I found out about this superb little online shop called Rowen & Wren that I know you’ll just love… there are pretty things for the home inside their virtual doors to enjoy and purchase. In addition to great finds, I really like how they style their items – they make you want them in your home which should be the goal of every online retailer… to make you want to shop!
Such sweet things… and styling. Things I would like to own: The button-backed chair, these candlesticks, this floor lamp, this mixed bulb pendant and two of these tables for my living room. I’m dying for some new end tables – I’m currently using one from my old vacation apartment that has a bit of a Moroccan vibe in white and another is a vintage table I found on the street that, while nice, isn’t nearly as big as I need it to be. I want my living room to be finished since I plan to have a big anniversary party at home in July for our 10th anniversary and currently my house isn’t where I want it to be for welcoming guests so I’m working hard on it!
(images: rowen & wren)
This post comes with a warning: If you live outside of Belgium you may become very annoyed by what I’m about to show you. Essentially this post is about seeing things that we cannot have, and it’s the canary before the cat I know, but I still have to share this with you. I recently learned about a very limited collection from IKEA called Annorlunda, meaning Different (maybe that’s us so we don’t get it where we live?), of ethnic modern finds curated by their designers and on offer in only TWO select stores in the whole wide world (no, I’m not using tone or ‘tude, okay maybe a little) and I’m dying to know what you think of it and the whole concept of pop-up IKEA collections in random places? I mean, I want to say Bahhhh they are mean to tease, but when I see these things I think that at least they are trying to keep the Belgium people good and stylish (like they need help) while the rest of us looks on in pain with fingers and nose pressed firmly to the glass — seeing what we cannot have.
Have I managed to depress you yet? On the up side, I think this whole concept is quite brilliant though I hate to say that but I really am
extremely jealous happy for my Belgium friends that they can go to their Zaventem or Anderlecht stores and find all of these amazing things… I almost want to drive over just to see what’s left because I spy a few pieces that I’d love to put on my three season porch like the turquoise chair (which could easily be spray painted into black and put in a living room). I think this collection would do great in so many other countries, like Germany (hint, hint), the UK and the US. Maybe this is one of those test things big companies do to avoid taking too much risk, so they dip in their toe to see how well something goes before doing a grand roll-out. Perhaps we’ll see Annorlunda in Annorbyneighborhood real soon.
I find it interesting how this collection came to be. IKEA basically sent five of their designers on a plane to hand pick inspiring objects that they wanted to turn into a limited collection with a ethnic vibe. The result is a line of products that are very global, fashion-inspired (I see lots of runway trends in these pieces, don’t you?) and still budget conscious which is what IKEA is all about. Plus, it’s what Scandinavians are all about as current trends up there are all about mixing in ethnic influences because those influences have crept over the border into Germany and people here are into ethnic touches as well, though they always were but the ethnic touches in brightly colored paint are much fresher than the originally teak variety that are floating around in most “ethnic shops” locally. My vote is on brightly lacquered furniture, baby!
There are so many products being designed today, our selection is so diverse compared to the choices our parents once had, and I think we are so lucky to have access to things from so many corners of the globe. So what do you think of limited edition pop-up collections put on by the big blue box?
(Found via: Lise at Urban Style Vibes. Photos: IKEA)
I can really get into wish listing things. Are you with me? They are a lot of fun to pull together but even more, they often motivate me to get things done or to have a certain goal to work towards. Currently, I’m wish listing storage items for my home – everything from zip bags for blankets to bins and magazine folders. There is no doubt about it, when I’m organized I can do my best work. What about you? Some function really well in chaos but I need definite places for everything and a neat space so that my ideas can flow freely. If I’m not organized, I feel like I’m walking in wet sand up to my knees. To motivate myself to get organized at home, I created a wish list for furniture that I’d like to share with you that is both good looking and practical that I also know can help me to get my act together. Introducing my storage wish list…
Pretty, right? I love wooden cabinets, preferably vintage, in gray tones, gray-browns, creamy whites and pure whites… I like them painted inside in a favorite color that is really striking or wallpaper inside. I like hardware that is pretty like hand-painted ceramic knobs. But most of all, I like containing my stuff in set places so I can have some peace of mind! I don’t know if you are the same, but when I can’t find my scissors or packing tape for a box I’m about to send I get a little peeved!
