Skip to content

The Charming French

I wasn’t sure what to call this post since I’m writing about two French companies with names that are too long for a proper blog post title. As I thought it over, the word charm just kept popping into mind along with quirky as I think lots of the French design that I see is very charming but also quite quirky, which is a very positive thing as I am quirky myself and tend to like things that are unusual way more than the typical stuff you can find in any store. It seems that French design, as least their more homespun stuff, is so delightfully charming that you often sit in your chair thinking, “How is it that that hasn’t become a global trend yet?” because it’s just so, well, cute and almost in a contagious way.

Charming...

Since the French seem to be big on torn and shredded fabric, making things by hand and flea market finds, as am I, I thought I’d share two companies with you who have me really charmed today. The first is Desaccord which means disagreement in English and I’m thinking they came up with that name because their products are very untypical and even disagreeing with what is out on the market as they are anything but normal. They partnered up with Les Petits Bohemes, another French business that specialized in vintage furniture, to do some lovely photo shoots together mixing their products (mostly handmade knits and sewn things like animal heads) with Les Petitis Bohemes’ vintage finds that range from antique carriages to old metal beds from France. I’m so glad that I visited the MILK website today and found both of these shops because seeing these products made me feel very energized!

Charming...

Charming...

I love the branch wrapped with fabric – I tried this for my shop window in Amsterdam before even seeing this but I couldn’t figure out how to get the branches to Amsterdam so I decided not to do them. When I got home and saw this I was reminded that I have to try it again, perhaps just for a home installation above a window or my guest bed. I would spray paint my branches white though and wrap more fabric around them but the idea is along the same train of thought.

Charming...

I love the marriage of hand craft with vintage finds along with that element of forward thinking, for instance a knitted cable cozy for a light cord, because then you have old, traditional and innovative design rolled into one product which is an amazing joining of things in my opinion. Aren’t all of these products in this post just delightful? Oh, Oui, oui! If you see anything that you like, please also visit their big cartel shops below and support these small companies because I imagine the people behind them are just sooo creative and wanting to make more and more things so by supporting them, we can continue to see this creativity and to become inspired by it.

Desaccord – online shop
Les Petitis Bohemes – online shop

(images: desaccord + les petits bohemes)

Posted in uncategorized on June 29, 2011

Joël Penkman Food Paintings

If you are dieting or cutting out sugar then my apologies for this post because it will most certainly ruin all of the good work you’ve been doing lately. :) These fine art food paintings from graphic designer and painter Joël Penkman are simply delicious. I think the candy canes are my favorite followed by the donuts… so pretty to see food like this.

Joël Penkman Food Paintings

Joël Penkman Food Paintings

Joël Penkman Food Paintings

Joël studied Fine Arts at Canterbury University in New Zealand and received first class honors in graphic design, no small achievement! After finishing, a move to the UK began with working for companies but now Joël’s life is purely freelance and with clients in Manchester that are highly regarded such as True North, Music, Like a River and Barraclough Associates so life is good and freelance was definitely the best path for Joël to have taken.

I love these fine art portraits of food – especially the sweets – I can see these as repeat illustrations on wrapping paper and fabric, can’t you?

(images: Joël Penkman)

Posted in uncategorized on June 21, 2011

Monday, Monday!

Ah yes, it’s Monday. Welcome, Monday! Somehow that happened and last week was a bit of a blur for me while Boom! a new week is front and center. I blogged quite lightly last week but I’ve been running around a lot and this week it will be very light on decor8 as well since I have a big week ahead of me in Amsterdam (for this) so I won’t be home again until June 27th but you can count on June 27-August 18th (the date I fly to the states) to be hoppin’ on decor8! I have so much trapped inside of my head waiting to burst out to share from things I’ve found to people I’ve met and it’s just a matter of me getting through this week first so that then my calendar opens and I’m all yours again. Just how I like it.

Instagram

A glimpse into my weekend above.

This past weekend was very nice and inspiring. I did so much that I still cannot believe all of that took place between Friday and Sunday! I went to a few music festivals, a huge outdoor fabrics and notions market (photos can be seen here if you want to know what it’s like), shopping in the city, and I attended a lovely party on Saturday night to send off two friends as they move to America. I also did lots of errand running and chores around the house, answered a ton of email and then spent yesterday with a good friend at an outdoor crafts market (high end stuff, gorgeous!) and we went to dinner at a cute cafe in the old part of our city overlooking a church from the 11th century, which always fascinates me as I come from a relatively young country so the sheer history that I now live around. I also watched a few films, I guess you could call them “fluff” films but they gave my head some room to chillax so I guess we all need the fluff sometimes, right?

What about you, how was your weekend? What did you do? I’m happy to see you again and to get back to blogging!

I’ll be around all day today and tomorrow and I’ll post on Wednesday as well from the train but I won’t be posting on Thursday or Friday so just remember that in case you wonder where I’ve roamed. See you back in a moment or two.

(images: holly becker taken via iPhone app Instagram. Do you have it? If not, it rules!)

Posted in uncategorized on June 20, 2011

Floral Photographs + Watercolors

I see more and more watercolor-y accents popping up in blog and website design, in magazines, and painterly patterns on clothing and textiles too. It’s a lovely trend that I definitely can ride from here until eternity. The ever talented photographer Jen Huang inspired me so much today with this introduction of watercolors that she offers to her clients along with her fantastic photography, something I’ve only seen before with Leslie’s work and a few others, as well as some Japanese books that I own. I think it’s gorgeous and it just made me happy.

Oh swoon. I love flowers, don’t you? I could write an entire book about them and I owe the love to my mother who was trained as a floral designer – our home was always filled with her arrangements. Some of you will meet her when I’m in Boston in August. She also loved to paint. I should take out my paints sometime and play around and see what I come up with. I really need to make some time to do that again soon. It’s funny, both my mother and aunt were painters, my aunt was a fine artist and art teacher, but I didn’t seem to get the urge to become a painter myself. Until I see work like Jen’s. Then I feel this gentle nudge to play a bit. I adore paintings, especially mixed media collage and watercolor work – two of my favorites – and so perhaps I should experiment a little. It’s been awhile… Do you paint?

I found out about Jen’s paintings on the 100 Layer Cake blog and so I hope you’ll click over to visit that gorgeous wedding wonderland when you have time. It’s a sweet, pastel-filled dream world.

(images: jen huang)

Posted in blogs, uncategorized on June 09, 2011

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.

eCourses:

Next dates

Blogging Your Way: Blog Boss
e-course, October 10 - November 10, 2014
Find out more about this exciting class by bloggers, for bloggers, teaching you how to blog like a boss!