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Do You Use Window Films?

Okay so I want to talk about window films for a moment. They’re often called window decals in the states, but over here window films it is. I was just talking to my friend Yvonne who wants to apply films to her glass doors and funny thing is, I’m currently looking to do the same thing for a few windows in my home that don’t face the most pleasing of views. My guest bathroom overlooks a light shaft and my entryway way transom window above my door could use a pretty touch, it’s a bit boring.

Emma Jeffs

It’s time to go from idea to execution, so I’m surfing the web tonight for my options and I keep going back to Emma Jeffs. I REALLY wanted Otto but it’s sold out so I’m trying to decide on another pattern.

Emma Jeffs

Emma Jeffs

Emma Jeffs

Do you use window films? If so, why and where did you get yours? How do you like them?

(images: emma jeffs)

Posted in Decorating Tips on November 07, 2011

Stylist Olga Naiman

Brooklyn-based stylist and event planner Olga Naiman from Aparat has an impressive client list and a gorgeous online portfolio that you’ll no doubt love viewing today. I’m liking the overall vibe here…


I’m particularly drawn to the strong colors and patterns in these spaces though lately pink and red aren’t doing it for me nearly as much as petrol blue which is that gorgeous greyish blue tinted with green that lots of magazines are flaunting at the moment. I particularly love it paired with goldenrod. But I digress… Despite my petrol + goldenrod admiration, these lovely red tones are total headturners– especially as December draws nearer and nearer and I see red everywhere. I find these rooms quite intriguing… And I’m totally digging chevron – still. You too?


Olga Naiman has worked with clients such as Domino, Anthropologie, Real Simple, People magazine, BBC and more. She currently works as a freelance stylist creating gorgeous rooms in CB2 catalogs and for Crate & Barrel along with West Elm, too. Nice job!


I love her educational background too – no doubt her BA in Clinical Psychology from Tufts University combined with her MA in Scenography/ Installation Art from St. Martin’s helps her a great deal to create events and catalog pages that speak to people… Styling is so much about getting in touch with all of the senses and understanding how people think but also for telling stories visually. Her styling work has a very easygoing, imperfectly perfect charm about it that makes me feel as though a person is nearby and will soon re-enter the room to get back to what they were doing before they left. Her rooms really look alive and have soul to them, don’t you think? For me, that’s what makes a great stylist – the arrangement of objects that feel like there is a beating heart behind it all.

What do you think makes a stylist great?

(images: from the site of olga naiman)

Posted in Decorating Tips on October 31, 2011

Inspired By Riikka Kantinkoski

Have you heard of Finnish photographer, stylist and product designer Riikka Kantinkoski? I love her home in Finland and the beautiful photos that she takes for magazines, but also the snaps of her own house that she shares on her beautiful blog called Weekday Carnival.

I found her work through Susanna Vento’s site and I’ve been in awe of Riikka ever since – especially of the things that she sells in her Big Cartel shop. Wow, I love it all, but especially her jewelry and these wooden knobs. Her soft color palette with shots of black definitely resonates with me as I love soft colors, too. Check out these images from her home. I especially love how she incorporated a West Elm comforter into her Finnish home – gorgeous!

Another version of her kitchen before she decorated it in shots of pink and black – this one is from a few months ago and will appear in a Paumes book about Finnish homes very soon.

I’m so inspired by the way that Riika decorates but also of the wares in her very special online shop. What a creative and clever lady!

What do you like about these spaces above?

(images: riikka kantinkowski)

Posted in Decorating Tips on October 21, 2011

Authentic Interiors

Hello everyone and a very happy Friday to you! I’m back from Munich and had the best time. I won a reader’s choice award from Myself magazine (Conde Nast), which was a real honor for me – I had my red carpet moment and everything. A big thank you to Myself magazine and their readers for presenting me with that award. I especially loved meeting German television personality and singer, Barbara Schöneberger, who interviewed me and gave me the award and I want to thank the very special and talented team who shot the video for the awards show of me and my work studio here in Hannover, especially the video art director and German actor Lutz Winde. So! I’m back home working now and have so many blog posts to write.


First though, have you recently visited the decor8 Interior Styling group on Flickr? With nearly 3,500 members and over 6,500 photographs, it is quite an inspiring and very international place filled with authentic interiors that are spontaneous and casual. I encourage you to visit and join (it’s free!) if you’d like to share the corners of your home.Real decorating, real homes — that’s what I love the most because that’s what I’m all about.



