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Trends

Caravans Are Hot!

July 30, 2009

I’m seeing lots of caravans lately… in print, online, in photography, on clothing, caravans are hot! And they’re not used only as design motifs, real life caravans (well in Europe they’re called that, here in the states we usually refer to them as travel trailers) are a hot new trend popping up all over – a bit of a home away from home with unlimited decorating possibilities. Here’s a few caravans to inspire you today in case you haven’t noticed them yet — surely you will now.

Caravans Are Hot!

a. Ken enjoyed the peace and quiet by Yellow Monday, b. the caravan exhibition by Seaspray Blue, c. image from No Chintz, d. caravan series by Leah Giberson, e. Remember Happiness by Vol. 25, f. fabric from Leanne Graeff and g. Metal caravan.

Caravans Are Hot!

Or how about the Mehrzeller concept caravan? I prefer the vintage gypsy wagons myself, or the American classic Airstream but if you’re a modernist this one will dazzle (and confuse) passerbys on the interstate for sure!

Caravans Are Hot!

These caravans are so sweet… Imagine owning one and keeping it in the backyard as an traveling art studio that you could bring to fairs if you are a painter/crafter? So cute! Psst: Here’s a great article in the London Telegraph today about Caravans of Love that you may enjoy.

Where are you seeing caravans lately? Would you like to own one? How would you use it – vacation, staycation in the backyard, for business???

(images linked to sources above)






Trends

What Are You Digging? I’m Into…

January 8, 2009

When Joy blogged recently about balloons being the next mustache when it comes to trends I was sitting here with my head bobbing up and down in total agreement. Balloons are all I see, think about, I just love them in pretty pastel or metallic silver or gold. Festive, happy, uplifting, balloons mean fun, freedom, and femininity. I’ve noticed them in everything from ads to fashion photography, products, and in lots of artwork lately. Are you seeing them too?

Birds of a feather…In addition to balloons, I am enjoying feathers more than usual… After watching the MTV Europe Awards in Manchester, England last year seeing all of the feathers flying around in Pink’s performance in addition to celebrities donning plumage (real, faux and feather motifs), I felt this whole bird trend changing a little, going from the entire tweeter to its lovely coat. I’m starting to see feathers as earrings, feathers on hair clips, feathers on evening bags, and of course in art, craft, etc. Samantha Hahn uses them in some of her most recent work. Ez posted about the beauty of a single feather placed in a test tube just today. I notice them in more and more music videos thanks to the most intellectual channel I’ve been watching wayyyy to much of lately called MTV.

(Bobbin bunch necklace from Anthropologie,Rug from Anthropologie, Sustenance print by Celebrate Life, Do you believe in fairies photo by i.anton, Just a Fledgeling print by KJS Design, and feather boutonniere via Twigs & Honey.

Aside from balloons and feathers, I’m inspired by Springy colors lately… Apricot and a pale Jade green to be exact. My suspicions that others may also be into these hues were confirmed upon finding this gorgeous artist box over at the Shop House store on Etsy. It is at least the hundredth find using these two colors that has come across my desk this week. Doesn’t Apricot sound better than Peach by the way? So going forward we use Apricot to describe Peachy tones, deal?

Remember my obsession with soft lilac late last year? The love affair is over. Which can only mean that my German apartment is in BIG trouble when I fly back over there in May. Looks like I will need to tone down the lilac and freshen things up with jade and apricot. Another color I think works within this palette is a mid tone aqua. Your thoughts? Not dark, not subtle, I guess I can describe it as ‘there’ but not screaming. A Caribbean sea, the lightest part of the water that you dip your toes into (before the piranhas snack on it).

Pink is still on my list of colors that inspire me, but pale and I’m liking it paired with either a yellow (think pink lemonade) or with apricot. It’s also quite stunning with mustard which sounds so unexpected and potentially wrong but it’s not. Trust me. It makes pink look less Hello Kitty and more Hellooooo! It’s very SF Girl By Bay. And very Springy. As the snow hammers down here in my part of the world, Spring is all I think about.

Another popular, I guess you can say trend, I’m seeing are light blobs on photos (here’s a beautiful example from Flickr photographer i.anton), along with photos out of focus, and ones that merge handwritten text or doodles though that’s nothing new but certainly seems to be growing in popularity. Do you like these things?

