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Ellen Calvert: Recycled With Love

Before I sign off for the week I must share the charming work of British textile and pattern designer Ellen Calvert who just wrote to me a few minutes ago to talk about her handmade things. I like her work so much that it simply can’t wait until Monday — I must share a glimpse now! These up-cycled home items are part of a limited edition collection and were created using both new and recycled products rejuvenated using several techniques such as screen print, embroidery and hand knitting. I like how familiar these things feel yet also how fresh!

Ellen Calvert

Ellen Calvert

Ellen Calvert

Ellen Calvert

I love her reclaimed 1930s school chairs. They are powder-coated and using her hand-knitted fabric, freshly upholstered so the chair is brought into the modern world though the frame still gives away its age. The fabric on the chair seats is made using quality British wool that is very sturdy and then printed and embroidered on top with original patterns designed by Ellen. She also creates complimentary hand-knitted cushions that you can see above, I simply can’t stop looking at them because I want to own them all! Each pillow has her knitted fabric on front and then the back is vintage cross-stitched table linens. Clever use of materials!

Aren’t these things lovely? You can find out more on Ellen’s website here.

(images: ellen calvert)

Posted in Arts + Crafts on December 10, 2010

Pantone Color Forecast: Spring 2011

Pantone is THE global color authority for the fashion and home industry so I shared their Spring 2011 color forecast with Real Simple readers today (view it here) because I was so inspired by the palette. Here is a pretty little presentation that I’ve put together for you to view these colors — maybe as you look at them you can think of which ones you’d like to try in a room scheme…

Pantone Spring 2011

Pantone Spring 2011

Pantone Spring 2011

Over at Real Simple, I also shared a few things in my home since it seems that rather unknowingly, I had a feeling for pink before it was predicted to be the color of the year. I guess when you work with interiors and are around products long enough, you just start to get a feel for things, don’t you? You must find this true of yourself, blogging and the internet makes us all feel pretty tuned in to what’s going on out there.

Did you know that Pantone has a gorgeous PDF to download each year that is filled with color inspiration for the season to come, from some of today’s top fashion designers? Oh yes. I’ve been downloading it for years. In it, you’ll read various expert opinions from a panel of fashion designers who talk about what inspired their color choices and overall collection and which ones they believe will work well together in your closet (my favorite part) — though you can also try the same suggestions in your living room.

Here are some colors that I think work together from the 10 shown above:

  • For a mid century modern enthusiast: Mix Coral Rose, Russet and Beeswax.
  • For a modern, contemporary home that is also warm: Mix Color Rose, Russet and Regatta.
  • For a fresh Moroccan vibe: Regatta and Blue Curacao all the way! Add Silver Cloud, too.
  • For a little cool sophistication try: Regatta, Blue Curacao, Lavender and Silver Cloud.
  • For some spice why not go with: Coral Rose, Honeysuckle, Russet and Beeswax.

See a favorite or two? What colors do you see working well together in a room?

(images: pantone)

Posted in Color Inspiration on December 10, 2010

12 Last Minute Gift Ideas

Looking for a few last minute presents? Leslie can help you! She has put together 12 holiday gift giving ideas for you. Care to see her finds? Of course you do!

Leslie's Last Minute Gift Ideas

Hello, it is Leslie here with a few favorites I have seen around online that may brighten your day. 1. A DIY snake kit by Banquet to block any door drafts. The colors are fantastic, the paints and everything else you need are included. 2. Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi is a gorgeous and very original cookbook that focuses on vegetables. I love cooking from this book! 3. The Dorm by Ferm Living is a fun piece to hang on your wall and display some of your little treasures. It appears to be out of stock on their website however, there is a store locator where you could see if a shop near you has it. I adore mine and am thinking about personalizing it a little with paint and paper. 4. Fun and very inexpensive tea from Pearl River that comes in some lovely tins. You can imagine some of these tins displayed on an open shelf in your kitchen or as handy containers for pencils or flowers on your desk. 5. A more extravagant but very functional and elegant mug from Royal Copenhagen. The silicone type base wrap protects you from the heat and it comes in an array of colors. 6. Baggu bags have saved me many times, for groceries, the beach, or as a extra shopping bag when I travel. A friend uses them as gift bags, you could get some red ones and add a striped ribbon –half the present would be the wrapping!

Leslie's Last Minute Gift Ideas

7. Geninne’s fresh and very pretty line of stationary for Gallison. There are lots of pretty gifts in the line for you to choose from. 8. Back to basics address file for your desk. A great gift to spruce up any office with some letterpress address cards. 9. Lovely crochet butterflies for a little ones wall. This is the sweetest idea and I like the pale wood frames. 10. Stunning and beautifully crafted earrings by Emma Cassi for Anthropologie. 11. A very useful J. Crew jewelry pouch for travel and safe storage of your pretty things. I received a similar one as a gift and have been using it for years. 12. A “Snow House” print of a watercolor painting by Anna Emilia for someone special.

What have you found this season to give to others? What is on your wish list? Care to share?

(images linked to their sources above.)

Posted in shopping on December 10, 2010

Pretty Things From Le Souk

My friend Danielle just added some new items to Le Souk, her online shop based in the Netherlands. She only sells what she’d use to decorate her own beautiful home located outside of Amsterdam in the countryside, so her products all work together perfectly since she has a very defined style that is simple, clean, natural with a global feel. Danielle loves to travel, her finds reflect this — she loves Turkish, Moroccan, Dutch and Danish design styles, especially when the more ethnic pieces are on the neutral, modern side. Here are a few of my favorite things from her current collection of pretty things.

Le Souk Gifts
A. Large Pinecone Heart, B. Grey Ibiza Pouffe with white embroidery, C. Crocheted Raffia Stool (also available in black with a darker wood base), D. Purple Teasel Pillow by Danish brand By Nord, E. Wool Rose Pillow with insert, F. Grey Suzani Pouffe with white embroidery, G. Handmade Coffee Pot Porto in white porcelain from Spanish brand Sargadelos, H. Bird Ornaments from Ferm Living, set of 5. I. Baldi leather bag by Dutch brand Tadei (available in several colors) and J. Handmade Tea Pot Porto in white porcelain from Spanish brand Sargadelos.

Pillows I Heart

Pillows I Heart

I love seeing the teasel pillow and the rose pillow in-situ, it makes me want them even more!

So tell me, what would you love to bring into your cozy nest this winter? I like them all but especially B, E, H, I and J!

(images: le souk)

Posted in shopping on December 10, 2010


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