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Vintage Velvet Wreath DIY

Looking to add a little color ka-pow to your life? This DIY submission that I received today from Danielle Thompson made me smile so I have to share… Maybe it’s my inner art school teacher wanting to come out and play or perhaps the quirky charm that just screams retro fabulousness, who knows? Whatever it is, you can customize this velvet ring ‘o joy to reflect your own style and for the season, how fun to have something offbeat and fun vs. the typical pine variety soon to adorn doors everywhere… You know the ones… with the gigantic red velvet bows (yawn).

DIY

IMG_9682

To make a wreath of your own and for the full tutorial, visit Danielle’s blog and she’ll show you exactly how she put this bad boy together. Enjoy!

(images: danielle thompson)

Posted in diy on November 16, 2011

Meet le Superflu + Dorlis Meier

Ready to enjoy something fresh and pretty? Dorlis Meier is a jewelry designer that I can imagine seeing in Anthropologie and Liberty. With gorgeous, quirky and very original work, her skill, trained eye and consistent vision make her pieces divine. I especially love that everything is truly one-of-a-kind and made by her own hands. Her brand is called le Superflu, which happens to be the name of her quaint little shop in Hannover where I live. I discovered this hidden gem while out on an aimless Sunday stroll last month and I vowed to return during store hours… I did as I intended and not only did I purchase three exquisite pieces that I’ll forever cherish, but I have a special shop tour and interview to share with all of you.


(a charming video produced by dorlis and her friend.)

But first, isn’t it amazing what a special necklace can do for an outfit and for the lady lucky enough to wear it? It’s the lipstick on your lips, the icing on your cupcake, the cream in your coffee. As a customer and a fan of Dorlis’ work, I thought that I’d set an appointment with her and drop in for tea and a chat to share on decor8 and that is exactly what I did. Dorlis surprised me with French pastries and many stories behind the designs in her display cases. She explained how items were sourced, from tiny glass vintage birds found at nearby flea markets to the metal that she pierces and then, stitches through which takes hours of concentration and skill. Talented Dorlis is completely in love with her craft and combines her finds, whether vintage lace or charms, with her own metal and stitch work along with semi-precious stones to create beautiful works of art that are lovely but not too precious (which I like). There is nothing in her collection that isn’t a labor of love. Some of her pieces are even found in the forest and then recreated into charms and decorative elements layered inside of a brooch or shadowbox-style locket. So imaginative!

Superflu

During our tea and chat, we spoke of many things and then I jumped up, as I felt so inclined to capture the moment, and decided to snap some photos. I saw so many things that I felt you’d love to see, including Dorlis herself shown above. Would you care to listen in on our conversation to learn more about this German designer and what she loves? Of course you would!

Superflu

Superflu

Holly: Why did you choose the name, le Superflu? What does it mean and when did you open up shop here in Hannover, Germany?
Dorlis: My shop is actually called, “le Superflu cést necessaire”, (or Superflu for short) which is French and means that you can never have enough colour, ornaments, gemstones, bows – just anything beautiful! I like to make a little fun of the Bauhaus philosophy and try to not take everything so seriously. I opened my shop one year ago with the idea to create my own world and share it with people who have the same love for vintage finds and colourful gemstones as I do.

Superflu

Superflu

Holly: How did you become a jewelry designer?
Dorlis: First I had my apprenticeship to become a goldsmith. After that I went to Hamburg to work at Colleen B. Rosenblat, which was very inspiring. She is known for her huge colourful high class jewellery and an adorable showroom. After a few years there, I decided to find my own style and create something personal. I studied metal design at the HAWK Hildesheim and finished with a diploma. Georg Dobler was a great teacher and is a very popular jewelry designer. I am so thankful for his support.

Superflu

Superflu

Holly: When did you know you wanted to turn this passion into your career?
Dorlis: I started making necklaces when I was a little girl, spending all of my pocket change on beads and buttons. One day I took a weekend course at a goldsmith studio and after that I knew that this was my love! The smell, working with my hands — it was and still is a kind of meditation exercise for me.

Superflu

Superflu

Holly: What do you consider to be the most important accessory for a woman?
Dorlis: To me a necklace makes a woman even more beautiful. They give me the most opportunities for design to because I am not so limited in size and weight. It is important for me to make my jewelry comfortable to wear and feel.

Superflu

Superflu

Holly: Overall, how would you describe German design that you see coming from the independent movement here?
Dorlis: I think it is self confident, not so commercial, simple and focused on creating new functions and in experimenting with new materials.

Holly: Where do you look for inspiration and what are your five favorite things about living in Hannover?
Dorlis: I love to walk around and go to flea markets and galleries. Very often I take a bike ride and let my mind flow. What I love about Hannover is the Eilenriede forest, Herrenhäuser Gärten/Gartentheater, Cumberlandsche Galerie, Scilla-Blüte am Lindener Bergfriedhof and Lindener Marktplatz on Saturdays.