A funny trend I laugh at whenever I’m looking at the fashion mags are those big bad circa 1985 earrings that resemble door knockers. It’s the 1980’s all over again. Gotta have at least one statement maker in the jewelry box this season, no matter how large or how much you swore you’d never wear them again except at those throwback parties where everyone is encouraged to show up dressed like Madonna or Boy George. I’m still on the line when it comes to massive earrings so I cannot say they are inspiring me right now, but I think seeing the 1980s reinterpreted is inspiring because I grew up then and wonder if anything is even worth bringing back. After seeing that Kelly Wearstler spread in last year’s Domino magazine with her “new” style being big on 80s resort hotel-chic with a whole lot of bad 70s thrown in for a healthy fight for attention, I think perhaps others are having fun with seeing what potential lies from styles buried long ago. I think I have an answer. Very little. If I see friendship pins, gummy bracelets, and lace gloves paired with the current big earrings heading down the catwalk this Spring I just may seriously start to question those tastemakers out there. But for now, it’s fun and I’m enjoying some of this cheeky 80s. The only thing I have a problem with is when people call the 80s “retro” or “vintage”. I know I should get over it but man my skin crawls. I was watching a commercial the other day, and it wasn’t that annoying ShamWow one (it holds 20 times its weight in liquid!), but some equally annoying 30 second blurb about some RETRO 80s Music CD with bands like Journey! Foreigner! Wham! and I hung my head low and felt really, really vintage.

What are you liking at the moment? Any trends you’d like to call out for the fun of it? Not that we care about trends here because I don’t think I own anything trendy at the moment, but it’s fun to talk about isn’t it? Anything you see that has like been DONE ALREADY and you are so sick of it?

Share! Because sharing is caring. :)

(images linked to their snazzy sources above)






Trends

The Clever Mustache

March 3, 2008

I’ve been watching the sly little mustache sweep through the indie design world for at least a year now which leads me to wondering how this whole ‘disguise’ trend got started as a design motif in the first place? Anyone know?

The Clever Mustache Shown above: cards from elephantine and owl print from hoorah.

I’ve seen it used on pocket mirrors and buttons, wallets and art. Also necklaces, sticker packs and even on posters, throw pillows, rubber stamps and silver stud earrings. This crafty man knitted and framed his own and Mr. Octopus seems to be enjoying his immensely.

Marcel Duchamp drew one on a copy of the Mona Lisa once so is this some kind of modern day take on that? Hmmm. Anyone know?

(images from elephantine and horrah)






Trends

Dress Forms As Decor

February 14, 2008

I spotted Malinki Design in the February issue of LivingEtc and had to learn more. Seems they are in the business of creating elegant mannequins out of funky florals and feminine silks, including custom designs (bespoke). I like the idea of owning a lovely French mannequin and though the intention I assume is to use it for tailoring, they also make a great accent in the home because you can drape them with accessories (handbags, brooches, a scarf, etc.) so that they’re functional. You can even use them as an inspiration spot for pinning fabric swatches, magazine clippings, etc.

Dress Forms As Decor If you’d like to learn more, you can contact owners Fiona and
Lucy though LivingEtc tells us that these start at around $1,300 USD.

Dress Forms As Decor On a budget? If you’re feeling creative you can buy a dress form with a wooden base for only $60 from vendors like Only Mannequins and customize it yourself. Try a patchwork technique or decoupage if you cannot sew. Paint the base in a fun color or hand paint it with a motif you love. You can also find vintage dress forms on sites like Craigslist and eBay. Search: mannequin, vintage dress form, dress form, it’s super easy to find these things on the web.

Dress Forms As Decor Here’s a dress form that I love from the wardrobe
remix
queen herself, Tricia Royal aka BitsandBobbins on Flickr.

Dress Forms As Decor An Anthropologie store window photographed by Skitzo Leezra. By the way, when is Anthropologie going to give us a book? I mean seriously. I think about this all the time, why don’t they have a book compiling images of their store displays with how-to’s on exactly the materials used to make each display? They pull together some of the best DIY projects and then, a few weeks later, they disappear forever. They need a book. I digress…

Dress Forms As DecorI took this photograph through the window of boutique
in Hannover, Germany back in 2006.

Dress Forms As Decor Here’s a pretty form from Impressionen.

Dress Forms As Decor Display your vintage brooches like Lannon787 does.

