Decorating Tips + Pia Ulin Photography

August 27, 2010

I’m so impressed and feeling quite creative after reviewing my mile long list of “people to blog” because I have collected many amazing creatives out there that I can’t wait to share with you over the next few weeks! I have to show you the work of Swedish photographer Pia Ulin today. And while I’m at it, I’m going to share some ideas from each collection I’ve pulled below with some of my own tips on decorating, styling and even some notes on relaxation. I think this is a nice Friday post… :)

Decorating Tips + Pia Ulin Photography

Try this at home: Paint your heat registers jet black, collect glass vessels on your windowsill, try mixing gold with indigo blue, craft a big flower-like piece of art for your wall.

Pia is based in Stockholm and is represented both in Sweden by Agent Bauer and in New York by Thomas/Treuhaft. I’ve had several editors contact the photographers that I’ve featured on decor8, so if you are from a magazine (or anyone else out there sourcing for a great photographer) Pia is a great one to consider. She has some gorgeous work on her website — my favorites shown come mostly from her interiors portfolio though I managed to slide a few lifestyle shots in the mix to create a little more visual interest.

Decorating Tips + Pia Ulin Photography

Try this at home: Pair two coffee tables from the same collection in two different sizes, collect lace doilies and with a little starch craft them into pretty bowls, place framed art on your kitchen counter, stack some magazines and top with a candle placed a little to the left (or right, just not dead center).

Decorating Tips + Pia Ulin Photography

Try this at home: White dinnerware always works and as you can see above, you can change the palette of your dinner table quite easily since you don’t need to work off of the patterns and colors of your china to create a theme. Why not have a few sets of dinnerware, one patterned or with color and another in fresh white? Why not? Also, add green to your home to give it some life – there are some beautiful plants out there that don’t require a green thumb to maintain and look lovely placed in the right vessel.

Decorating Tips + Pia Ulin Photography

Try this at home: Don’t be afraid to display some of your prettiest dresses and smartest shirts in your bedroom. I always air dry my silk blouses by hanging them on the rod above my window and love how the patterns look in the room through the filtered light. If you have a few favorite pieces, photograph them in your bedroom and see if you can create some pretty photos for either your blog or personal collection of images. Lay a dress casually on a bed. Take a few dresses on hangers that look nicely together and layer them against a door. Hang a gorgeous dress in the window from the rod. This exercise can also help you to see what certain colors and patterns can do to a room, often a dress hanging on your closet door can wake you up to a stunning new palette for the bedroom. Oh and try to use linen, whenever possible, in your home. It breaths so well and drapes beautifully. On tables, as tea towels, on beds, curtains, shower curtains… and it’s such a forgiving, durable fabric.

Decorating Tips + Pia Ulin Photography

Try this at home: Remember when you were little and still in grade school and the teacher called a “time out”? That usually meant you were to put your head down on your desk and take about 10 minutes to nap, day dream… as long as the pencils were down and you were not talking. Sometimes, as adults, we need to take a time out during our work day. If you are at home working from your office there, get up and stretch, pour yourself some hot tea, sit on your porch, or simply put your head on your desk for 10 minutes and just chill out. Relaxation promotes creativity. If you want better, more authentic ideas you must take some time out moments each day. Why do you think the French are so creative? It’s those lingering lunch breaks! Another tip, if you are showing a photo of your bathroom on your blog or in a magazine, fill it with bubbles and a plop a big sponge on the rim — nothing more inviting that that!

Lots of these shots where stylist by Stella Nicolaisen, whom I’ve talked about before on decor8. I hope that you enjoy my picks today from Pia’s magical portfolio and I hope that you’ll visit her website to view many more gorgeous photos that are not shown here.

(images: pia ulin)


  • Reply Ludmila {} August 27, 2010 at 11:16 am

    Great tips, Holly! Loved the ‘try this at home’ idea, maybe you can make up a series called this way and advice us from time to time how to create by ourselves the amazing looks you’re featuring here? xoxo

    • Reply decor8 August 27, 2010 at 11:30 am

      @Ludmila – That’s the plan!!! I started with this post. :)

  • Reply neva August 27, 2010 at 11:18 am

    this is truly very inspiring. :) thanks. :)

  • Reply Masha August 27, 2010 at 11:21 am

    Great ideas, Holly! But the one that I really loved from the photographs was the paintbrushes in the white mug. I keep my brushes in a glass jar now, but a mug seems so much more stylish and practical.

