Monthly Archives

September 2008

Arts + Crafts

Sidsel Gaustadnes & Spagat

September 29, 2008

I cannot deny my love for owls. I carry a photograph of one in my wallet and look at it whenever I need courage or if I’m in a bad mood — I glance at my little owl and the world is all better again. Don’t laugh, I love carrying around little tokens that reel me back in whenever I’m feeling a little out of balance. Something about owls in particular really captivates me. When I was little my mother took me regularly to this beautiful sculpture park and garden in South Carolina near our house called Brookgreen Gardens. It was my absolute favorite place to go, especially because it had a small zoo where I would spend hours admiring the owls. I would stand before them perched high in their tree and imagine what they were thinking, what they did when the zoo closed, if they understood what I said as I spoke to them. I always felt tremendous peace looking at them, the great horned owls were my favorites…

Sidsel Gaustadnes & Spagat

It’s no surprise why today I’m still very much a lover of owls. I’m always interested when I find others who have been inspired enough by owls to photograph them or include these gorgeous birds into their artwork or pattern designs, like artist and graphic designer Sidsel Gaustadnes from the Spagat blog and shop.

Sidsel Gaustadnes & Spagat

Sidsel Gaustadnes & Spagat A card Sidsel designed that will soon be in her shop… no owls here but look closely at what it says. It’s a riot but many a truth is told in jest!

Sidsel Gaustadnes & Spagat

Sidsel Gaustadnes & Spagat

Doesn’t this arrangement look so sweet? These are paintings by Sidsel and her studiomate Line Juhl Hansen. Line is a professional artist and freelance architect who has a lovely blog here and an Etsy shop. I’d love to own a painting from Line or Sidsel.

Do you like owls too? If not, what do you enjoy seeing in artwork that gives you good memories of times past? I love owls, birds in general, and girls – fashion illustrations, abstract paintings of women, and of course florals… I never tire of flowers.

(images from Sidsel Gaustadnes)






Shopping + Products

All The Luck In The World

September 29, 2008

I’ve bragged about Jane before but since I had the pleasure of meeting the talented lady behind All The Luck In The World, artist and graphic designer Jane Schouten, in Amsterdam recently I thought I’d sing her praises again. What a pleasant person she was to talk to and so very sweet! We chatted for quite some time and I had so many questions that I only thought to ask her after she had left for the evening — ever have one of those conversations!?

All The Luck In The World

A few things that I found especially attractive about Jane was how down-to-earth she is, absolutely the easiest person to get to know and so genuinely kind and a very good listener. As I look at her photography on Flickr and at the merchandise she sources for her online shop I can clearly see pieces of her personality that I was so lucky to experience in person. It felt so nice to put a face behind the name that I’d only known online up until a few weeks ago.

All The Luck In The World

All The Luck In The World

All The Luck In The World

All The Luck In The World

Shown here in this post are just a few beautiful photos from her home and shop that I found especially inspiring today. I hope that you enjoy basking before all the glorious color and pattern set against crisp white.

I admire those who are not afraid of bold color like Jane, sometimes I wish I could be more daring with it myself but I’m learning… everyday I feel like I’m a step closer to being that kid again with the brightly colored bedroom that I had growing up. Jane really encourages me personally to branch out with color whether she realizes it or not.

In addition to her daring use of color, I also admire how Jane can find a gem in a piece of furniture that someone may no longer love and, almost miraculously, she can transform it into something cool and unique. This lady is some kind of talent — Jane you are a star!

(photography by Jane Schouten)






Rooms

LaNui Bedding & Etc.

September 29, 2008

I almost forgot to tell you about another fun thing that I did over the weekend — I attended a grand opening reception at a new home design store here in Hannover called Sommerfugl (butterfly in Danish) Raumkultur. For the locals you have to check it out, it’s around the corner from Noa Noa at Wedekindstra?e 2. Owed by Daniela Thaul, I had the pleasure of speaking with her and her business partner and both were extremely kind and genuine (and spoke fluent English). I found these bowls and a lovely tea box along with some gray candles and a great pillow… the pillow is from LaNui – a company I’ve never seen blogged before so here’s their design blog premiere – ha ha! :)

LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.

