I loved Afroart and could have lingered in this gorgeous color-filled shop for hours sifting through the endless piles of rugs, blankets, textiles, ikat fabrics, woven this, embroidered that… Oh it was just such a great place to discover, and it was a block from our hotel. Heaven.
Yum! All so very delightful and the greater good is accomplished when you shop here as it is owned by a group of Swedish designers who work directly with artisans all over the world and purchase directly from them. They have lots of information on their website about their cause, you should read it for all the details.
I couldn’t take it all home with me, so I decided to locate one item that I would forever keep – something special. And this was easy, as it was the first thing I spotted the moment I stepped into the door. It was on a wall ladder that I found my dream blanket, which will go in my living room when I return to the states, a queen size hand-embroidered 100% cotton blanket from Bangladesh with the most beautiful birds on it. It was around $1,200 kroner which was maybe $200 USD (I think, I have to check with my bank). There was also a stuffed elephant and bird to match, as well as a small blanket for kids that was around 400 kroner. I love ethnic stores like this one because the designers select things that are very hip and colorful, bright, fresh – some stores offering ethnic things tend to go more towards the dark woods, colors, and lots of kelly green and orange. Not this place – it was a hue-infused exotic paradise.
They have two stores in Stockholm, but I preferred the one on Hornsgatan 58, in the S?dermalm district because it’s much larger than it’s newly opened sister store. I highly suggest Afroart when in Stockholm, it’s a must-see for those in love with ethnic prints and patterns, helping the environment and villages around the world, and of course, recycling.
(images from holly becker for decor8)
I hope you’re prepared to travel this week, because I’m back from Stockholm and ready to give you the full scoop. So if you’ve ever wanted to travel there, this will be your virtual vacation. I can’t wait to share the ‘best of’ highlights from this delightful travel destination. You’re in for a treat this week!
But first, a big thank you for your patience while I’ve been away. I think all bloggers battle with taking time away from their blogs and although I was only out for 3 days, it feels like eternity! But no worries, I’m back in full swing now!
Ah Stockholm. What a terrific time away and certainly one of the most inspirational — everything is super stylish, from fashion to interiors, and the people are friendly and helpful, streets are clean, food is amazing, magazines and books are filled with color and character, I’ll have great memories of this city for the rest of my life. What I appreciated the most is that despite ‘having it all’, the people are the most laid back and unpretentious in the world despite how they hold the key to so much beauty, talent and style. There’s no “too cool for school” vibe like I sometimes feel back home in America in certain areas, where you almost think you aren’t good enough to run with certain crowds. I’m sure some of you know exactly what I mean. It was just so nice to land in a place where I instantly felt accepted and welcomed by the people, but that I in turn felt an attachment to – like I could live in Stockholm because I had the feeling that living there could work. It’s not a feeling I have too often.
Stockholm is welcoming, open minded, confident, modern, vibrant, and if you love design and food (as I assume you must), you have to visit at least once in your lifetime. It takes a lot for a city to impress me these days, due to my own age and experience I guess, but wow – it’s a fascinating, beautiful spot that I can’t wait to share with you.
Oh, and if you like the horse from the first image above, he’s also from Cosas, a gorgeous Swedish online store that I was able to shop from in person at their booth at the Hem ’07 show. I love his little wool saddle. :)
(image by holly becker for decor8)
Time for a girls’ getaway! I’m signing off now because in the morning I’m heading up to Stockholm to meet up with Danielle, who is flying there to meet me for holiday. We’ve both wanted to see Stockholm for many years now, so it’s exciting that the time has finally arrived and that we’ll be taking in the sights together, with Emma and a few other friends as our trusty guides. (Psst: Emma wrote a terrific guide to Stockholm if you’d like to see some of things we plan to do while there.) I can’t wait to finally meet Emma!
I’ll be away from the blog until Wednesday, October 10, so please feel free to browse through the archives and some of my favorite blogs in the left column while I’m away. And when I’m back, I’ll share with you all the highlights from our little adventure in Sweden, from the stores to hotel photos, and a ‘best of’ round up from the Hem design show. I’ll see you back here on Wednesday, October 10th! – xo Holly
(Image: Rob Schoenbaum for the NYTimes)
Want to have a little fun? Time to play! If the idea of creating a moodboard today sounds good to you then visit the Dutch site Mijn Moodboard from VT Wonen and enter your email address to the right, check the box, and click login – that will take you where you need to be to create your very own inspiration board. Here’s one that I quickly pulled together to show you an example of what you can do.
I hope an American design magazine eventually integrates something like this into their website because it’s quite a helpful tool and from a marketing/sales perspective, it would be a clever way for a magazine to obtain sponsors, at least I would think. Imagine a site where you could build a moodboard using products that are each linked so you can purchase them if you decide to? I think I’m onto something. Anyway, have a good time, it’s addictive!
(image from mijn moodboard)
Since I don’t know Dutch, I’m a bit lost if I try to read some of the product blurbs, but I still enjoy all the trend pieces, the overall presentation, and the big glossy pages of gorgeous rooms – all in the delicious boho-euro style that I love. If you don’t have access to a copy, no worries because you can browse their inspiration galleries online – so many great images to motivate your next room redux.
(images from vt wonen)