I am a lover of all things Swedish. It isn’t just simply owing to the fact that my boyfriend is a born-and-bred Svensk, but it’s the entire package; it’s the illusion of Swedish charm. You can (figuratively) wrap Sweden in a neat little box- like a perfect gift that is full of quirky yet breathtaking surprises. A gift of many layers that constantly makes your heart flutter with each little gem that you unveil- and let me assure you, it’s a never ending cultural experience.
Not having personally set foot in the land of fika, ABBA, and renowned DJ’s that are seemingly taking over the music world (Avicii, Swedish House Mafia, Icona Pop etc.), many would wonder what I, a 21 year old non-European-travelled, introverted Australasian girl would know about these so called “gems” of Sverige. Well, as a self-confessed Eurovision fanatic and inexperienced tumblr-wanderluster, I can say that I know enough to fuel my indisputable desire and fervent yearn of this beautiful, nation-state.
I simply cannot wait to wander the quaint market streets of Göteborg and Stockholm and see the blue-and-yellow flag hung proudly by the entry of perfect little cafés. To journey across the Øresund Bridge to Malmö and to immerse myself in the city that I thought hosted one of the best Eurovision years thanks to talented Swedish musicians like Loreen, Robin Stjernberg and (to some extent) Danny Saucedo. To experience the sensational delicacies of Swedish Fika- the semla and the prinsesstårta while trying in foolish attempts to converse with locals and improve my svenska:
“Hur mår du?”
“Jag är bra, tack så mycket. Den här semlan smakar gott!”
“Du är konstig…”
To journey through Norrland and revel in the beauty of small cities and summer houses that I will hopefully, inevitably call my second home in the distant future.
But for now, I can only admire Sweden from afar and grasp as much of it through articles and images, tweets and a slow increase in Swedish connections on Facebook (courtesy of Mattias). I could also somehow figure out a way to hide in IKEA and live on Swedish meatballs and cinnamon buns whilst taking much needed naps on the gorgeous bedding designs. Though Australia doesn’t have much to offer by the way of Swedish culture, there are some hidden treasures lurking amongst the MADE-IN-CHINA labels plastered and plaguing almost every store.
One of them is kikki.K.
I. Am. Obsessed.
The thing that I love about Swedish design is the modernistic simplicity that makes it undeniably unique and stylish, and kikki.K certainly epitomises the beauty of Swedish design. It’s thanks to the entrepreneurial genius of one Kristina Karlsson who shared the beauty of Swedish stationery with those outside of Sweden that Swedish lovers such as myself, am able to spend my pay-check on gorgeous stationery that is both qualitatively functional and aesthetically pleasing.
I personally find that a lot of stationery that I purchase from Asian stores (e.g. Morning Glory) are often overly-flowery and of a below-average quality- though I suppose you kind of get what you pay for… except you should never buy pens from Morning Glory because they literally run out of ink after a day of usage. Though kikki.K’s products aren’t very accommodating to the wallet of full-time students, the quality is of such an impeccable standard and worth every dollar you spend. They’re great gifts for anyone of any age- there’s a plethoric range of diaries and notebooks that suit every need; yearly planners, baby planners, wedding guest books, memory and photo albums, organisational folders and pretty much anything you can think of to get your life in track and organised. Again, you will find the perfect gift from kikki.K, so if you’re not buying something for yourself, definitely buy it for a loved one.
These are just some of the items that I’ve bought from kikki.K over the past year, as gifts and for personal use.
I’ve pretty much abused my 2013 diary. I’ve written on every page and stuck personal memos so that when I reflect back on my year, I can remember what I’ve done every day and what my favourite songs of the month were.
I am itching to start using my 2014 diary; especially since 2014 will be the year that I will step foot in Europe… and yes, come the European summer, I will be wandering the streets of Sweden wearing my wanderlust heart on my sleeve and documenting every bit of it with my trusty Canon 60D and my kikki.K diary. Then, when I get back from my year in Europe, I hope I can get a nice little job either in Ikea or kikki.K, just to fuel my Swedish desire.