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Ljungbergs Textiles (Sweden)

I love to learn the history behind some of my favorite companies because their beginnings are often based on real experiences that I can relate to as a freelancer; passion, struggle, determination, a genuine love for the trade, and a willingness to reach ones personal best, no matter how hard or how uphill it may seem at times.

It’s one thing to be a writer or a design consultant. Quite another to own your own printery like one of my favorite textile manufacturers, Ljungbergs. I imagine the process of perfecting the prints, fine tuning the colors, hiring trained staff, operating large machinery, all of it must take a great deal of patience and much time to ‘get right’. Especially since being the best printer means being an absolute perfectionist.

Ljungbergs is a printery founded by Erik Ljungberg in 1949, one of the most skilled textile printers in Sweden in his time. Ljungberg was hired by Svenskt Tenn to produce Josef Frank fabrics, which are still in production today, all hand printed and gorgeous. Long after Ljungberg passed in 1983, his dream lives on and the printing continues.

One bit I didn’t know about Ljungbergs is that they not only take on large commissions, but will gladly work with anyone on a small project, printing patterns on cotton or linen. Another interesting fact is that they have a showroom in Stockholm, Area, and an outlet store in Floda, not far from G?teborg. If you ever hear I’m visiting Sweden, you know where to find me.

Ljungbergs shares a brief history behind their signature fabric, which I found completely fascinating. “Signed Textiles took its start in 1954 when the Swedish department store NK launched a new collection of fabrics for the expanding public sector in Sweden. The idea was to improve the status of textile design as an art form by letting the artists sign their work. The copyright regulations regarding art work at this time was still neglected.”
Learn more about their signature fabric here.

Like most of you, my best ideas flow freely when I see something I connect with on some level, no matter how small or insignificant the same item may be to someone else, it doesn’t matter because it’s my experience and what I take away from it that gives me the inspiration I need. I’m certain you process things much the same. I’m a very tactile and expressive person, so I love fabric because I can not only touch it for instant pleasure, but also shape and sew it into many different forms so it can serve as something pleasing to the eye, functional, or both – allowing me to express myself. When I see a pattern that stimulates my mind, ideas flow so freely that I have to write them all down to keep up. The textiles that Ljungbergs prints sends my brain into absolute overdrive.


How do you respond to prints and patterns?

(images from ljungbergs)

Posted in shopping, textiles, travel on March 15, 2007

Annette Meurer of Wechselstelle (Hannover)

Annette Meurer is the talent behind Wechselstelle, her amazing design studio based in Hannover, Germany. From there, she creates textiles, art, products made from silicone, and fashion.

I want everything in the above two images, the sofa (love the textile), the dog painted on the wall, the art, all of it. Love this.

Everything has a fresh, happy vibe – I absolutely love her technique, so spirited! I first discovered her at Frau Zimmer last year and have been checking her site for updates ever since. I’m hoping that someday, I’ll see Wechselstelle products available somewhere online or in American boutiques because everything would fly off the shelves – seriously, her work that good.


I love the sporty illustrations, the pugs, the deliciously preppy colors, all I can say is fresh, fresh, fresh! I own a few of her silicone tiles, they look gorgeous pressed against a window where I have mine displayed, and I think I only paid $25- Euro for both. They’re the size of a standard drink coaster, with vibrant colors and the best illustrations ever. Mine have a single face on them, one of a man, the other, a woman. Available as circles or squares, sold as a set of two, in a single box (see below).

Even the silicone oven mits stick to the wall, window, appliances, glass…

You can view her work here, and if you’re a store owner or you simply want to inquire about her work, email Annette at kontakt{at}wechselstelle{dot}de. When I’m in Hannover again this Fall, I hope to arrange a meet-up with Annette because I’d love to see her entire collection and shop, of course!


At this time, Wechselstelle appears to only be sold at Frau Zimmer in Hannover, so if you happen to live there, lucky you!

(images from annette meurer)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, shopping, textiles, travel on March 14, 2007

Re-found Objects

If you love vintage style, don’t miss this place. It seems like every time I pick up an issue of Living Etc, I spot products from Re-found Objects. What a terrific source for reproduction and recycled vintage goods, it’s like a glorious online flea market.

These pendant jelly lights, made from vintage jelly molds, are totally clever, don’t you think? I’d love to paint them in white or a bright fire engine red.

And I love the old-fashioned charm of these vintage-inspired pillows, the union jack is my favorite, I’m not huge on flags as decor, but a tiny little jack is so quintessentially Britian that it’s a must-have for any anglophile.

But back to those mold lights, how hard could it be to make your own? Perhaps search ebay for vintage jelly molds (I just spotted a set of 4 there for $1.99!), drill a hole in the top center, and purchase one of those inexpensive lighting kits from IKEA and you’re more or less finished. You could also find a vintage bundt pan, those already have a hole. Hmmm. I seriously wonder how easy a project like this would be because on paper it doesn’t look like much of a challenge. Has anyone worked on a similar project before?

(images from re-found objects)

Posted in lighting, textiles, vintage on March 13, 2007

Variegated Launches *New* Etsy Store!

Thanks Corbett for telling me about the new Variegated etsy shop. There’s a slew of sale items on overstock and sample pillows, which they’re moving out at great prices to make room for new Spring lines. Pillows priced between $15-25 – gotta love that!


(images from variegated)

Posted in etsy, textiles on March 08, 2007

Books:

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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