Objects, Rooms


June 17, 2010

Onszelf (Ourselves) is a lifestyle brand founded by Astrid Nieuwenburg and Claudia Drübe, two Dutch designers who grew up in Amsterdam. I first heard about them when I was visiting Charlotte who founded the Danish company RICE – she gave me a personal tour of her company and showroom when I was recently in Denmark and a sneak peek of their outlet sale – which was amazing (I found the cutest crochet vest!). Charlotte had Onszelf wallpaper in her building and immediately I asked her where she got it because it was so unique and looked as though it had been illustrated by hand. It was from Onszelf.


About Onszel, Astrid attended the Amsterdam fashion academy Vogue and then she became an interior stylist and her last position before launching Onszelf was when she worked with Eijffinger, a renowned wallpaper and fabrics supplier.


Claudia completed her training at the College for Wood and Furniture in Rotterdam. After a short career as a window dresser at Bijenkorf (large department stores) she also started working at Eijffinger. Then they left to form their own company three years ago creating mostly wallpaper and linens for the kitchen.





If you live outside of the Netherlands you can order the wallpaper directly via Janoli Design Store or by sending an e-mail to info AT janolidesigns.nl. They are the official exporter of the brand Onszelf.

Thank you so much Charlotte for telling me about these talented ladies!

(images: onszelf)

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  • Reply Renee June 17, 2010 at 2:18 pm

    Hi Holly,

    This is just wonderful – I am so intrigued by her wallpaper. Here is my dilemma, I live in a very old home with plaster walls, is it possible to put wallpaper up on plaster? I have been asking this question for years and get so many different answers – so you being the very fabulous Holly – would love to know your thoughts on this subject.

    If the answer is yes – I have a fat file of very cool wallpaper options.


    • Reply decor8 June 17, 2010 at 2:29 pm

      Renee – My friend used an electric hand sander and sanded it down nice and smooth and wallpapered her wall but it really depends on the surface. :)

    • Reply decor8 June 17, 2010 at 4:28 pm

      Anna – Thanks for helping Renee! You always have the best DIY advice.

      Renee – For some additional help, I’ve prepared some links for you to review. Another idea is, if you have the budget, is to hire someone to prep the walls for you.

      Prep old walls – article: http://www.practicaldiy.com/general-building/plaster-repairs/stud-wall-repair.php — my friend did this and then used an electric hand sander to smooth them, then she used Kilz I believe (3 coats) to prime them. Let dry for a few days, especially in the summer — you want zero moisture.

      I once wallpapered over PANELING. Yes, old, brown paneling! What I had to do was apply Spackle to the seams and groves which took me hours and days and weeks
      and then I had to rent an electric sander from Home Depot to sand them down smoothly, then I primed the paneling FIVE times with Kilz (yes I said FIVE), and then wallpapered them. I also did this in my kitchen over brown 70s paneling about 15 years ago — I primed with Kilz 3x and then painted 3 coats of this very lovely robin’s egg blue on them and everyone thought my paneling was removed and the paint was on drywall. I spent weeks perfecting the surface but that’s what a girl does when she is renting and her landlord says she cannot remove the paneling, only paint it. :)

  • Reply Andee June 17, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    Holly, What do you think the lifespan of wallpaper is? In other words, how long will it take for today’s wallpaper to become outdated? I want to put some up, but I don’t want to regret it in five years. -andee

  • Reply Milk and Honey Home June 17, 2010 at 2:38 pm

    bookmarking that resource! loving the 1,2,3,4,5!!!

  • Reply simone leblanc June 17, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    gorgeous use of prints!

  • Reply Anna @ D16 June 17, 2010 at 4:07 pm

    Renee, I live in a very old house with plaster walls, and I have lots of wallpaper up, too. :) If the walls are smooth, you’re good to go. If the plaster is rough/bumpy/etc., though, you really need to address that first. If it’s beyond what a light sanding can take care of, you can use something called “lining paper” on the walls first — any place that sells wallpaper supplies should have it. It’s almost like a thick wallpaper that you hang horizontally, perpendicular to the wallpaper.

    Just remember that any imperfections on the walls WILL show through the wallpaper. Rough spots can cause tearing during installation, too, so check and double-check for smoothness.

    The MOST IMPORTANT thing to do is to use a special wallpaper PRIMER, though! A lot of people skip this step, and I’m not sure why. It will not only make the installation better, but it will make your life a LOT easier should you ever decide to strip the wallpaper off in the future. (Which actually isn’t THAT horrible a task, provided you’ve prepped the surface properly beforehand.)

  • Reply Renee June 17, 2010 at 7:11 pm

    Thank you, thank you, thank you for all the wonderful advice. I am so excited to give it try.

  • Reply Renee June 17, 2010 at 7:12 pm

    Thank you, thank you for all the wonderful advice – I can’t wait to get started!

  • Reply Linda/Heartfire At Home June 17, 2010 at 8:49 pm

    I am dying to put up some wallpaper at my place…. it’s been bubbling away in the back of my mind for about a year now, and every time I see some gorgeous wallpaper I just get this real hankering to get it done. Anna, thanks so much for those tips, and Holly, thanks for those fabulous links and your advice. I think I’m a bit of a chicken though…. I’ll probably pay someone to do it when I finally get my backside into gear and bite the bullet. Love the papers in the pics above with a focus on typography – divine!

    Linda. :)

  • Reply Diana L June 18, 2010 at 9:24 am

    Love these designs. The first tablecloth, waant it… All the photos are lovely, fun and simple all at the same time. The use of black in each photo anchors the room and gives it such sophistication.

  • Reply Ewelina June 20, 2010 at 12:40 pm

    Wow! This is some amazing stuff for walls, tables and pillows! Great graphical patterns. These are some two gifted and creative ladies.

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