
Finishing your bracelet

Disse instruksjonene viser hvordan du monterer et tynt 4 tråders armbånd, men prinsippet er likt for alle typer armbånd, fotlenker og halskjeder.
The tutorial shows how to finish a 4 thread bracelet, but the principal is the same for all bracelets, anklets and necklaces.

Du trenger: Endestykker i passende størrelse. De skal passe stramt rundt tråden, men må være store nok til at du får trådende og lim inn. Hvis de er for store kan de bli løse, så velg noen som er 1 mm større i indre diameter enn tråden.
Lim: Velg det sterkeste limet du kan finne. Jeg brukte superlim før, men det kan kapsle seg rundt tråden inni endestykket slik at det løsner, samt at det kan løsne i vann. Nå bruker jeg E-6000, et bra lim, men det trenger 24-48 timer herding + god ventilasjon.
Lås, o-ringer og charms: Her bruker jeg sterling sølv deler og noe kobberdeler for variasjon, samt ferskvannsperler, sølvcharms og Swarovskikrysaller.
Smykketenger: Jeg har en kutter, en rundtang og en flattang.

You´ll need: Encaps of the appropriate size. They should fit snuggly around your braid, leaving only enough space for the braid + glue. Too big endcaps might become loose.
Glue: Pick the strongest glue you can find. I used to use superglue, but it can loosen if exposed to water or if something happens inside the endcap. I´ve switched to E-6000, a better glue, but it needs 24-48 hrs drying time + good ventilation.
Clasp, jumprings and charms: I use sterling silver findings and some copper for variation. I add fresh water pearls, silver charms and Swarovski crystals. Anything you like!
Pliers: I use a flat nose, round nose (loop) and a cutter.

Hold endestykket i en hånd og ta lim på en avklippet q-tip eller lignende med den andre. Smør lim i endestykket og eventuelt også på trådenden.
Hold the endcap with one hand and apply glue with the other, both inside the endcap and on the braid. 

Lim et endestykke på hver trådende og la dem herde over natten før du fortsetter monteringen. Tørk vekk overflødig lim så raskt du kan.
Glue one endcap on each end of the braid and leave it to dry overnight before continuing. Wipe off excess glue as soon as possible.

Med en flattang og en rundtang (eller en flattang til) åpnes en o-ring og tres i løkken på endestykket. Hold fast o-ringen med flattangen og tre på en lås og charms. Lukk o-ringen med flattang og rundtang.
With a flat nose plier and a round nose (or another flat nose) plier, open the jumpring and slide it on to the loop of the endcap. Hold it with the flat nose plier and add a clasp and charms. Close tight using both pliers.

Sett på o-ringer i det andre endestykket og du er ferdig!
Add jumprings to the other endcap and you´re done!

Tutorial: Make your own wrap-around bracelet!

Kumihimo rundfletting med 4 tråder - lag et armbånd
Kumihimo tutorial - round braid with 4 threads - make a wrap-around bracelet

Du trenger til et armbånd : 2 tråder i 1-1,5 mm tråd ca. 90 cm lange, i en, to eller fire farger. Flettingen passer i 3 mm endestykker.
Du trenger også: 2 endestykker 3 mm, en lås, en perle på perlestilk, krystall eller charm og 4-5 o-ringer 5 mm.

You´ll need for one bracelet: 2 threads in mousetail size, aprox. 90 cm (3 feet) long, in one, two or four colors.  It fits in 3 mm endcaps. 
You´ll also need: 2 endcaps 3 mm, one clasp, one pearl on a pin, crystal or charm and 4-5 jumprings 5 mm.

Du ser utstyret på de første bildene.
First two pictures show the equipment. 


Fletteskive, en mobilstropp jeg bruker til å holde sammen trådene med, satengtråd, o-ringer, lås og charms. Du trenger også endestykker.
Disc, a mobile strap I use to secure the threads, satin cord, jumprings, clasp and charms. You´ll also need 2 endcaps.

Her er startoppsettet. 
En tråd sitter i hver av himmelretningene; nord, øst, sør og vest. Vi kommer ikke til å snu på fletteskiven i denne flettingen.
Start setup: One thread in each direction; north, east, south and west. We will not move the disc for this braid.

Den første tråden som flyttes er den nederste tråden (sør). Flytt den opp på utsiden (til høyre) for den øverste tråden. Fra 16 til 1.
Move the first thread: The lower one goes up to the right of the upper thread. From 16 to 1.

Den andre tråden som flyttes er den øverste tråden. Flytt den ned i det samme hakket som den første tråden sto i. Fra 32 til 16.
Move the second thread: The upper thread goes down to where the first thread originally was placed. From 32 to 16.

Nå justerer du den øverste tråden slik at den står rett i nord ved å flytte den et hakk til venstre. Fra 1 til 32.
Adjust the top thread so it´s placed straight up in north by moving it one notch to the left. From 1 to 32.

Nå skal vi flytte sidetrådene på samme måte. Tråden i vest flyttes over til øst i hakket over den tråden som er der fra før. Fra 24 til 7.
Now it´s time to move the side threads in the same way. Move the west thread over to east in the notch above the thread already there. From 24 to 7.

Nå går det østre tråden over i det samme hakket som den vestre tråden satt i. 
Fra 8 til 24.
The east thread moves over to the notch where the west thread was. From 8 to 24.

Juster den østre tråden et hak ned. Fra 7 til 8.
Nå er vi tilbake i startposisjon. Fortsett å flette til du har et snor som er mellom 30-35 cm.
Adjust the east thread one notch down. From 7 to 8.
And we´re back in starting position! Repeat until the braid is about 1 foot, 30-35 cm.

I neste post skal vi lære å montere armbåndet.
In the next post you´ll learn to finish the bracelet.