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Workspaces That Inspire Me

There are so many inspiring spaces to see both online and off in our favorite magazines, books and on blogs. There is no end to the inspiration. As I work on putting the final touches on my work studio before Debi Treloar arrives to shoot it next month, I’m drawing my inspiration from a bunch of beautiful rooms that I’ve been collecting online. It’s a great idea to build these style files so that you can keep all of your room ideas in one place. Here is my work room style file, see if there are any below that you feel a certain connection to.

Spring come soon!

Taken this morning with my iPhone of a nook in my office.

Workspaces that inspire

vtwonen can pull together a room like no other. I really like the tones in this room and that bookcase is painted so beautifully.
Workspaces that inspire

frau-p – This lady lives in Germany and really knows how to pull together a bookcase!

Workspaces that inspire

vtwonen – My favorite magazine and it always delivers the best of the best. I really love this glass wall!

Workspaces that inspire

lisa congdon – A kick butt artist in San Francisco with a kick butt space.

Workspaces that inspire

My workspace, at least as it was a year ago. I’ve updated since as I always do. :)

Here are a many more workspaces to inspire you today that I’ve rounded up for you >CLICK HERE<.

It is so important to have a nice work room, at least when you are a freelancer working from home as I do. It’s where everything begins and ends for me each day so I need it to support me. Do you feel the same way? Do you have a room in your home where you can escape? Do you have a creative nook if you don’t have an entire room?

(images: linked to their source above.)

Posted in workspace on March 30, 2012

Emma Cassi + An Inspiring Visit

This past Sunday in London I knew I was in for a treat, but I didn’t know just how BIG of a treat. You see, I’ve been a big fan of French jewelry designer and stylist Emma Cassi for at least three years, but most likely longer. She’s been a huge inspiration to me and my work but even more than that, she has been a lovely source of inspiration to so many of my friends and readers.

Emma Cassi

Above: Emma changes up her office space with each new season since it’s common for buyers to visit her at home.

That’s why when I found out that my friend Sania Pell lives nearby to Emma and they know one another very well, I jumped out of my seat! I knew I had to somehow arrange to meet her. In addition to my obsession with Emma’s creations, my friend Leslie Shewring, also visiting London this past weekend, is equally a fan. We all love Emma and her work. That’s why when we asked Sania if she could arrange for us to visit Emma at home, I nearly fell off of my seat when she quickly pulled it together and before I knew it, we were entering her petite paradise in London filled to the brim with gorgeous handmade things! Eep! I knew that this was going to be a most inspirational visit and it was. So now I’d like to show you a wee bit of what I saw. I’m still aglow and a bit light-headed from it, ahhhh.

Emma Cassi

Emma Cassi

Emma Cassi

Above: I love her handmade dream catchers.

Emma Cassi

Emma Cassi

Lots of yummy colors, lace and shots of black and beige.

Emma Cassi

Above: I loved her little Abigail Brown owl displayed proudly on a cabinet. So sweet.

It was the type of visit a blogger like me needs – to gain a new perspective, to have some tea and a chat, to wander through the beautiful corners of a most thoughtful space and to browse tiny drawers filled with jewelry in her magical corner atelier which happens to be in her living room. We met her daughter, her husband and her sweet little son.

Emma Cassi

I poked around her corner studio space to see how she makes…

Emma Cassi

Jewelry spilled out from every corner. Such a treat! I really liked seeing her palette for the upcoming season as she’s already working on things for 2012 – lots of lemonade yellow and bright pink. Gorgeous.

Emma Cassi

I spent lots of time looking at her many inspirational nooks, including this pretty corner above where she posts what has her eye at the moment onto the wall above her desk.

Emma Cassi

Sweet Emma made us rose tea served in Astier de Villatte mugs and she shared some Japanese catalogs that inspires her that I also found quite beautiful.

Emma Cassi

We looked (drooled, in all honesty) at her gorgeous jewelry collections, some seen and some unseen (until now at least) for upcoming seasons in 2012. We even purchased some to enjoy for years to come. I wore lots of her jewelry on Sunday and Tuesday during London Design Week, so if you saw me and admired any of it (some of you asked), then Emma Cassi is the designer of most of what I had on. Emma showed us so many beautiful things (you can see her above – she is beautiful in every way), I floated away after we left her apartment. What an honor to be there with such a creative lady.

Emma Cassi

And in the end, we all posed for a photo taken by her husband. Above: from the left is Emma and her little girl, Sania, Leslie and then me on the end. I will never forget this morning, organized by dear Sania, hosted by Emma and her family and well… it was a morning that I’ll never, ever forget. Truly a dream visit for me.

Emma thank you from our hearts for your hospitality and friendship. You made my London trip magical!

To see more of Emma’s work and to purchase it, please visit her website.

(images: taken by holly becker except for the last one, taken by emma’s hubby.)

Posted in workspace on September 29, 2011

Studio Tour: Meet Silken Favours

I know that you’ll walk away feeling motivated and refreshed after reading this interview and seeing this quirky East London studio so I’m just delighted to share it… But first, a little background… I recently had the honor of interviewing Vicki Murdoch, the creative lady behind the Silken Favours brand who recently launched her first collection of scarves at the prestigious Liberty of London. I first found out about her via Liberty and this video, which made me want to learn more since I fell in love with her scarf patterns and colorways. I want to purchase one to frame or turn into a giant cushion for my sofa.

