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Photography by Andrea Hübner

I was recently wasting time doing research over at deviantART and stumbled across German photographer Andrea-H or Andrea Hübner, who also goes under the name Quadratiges (or Square in English) and my, my, my how brilliant she is! It was love at first site the moment I laid eyes on her stunning portfolio.

Andrea’s photographs radiate such emotion because her gorgeous composition and use of natural light is breataking but also her wistfully thoughtful models are quite intriguing too. I feel bathed in peace and quite relaxed just looking at each photo. I appreciate that so many are in square format (hence the name Quadratiges) or diptych as both styles really appeal to me currently. The best part about Andrea’s work though is that you can purchase it so this is not merely about having a one-time dose of inspiration but instead it is an opportunity for you to own some of her work to enjoy at home.

All  photographs above as well as many more are sold here and ship worldwide – I have my eye on several that would work beautifully in my home. What about you, do you see anything that you like? She even has a beautiful calendar available for 2011 that you simply must check out and she designs CD and book covers on request… I can totally see her work on novels!

(images: andrea hübner)

Posted in Arts + Crafts on May 11, 2011
decor8 great.ly shop

Pretty Crafty Things

I love pretty crafty things, don’t you? Sometimes just being in a craft supply store can make me feel creative even though I’m simply browsing. I like to look over each object wondering what I could do with it or how I could apply another item to it to create something more personal. Though I find most craft stores to be a bit boring display-wise, I’m lucky that where I live in Germany we have some interesting stores that display crafts and some of the ideas aren’t bad at all… they often are a springboard for me as I examine the projects on display and wonder how I can make them different. I find crafting rewarding, good for the self esteem and particularly helpful for relaxing. I also find that when you give handmade things that you are often cherished even more so by your friends because of the work that went into your creation. Even simple crafts, which I’ll show you below, can be a personal reflection of your style as well as a generous gesture when shared with others. For instance, if you received a business card tucked into a tiny vellum bag inside of a greeting card from a friend, and it was wrapped like this… Welllll….

Pretty up your business cards

…Would that not make you smile? Would you like to receive a business card in a tiny vellum bag (also called glassine) embellished with cute things? I’ve not received anything like this before which is why I thought that maybe I should think of some easy ways to give my cards a handmade vibe.

Pretty up your business cards

All you need is permanent glue, scissors, scrap papers, Japanese tapes, fabric bits, small vellum bags, string or ribbon, and other little things that you can adhere to your bags and when you are finished, you can slip your card inside. Keep a few in your desk drawer so that the next time you send a gift or card, you can tuck inside a business card that is in a sweet little bag.

Pretty up your business cards

Pretty up your business cards

Pretty up your business cards

They need not be fancy or elaborate, but if you are in a creative field and want to show your crafty side, why not have a little fun and create artsy bags of your own? I think these days, especially for creatives, you have to seek opportunities to set yourself apart and to also show your personality. I may not hand these to business contacts in the corporate world, but to present your cards to friends, family, and others who you know will admire them then why not give it a whirl?

While you’re at it, you can use the same materials and add some cardstock or vintage wallpaper, and hand cut and create your own greeting cards. Here are a few that I made recently below using wallpaper, pages from a vintage dictionary, tapes, and other sweet embellishments. Each card was tucked into a transparent paper sleeve that I made and left beneath the silverware at each place setting for the Liberty launch party tabletop demonstration.

Crafty Things I Made

Crafty Things I Made

You can even pretty up plain paper notebook covers with the same materials, here are some notebooks that I made that could be a nice source of inspiration for you. I used lots of Japanese tapes for these and they came out very nice.

Crafty Things I Made

AND using the same elements, you can even add some charm with a few garlands that you can use for a party, at weddings, at home, anywhere you’d like really.

crafty garlands

Crafty garlands

The idea is to try to use your things in many different projects in order to stretch them a bit farther and this exercise helps you to challenge yourself a bit to think of alternate ways to use what you have – one idea springboards to another idea. I love to make things, though I don’t always make time for it as I should — you must be able to relate! It’s fun to get crafty, don’t you think!?

(images: holly becker for decor8)

Posted in Arts + Crafts on April 29, 2011

Chocolate Creative: New Products

I love the new batch of fresh and modern Chocolate Creative products that are available! Shown below are peeks from her collection including some prints from the Decayed Glamour line that I think look just great (and are styled quite well, I must add!).

Chocolate Creative

Margarita Lorenzo is the designer behind this company, she also authors a fantastic blog, and I had the pleasure of meeting her in January in London during a press event for my book and in addition to her great smile I took note of her adorable tote (I want one now!). It was such a pleasure to get to know the lady behind the brand in person and I’m inspired by what she does. Margarita has a love for vintage textiles, antiques and traditional craft so she infuses her line with her inspirations for a fresh, modern interpretation of these things. Her brand focuses on handmade, sustainable products for the home that combine the traditional skills like embroidery and cross stitch that she loves so much with silkscreen printing. The results are just lovely!

Chocolate Creative

Chocolate Creative

Chocolate Creative

Chocolate Creative

Margarita will be taking part in the Dulwich Festival artists open houses soon so please stay in touch with her via her newsletter to learn more. Nice work, Margarita! xo

(images: chocolate creative)

Posted in Arts + Crafts on March 28, 2011

3D Wall Butterflies

Anyone who knows me well, knows that I love butterflies. I’ve long held an interest in them and today, view them as not only delicate, beautiful creatures fluttering about in nature — but in the home I like to see them as motifs whether on a print or used in a pattern as part of a pretty piece of fabric. I spotted these gorgeous 3D wall butterflies crafted from paper on Etsy’s homepage today and felt inspired to share them. These are made by Jacqueline who runs Hip and Clavicle in Pennsylvania.

Hip and Clavicle

Hip and Clavicle

I love Jacqueline’s inspiration behind her work, “To explore the way ordinary objects and processes come together with human sense and memory in moments that transcend their everyday existence. I am drawn to capture and recreate those moments that spontaneously fill me with wide-eyed reflection and contemplation.” I think you could use these to create a lovely installation in your own home much like how a store would create a seasonal installation to promote a theme — your theme could be centered around Spring and you could put these on delicate transparent fishing string and hang them in your window or from the ceiling in a children’s room — or of course, use two-sided tape and adhere them to the wall.

Butterflies symbolism freedom, exploration and whimsy. That’s a big part of who I am, which is why I think the butterfly will always remain an inspiration to me. Owls for their wisdom and quiet strength, dolphins for their playful energy and ability to connect with those whom they love, trees for how sure and secure they appear yet just below the surface it is their roots that keep them strong, clouds, flowers, the sparks you see at times when two things strike together… the smell of the forest after rain has fallen… There is so much in nature to inspire and delight the senses, isn’t there?

(images: hip and clavicle)

Posted in Arts + Crafts on March 03, 2011

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