Sommerfugl is a beautiful shop with a focus on Scandinavian design, they primarily stock Villa Collection out of Denmark along with a few products lines I’d not heard of before, one being a new German design firm owned by Valerie P?tzl called LaNui of Hamburg. I immediately scooped up a pillow cover as I fell in love with the insect pattern called Grasswhisperer. It’s so soft and the quality is lovely, I adore the green satin piping. When I went home to check out LaNui’s website I was pleased to learn that they carry bedding to match. If you like LaNui you can also shop them here online.

LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc. This skull embroidered bed cover is really cute.
LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc.LaNui Bedding & Etc. The swallow embroidery on this striped cover is unexpected and pretty.

I really like the quality of their bedding and their attention to detail along with the gorgeous embroidery gives a craft most associate with grandma a fresh, modern edge. I’d love to see more companies like this rising up out of Germany — I think the potential is definitely here but most move out of Germany to pursue design careers in countries like England and America instead. There are many creative people here though which is why I get excited whenever I come across companies like LaNui!

(top 3 images taken by holly becker for decor8. all others from LaNui)






Stationery

Happy Monday!

September 29, 2008

Good morning! I hope you all had a good weekend and were able to fit in some home-related projects like I did. I always feel so much better going into a new week when I had a weekend that I consider productive, don’t you? I had a good balance this weekend — a little work, a little play, moved some furniture around, entertained guests, went to an outdoor festival, and then… a surprise present from my husband. It was the cutest thing, he disappeared to go buy some ‘trash bags’ at the grocery store and returned with a brand new sewing machine for me! I heard him struggling to open the door with his keys so I went into the hallway to help him and noticed his red face and that one was hand tucked behind his back. I thought to my myself, “Oh how cute, he brought me flowers!”, so I started to grin and he looked at me and said, “I’m sorry mausy but the store didn’t have the bags you were looking for so I got this instead”, and he handed me a box with a picture of a white AEG sewing machine on it! I nearly died. This of course made my weekend because we’ve been so busy over the past 6 weeks getting our apartment here together, traveling, seeing family and old friends, etc. that I haven’t had much time to sew and he knows that this has bothered me. It’s nice when someone you care about so much takes such a personal interest, isn’t it?
Outside of the sewing machine, my 1940’s buffet (purchased on eBay from a seller in southern Germany) arrived yesterday and I am completely smitten by it. I genuinely love it. You can see some photos here if you’d like. I’ve been wanting one for ages but these Jugendstil style pieces are hard to come by and when you do find them, they are normally very expensive. I paid around $450 for mine (and $300 for delivery – I know, meep!) but it’s perfect and in excellent condition so I’m happy.

Happy Monday!
Happy Monday!
Happy Monday!

Guess what? You know how I’ve often complained about the lack of fun paper products here in Germany? (A Paper Source or a See Jane Work type of store doesn’t really exist here.) Well I went to this chain store on Saturday called McPaper expecting nothing other than the typical conservative red, blue, or gray solid color notebooks or ugly fruity notebooks (see their website to catch a peek of what the average stationery shop looks like here)… But what do you know, I found a few nice things from Herlitz (another boring paper company so I was surprised to see some of their new designs), a 2009 from teNeues designed by Hanna Werning, and a folksy blue spiral bound notebook from a company called Pip Studio. Yay! Trust me, this is progress. I hope to see more of this stuff on the shelves in paper stores, office supplies do not have to be boring. It’s very much how 1980’s America was, but just as things changed in the states and now even large companies have been forced to jazz up their collection due to demand. But enough about paper…

So… what did you do over the weekend?

(images taken by holly becker for decor8)






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