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Designers + Stylists

My Journey: Styling From The Heart

June 21, 2016

I have big news! I have to tell you guys where I’m flying this morning… I’m heading up north to a Swedish island called Gotland. Have you heard of it? I mentioned recently that I was going but left out WHY… Well my friends, I’m taking a masterclass with Creative Director and Stylist Dietlind Wolf.

My Journey: Styling From The Heart

Dietlind is a leading stylist for 25 years in Germany, styling stories for magazines globally, but mostly German and Dutch publications. She also is a self-taught photographer and for the past several years has coupled her styling work WITH her own photos. Dietlind is also a columnist for Sweet Paul magazine. She designs and makes a line of heartbreakingly poetic and beautiful ceramics that sell in New York City’s own ABC Carpet + Home too, all produced in Hamburg by her own hands, with her own paint, infused with her unique point of view.

My Journey: Styling From The Heart

Dietlind also does some beautiful collaborative efforts with talented people since she is more than a stylist, she makes so many of the props she uses, she is a true artist. She is the first stylist in Germany that ever caught my eye whom I’ve followed for years. When I moved here in 2009, I saw her work more and more in magazines and really took a liking to it. Her style just speaks to me. I am hard to impress when it comes to styling these days. I’ve seen it all… And most of the work I see doesn’t stand out as a signature look or even as special. I feel like some work doesn’t tell a real story and stylists are just showing what everyone else shows in almost the same way because it “works”. I am sure this is largely driven by their clients or the magazine they work for. It’s not that they are copying, it’s just how they were trained. I fall into this at times too. No one is to blame! But some stylists are just fantastic, they definitely tell a story and awaken the senses bringing objects to life.

My Journey: Styling From The Heart

I don’t find most of the styling I see in most magazines and especially in catalogs, that inspirational lately. Do you? Sometimes I believe if you’ve seen one issue you’ve seen them all. The styling doesn’t change and neither do the photography angles, nor do the portraits of people who look almost depressed sitting in their beautiful houses. I don’t find that beautiful or touching, a lot of times I walk away feeling empty. To see a home story with everything perfectly placed and people looking “too cool” to smile or at least show some emotion in their eyes… it’s almost like showing where ghosts live.

My Journey: Styling From The Heart

Why bother learning to become a better stylist if what is already out there works fine though? What has become popular, mainstream, or trendy, isn’t always inspirational, touching or magical. Lots of work can run very vanilla, generic, simplistic but in a negative way. It can sometimes look like everyone has the same muse and is just replicating. A home as a museum and a person as unfeeling doesn’t speak to my heart.

My Journey: Styling From The Heart

On the flipside, there is still genuine magic out there being produced, it’s just not so common. But you can spot it and immediately you’ll know it’s special. Like some of these stories produced by leading Aussie stylists. Or some of the Americans, especially the New Yorkers… Or you look at the work of some of the Spanish or French stylists… Or those living in the UK, Denmark and Sweden… You can’t help but look at their work and feel fire in your belly and love again for interiors, home, food and family. When I stop to study a photo because the placement of objects are so interesting, then it’s no longer just a photo of stuff in a home or on a table, it’s a piece of art, and I love that.

My Journey: Styling From The Heart

That’s why I admire the work of Dietlind as shown throughout this post. Storytelling through mini scenes, through objects, food, flowers, ceramics… inspires me to no end. I am excited that I will get to share nearly a week under her masterclass as a student, to soak in her wisdom and learn a new way. Starting in a few hours, I will land in Gotland and live in an old Swedish farmhouse with my friend Leslie Shewring, and we’ll be only a stone’s throw away from the beach, with a private greenhouse and an organic garden on the property. And we will travel to prop shops on the island and create scenes and take photographs. Dietlind will train us on how to develop all of our senses and bring them into our work more fully, making our styling more robust and magical. I simply cannot miss this experience to train under one of my favorite stylists. I’ve invested so much time and money into this trip, I want to make the most of it – I have a two-year-old boy so stepping out of my role as mommy for 5 nights is a big deal. I miss him already but I cannot think about that… This is fuel for my soul and good for my work, so off I go!

My Journey: Styling From The Heart

I’ve not spoken much about this course because it was something I wanted to keep in my back pocket until I felt ready to talk about it. But I’m thrilled and ready to be molded and shaped like a fresh piece of clay. I am stuck in a certain way of styling and I want to grow. I want to start styling the things my heart feels when I touch objects, I want to display them in a way that tells a story, that makes people think and feel something, I want to approach my work more artfully and create a certain intimacy but also improve my skill set. To me, creativity is an ongoing process of learning, feeling stuck, wiggling out, learning again, getting inspired, going into a hole, coming out, learning, working hard, again and again and again.

