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I love the Dutch brand Nooosugar! Have you heard of them? They wrote to me just yesterday to introduce themselves and the second I clicked over to their website it was insta-love because I find comfort in simplicity and balance these days and enjoy clean, modern design with a dash of bohemian ethnic style more and more. It’s very peaceful I think, it feels special — even a little luxurious and resort-like don’t you think? Nooosugar has all of that in one impressive shop. I was surprised to learn that they are decor8 readers, which came as a pleasant surprise because it’s really such a small world online, you know?




Anja Bas Backer told me about her company that she runs alongside partner Susanne Houx — they have had an online shop for only a year but they are growing and doing quite well. I learned that 90% of what you see on their site is their own designs and handmade by artisans in Morocco and all unique as there’s only a few of each product available in stock. These ladies are so talented with such a great eye for style. The cushions are handwoven striped cloth and one-of-a-kind for example. I love the striped curtains, I imagine them as a canopy over a bed or perhaps on the patio slung casually over a bamboo rod above a table for a laid-back lunch. So pretty!

If you are interested in ordering from them and you do not speak Dutch you can write to Anja via email in English and she’ll answer you – she is very nice and helpful (info AT

(images: nooosugar, taken by photographer Brigitte Kroone)

Posted in Decorating Tips, shopping on February 04, 2010

Photographer Anitta Behrendt + Turquoise

Let’s dive into the week with the inspiring work of photographer Anitta Behrendt who lives in Copenhagen whom I found back in September 2008 in German decorating magazine Living & More (blogged here).

Photographer Anitta Behrendt

I recently saw her on someone’s tumblr site and now I cannot remember who… but anyway if you read design magazines in this part of the world chances are you may be quite familiar with her work already. And if not, perhaps seeing these photos today will be a fresh glimpse into some very lovely interiors shot by a talented lady who makes beautiful rooms even more radiant. While peeking through the photos shown please be on the look out for buttons hand sewn onto a sofa. You’ll want to run home and duplicate the look!

Photographer Anitta Behrendt

With turquoise being the “it” trend color for 2010, some of these rooms may even give you a few ideas on ways to introduce it into your home if you don’t already have this breezy blue… one of my favorite colors. Especially since you will likely find it readily available in most stores so if you’re out shopping it should be easy to find.

Photographer Anitta Behrendt

How can you bring turquoise into the home? You can paint an accent piece, like a cabinet, bookcase or table in turquoise, even something smaller like a picture frame or a stool. Or if you’d like to be subtle, paint the inside of a cabinet with glass doors and inside, place all of your china and/or white porcelain so that the white really jumps out from the turquoise background. You can add a print from Etsy to your walls which lots of turquoise in it, or look for solid or patterned throw pillows to toss on the sofa or bed. Even glass bottles and vases, or pots, turquoise is nice as a bold statement or as a simple accent. You can even use clothes, jewelry and handbags as decorative accessories so pull out those turquoise beads and place them on a hook over your dresser. It goes with so many other colors from red to black, yellow to green, and looks especially nice with chocolate brown though I tend to prefer it with white and black and a touch of lilac and pale lime. In my home, I use turquoise in all of my rooms as an accent, for instance my taper candles are a light shade and my candle holders are white and silver.

Photographer Anitta Behrendt

Aren’t these rooms beautiful? I hope that you’ll take a moment today to look at Anitta’s online portfolio where you can be exposed to more of her lush interiors. Some days I just want to move to Copenhagen because I’ve not been and for a small city it certainly seems to have a lot of talent living there… Perhaps I’ll drive up this Spring or take the ICE. I need a mini break and I just have to see this city to believe all the hype for myself. Since moving to northern Germany I’m exposed to Danish life + culture so much more, time to get up there and shake a tail feather! Ha ha! Does anyone even say that anymore? I feel so behind with American slang it isn’t even funny!

Anyway, enjoy Anitta and I’ll be back with more goodies in a few…

(images: anitta behrendt)

Posted in Color Inspiration, Decorating Tips on January 25, 2010

Blossoms & Blooms

I need flowers in my life! I’ve been buying some here and there, but not weekly as I usually do and I can definitely see a difference in how my home looks and feels. Maybe some are not as sensitive to whether or not they have flowers around, but I am. My mother was trained in floral design before I was born so you can imagine how our home and yard looked growing up – flowers and plants and a gorgeously landscaped yard that was the envy of the neighborhood. In fact, our neighbors loved our yard so much that they’d ask my mother for tips and often when I couldn’t find her I’d see her planting and digging next door as the neighbor stood there grinning ear-to-ear. It was just her way. She planted, cultivated, picked and styled flowers, shrubs, trees, you name it… The flowers would often end up in pretty containers in our home and she even painted them onto canvas with oil paints simply because flowers inspired her and they just made her happy and still do.

Jennifer Murphy

Illustration by Jennifer Murphy, photo from Domino.