I believe that everything in the home should have a place. Keys, spices, dish towels, linens, tacks, scissors… you simply must devote a space to everything, including spare buttons and stamps, because those are always the items that you turn over your house trying to find the second you need them and you know you have a stamp laying around somewhere! Another organization tip is that you have to return items to their nook immediately after use to avoid clutter and chaos as well.
I’m currently in the process of organizing my home and for me it means buying furniture. I’ve not purchased much for my new place since moving in last October. I know, eek is right! The space I had before this one was significantly smaller (550 sq ft) so I had all of the storage and furniture that I needed in a one bedroom apartment. But now that my home has 2,300 sq ft and huge open rooms, I need to furnish it properly. First though, I’ve spent a lot of time THINKING. I really needed to get a feel for this massive city apartment – a feel for the space, what I want to do in each room, etc. before investing in furniture. It’s natural when you first move in to a home to go out and buy everything and be done with it within a few weeks. Problem with that is, you make purchases you often regret later on. You have to get a feel for the space before investing in quality pieces of furniture.
Would you like to see the first item that I purchased on my storage wish list? Here it is….
Above you can see my new cabinet shown in the Lys Vintage shop in Hamburg. I first “met” it several months ago in person and fell in love at first sight. I particularly love how solid it is and that it’s this gorgeous gray brown wood with glass doors. It doesn’t hurt that it’s a new piece but made from vintage wood and that it is from France. It will arrive in just a few weeks and I cannot wait to use it. Once it arrives, I’ll show you where I’ve placed it in my home and what I’ve put inside so perhaps it will motivate you to get organized if you’re not currently. I ordered it from Simone who owns Lys Vintage and curates the lovely selection in this favorite shop of mine located in nearby Hamburg.
Now I’m looking for a closet with a single door, in wood, that I can put in my guest bedroom. We will use it to store winter coats and also as a place for guests to hang some of their garments. I am sourcing for something like this one currently, can you see it there in the left corner in creamy white? I think Simone sold this one, so I’m in the prowl for something similar, definitely an antique and not a reproduction piece, for the guest room.
This beauty is tall, antique, from France, gray, solid wood, and inside it has only shelves so it would be perfect for my work room to use as a crafts/props closet where I can store everything that I use and love but can also hide stuff in an attempt to have less visual clutter in my work area since it distracts me quite a lot. I’m not sure where I can find a cabinet like it, most likely a flea market or eBay, so I’m on the prowl… This one is in Tine’s dining room, owner of Tine K Home. Does anyone have some leads for me? Ideally I’d love one in gray like Tine’s but I have plenty of paint and so I don’t care what color the cabinet is in because if it’s wood, I can paint it! I also want to wallpaper inside… Because Shannon Fricke’s cabinet below that I wrote about nearly a year ago hasn’t left my radar.
And yes, I’m also looking for something like this for my home too. I hope to eventually find all of the storage that I need (German homes and apartments typically do not come with closets so no room in my home has one except for the kitchen, hence my need for storage!). Remember, I’m American. I come from the land of walk-in closets so this has been an adjustment for me.
So those are my dream storage cabinets, currently on my wish list with the exception of the one I will soon own and the others that I hope to have the patience to source and find.
What’s currently on your wish list? Does your wish list motivate you or depress you? Do you have links to share to pages where you keep your wish lists?
(images: first two: lys vintage, third: debi treloar for decorate.)
Some of Sweden’s most prominent designers have made products for your home for Save The Children, and one of my favorite designers, Lisa Bengtsson, has a new collection of wallpaper, textiles and posters created especially for their design shop. The sweet doggy patterns that you see below are from the Tillsammans collection (which means Together in Swedish) and shows dachshunds from around the world.
As mentioned, these products are in cooperation with Save the Children and show six illustrations depicting dachshunds from around the world with hats and hairstyles to symbolize different nationalities. The illustrations are exclusively designed for Save the Children and are available only in their design shop. I like to know that when I buy something beautiful for my home that I am supporting such a worthwhile cause — to protect and save little ones against violence and sexual assault and to invest in their future by ensuring that they receive a proper education in Sweden and in other parts of the world.
I love seeing good design being used to promote and support something so important and to own something that I know supported children in need makes the item, for me at least, so much more valuable and gives me a genuine emotional connection to it. Design with heart. With soul. With intention that goes beyond personal gain.
I believe that our possessions should have positive associations (or else what’s the point in owning them?) and any design item created for such a worthy cause would definitely make it even more cherished and special in my home. Do you agree?
Thank you Helena from Room and Serve for writing to me about this today!
(images: lisa bengtsson/save the children)