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Robins Egg Pink {Pillows Under $25!}

It was so nice to learn about Robins Egg Pink via an email that owner and Canadian designer Angela Falcao was nice enough to send announcing her soon to launch shop (coming in January, so bookmark this one!). Angela currently creates lots of beautiful things for babies and also some gorgeous pillows for under $25 that I want to show you that are available in her Etsy shop.

Most of her pillows are around $22 which is a great deal for a handmade cushion. I can imagine lots of them on my big white sofa! :) The net proceeds from the sales of many of her products will be donated to The Hospital For Sick Children in Toronto, Ontario; and the Ontario Humane society. Angela will soon add pendant lights to her collection – yay!

Robins Egg Pink on {etsy} and in January you can find more including lighting on {Angela’s website}.

For some reason they remind me of beachfront living in Australia. Maybe it’s all those Aussie mags I’ve been reading and of course the influence Miss Anna Spiro has had on us all in bloggyville. I can see one of these pillows in her lovely home or shop. Here’s a little idea of what I’m talking about…

Anna’s gorgeous shop, this is a recent shot of a display there. Total wow factor. More shop photos here.

(photos for robins egg pink by sarah hartill photography)

Posted in Decorating Tips, kids, textiles on December 09, 2008
decor8 great.ly shop

Bongenre: Fancy Melamine Tableware

I recently heard from Jill at Bongenre and thought her work was something lots of us may really enjoy, especially for guests and for setting the “children’s table” that so many use during dinner parties when the family gets together. Bongenre is melamine tableware (bowls, plates) with a twist – it’s actually quite elegant! Brooklyn-based founder/designer Jill Fenichell spent 15 years as an antique porcelain and pottery dealer specializing in English blue and white porcelain made in the 18th century.

About her designs Jill says, “I get to think about patterns I love, and work out interesting color relationships and rhythms between shape and pattern and color,” she adds, “The real question is: how to connect the old to the new…that’s what I want to do with my tableware.”

Don’t miss the Winchester Mandala pattern, available in several gorgeous colorways. I’m really into mandalas right now so these totally speak to me, especially in purple, lime, and winter (oooh) which is PERFECT for an indoor party this winter for January/February when everyone is tired of red and blue and white seems to coordinate so nicely with the snowfall. Perfect for gift giving too!

What do you think of Melamine tableware? Yes, no, maybe? Under what circumstances do you use it currently? Outdoor only? Indoor? Do you use it mainly for food or for decorating (on the walls or on plate racks)? Do you think it’s a good option for dinner parties when breaking out the china isn’t something you feel up for and paper plates are definitely not on your menu? Is Melamine the happy ‘in-between’ option for you or…?

(images from bongenre)

Posted in Decorating Tips, kitchen, shopping, walls on December 04, 2008

H&M Home Collection {New!}

Frida from Husmusen told me last week that Swedish apparel giant H&M (Hennes & Mauritz) will soon launch a home line (window coverings, comforters, sheets, pillows, towels and accessories) due to an large demand for home textiles from their customers. The collection will include several items grouped by theme, here are a few that the lovely Frida has grouped together for a quick peek:

Nature (love those button cushions!)

Design (bold graphics, black and white)


Bright Colors (featuring work from Liselotte Watkins, blogged here before)

and Classic (Marine blue, “New England style”)

These collections will start to sell online in February 2009, but not in America, only in Germany, Austria, Netherlands and Nordic countries. They want to start selling online and through catalogs first to see how things go and then see what they want to do from there. Perhaps America could be next? Stay tuned!

Out of the collections shown above, do you have a favorite? Why? Anything that you’d like to see that is currently missing when it comes to affordable home items? I think the world could use more of a selection when it comes to shower curtains and affordable patterned curtains personally.

(images from frida and H&M)

Posted in Decorating Tips, shopping on December 04, 2008

Real Spaces {Share Your Thoughts}

Let’s talk about decorating and have a little discussion about it today, shall we? I’ll start and then you can pick up with your own thoughts in the comments section. Ready? Okay. When I was a little girl, I would beg my mother to take me on night walks around our neighborhood so I could see what homes looked like inside. I really loved to catch glimpses of the magical places where people lived, and though I didn’t press my nose against any windows, I certainly loved admiring the many homes from the sidewalk as we strolled by. I particularly liked to see what was in the window. Sometimes a little cat relaxing on a blanket, or I’d notice plants and flowers in pretty pots, stained glass, and window decorations like glass animals or paper mobiles. It was always a treat to take night walks and today nothing has changed. Whenever I’m in Boston, I like to walk around the Back Bay (especially in early December) to see the twinkle lights and to catch peeks of the gorgeous brownstones that line the streets.

via Candi Mandi. She made her own headboard with fabric paint creating the word, Love.