Superflu

Superflu

Holly: What are some of your current favorite trends that you see in fashion and for the home?
Dorlis: I adore the fifties-style, especially from Scandinavia and the range of colours from mustard to curry and amber. My favorite Wallpaper is “Woods” from Cole & Son. I also love the cozy “knit” trend using accessories made from yarn like rugs, cushions and bed covers…

Holly: What are some songs/artists that you enjoy listening to while you work?
Dorlis: Emiliana Torrini: Birds, Stacy Kent, Motown Funk and Soul, The Beatles

Superflu

Superflu

Holly: What is your favorite city and why?
Dorlis: I love Amsterdam! The product design, the architecture, the canals and bridges… It is just the right size to explore everything by foot or bike. There is a very inspiring jewelry scene there such as Galerie Ra, the Sieraad jewelry fair

Holly: If money grew from trees, what one thing would you buy?
Dorlis: A big old Victorian house at the seaside with a pony, donkey and rabbits in the backyard. Furnished with all my favourite design classics, of course.

Superflu

Superflu

Holly: I love Sundays in Germany because almost everything is closed except for cafes and museums. What do you love to do on Sundays?
Dorlis: I like to take a long walk in the forest with my family, where I look for nice branches, flowers, bugs and butterflies. After that, I end my day with a big plate of vegetarian Thai food – gorgeous!

Holly: For those visiting northern Germany, what are your favorite flea markets around here?
Dorlis: In Hannover – Leineufer, in Hamburg – Lehmweg and Turmweg and in Berlin – Arkonaplatz and Boxhagener Platz.

Superflu

Superflu

Holly: What about German life and culture do you appreciate and value most?
Dorlis: To me the Adventszeit is nice because it is cosy with all the candles, cookies, crafting and knitting and the good smell everywhere! I love the smile on the face of my son Jacob when he opens the door of his Adventskalender! In summer I love BBQs at the Schrebergarten with good friends.

Dorlis, what a pleasure to know of you and your creations and decor8 readers, I hope that you’ve enjoyed this peek into the world of a local designer who lives in my city! Thank you Dorlis for allowing me to explore your atelier and to learn more about what you do!

Psst: If you like anything shown, you may order from Dorlis directly or ask her to custom make something gorgeous for you. You may also order things directly from her DaWanda shop here. If you happen to be in Hannover, you can see her work and buy it at the upcoming craft show over at the Handwerkskammer Hannover from November 26 – December 18 or at our annual indie craft fair,Designnachten, in Hannover on December 17 & 18.

(images: holly becker for decor8)

Posted in fashion + accessories on November 16, 2011

Sunday Morning Stroll – Berlin

Inspiration surrounds us and to tap in, I love a good Sunday morning stroll. I’ve been taking them each week since I relocated to Germany over two years ago. They’ve become a very big part of my life, a ritual of the senses. I’m not a very structured person, I tend to like to work and do most other things when I feel creative because then I know I’ll do them well… but a little routine on a quiet Sunday morning feels nice.

Berlin

Usually I’ll visit a park, garden or walk through the big city forest behind my house. I love the forest… the scent of forest air, fresh pine, firewood burning in a nearby chimney, that crisp cool wind against my face – it’s both calming and refreshing. A sunny sky is not a requirement for me, in fact it’s often a melancholy gray that feels far more comforting – like a large wool blanket lovingly wrapped around my shoulders.

Berlin

Sunday Stroll

My idle walks usually end up in the city, wandering through alleys, exploring both familiar and unfamiliar streets and always snapping photos with my iPhone. I love going from the forest to the city, only a few steps apart, because contrasts excite me. The organic versus the planned, hard lines then soft curves, dirt then stone. Often Sunday mornings allow me to compose song lyrics and construct poems in my mind, to explore my imagination and to go so deep in my inner world that my walks become almost dream-like where I’m altering how the story will continue and where it will end.

Berlin

Berlin Impressions

After 90 minutes or so, I usually require a cappuccino (smile) and brunch so I begin searching for a cozy spot to people watch and linger a bit. If the cafe is playing show tunes, jazz, or a little Frank and Dean… all the better. For me, this is the perfect Sunday. If I end up in a quaint theater for a matinee, perhaps something along the lines of Bright Star, Das Parfum (a bit dark can be good) or Lost in Translation, then I’m double lucky. I love a good melancholy film on a Sunday afternoon. In the evening, a glass of red wine in a cozy bar huddled around a table with good friends or breaking bread with cheese and olives at home – perfect. I’ve just had the perfect happy ending to my day.