Dress Forms As Decor A 1950’s dress form found on Craigslist by Jessica in Portland, Oregon also known on Flickr as ThriftCraft. Wow. This is a great piece, I especially like how the breasts are so worn — those have seen a lot of action in their day I guess! :)

Dress Forms As Decor Or if you prefer the look of a wire dress form, try Ballard Designs.

Click here for some more dress form inspiration. Do you decorate using a mannequin? Do you sew or just use it to display things? Care to send in any photos? :)

(images linked to sources above)






Trends

Boho Modern Decor Is Trending

January 4, 2008

I’m thrilled by the response to this post about London stylist Liza Giles and cannot believe the amount of emails flooding in about this style overall. Many have challenged me to define this look into a name but that’s not really my thing as I’m sure it’s already been categorized by designers… But for fun, I did do some research and now I know what I’d like to call this style when I write about it in the future: Boho Modern.

Boho Modern Decor Is Trending
Let’s see… We have mid century modern, Hollywood regency, modern, minimalist, retro, but what do we call this one? Not vintage modern, that makes me think of Thomas O’Brien and I don’t think his look fits this one since he’s more traditional, clean cut and uses lots of beige and blue. Certainly my friend with her Crack House Chic comment was off base, that raised a few eyebrows and made most of us laugh and cringe simultaneously, and CHC is not even close to what this style should be termed. All things considered, let’s give this look the term Boho Modern. As in Bohemian. How does this sound? It’s a little old with new, less rules with more play.

Boho Modern Decor Is Trending
I did a little research to see if Boho Modern really works. Wikipedia describes Bohemian, “In modern usage, the term bohemian no longer refers to the Roma but can describe any person who lives an unconventional artistic life, where self-expression is their highest value; art (acting, poetry, writing, singing, dancing, painting, etc.) is a serious, if not central, part of their life.” Okay good. That sounds about right.

Boho Modern Decor Is Trending
I researched fashion, too. Boho Chic already describes a style of fashion (think Anthropologie, Noa Noa, Odd Molly), and some stylists call it Modern Boho as well. So you can go with Boho Chic or Boho Modern, too. In the land of interiors, I’ve noticed this style referred to as Flea Market Style, Global Decor, Shabby, and Ethnic Chic, Midwest Modern, Modern Euro Country, and though they fit to a degree, I think Boho Modern works best. Flea Market Style is a close runner up, but because it’s more about self expression and less about where items are sourced – lots of us don’t have access to good fleas, so we shop on eBay or second hand stores – or we pick up new things at Ikea and paint them to give them a little age appeal, I don’t know if Flea Market Style is what I would call this. But I get the point because the rooms end up looking a little bit like everything was found at a flea.

When it comes to Flea Market Style, that can come mean something different for everyone as it’s all about where you live. In my part of the country, most markets do not carry any of these gorgeous things. If you pulled together a room using things from MY local flea market here in New Hampshire, you’d have a room filled with discarded dollar store ceramics, shot guns, pocket knives, beat up action figures, and dirty movies. If you shopped a flea in San Francisco or London, you may have a different ‘vision’ when you think of Flea Market Style.

Boho Modern Decor Is Trending
Suggested reading: New Decor by Elizabeth Wilhide is a lovely book embracing this very style, I suggest picking it up, it’s brilliant. I reviewed it here in case you’re interested. Creating Vintage Style and Flea Market Style by Emily Chalmers is another that I . (Has anyone ever visited Caravan, her London shop?).

Boho Modern Decor Is TrendingBoho Modern Decor Is TrendingBoho Modern Decor Is TrendingBoho Modern Decor Is Trending
Boho Modern is: Mixing old with new. Building your space over time. Taking formerly functional items and transforming them into either purely aesthetic pieces – a collection of vintage keyholes or door knobs mounted to a single wall, or using functional items in fun new ways – a vintage umbrella stand becomes a place to store rolls of wrapping paper or vintage sheets transformed into a duvet, for instance.

Boho Modern Decor Is Trending
Boho Modern feminine with an edge. It’s deeply personal. Mixing periods and ethnic styles is highly encouraged (i.e. Indian prints mixed with Aboriginal). Color can be subdued, rich, bold, or barely there. It can be neat with few objects or items arranged in collections, or a bit disheveled. Traditional design “rules” are thrown out the window, replaced by a casual beauty that comes from the heart. It’s all about textures and details. It’s about living a more creative life and decorating from the heart. Eclectic living.