I want to learn how to put my own stamp on the work I style, because also take my own photos now and want to write, style and photograph my own book from beginning to end someday. In order to do that successfully, I must take on a new adventure, become a student, and allow myself to feel new light and breath fresh air. My 4th book, with Leslie Shewring, to publish in September, has many photos inside styled and photographed by me. But of course, not solely. I could never style and shoot an entire book at this point along with write it! Yet, this is my goal so to get to that point, I need to train hard. This is the first creative retreat I’ve ever been on in my life where I was the student, so I’m absolutely ready and excited for whatever comes my way and to see what results.

If you want to follow my journey on Instagram, I'll be posting live from Gotland, Sweden from 21 June until 27 June so please enjoy my Swedish feed and leave comments as I go, I would love to read them. I'm @decor8 on Instagram.Click To Tweet

Wish me luck and see you on Instagram!

xo Holly

(Photography + Styling: Dietlind Wolf)






Designers + Stylists

Marbled Wood Flooring By Snedker Studio

May 25, 2016

I came across some magical wood flooring (and decorative wood for walls too!) last week and still days later, I can’t stop thinking about it. This is always a sign that I have to share with all of you! I feel like I could write a glorious intro but the photos so beautifully speak for themselves that I’m not sure I could do better in words. All I can say is that this is wood and these floors and walls make me so deliriously happy.

Marbled Wood Flooring By Snedker Studio

Designed by Pernille Snedker Hansen of Snedker Studio, these surfaces definitely satisfy my love of interesting floors which is why I adore decorative tile so much. She is both an artist and designer who loves to explore color and patterns and is fascinated by the traditional craft of marbling, a technique she has brought to her wooden surface designs. Her work reminds me a lot of Suminagashi (floating ink) marbling, a Japanese technique that was practiced in the 12th century long before it landed in western cultures.

Marbled Wood Flooring By Snedker Studio

In 2012, Pernille won the Wallpaper Design Award and currently exhibits her work in conjunction with the Danish Crafts Council. Beginning today, she is also exhibiting in Copenhagen as part of 3 Days of Design at KONTEMPO, so go and check that out if you can. Continue Reading…






Designers + Stylists

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

April 2, 2015

I was recently introduced to Luke Edward Hall, a British interior designer, prop stylist, illustrator and protege of Ben Pentreath, and found his new line of home decor so very English and inspiring. My favorites are the “Delicious” plates and the hand drawn tiger cushions. Here is a glimpse of some of his styling and illustration work below along with a photo of him from a great story I read in Lonny mag. I’ve included some shots from his IG account too since I found it very inspirational to follow.

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Stylist Luke Edward Hall

Luke Edward Hall (25) is an interior designer, stylist and illustrator. After graduating from Central Saint Martins in 2012 with a degree in Menswear Fashion Design, Luke and two like-minded friends ran Fox and Flyte, a thriving online antiques shop. Combining his passion for design and retail, Luke founded his eponymous range of homewares and fabrics in 2014 and has been carefully growing his interior empire into a full home offering. Luke also currently works in the interior decoration department of the acclaimed architectural designer Ben Pentreath, in London’s Bloomsbury and is about to launch a new collection of illustrated plates through his online store.

This moody dark English style is so appealing to me. My father used to own an English pub (in addition to his daytime career) and the bar was shipped over from England to South Carolina where we lived and it was such a moody, dark place that the locals really loved. I used to go there every day after school and wait for my mother to bring me home since she managed it during the day, and I remember it being such a cozy space in all of the dark moody greens, navy, burnt umber, dark red, mustard… Leathers and woods. Very Sherlock Holmes (Cumberbatch version).

It was such a contrast to our family home, which was light, bright and very colorful like my mother. It was even in such contrast to the neighborhood – a beachfront community. You could escape the sunshine for the pub and instantly feel like you were on vacation in England ordering a pint. My father’s family has English blood, which was why he had such a passion for opening a place like that. Whenever I see spaces like this, I think fondly of my father and his decorating style.

In fact, whenever I’m in London I think about my English ancestry and understand why I like it there so much – there is part of me who definitely feels a link despite how very American I am.

Isn’t Luke on such a great path for his age? I’m always so impressed when I see people in their early twenties, fresh from design school, with product lines already. It seems like today there is nothing stopping anyone with ambition as the start up costs of getting things made and the whole “free” internet makes it so much easier than in times’ past. I think he has a lot of potential and can’t wait to see what else he does down the road.

Do you find this eclectic mix of objects coupled with lots of dark hues to your liking? 

