I think I could go on blogging about the things I discovered in Stockholm forever – and I only visited for 4 days! I can’t imagine spending a year or even a lifetime there, it seems the design well is never dry – there’s always something new and exciting to learn about. I found out about Anna Irinarchos recently because I spotted her Magnet pendant light in a magazine (I think the Swedish Elle) and thought it was so cool because it’s magnetic, so you can personalize it however you’d like.
After clicking around on her site, I then discovered that she is one half of a design firm called wis design, with lots of additional products. Like this gorgeous piece. Double-drool.
I identified it immediately due to Emma who blogged about it recently, it’s called the Decades chest of drawers (thanks, Emma!) It was made using discarded drawers found at flea markets. Is this a great idea or what? I think it’s very Wary Meyers, I can see them looking for street castaways in New York and pulling together something like this. It’s also very Anthro. I wonder if this dresser will end up in a future catalog? I think Anthro buyers frequently hop planes to Scandinavia sourcing for products and inspiration because as I strolled Stockholm, I could see them selling just about everything I found there. And can you blame them? There is so much beauty and innovative design, especially in Sweden, Anna Irinarchos and Wis Design is just another example of this fact.
(images from anna irinarchos and wis design)
Yowsah! Have you heard of German designer Lars Contzen? He believes that, ?Decor expresses a feeling for life” and with an extensive client list and a whole slew of eye-popping products ranging from furniture to rugs, tableware, and wallpaper, I think you’ll clearly see the feeling he’s trying to express. Joy. Happiness. Fresh and full of life. With bold geometrics in groovy kaleidoscopic colors, his surface designs are futuristic and a far cry from shy.
His fab faux bois bench in hot pink has my attention, especially against hardwood flooring, I’d love to see one in a hallway with colorful rubber boots beneath it and a huge frameless mirror directly above with a white shelf floating directly below the mirror. I see the wall in a happy yellow – we could call the hallway Pink Lemonade inspired by these ladies, what do you think? And for the ultimate statement, a medium sized disco ball pendant light so I can crank a little Walk It Out Fosse, of course. Or Abba.
Which leads me to ask lighting designers around the world – why aren’t you designing a pendant light that looks like a disco ball? I don’t get it. I can even design it for you, I have so many ideas but imagine a disco ball with the bottom 1/4 chopped off, hollow inside, with a light bulb for illuminating through the clear (or iridescent) glass mosaic tiles on the exterior. I mean, hello designers we could totally do this. The world needs these things. Maybe it could have an extra mechanism where you could flick a switch and it would throw out a little strobe light action for when you entertain friends. Okay tacky. But fun. Otherwise, it’s basically a light fixture every other time. I’m totally disappointed that someone isn’t out there with one already. I’d totally buy it if it were done right (not kitschy and cheap). But I digress, back to Lars Contzen and his fabulousness. Here’s some more eye candy from his kick butt portfolio.
(images from lars contzen)
Ready to be totally inspired? I recently mentioned Anne Wendlandt, also known as Enna, promising that if she allowed me to take photos of her new shop here in Hannover that I would share them with you. Well, I met the lovely Anne today and spent time with her visiting her shop/work studio and I walked away with a skip in my step because I felt so inspired by this young, talented artist.
She used regular flat latex paint in her favorite colors and created a stencil by hand that she applied to the wall to repeat the pattern. Clever!
Anne is so nice and open, very easy to talk to and so excited about being a part of a design blog as she is just starting to explore the whole world of blogging and selling online so I’m just as thrilled to talk about her work here on decor8.
She has an etsy store, a DaWanda shop, and a store on her website. In addition to all of this, she creates many things by hand, she’s a talented illustrator, and a graphic designer along with a shop owner, so Anne is a busy lady. I’m so excited to share her store with you because there are so many little details and pretty things to tell you about. Would you like to know more? Okay, here’s a little tour.
