As you can imagine, I am exposed to the design work of so many that some conclude it must be easy to forget who’s who and and sometimes it can be! Truth is, no matter how many illustrators and graphic designers that I find and feature here, I tend to remember them all (even if I forget their names!) because what I write about strikes a cord with me and so they stick in my mind like glue. And some, like EightHourDay, really stand out as exceptional and it’s then that I find myself revisiting the work that I love regularly to see what’s new — no doubt just as you do with the faves that you collect. Katie Kirk is an illustrator and graphic designer based in Minneapolis and with her husband, Nathan Strandberg, they own EightHourDay and if you’ve not seen their work before then perhaps they’ll become one of your favorites, too.
This multi-disciplinary design boutique has been raved about by Print Magazine, PDN Magazine, HOW Design, and Communication Arts. “Most often found either at the studio, the dog park or an antique shop they aspire for the designed life(style), a place where work, life and inspiration are all equal and integrated organically.” Above is just a glimpse inside of their portfolio… you can view more on their website, her illustration blog, or in their etsy shop where you can purchase some of the prints shown. Enjoy!
If you love a good mix of Scandinavian and Japanese style with a Canadian twist, you’re going to love the many spaces of Mjolk. Last week I shared a special blog called Kitka that some of you went bonkers over (if you missed that post you can refer to it here) and so today I thought I’d give you a glimpse into the people who author that blog, John Baker and Juli Daoust. This couple lives and works in Toronto, Canada and in addition to their blog they own Scandinavian/Japanese lifestyle store Mjolk. Baker and Daoust also happen to have an 800 sq ft apartment above their shop and a 1,000 sq ft summer home on Georgian Bay. Today they’ve prepared some photos of these spaces to share with us in addition to a mini interview that I had with them. Ready to be inspired?
When did you launch Mjolk and why? We launched December of 2009 because we were frustrated shopping for items for the home. It seemed that it was all about big box stores and boutiques that were not on the same wavelength as us. The closest we got to what we wanted was in the vintage shops, but at the end of the day, you need useful and beautiful new everyday objects as well. We just wanted to fill that need while giving people like us a whole new and interesting experience.
You have a city apartment and a summer house. Wow. Tell us more. We are living our dream, having our home above the shop. It’s really urban being on a major street so we forget about things such as trees and flowers, which is sad. One day we hope to renovate and incorporate a sort of courtyard so we can have some nature around us at all times. The summer house is located on Georgian Bay, home of the best swimming in cottage country, gorgeous sunsets and the feeling that you might just be on the ocean.
Above: Their apartment located over Mjolk.
What attracts you to Scandinavian and Japanese style? It’s just a natural attraction for us. We appreciate simple everyday objects, natural materials, and a focus on craftsmanship.
How would you define your style? We strive for simplicity — think Swedish apartment, light, airy, white and black.
What are 5 of your favorite things in your city apartment? The main living room is spacious and has a big bright bay window; the white floor makeover; it’s not too big to handle; short commute to work; and it’s potential.
Above: Their cottage on Georgian Bay.
What are some features in your summer cottage that you enjoy the most? Since the renovation, it feels so big, bright, fresh and open; the view, thanks to Juli’s parent’s initial vision of switching out the closed in porch with wall to wall windows; that we had free range to do whatever we wanted and we did so almost exclusively ourselves; experimenting with plywood; the future.
What are some key decor tip if someone wants to duplicate your look? You can never have enough white paint! White walls give a beautiful backdrop to our furniture, while white floors/ceiling really brighten a space. Also, don’t be afraid of using unconventional materials (plywood has become our best decorating friend, especially since we don’t know how to drywall). Always bring something home from your travels—big or small, they serve as little reminders once the day to day humdrum sets in. Definitely combine a little old with a little new. Vintage or antique pieces have a history, add warmth, and add uniqueness plus they are oh so fun to hunt for!
Thank you John & Juli for these very special glimpses into your life and home!
(images: john baker & juli daoust)
Parasol Co. just announced that they have created four new fabrics in mushroom, nesting doll and ikat dots (the navy/white is my favorite) in case you are looking for something to freshen your chairs or to transform into a table runner.
In addition to fabric, Parasol Co. designs patterned paper goods and limited run digital publications which promote the work of both emerging and established creatives. You may really love their website (nudge, nudge) – it’s so perky and inspirational.
Parasol Co. also has digital patterns in their shop that you can also purchase and use for online scrapbooking or even to enhance your blog photos to use as borders and such.
Go color, go!
(images: parasol co.)
Jane just updated her lovely shop, All The Luck In The World, so you can buy some fresh vintage and crafted items from her if you’d like. Here’s a sampling of the pretty things in her shop… Fantastic — colorful, happy, and just the best! I met Jane in person a few years ago at a decor8 meet and greet in Amsterdam and she was the sweetest thing — so humble and down-to-earth and super creative.
Jane has a storefront now in the Netherlands but her online store is where I frequently do “drive bys” to see what’s new. I love how she restyles flea market castaways, she has such a great eye for enhancing, upcycling, re-purposing, recycling… all of it!
(image: all the luck in the world)