Berlin

When most people meet me, at least from what I’m told, they perceive me as being witty, charming, fun-loving and outgoing. Well, thank you because those are very nice things and I’m happy that most people are so sweet in describing me. I certainly do love a good time and people are my fuel. Though I must admit that too much time in the spotlight drains me so I need weekly “time outs” to escape crowds and light-hearted  surface conversation to go deep and to simply live inside of my own head. Can you relate at all? These Sunday pauses do this. I can be a tad moody, even melancholy, very dramatic, and I’m quite a romantic and extremely passionate about so many things – especially behind closed doors or around my dearest friends. If I don’t have a weekly space for myself to refuel, I approach a new week with little zeal to do the things that I love.

Berlin

That is why I found myself incredibly inspired this past weekend spending Sunday morning roaming Berlin. I didn’t have long, but in just a short time I snapped the photos in this post on my iPhone and found inspirational glimpses all around me in this most fascinating city. I hope my Sunday morning stroll inspired you a little too and I hope to get back to Berlin next week for more of the same. It’s nice to take a pause each week to reflect on what makes us, well US — isn’t it?

Berlin

Sunday Stroll

Sundays make me happy.

What about you, do you have a weekly tradition that you employ to center yourself and explore your imagination and creativity?

(images: holly becker)

Posted in uncategorized on November 16, 2011

Berlin Book Party Highlights!

Hello friends! I had such a great time in Berlin this weekend! The weather, the hotel, the people, the party, even the Russian disco we went to later on for a little fun — it was all such a fantastic adventure. It feels great to begin a new week with such a warm heart – thank you to my many friends and guests for making my German interiors book, Lust auf Wohnen, launch party at the Soho House in Berlin such an amazing event but also to the many, many bloggers who attended – oh my goodness, what a crowd of stylish, warm and chatty people!

Party Pics To Blog

I thought I’d share some highlights from my day captured so brilliantly by photographer Sina Preikschat. The amazing Miss Sina not only shot photos at our photo wall, but she took all of the others shown below that I think came out super nice. I also loved how she managed to stay somewhat invisible as she worked and also how comfortable all of our guests felt having their photo taken. Thank you Sina, you’re a star…

My guests arriving!

Above you can see my guests arriving downstairs at the Soho House Berlin to check in and claim their goody bags sponsored by Etsy (with a special thanks to Emily and Matt) along with some decor8 contributions from my friends Snug Studio, Enna, luzia pimpinella, Formes Berlin via Sommerfugl and Ferm Living who supplied some items for me to decorate the room with and who sponsored our fun giveaway. Also in the bag, journals supplied by Callwey Verlag for taking notes.

Setting up for my party

Caroline Ditting (from Callwey) and I are shown above. She helped me enormously to plan this event and did a super great job. Thank you Caroline! Here we are preparing a table to decorate with shiny things, candles, balloons and eventually, cupcakes – yummy, delicious cupcakes.

Party Pics To Blog

Speaking before a very full house.

Steffi + Holly

There I am with Ms. Luxat from Brigitte magazine. Brigitte was the official sponsor of my event at Soho House which was an honor… To see Germany’s top lifestyle magazine for women support me in this way is absolutely, positively wonderful. I love how they “get” the blogging community and how much they invest in reaching out to not just me, but the many fabulous people who author blogs.

Party Pics To Blog

My amazingly sweet guests made me laugh and put a smile on my face throughout the day. PEOPLE make any event and I’m so happy the “snob factor” didn’t exist here – everyone was warm, approachable and very smiley and open-minded and stylish, too!

Loot bags

Loot bags filled with goodies that have gorgeous pine trees screen-printed onto them.

I made seating cards for the VIP guests

We had some VIP seating so I made seat tags for those guests – mostly my sponsors, volunteers and very good friends.

Such a great day....

A full house…

More book party photos :)

My guest book along with other goodies for guests to enjoy.

More book party photos :)

Caroline Ditting speaking for Callwey Verlag, the publisher of my book here in Germany.

Such a great day....Juliane

More book party photos :)

Oh the cupcakes were divine!

Sharmaine + Holly + Jack

Sharmaine, me and Jack. They are both from Dialogue Books in Berlin. They brought some copies of the book to be sold during my event and helped me with some party planning, too. If anyone wants a German signed copy, you can email them and they’ll ship one to you. sharmaine AT dialoguebooks.org is the lady to ask.

Party Pics To Blog

Caroline with Steffi and my good friend Anne who not only helped me set up but who gave everyone either her illustrated postcards or rubber stamps from the Enna shop.

Party Pics To Blog

Lutz + Holly

Lutz and me. He has enough charm and energy to fill an empty room. What an authentic, witty and caring person. So glad to know you, Lutz!

Party Pics To Blog

Clara, Anette + Gabi

Party Pics To Blog

Left: Marlene / Right: Steffi and Matt Stinchcomb from Etsy being silly. I was so honored to meet Matt in person after knowing him online for 6 years now.