I recently met up with a friend in Frankfurt at the book fair and you know what was funny about our conversation?  He was convinced that all homes in America were huge and gorgeous because each time he sees them in films, books and magazines, they always look that way. I laughed, not trying to be rude of course, but my natural reaction was, “You must be joking!”, which was exactly what I said. In a very serious voice he replied, “Um no, I’m serious. Americans have the best homes ever.” I grinned because I was unsure of how to break it to him. You know, tell him the truth because for the most part we sorta don’t live as large as the rest of the world thinks. Or as posh. We are real people with real homes just like every other country and we make the best out of whatever it is that we have in our own way. In fact, the trend for interiors is leaning more and more towards authenticity and less bent on looking constrained and artificial.


debee{art & emma lamb

Makingchickensalad & Deva


Danielle T

Danielle T

It’s easy to assume that the homes in our favorite books and magazines are perfect and that’s usually because they are. What do I mean? Most homes featured are styled for the photograph and there are even times when furniture is brought in to make the space look more like the magazine’s aesthetic. Yes, really. But of course, to be fair, lots of homes are just plain gorgeous and some people REALLY DO LIVE LIKE THAT. Like JLo and Will Smith and big name designers – yes, they do live that way for sure. Even creative types who are in the business of fashion or interiors, you can expect that they’d live quite lush. Then you have people who are just really into design and hire professionals to make their homes look perfect. So yes, these gorgeous jaw-dropping homes do exist but reality! check! that’s only a fraction of the population.


Citrus and Orange


To be fair, some countries do tend to be more “in tune” with style than others, like those amazing Danes, and even we Americans do have our radars more in tune than some countries that don’t place a priority on a good table runner. I don’t know if that’s a great priority, but yeah, some of us do put a lot of time into how our homes look. As an American though I can say we are a pretty big country with a ton of people who have never heard of an Eames chair or who know (or care) about “design blogs”. That’s not being critical, that’s being perfectly honest. As for those gorgeous New York apartments in every chick flick out there? That’s not our reality. Most of my German friends are convinced that all New Yorkers have giant lofts with shiny concrete floors or massive pre-war apartments. Yeah, those secretaries in Manhattan, the ones who star in our films at least, can afford those penthouses but not the rest of us.



Most of the homes that belong to my friends are not magazine – ready or film – worthy. Does that mean Americans have no style? Or that all Americans possess amazing style? No and No. It’s just that we’re real people like the rest of the world and some of us care about decorating and some could care less. Some of us care but can barely afford what we want and some of us have way too much money and way too little taste. Those who care about design are always trying to influence the could-care-less crowd and the could-care-less crowd, though some do cross over to the bright side of decorating, usually are found wagging their heads wondering why the h-to-the-ell we bother spending weeks to research the best wallpaper options when we could simply drive out to the hardware store and pick from the 25 options on display – like that pretty vinyl floral pattern in peach, for instance. But to be fair, didn’t most of us go to stores like that 10+ years ago to select our wallpaper?




Only recently have we been introduced to so many options. The ability to order wallpaper from websites or even better, from cool places like London, transformed us. Options do that I guess. But we’re still just real people decorating our very real homes. A majority of us dislike more about our home than we love but we do our best. I’m inspired by all of it. The most amazing home on the beach to the carefully renovated on a budget one bedroom in Detroit – they are all special. I like to see how those interested in decorating show their personality at home and in how they select and then arrange, their things. It has always fascinated me and groups like Interior Styling continue to fuel my excitement when it comes to such spaces. I love watching how others have trained their eye and then work magic on their space. All of the photos above are from many contributors to my interior styling group and are from all over the world – and are excellent decorators with amazing style and talent. I’ll take that over those carefully arranged, extremely expensive and almost snobby looking interiors any day.

I don’t want decorating that is contrived, I want authenticity in interiors.

Do we all live in the perfect home? For most of us, no way. But style isn’t a state of the wallet, it’s a state of mind, right? Doing the most with the least is a challenge but one that can be met and in the end, it’s exciting to see what creativity can do to even the simplest of homes.

(images: linked to their sources above.)

Posted in Decorating Tips on October 21, 2011


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