  • Reply Stephanie August 27, 2010 at 11:22 am

    gorgeous pictures! I love all the soap dispensers in the top set.

  • Reply Purple Deer August 27, 2010 at 11:24 am

    I love the advice at the end. Nothing is more true then “chill out” time. I should even do this more myself.

  • Reply Kira August 27, 2010 at 11:36 am

    I loved this post! Love the ‘Try this at home’ – very simple and straight foreward tips for people who might not know where to start.
    Brilliant! :)

  • Reply Ludmila {} August 27, 2010 at 11:48 am

    YAY! very excited about this!

  • Reply cloudy August 27, 2010 at 12:14 pm

    oh yes! a “Try this at home” – Series would be wonderful!!! great idea!

  • Reply Milk and Honey Home August 27, 2010 at 12:19 pm

    Boy, that is the truth. I woke last night with two great ideas….they always come when I’ve turned my brain off.

    Fun design tips & beautiful photos :)

  • Reply Janine August 27, 2010 at 12:21 pm

    That’s the message I needed to hear today! Thanks for these creative tips + sweet advice Holly … so love the little story about daydreaming at grade-school :)

  • Reply Sarah August 27, 2010 at 1:11 pm

    Great post Holly – I love all these ideas, especially the clothing shots…but, I do love the idea of mixing china and patterns – so creative and makes a table look so unique! I have been buying old china with beautiful patterns and just having a bowl of cereal in my favorite ‘Grindley Creampetal’ china (UK of course) starts my day right – :))

  • Reply lady a. August 27, 2010 at 1:45 pm

    Awesome pics and great tips. I love your blog!

  • Reply Diana August 27, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    Great inspiration! I’ve always felt that bringing plants into your home is so important. It literally brings life in! Those doily bowls are great – I’m going to have to try that. I can definitely picture them in my office holding bits of ribbon or colorful paperclips.

  • Reply Renee August 27, 2010 at 1:55 pm

    I love all the tips and the images are gorgeous!

  • Reply Kim August 27, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    I love this!!! I love the try it at home tips! I will definitely keep these in mind when I’m fixing up my space at home. Thanks Holly!

  • Reply PriscilaPetersDecor August 27, 2010 at 4:01 pm

    Blue, blue and blue. I just loved those images. I’m always looking for easy tips, they’re always welcome. Thank you,

  • Reply Toronto Interior Designer August 28, 2010 at 4:20 am

    Love the Try This At Home suggestions. Especially about the 2 different sized coffee tables. Great idea!

  • Reply martha brown August 29, 2010 at 6:05 am

    When you put your head down for a little rest — don’t put your face on a magazine! I did it a few years ago and then spent the next part of the day walking around and people were giving me funny looks — the magazine text had transferred onto my face! No one told me! Very embarrassing….

  • Reply jacqui August 30, 2010 at 10:49 am

    What a stunning portfolio and great tips! I love having fave pieces from my wardrobe on display (I rotate them to change things up) – one tip I have for this is if you have some spare wall space, hang an old, ornate wooden curtain bar, give it a coat of paint, and hang scarves, belts, dresses, skirts, tops, necklaces, beads, mobiles, (whatever!) off it.

  • Reply Sara August 30, 2010 at 7:20 pm

    Love the “try this at home!” I love seeing the images, but your tips in addition…FABULOUS!!!! It’s kindof like the running mental commentary I try to do, but your eye/perspective catches things I know I wouldn’t :). Thanks, as always!!!

  • Reply John * Mr Curtains August 30, 2010 at 11:12 pm

    I’ve decided to take the rest of the day off after reading that. Thanks for the advice :0)

  • Reply Dina September 1, 2010 at 2:57 pm

    Wow, I so like your decorating tips, they are very elegant to look at specially the the idea of painting the heat registers. I had it done today, although it was a little mess I still like it, I know I can make it better next time. :) I am reading through all your posts now and think you are very talented. Keep up the good work.

  • Reply eva September 2, 2010 at 9:38 am

    Looking forward to your next post. thanks for the great ideas.

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