(photos: Lonny, Luke Edward Hall and 2LG)






Designers + Stylists

Norwegian Home Products By FunkyDoris

October 17, 2014

It’s always fun sharing products from small labels, like FunkyDoris which was founded in 2012 by two Norwegian textile designers, Grethe Bjørk and Tove Trydal. Inspired by what they call the best decades of Scandinavian design (1950s-1970s), their core products are pillows, poufs and pendant lamps along with kitchen products such as tea towels, potholders, aprons and birch veneer trays. They’ve recently added a new range of handmade bowls, candle holders and pendant lights. These are great for adding shots of color in your home and of course, in the typical Scandinavian way of adding color against a neutral background – always a winner!

Norwegian Home Products By FunkyDoris

Norwegian Home Products By FunkyDoris

Norwegian Home Products By FunkyDoris

Norwegian Home Products By FunkyDoris

Norwegian Home Products By FunkyDoris

 

I rather like the idea of hopping on my scooter and taking off for a picnic in the countryside right about now, don’t you?

(images: FunkyDoris)






Designers + Stylists

Inspired By Stylist James Leland Day

August 29, 2014

I always like to peek in on what my friend James Leland Day is up to on his website. He has a few new style stories on his site that inspired me today to take a country drive. James is an American professional Style Director and Interior Designer who lived in Paris for years and who now is based in Berlin and has quite an extraordinary eye and vision and is a really lovely person to boot.

Inspired By Stylist James Leland Day

If you were at my book launch in London at Anthropologie on Regents Street awhile back, you will remember meeting him – he was one of my special guests who spoke about decorating. Here are some inspirations from his portfolio to inspire your weekend. I’m feeling Fall-ish after seeing these images and then spending the afternoon in the German countryside picking flowers, pumpkins, squash, sunflowers… So I’m ready to work on preparing the house for more of a Fall mood this weekend to welcome in September. What about you, what will you do? For my friends stateside, have a lovely Labor Day weekend.

Inspired By Stylist James Leland Day Inspired By Stylist James Leland Day Inspired By Stylist James Leland Day Inspired By Stylist James Leland Day Inspired By Stylist James Leland Day Inspired By Stylist James Leland Day Inspired By Stylist James Leland Day   Are you feeling Fall-ish too? (images: james leland day)






Designers + Stylists

Stunning German Home + Studio Oink

June 21, 2014

Hello everyone! Okay so I have to highlight a recent home tour and article that I just found in my inbox from the beautiful Est Magazine because it’s a pretty swank pad based in Germany and as an American living here at the moment, it’s always exciting to see what’s happening in my own part of the world. I feel like everything beautiful and cool that is what I consider tasteful, enviable, drool-worthy… is coming out of Los Angeles or Sydney at the moment. I know that’s NOT the case, as this home clearly shows, so that’s why I really want to highlight it. If you don’t live in southern California or Australia one can feel a bit like they are missing out on all of the interiors fun!

Stunning German Home + Studio Oink

This home is in Wiesbaden, Germany and is owned by interior designers and stylists Lea Korzeczek and Matthias Hiller of Studio Oink, a design studio focused on set design and residential interior design. I adore their marble floor, which really surprised me because normally I don’t go for tile or marble in living spaces (wet spaces, yes – kitchen, entry, laundry, bathroom, etc.). The marble is so classy I think, and being beige vs. the gray marble you normally see, it is warm and welcoming as marble can often feel very sterile. I wouldn’t go as far to say that this apartment feels “warm” though, it still has a coolness about it but that is obviously what this talented duo was going for – something upscale and posh. Mission accomplished. James Bond could live here.

Stunning German Home + Studio Oink

Stunning German Home + Studio Oink

Stunning German Home + Studio Oink

Stunning German Home + Studio Oink

I personally like the details, like the texture of the wall behind the art above, the coastal-theme artwork, the soft tones, the lighting, the wooden chairs and the gorgeous sheepskin throw. I, of course, like the addition of fresh flowers – especially the floppy romantic peony. Well done.

Here are some of their other projects below; also quite stunning and minimalistic but with pretty accents that draw you in. Their rooms look like they could be in films. I particularly adore the kitchen below…

Stunning German Home + Studio Oink
Stunning German Home + Studio Oink
Stunning German Home + Studio OinkStunning German Home + Studio Oink
Stunning German Home + Studio Oink
Stunning German Home + Studio Oink
Stunning German Home + Studio Oink
Stunning German Home + Studio Oink

The fresh green plants really call to me, especially the above shot with a peek of greenery through the old wooden windows… These photos are all so light and bright, a big vitamin D injection for sure.

What do you like about these spaces? See anything that calls out to you?

PSST: Studio Oink also has a blog that I just started following called Grand et Petit. Check it out. They have a lovely little online shop too.

(images: studio oink)






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