Looking for some inspiration from “real” homes? Visit these homes from a few decor8 readers living the Boho Modern life: AB Chao, Jasna Janekovic in Germany, Victoria in San Francisco, Yvonne in the Netherlands, and my friend YIPPIEYEAH in Hannover.

(images from caravan, living etc, and odd molly.)






Inspiration, Trends

Collections {we love ’em}

December 10, 2007

I’m excited to talk about collections today for a simple reason – they’re everywhere! Most of my friends and the design shops that I visited over the weekend down in Boston are moving far away from the “less is more” decor and embracing the pack rat within, but in a more organized fashion – through gorgeous groupings – and I love seeing it.

Collections {we love 'em}

Decorating that bends the rules and reaches deep into the soul, pulling out your story, dreams, and emotions, and placing objects that reflect these things in your space is empowering. I love being around things that make me feel positive and motivated, and sometimes certain objects do this for me. Combining like items, or objects that relate to one another somehow, create order. This is something we all strive to attain – a sense of order and balance while showcasing parts of our unique personality. Most neat freaks and minimalists disregard scattered objects as useless clutter or little piles of chaos, opting for a more streamlined design. They claim there’s no time to clean around tons of tiny things piled all over. And I see the point. But life in a perfect model home isn’t for me either, so I’d rather hire someone to clean my collections for me or do what I currently do – block out time on a Saturday afternoon to clean my home. But I agree that rooms can appear chaotic and be a nightmare to clean when objects are bursting from every surface.

That’s why I’m a big fan of collections – placing things together instead of scattered randomly all over. Collections work best for a variety of personality types and design styles – from those who favor streamlined interiors to others who embrace a cozy lived-in decor. Why? Because all can achieve harmony and order by placing a careful collection, or two, or ten, in various places in the home depending on how much you’d like to show.

This is a collection of embroidered works that Esther from Mokka bags pulled together to form a gorgeous rug. Do you see something interesting here? A collection doesn’t need to be something sitting idle on a shelf – it can be a grouping of things you love put to good use!

Collections {we love 'em} This is an usual way to display a collection – on the floor! I loved it the second I read about this rug on the Style Files today.

For some, if you like very little on display, a collection to you may mean three 3 items on a single floating shelf over a sofa. And that’s it. For others, a collection gives them them the chance to fill every shelf with something exciting to gaze upon. I’ll leave how far you go with the amount of collections up to you — ultimately it’s your home and my preferences here aren’t important. But I can point you to some good tips that I’ve used to make those collections do what you’ve intended for them – to showcase objects in a creative way that is visually interesting.

Collections add dimension to a room in ways both seen and unseen. Pattern, color, or texture are introduced to let you know about the person living there. These curiosities add warmth, make guests feel at home, and give the space character – yours! On an otherwise boring white bookcase flanking a fireplace, group a special collection to add pattern there, for instance, instead of filling it with books that you never read simply because you reason that bookcases need to be filled with books, right? Ha! No way!

Lorena Siminovich, a talented artist from San Francisco, shows us the importance of a balanced collection using her bookcases. She knows when “enough is enough” and she’s got a great handle on symmetry – because her bookcases flank her fireplace, Lorena needed to balance each one so they relate to one another, have the right amount of “stuff” on each or else one side would look heavier than the other, and all this while still being creative and showcasing the things she loves without things appearing textbook perfect.

Collections {we love 'em} Lorena’s results are beautiful while still maintaining her authentic style.

How do I get started on a collection, you ask? Easy. Look for themes already in your home in the many objects you already have. You may see milk glass in random spots, maybe in your bathroom, a few items in your kitchen, and a beautiful piece displayed on your credenza. Would you like to create a collection displaying all of these arranged together? No? Okay, let’s leave the milk glass alone and look at other repeat objects in your home. Are those prints from Etsy I see stacked in a small pile on your dresser? Hmm… Perhaps you can start there.

Here’s a practical solution to showing off your growing collection of art. Purchase a few picture ledges, mount two (one directly over the other) to a free wall, and buy a series of white frames or frames that are all very similar in size and color. Take all of your prints, frame them, and arrange them on the ledge in various order to see what suits you. Step back. Admire. If you get tired of their order, move them around. If you tire of a specific print, purchase another or make something yourself using photos or a scrap of your favorite wallpaper, scrapbook paper, or fabric, and swap it out. Maybe you could include that cute drawing your baby cousin sent to you? That’s personal and gives your collection a great conversation piece.