Here are some of her fabrics and the handmade rubber stamps she uses for her designs. She told me how to make handmade stamps, so I’m quite excited to give it a try. I may ask her if I can take a class with her, I’d love to learn a few things from her to apply as a hobby, there’s so many fun things to do to personalize your space.
What does Anne design? I guess a better question is, what doesn’t this girl do? :) She does so much. She crafts earrings out of polymer clay that she then hand paints, she designs postcards, pillows, shirts, hoodies, and onesies for baby, plates, iron-on patches, wrapping paper, softies, marketing materials for her business, her website, the signage on the window of her shop, the list goes on and on. She is inspired by so much, she certainly doesn’t want to limit herself to just one thing.
These are plates that she found at a second hand store, and after cleaning them up, she applied her illustrations to them and displays them as art in her shop. I asked if she’d consider selling them to me, so I’m awaiting her decision because she’d not been asked before. I encouraged her to consider creating more and selling them in her shop and online, I really think people would like to own these.
She also sells items from etsy sellers that she loves and Japanese products, so this shop has lots of pretty things to look at and purchase. She’s expecting an order of goodies from Japan any day now, so I will have to return to Enna to see her new stock once it arrives, of course! Who can resist Japanese zakka cuteness?
This is her new wrapping paper, don’t you love the pattern? This folksy style is really big right now, especially these Russian dolls called matryoshkas. They’ve been in all the magazines for the past 6 months, you can’t help but notice a trend here. Between Asian prints, African patterns, and folk-inspired patterns from Russia and Poland, there’s something for everyone this season. Oh, by the way, you can buy this wrapping paper from her for only $4 on etsy if you’d like. I grabbed a sheet today, I want to line my desk drawer with it. Here’s some of my loot from today…
(images by holly + thorsten becker for decor8)
I spent lots of time today out enjoying the beautiful Autumn weather here in Germany, and my travels around the city brought me to Hannover Linden to visit a few creative locals with shops that I really enjoyed visiting. I’ll introduce you to two that I found quite inspiring. First up is Gross Stadt Rekorder, a store and gallery that I liked very much.
The fashion designers sharing the space invite artists in for mini exhibitions, something I’m a huge fan of – the promotion of artists that I may not have heard of otherwise. Gross Stadt Rekorder current features the work of 25-year-old Hannover-based artist Evelyn Hahn, the exhibit is called “Dream A Little Dream” and I liked it so much that I asked if I could take photos to share with you.
I really enjoyed Evelyn’s work and especially how it was installed, so creative! And all of the various surfaces she works on from wood to paper, canvas, even small stones, I liked the variety very much. Her edgy illustrative work is so interesting, so urban, her distorted characters and heavy lines in mostly black and white held my interest for quite some time, some pieces I couldn’t take my eyes off of. I hope an American gallery will pick her up because I think her work needs to be seen in the states because I think people would respond to it — and I like art that creates a reaction and makes one step back and think. I just loved how her art was displayed on this wall below in all the mini antique frames, from ovals to squares. Great idea for art arrangement in the home I think. The center piece was a small wooden chalkboard with Liebe Dich written on it and a small piece of chalk suspended from a string. It was really sweet. Some of her work was altered images, for instance a vintage portrait of a lady with a new head – a head created by Evelyn, popped onto the body. Or an illustration on a lace doily on a painted board. You can click on the images to see larger views to check out some of the details. Perhaps it will get your creative wheels turning for your very own art project.
One thing that I love about northern Germany, from Hannover to Hamburg and especially Berlin, is all the raw indie talent that exists over here, it’s all very inspired by life in Germany, the history of this country, their culture, and the future that these talents young people hope to build here. It’s edgy, there are messages woven into their work, and it’s unique and very authentic, something I appreciate so much.
Gross Stadt Rekorder is located in Hannover Linden at Deisterstr. 77. Evelyn’s exhibit will be on display until October 31, 2007. And pay special attention to their fashion, the clothes are amazing. I think ‘Little Red Riding Hood makes a life for herself in Berlin’ sums up the style to me. :)
(images by holly becker for decor8)