upper right Sara Palojärvi, a young knitwear artist involved with yarn installations in addition to designing knitwear; center, scarf designed by Palojärvi, knit with Finnish sheep wool; upper left, a clear winter day in Helsinki
Sara Palojärvi's installations on the ferry between Helsinki & Tallinn
Palojärvi has trekked around the EU in search of sites for her installations; how amusing to decorate the ferry rail. The easiest method of traveling to Tallinn is simply to take the ferry from Helsinki. Tallinn and Riga are not yet served by international high speed trains, due to the differing Soviet track size, and while the rail systems are being upgraded, ferries, planes, and buses are the best option. It's common for stag and hen parties to take the ferry to Tallinn for the weekend, prices are considerably less there, but knitters also make this pilgrimage. Estonia is known for its yarns, Kauni and eVilla Art Yarn. Ruth Sørensen has designed exquisite patterns for these yarns, color patterns that capitalize on the color gradations, which run in longer streams in the eVilla. see: http://www.ruths.dk/ it is ecomodista's fervent hope to one day knit one of her designs.
If you are on a tenuous budget, there's a great hostel in Helsinki, Eurohostel on Katajanokka Island, well one can't really discern that it's an island, and the tram is just outside the door. Replete with all the mod cons, during the winter one often has a room without share. The bathrooms have been upgraded and one of ecomodista's favs about Finland are the toilets, no there aren't bidets, however, all public toilet stalls have small sinks with nozzeled hoses for sanitation. If you would rather stay in a more upscale hotel, the Scandic Grand Marina is nearby, and all Scandic hotels are environmentally aware, providing toiletries in large refillable containers instead of these maddening tiny plastic bottles that seem endemic these days, nothing could be further from sustainable.