Watching a mother so passionate for these things couldn’t help but leave an impression on me. But it wasn’t just her, my grandparents lived on a working farm where she was raised and so this passion was also planted in me at a very young age whenever I would visit them. And no doubt if and when I have children, I’ll be teaching them at least how to arrange flowers as I didn’t inherit a green thumb — though lately I’ve noticed my plants are no longer dried up and withered but healthy so perhaps my black thumb days are over.

flowers in my home

My own arrangements are shown above in both my current and last home.

Nicoletter Home in Germany


Rie Elise Larsen

Rie Elise Larsen

What about you? When you look back on your childhood do you recall any experience or even a parent or sibling, aunt or uncle, even grandparents who had a deep appreciation for nature, namely plants and flowers, that they passed on to you? How did this influence your adult life? Or perhaps you did not have this influence early on but rather, picked it up as an interest later in life? And if so, what made you think more about bringing plants and flowers into your home? And how are you doing with raising them? How often do you buy flowers and style them? How does the experience make you feel? I ask all of these questions because I believe that demanding schedules and life in general gets in the way of slowing down to consider how and why we do certain things, why we have specific rituals around the home and how they make us feel and contribute to our overall sense of well-being. And by the way, the common expression, “Stop and smell the roses” is so true! As you are styling your arrangements at home, take time and really get into the moment as it can be quite an enjoyable experience of the senses.

1 800 Flowers

More generic arrangements but beautiful flowers from 1-800 Flowers. Note: Once they are delivered you can add in some of your own store bought blooms to design a custom bouquet.

This week I plan to buy some flowers that I’ve never bought before, lately I’ve been bringing home mostly tulips and roses and orchids. I will go to the farmers’ market tomorrow and try something new. The thrill of the hunt, even for something as simple as a bunch of flowers, can turn a rather mundane task into something pleasurable. There is nothing wrong with making some of the simple things in life matter in some way. It’s comforting somehow, like days aren’t running into weeks and months without me slowing down to feel all of these precious moments.

Stella Nicolaisen

Just a simple plant…Stella Nicolaisen

Color Me Pretty

A Creative Mint

Etsy Take Five Tuesday

Flores Del Sol

Fresh Heather

Heather in my living room from last Autumn.

Shana Rae

Shana Rae

Sunday Suppers

Sunday Suppers, Karen Mordechai.

Wood & Wool Stool

Wood & Wool Stool

MayaLee Photography

MayaLee Photography



Well, who thought that simply thinking about flowers this morning would lead to an essay? Aren’t flowers uplifting and altogether lovely? I can’t stop but appreciate them whenever I pass by an intriguing flower shop window. I peeked into a shop yesterday around the corner from my home and saw some sweet mini cypress trees that I may buy for my windowsills, or perhaps a small potted olive tree for my kitchen window. I can’t wait until Spring so I can hunt for some flowering branches to put in my living room, they make such a difference in the mood there and it only takes one or two in a tall vase. All of these beautiful photos show, whether large or small, flowers have a profound impact on our mood as well as our interiors. Don’t you think it’s time you took a walk over to your local flower shop?

(images linked to their sources above, please click on them to find the work of some pretty amazing creatives out there!)

Posted in Decorating Tips on January 20, 2010

Just A Peek

Decorating comes in all shapes and sizes yet time and time again my eye gravitates towards homes that are well edited and creative, places where you know details matter. My friend has a very well edited home — even shampoo bottles are discarded and contents poured into clear plastic bottles instead so that the tub looks simple and neat. THE TUB. Hello. I am detailed-oriented and even I don’t do that! But it’s something to aspire to so I think I’ll talk to my husband because I often close the shower curtain to hide all of the ugly labels anyway. In the states it was different, the shampoo and conditioners that I used had the best packaging but here product packaging is a bit more generic and the good stuff in the gorgeous bottles is expensive. I simply do not want to shell out $25-30 for an 8 ounce bottle of shampoo.

Just a peek...

Sweet Berry Me

But shampoo bottles aside, I really appreciate people who put SO MUCH into their decor. It’s extremely energizing and motivating! So, with that being said, would you like to peek in on a few spaces today of your neighbors in the online decorating and crafting community?

Just a peek...

Dottie Angel + souvenirs du passé récent

Just a peek...

How Now Design + jasna janekovic

Just a peek...

ishtar olivera + Mundo Flo

Just a peek...

Simply Grove + herz allerliebst

Just a peek...

Trisha Brink Design + miss vu

How inspiring! What did you like in the photos above? I really like Simply Grove and her well arranged bookcase. I love all of the photos above, of course, but that one really stood out as I can only imagine the thought and care that went into such a gorgeous arrangement. And are her books facing pages outward and spines in or am I seeing things? How cool is that. And what about you? Spot anything above, in particular, that stood out? Another detail I noticed is the globe in How Now Design’s workspace. Scroll back up and see for yourself. Neat-o.

(images linked to their sources above)

Posted in Decorating Tips on January 18, 2010


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.


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