SIlken Favours

In her video, I caught a glimpse of her work studio and simply had to learn more, and see more, so I approached her for an interview and was delighted when she said her friend and photographer, Martin Zahringer, would be happy to take photos to share on decor8 that haven’t yet been online before so I hope that you enjoy these views. Vicki is an inspiring young woman, just barely 30-years-old, this gorgeous talent is one to watch for sure! Would you like to meet her? Of course you would… so let’s get started, shall we?

SIlken Favours

Hello Vicki, can you tell us where you are from, where you live now and what you do? Yes, I’m from Aberdeen, Scotland, live in London and I’m a designer.

How did you get into design?
I moved to London twelve years ago to start a career in modelling, I was lucky enough to travel the world for a couple of years, living in Tokyo, Cape Town, Sydney and New York but then settled in London and went on to study textiles at Chelsea Art School. When I graduated I worked for a few companies but realised very quickly that I wanted to design for myself, so created ‘Silken Favours’ which started as a bespoke scarf service and I then went on to design my new range.

SIlken Favours

How did you get to work with Liberty on your collection? I went to their Best of British Open Day in April 2011. They give you three minutes to pitch your designs, they then give their expert advice, which I took, and added a dog scarf to my ‘heart collection’. I was then told they would be in touch. Two weeks later I got an email inviting me back for a second interview and a week later they placed an order. So it all happened pretty fast.

Silken Favours

What are you goals for the future regarding your pattern designs? Do you see them in interiors? I would love to design for interiors, For my final degree show piece I created an environment inside a 1960s Cheltenham caravan (photos above), which I named the ‘Catavan’. Every print was cat-inspired – and I used over thirty designs – on upholstery, curtains, wallpaper, flooring, pillows and dresses. I did a short course on upholstery so I could revamp old chairs using my prints. Basically I would love to see my patterns on most objects.

SIlken Favours

SIlken Favours

What inspires you about your studio space? I live and work in a large, light-filled warehouse in East London which is shared with five other people.  I’ve been here for four years now. We are all creatives and lead busy lives and we each have our own studio space within the warehouse so there is always something going on.  It’s not as noisy and party-filled as it used to be, through our own choice and the small threat of eviction.

SIlken Favours

What motivates you to work freelance? I love being freelance, I was a freelance fashion model for 5 years then a student for four years and now I’m a freelance designer. I don’t think the structure of a 9-5 would suit me. I suppose I’m just used to being freelance so I get on with it. I know you have to put certain amount of pressure on yourself to get things done, but also not to beat yourself up and enjoy life when you can.

SIlken Favours

SIlken Favours

SIlken Favours

What do you do to find inspiration? I find a lot of my inspiration from nature, I had an epiphany once out running in Victoria Park, “All I want to do is dance and draw”, I ran back home very excited and started drawing, the dancing isn’t going as well.

What inspires you about living in London? Lots of things: my friends, Victoria Park, Kew Gardens, the markets, Hackney Farm, the V&A and small up and coming galleries.

What are your favorite interiors and fashion magazines?
1970s ‘Ideal Home’ and ‘House and Garden’, Nest, Wallpaper, Casa Vogue, Amelia and LOVE.

SIlken Favours

SIlken Favours

SIlken Favours

How does a designer get their line into a store like Liberty? The Best of British Open Day, the next one is Saturday, August 20, 2011.

What do you think matters most when it comes to working for yourself? Focus, Determination, Belief and Enjoyment.

What are some trends in pattern design that you find inspirational? Mirrored opulence, nature, animals and anything 1970s.

Thank you so much Vicki for this peek into your life and studio, I’m sure decor8 readers are all going to be big fans of yours now after seeing you in action in your fun space. Thanks again!

(Photographs: Martin Zahringer)

Posted in workspace on August 04, 2011

A Clever Desk For Standing: INSEKT

I recently came across the INSEKT desk by designers Buisjes En Beugels in Rotterdam in a copy of VTWonen magazine and bookmarked it… BUT I then put the magazine down and forgot all about it as I normally do with magazines until today… When Buisjes En Beugels contacted me. I really, really love their desk for so many reasons — but first, let’s get something out of the way…

Love this work table

It’s being marketed as a kid’s desk because it is available in three sizes, two sizes made for sitting and one size made for standing or using a stool and the desks for sitting are more for children…. so when I read that this was a kid’s desk I nearly deleted the email until I looked at their press release and found the image I had seen in VTWonen shown above. That is definitely not a desk for only kiddies, but definitely for someone like me who hates sitting all day online and enjoys standing to sort through paperwork, email and even have lunch or a cup of tea.


Sitting all of the time is such a growing issue for web freaks like most of us because once you hit thirty (or even sooner these days) you start to pay more attention to your posture, overall health and things like slouching and sitting for hours and hours start to take their toll on your health. I love the INSEKT desk because it’s good looking, has great storage beneath it that is open so it’s easy to find things, and it comes in several nice colors and three sizes – one being the taller model that I’m a big fan of.

I have a desk in my office and a very long work table where I stand to sort through things but it’s standard table height so after awhile of bending down to sort things I notice that my back starts to hurt a bit — so a desk like INSEKT is what I need for sure.

What do you think, do you like having the option of standing more often to use your laptop? To craft? To work on miscellaneous administrative tasks?

(images: vtwonen tear sheet with permission via Buisjes En Beugels)


Posted in workspace on May 24, 2011


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