In Germany, my vacation apartment is in a small city the size of Boston in a neighborhood with many gorgeous Jugenstil style buildings from the 1800′s. Our night walks here are always a delight, from sparkling store displays to a glimpse of someone’s apartment, even if only their window decorations. Many of you are the same, it’s not so unusual to enjoy seeing how real people live. That is why I love Flickr. I find so many homes there of some pretty creative people who live all over the world, and I never tire of viewing them because I see so many things I like and feel inspired by.

via Nestled In who has a lovely blog too.

When you view the magical world of interior design magazines it can often be a double edged sword. On one side you can become seriously inspired. On the other, if you take what you see too seriously, you may find yourself depressed, feeling as though your life will never be as glamorous, wondering why ‘they’ have it and you don’t (and let’s face it some of us will never live in a posh flat in London or on the beach in Malibu). I call these rooms “smoke and mirrors decorating”. Sure, these places are real in most cases but it’s important to remember that they are often designed by pros, styled to perfection by pros, photographed by pros, with some of the most expensive and luxurious products and furnishings on the market, and then presented as though this “perfect” home is absolutely normal and attainable — like we should all live in the rooms that the magazine presents as ‘the’ lifestyle. In America it’s often sold as the “American Dream”. In this economy some of us may need to learn to appreciate what we have and not lose our joy focusing too much on what we do not have. Goals are good to have, but many who become obsessed with trying to mimic what they see in a magazine are often disappointed with the end result because they forgot that what is in a decorating magazine (in most cases) is much like what you view in a fashion magazine, it’s a “model” of what part of society views and the other part should be viewing (in other words, what we are being sold to believe as the perfect body, the perfect room, the perfect products to buy, etc.) as completely normal, the lifestyle we should all be aiming for. Am I making sense yet? I’m trying… I’m trying… :)

The work studio of Lovely Design in Vancouver.

I think that it’s obvious when you read certain magazines or even blogs, sometimes it’s as though everyone is decorating in somewhat the same way and professing to be unique and not “mainstream” yet they are all unique in exactly the same way, you know? I’m guilty of this as well, I often fall into seeing something on a blog or in a magazine and hopping on the wagon incorporating a look into my home that isn’t really “me” but because I saw it elsewhere I decided that I should try it out. I’s normal to do this and certainly nothing wrong with it, but it’s important to remember that no one should be given the authority to tell you what is “good” decorating and what is “bad” decorating, just as with art it is open to personal interpretation (to a certain degree of course, skill is something you can measure to a certain extent but that is an entirely different conversation). There are those naturally born with very good style and this translates into their home and by good style I mean that they possess the knack of pulling things together in a way that is visually appealing. Like the home owners featured in this blog post, they’re all extremely talented with such a gift in my eyes. I think though that it’s important to keep in mind that the most commonly accepted style is usually considered the ‘best’ style but it doesn’t mean it is truly THE BEST, it’s just the most commonly accepted style during a certain period of time.

Nicole – A habitat of being, also a blogger.

In the end I’m simply trying to say to create a home, a room, a corner of your home, any space that belongs to you (even half of your dorm room) into a space that has your fingerprint on it — something personal and special, a place that supports you, the invigorates, refreshes, inspires. If you like it, that’s what matters the most. The homes that I enjoy most are those real spaces that I recall seeing as I strolled hand in hand with my mother many years ago, the rooms I see as I walk at night now with my husband, and the homes I see of my friends, family, clients, and those on sites like Flickr. Warm, lived in, special places where there is a sense of pride, history, present, and future. It’s hard to describe in words so the photos I’ve placed in the post are a visual interpretation of what I’m trying so hard say.

Moline, aka Yvonne, a neighbor of mine here in Germany who lives about 30 minutes to the north. Her home is utterly breathtaking. More here and here.

From Christianna’s Earthly Delights.

From ZAI Couple in Latvia. They also blog here.

Kleofea in Switzerland.

From -Haust-

From the amazing Herz-Allerliebst in Germany who has a lovely relaxing home.

An entry to a beautiful New York home, Door Sixteen does decorating so, so right. She blogs too.

Via Posidriv in Norway, her blog is here.

Jasna Janekovic in Germany, who sells things that she creates here in her DaWanda shop. She even hand painted polka dots on her fridge!

Alex The Girl from Girl At Play based in Santa Monica, CA. Her former living room is to die for in my opinion.

Do you have your own opinions on what defines a real space? I’d LOVE your thoughts so please share them below…

(images linked to their sources above)

Posted in Decorating Tips on December 01, 2008

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