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DaWanda Anyone?

I’ve blogged about Berlin-based indie super store DaWanda before, but a quick show of hands… Do you shop DaWanda? If not then I’ll try to entice you with a quick snapshot of a few of my favorite DaWanda shop owners. I love Etsy so I’m always talking about them, but with so many other great indie shops online I don’t want to ignore anyone. What I think sets DaWanda apart is that they’re based in Berlin so they attract more small business owners based in Europe. Plus, their site is in German, French, and English — a very attractive perk as well. And when it comes to payment, many offer Paypal but most accept bank transfers which is the most common payment method in Europe. The overall aesthetic feels slightly different, too. Here are some of my favorites, see what you think… :)

Prints and cards from Ted + Rose Design with terrific graphics and bright happy colors. Yellow, pink, and animal motifs – how can we not like ’em?

Andrea from Pequenio Craft in Argentina simply loves paper (especially Japanese papers) and with this paper passion she creates everything from stickers to brooches and prints. The colors she uses are beautiful, they really lure me in. I love her sweet little handcrafted girls, so sweet!

These are concept bags are new and sold in Thailand by a group of independent designers and they’re now available in their Made In Spire DaWanda store. The bags are only 15- Euro, free shipping, and come with free pins to coordinate with the pattern on the bag so that the bag has some dimension to it and stands out as unique.

Falling down a rabbit hole I landed in the imaginative world of Isabella’s Art, a Dutch artist inspired by fairy tales and silhouette art. There are so many prints to choose from, all very affordable and each telling a unique story.

In addition to all sorts of crafty things, Lady Dilema from Spain makes these great shirts with ties — super cute!

Anything made by Enna in Hannover, Germany makes me happy. I met her last year and toured her retail store (so sweet, click here to view it), and she even taught me how to make my own stamps for designing fabric (our project here, don’t laugh). I can’t wait to get back over to Germany to see her again this year!

DaWanda asked me last year if I’d pull together a pinboard for their site and since I only recently had time to do that, it will go live on their homepage soon. Yay! When that occurs, I’ll be sure to post a link here on decor8. It will link you to over 50 of my favorite DaWanda sellers which just may become yours as well. :)

(images linked above to sellers)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, small business on February 21, 2008

Labokoff

Fabienne wrote in from Paris today about her work as a graphic designer along with the opening of her new etsy shop Labokoff where she sells prints of her art. She merges photography with paint by embellishing her photos with subtle painted motifs like circles, starfish, and swirls.


I enjoy seeing France through her eyes, it’s like taking a mini vacation. Muted imagery of the eiffel tower, lazy days along the coastline of Normandy, the calmness of the countryside, it’s all very inspiring. This work gives us a glimpse of the French lifestyle through the eyes of Fabienne, each telling a story as you gaze into them. Go ahead and see for yourself, look closely and use your imagination…

(images from labokoff)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, Etsy Faves, Rooms on February 20, 2008

Ellie Curtis {prints and pillows}

Nicole from Etsy Love just wrote to me about Ellie Curtis, a London designer with a brand new etsy shop where she sells some pretty amazing pillows and prints based on her whimsical illustrations (love her unexpected color combinations like violet with orange). Ellie takes her drawings and creates screen prints onto paper and fabric with crisp modern results. Her inspiration? “I often like wandering around places like the British Museum, the V&A, or the Pitt Rivers in Oxford to soak in the many different objects and their owner?s associated thoughts, worries, beliefs,” she says.


In the past, Ellie created brooches that I found pretty enough to post so I have to share them to you today. I’m not sure if she plans to make them again or carry these in her etsy store, but I wish she would at least consider it. I’d love to pin them to throw pillows, especially the butterfly.


Great unique work, it’s really refreshing. Thank you Nicole for the tip!

(images from ellie curtis)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, Etsy Faves, Objects, Rooms on February 15, 2008

Malinki Design {dress forms}

I spotted Malinki Design in the February issue of LivingEtc and had to learn more. Seems they are in the business of creating elegant mannequins out of funky florals and feminine silks, including custom designs (bespoke). I like the idea of owning a lovely French mannequin and though the intention I assume is to use it for tailoring, they also make a great accent in the home because you can drape them with accessories (handbags, brooches, a scarf, etc.) so that they’re functional. You can even use them as an inspiration spot for pinning fabric swatches, magazine clippings, etc.

If you’d like to learn more, you can contact owners Fiona and
Lucy though LivingEtc tells us that these start at around $1,300 USD.

On a budget? If you’re feeling creative you can buy a dress form with a wooden base for only $60 from vendors like Only Mannequins and customize it yourself. Try a patchwork technique or decoupage if you cannot sew. Paint the base in a fun color or hand paint it with a motif you love. You can also find vintage dress forms on sites like Craigslist and eBay. Search: mannequin, vintage dress form, dress form, it’s super easy to find these things on the web.

Here’s a dress form that I love from the wardrobe
remix
queen herself, Tricia Royal aka BitsandBobbins on Flickr.

An Anthropologie store window photographed by Skitzo Leezra. By the way, when is Anthropologie going to give us a book? I mean seriously. I think about this all the time, why don’t they have a book compiling images of their store displays with how-to’s on exactly the materials used to make each display? They pull together some of the best DIY projects and then, a few weeks later, they disappear forever. They need a book. I digress…

I took this photograph through the window of boutique
in Hannover, Germany back in 2006.

Here’s a pretty form from Impressionen.

Display your vintage brooches like Lannon787 does.

A 1950’s dress form found on Craigslist by Jessica in Portland, Oregon also known on Flickr as ThriftCraft. Wow. This is a great piece, I especially like how the breasts are so worn — those have seen a lot of action in their day I guess! :)

Or if you prefer the look of a wire dress form, try Ballard Designs.

Click here for some more dress form inspiration. Do you decorate using a mannequin? Do you sew or just use it to display things? Care to send in any photos? :)

(images linked to sources above)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, DIY, trends on February 14, 2008

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