Party Pics To Blog

Left: Kathrin / Right: Anna-Maria who owns Fraulein Wild, a lovely cafe in Berlin where we ate Sunday morning. She is so adorable and bakes wonderfully!

Party Pics To BlogLeft: / brigitte / Right: andrea +bettina

More book party photos :)

Need I say more? Nom nom nom.

Sharmaine + Holly + Jack

Me and the Dialogue Books gang.

More book party photos :)

Steffi giving her speech about how bloggers can work with magazines like Brigitte.

Brigitte magazine girls + Matt from Etsy.com

The Brigitte magazine girls and Matt Stinchcomb from Etsy – all were my fab sponsors.

Lutz + Holly

It’s fun to be silly at your own book launch, you know? Why be serious when you can live life and have a ball!

Party Pics To Blog

Left: Didem / Right: Laura

Matt doing his thing, great guy, great speaker

Every single girl had a crush on this guy after he spoke. He has tons of charm and is very intelligent and witty. I also think it’s the floppy hair, girls really dig that longish floppy hair. Matt sparkles when he speaks. People like to think Etsy is mega popular because it’s a great online marketplace but I think chicks just dig Matt. Don’t believe me? I had at least 10 people come up to me after he spoke and said, “I’m reopening my Etsy shop now that I saw Matt!” and the stars in their eyes totally spelled out: CRUSHING majorly on the Mattster.

More happy lovely people

When Matt spoke, people smiled, laughed and listened.

Happy guests of mine

See what I mean? In blue is my co-author Joanna Copestick who flew in from London and in green is the adorable artist and blogger Stephanie Levy.

More book party photos :)

More book party photos :)

See what I mean about loving to hear Matt speak?

Happy guests of mine

Oh yes, Matt worked the crowd.

More party shots

At one point he asked, “Who thinks I’m totally dreamy?” and here is the reaction. No, just kidding. This was actually when I was speaking as I love to ask questions when I speak or else I feel like everyone will fall asleep.

 

More happy lovely ladies

Ladies bonding on a very sweet plush sofa that I wanted to carry home with me.

Lust auf Wohnen book party

Oh yes, and the book. We came for that too.

Checking out my book :)

Fun to see my guests peeking in on Lust auf Wohnen! Go book go! Work it!

More happy lovely ladies

Very sweet ladies that I felt honored to meet.

Lutz + Holly

Lutz and me acting silly.

Pretty lady

Oh hello pretty lady…

making new friends at my party

Brigitte had the sweetest personality and the most incredible red hair.

Party Pics To Blog

Left: Lenka + Nadja, Right: Rieke + Ricarda

Happy ladies

Dorolos Wally from klienFORMAT magazine who not only flew in from Vienna but who so generously GAVE everyone a copy of her self made magazine seen chatting here with my friend Anne.

Checking out my book :)

I didn’t get to meet this guest, anyone want to shout him out? I’d love to know!

My dear Steffi from Brigitte magazine

Lovely Steffi.

Party Pics To Blog

Me, Jack and Sharmaine.

My publicist, Caroline Ditting, at Callwey Verlag

Caroline Ditting

Party Pics To BlogRight: Valerie + Donna / Left: Marlene + Steffi

Party Pics To BlogMaren + Lola

Party Pics To Blog

Left: Elizabeth Rushe who looks like a double of Florence and the Machine / Right: Anna-Maria Wild and Steffi

More Hamburg Girls

Hamburg girls

Party Pics To Blog

Left: Lutz, me /  Right: Stephanie Levy + Eleanor from EM Papers. These lovely ladies came all the way up from Munich, loved having them!

Party Pics To Blog

Eleanor and Theresa Neubauer.

Party Pics To Blog

left: ricarda, steffi, rieke / right: nicola

Party Pics To Blog

Party Pics To Blog

Left: Steffi and Lutz / Right: Andrea

didem + oliviaDidem Strebe + Olivia Tänzer

I want to thank EVERYONE for coming out – I couldn’t believe how many people we had and to think we only could take 50% of those who RSVP’d – whoa, this tells me there is a lot of blogger interest here in Germany so Brigitte and I are putting our heads together for possibly another event this winter so stay tuned!

A big thank you to all who sponsored this event  – I’m so grateful to have all of you in my corner and to call you my friends!

To see many more photos in a slideshow, click here.

(photos: Sina Preikschat.)

Posted in events + markets on November 14, 2011

Books:

Some of my books...

Further editions available: Decorate published by Murdoch Books for AU/NZ, Decorar BR, Alt om indretning DK, Inspirace pro váš byt CZ, Dekorácie SK, La décoration FR, Lust auf Wohnen DE, Sisusta tyylillä FI and Sztuka aranżacji wnętrz PL.

eCourses:

Next dates

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