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Samantha Hahn {artist}

Happy! Color! Spring! Samantha! I recently contacted talented artist Samantha Hahn about her work, this lady has a super impressive bio — she received her fine arts degree in illustration from Syracuse University and went on to obtain her M.A. in Art Education at Columbia University. Samantha is not only a smartie and extremely talented, but she’s also nice and easy going, a real charmer. Her warmth really shows in her work, just look at these colors!

Samantha does figurative oil painting, freelance illustration, and crafts. She also teaches art and authors her own blog called Maquette. After finding her over on Absolutely Beautiful Things, I immediately contacted Samantha because I wanted to inquire about purchasing some of her work. She was such a pleasure to deal with online that I ordered two 11 x 17 matte prints of Dancing Girl and Beehive Girl (they’re $100 each in case you are interested, free shipping.) She’s working on opening an online store to make it easier for customers, but for now you can email her directly. She’s in the midst of relocating from Manhattan to Prospect Heights in Brooklyn, but she’s still pretty speedy when it comes to answering her emails. (info AT

I don’t know about you, but when I like someone I’m that much more interested in owning their work. You know the human element, the whole reason why I shop from an independent artist in the first place. Sure I like their work, but if after a few emails or a quick conversation at an opening or craft fair I find that I also like them (their spirit, hard to explain, but you know what I mean – it’s chemistry maybe?) then I’m sold. I own most of my art for life so when I look at it I want to recall fond exchanges. I believe in owning things that give me positive memories. If I associate a negative experience with something, no matter how valuable, I sell or donate it. Hasta la vista! Fortunately, I’ve only had to kick out a few material possessions in my life because they reminded me of someone that I dated for nearly my entire twenties before I met my husband and despite an amicable parting, I wanted to leave the past in the past. I won’t own anything that I associate with an experience that makes me uncomfortable or recalls memories that stunt my progress in one way or another. Are you this way too?

Now back to the lovely Samantha… If you’re looking to start building an art collection, or you just need some color and pattern in your home, consider Samantha Hahn and her work. It’s really bright and cheery but also sophisticated and modern enough to fit into a range of decors. I can’t think of a better way to usher in Spring that to have a print of hers framed over a credenza or bed, i.e. installed above the Harlow table from Ballard Designs topped with an arrangement of fresh flowers. Gorgeousness!

(images from samantha hahn)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, walls on February 04, 2008

Harmonie Int?rieure {new from France}

Just when you think you’ve seen it all in the world of vinyl wall decals, you discover something that’s new and blows you away like Harmonie Int?rieure.

I heard from a Fabien Barral, a graphic designer based in France who recently launched this exciting new project alongside wife Fr?d?rique using graphic design a bit differently in the home. Together they take their designs and photographs and apply them in the form of wall stickers that are anything but typical. In addition to decals of photos and such, there’s also posters, books, and notebooks with some of the most inspiring imagery I’ve seen in a long time.

The ornament pattern is my favorite because you pretty much use it to decal/wallpaper your entire wall and just peel it off when you move. I mean, c’mon – this is a brilliant idea. Thank you so much Fabien for writing to me, your work is inspiring and I’m starting to imagine a future now when wallpaper becomes more peel ‘n stick for people on the go.

(images from harmonie int?rieure)

Posted in walls on January 29, 2008

Keep Calm Gallery

Have you heard of the Keep Calm gallery? They just starting producing this terrific print in the sweetest cross stitch typeface, and the message is by far the most inspirational I’ve come across in a print since this one from Matirose.

‘He Who Cares Wins’ is currently available in a limited edition run of 50 in your choice of red or blue ink printed on recycled cotton rag paper from India.

This is a powerful message! At the end of the day it boils down to making a difference, having a positive influence on others, and considering the big picture when it comes to what we’re doing – how is your life impacting others. When you do work you care about it shows. Your positive energy spreads to others because ultimately you get back what you put out into the world. When you care, you win.

(images from the keep calm gallery)

Posted in Arts + Crafts, walls on January 29, 2008

Le Souk

One of my dear friends in the Netherlands authors a fabulous blog called the Style Files, and though I’ve talked about her and her blog a million times on this site I just realized that I’ve never formally announced the opening of her online shop Le Souk. You may remember Danielle, we went to Stockholm together in October. I can’t believe how I let Le Souk slip from my radar, but not today!

Familjen wallpaper by Swedish designer Lisa Bengtsson.

Danielle’s life dream was to set up her own business so while she still has a day job, she’s hoping that Le Souk and her blog will someday give her the opportunity to work from home full-time. She’d also like to widen out and work more with clients as an Interior Stylist, and I know for a fact that she’d excel at this because her taste level is so exquisite — her rooms would be magazine worthy and gorgeous. I can’t wait to see Danielle continue to march towards her dreams, it’s so empowering to see women going for careers that they’ve often only dreamed about before. And though it’s only baby steps that get us there, Danielle has made so much progress in one short year being online as a blogger and a few months as a shop owner that I know she’s got a lot of great things in store!

Le Souk ships worldwide and offers a range of home accessories for modern living, most with an ethnic flavor to them, and she offers personal accessories too. Mixing traditional ethnic pieces with modern and handmade items, each Le Souk item is carefully sourced by Danielle so you can be sure everything is made well and looks wonderful. From rustic, wooden stools to authentic vintage silver tea trays from Morocco and even beautiful crocheted pets for the kids, Danielle’s growing shop is a real treat. Enjoy!

Would you like to read more about Ethnic design? Click here.

(images from le souk)

Posted in ceramics, furniture, walls on January 25, 2008


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