Collections {we love 'em} Mixed media collage artist Michelle Caplan has a rotating gallery in her home. Using a simple bench, she displays her favorites pieces of the moment.

When I think of collections done right, Lisa Congdon comes to mind. Whenever I peek in on her, I notice she enjoys artful arrangements around her San Francisco home. She seems to always have something new and she does a beautiful job pulling in all the objects that relate to a particular theme that she’s working on. Here’s her recent plate collection, and another of vintage photos on her wall. See what I mean?

Collections {we love 'em}

Collections {we love 'em} For a real treat, visit Lisa’s pool of creative collections. You’ll look at everything in your home differently after checking out her photos.

For a successful collection, there needs to be a theme behind it. I don’t necessarily mean that it has to be object-related – only owls or only white pottery, although these are both common and pretty ones, just as deer, mercury glass, feathers, plates, silhouettes, vintage cameras, globes, clocks, are other popular collections. But a collection can be based around an emotion using a variety of objects to show the emotion.

You can also have collections centered around a theme, such as a season, color, or designer. Some love to collect white pottery only from the pot-king himself, Jonathan Adler. Others collect objects from outside and group them together to show more of a seasonal display of objects (acorns, leafs, seed pods, etc.). Still others are looking to group items together that radiate a certain feeling – this display created by Creature Comforts, who is a highly creative blogger and shop owner by the way, shows us an example of this.

Collections {we love 'em} Creature Comforts’ displays many different objects that relate somehow, through various tones of white, along with clear glass, mercury glass, and milk glass, to show us what Winter means through her eyes. A refreshing mix, isn’t it? The reflective surface of the mercury glass adds a festive spark.

Then you have Brooklyn designer Lena Corwin, a lady that many of us are keenly interested in because she has such a great eye for color and pattern, and she shows this through even the most “mundane” objects, things that no longer seem so everyday when she comes in contact with them.

Collections {we love 'em} Lena’s way of displaying objects is very appealing. Take her vintage collection of mugs on a simple shelf.

Of course, not all objects on display are ones you can pick up and examine, as we saw early with that beautiful embroidered rug. Some are meant to be enjoyed from a few steps back, like art. In blogger Victoria’s home, you see an example of an inexpensive art collection grouped over a simple white sofa accented by pillows that pick up the pattern and colors in the art.

Collections {we love 'em} This is a great example of a collection done right – art displayed in a casual way, although Victoria confesses to spending time on this arrangement to get things right. But the end result is laid back bohemian, a style of living that this California lady embraces.

You can also build collections based on a season or holiday, as we’ve mentioned already, but here’s an example to ground the fact that seasonal decor doesn’t have to be tacky or purchased in one single trip to some big box store. The very word collection means “something that is collected; a group of objects or an amount of material accumulated in one location, esp. for some purpose or as a result of some process”. Notice it doesn’t say “collected from one location” rather “accumulated in one location”. Big difference. Collecting is all about taking time to build something and enjoying the process so that the gathering of things in one location, be that a credenza, cabinet, or wall, means something very personal to you.

Collections {we love 'em} This is a good example of a collected group of seasonal delights that evolved over time. These dazzling vintage tree toppers owned by Mindy from Retro Clean. Mindy tells us, “These vintage tree toppers are my Christmas decorating obsession. I have 39 of them on display and a few more that I didn’t put out. I can’t pass one up when I see them at a sale. Most have been obtained at yard sales or estate sales.”

Collections {we love 'em} Here is a collection of little trees from Stephanie Barnes, also known as one half of the 3191 blogging duo, mixed in with some other objects. When I look at Stephanie’s collections, I imagine that she is trying to tell a story or convey a feeling through her displays. You almost have to peer closely and use your imagination to figure out her displays, and that is really fun I think.

Collections {we love 'em} This is a collection of goodies from Nina van de Goor, who has the most gorgeous photos of things she is inspired by right here. This grouping seems to be pretty random, but shows that a collection doesn’t need to be planned out or guided by one specific item. You may find random items at flea markets or gifts from your friends that just seem to work together and after some arrangement, it just works. Perhaps it has to do with the balance she’s created in the harmony of blue and red?

I’d really like to see what you’re collecting lately, and hope that you’ll jump in and share either through a comment or via photos (email me!). I’ve created a flickr group called Creative Collections if you’d like to add your photos there. I hope you’ll join! I’ll be using some of them here on decor8 throughout the week to talk more on the topic.

(images linked above to their photo bugs)






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