A package came today from the states (I get excited when mail arrives, I finally understand it when people tell me they love getting mail from America — it’s fun!) and do you want to know who it was from? Becky. The resident Top Design guest blogger here on decor8. And I think her cheeky gift is funny because whenever she sees butterflies she thinks of Mariah Carey (in a bad way) and so she was teasing me about my butterfly on the decor8 logo. So what arrives in the mail today? BUTTERFLY STUFF. How cute is she. Brat.
And it’s from the new John Derian collection for Target. I had this big plan that once I was here in Germany I’d just order what I wanted and have it shipped to my home in New Hampshire, no big deal. Well it is a big deal because Target doesn’t ship any of the JD collection, you can only buy it in stores. And by the time I’m back in America his collection will be gone-zo-la.? ARRR. Another reason why I love Becky’s gift so much, I can enjoy a taste of John’s lovely budget collection. Thank you Becky!
I love the coasters the most, I imagine using mini plate holders and arranging them on a wall. $12.99 for 4 is great deal don’t you think?
And if I could order from this collection I would definitely purchase THIS and THIS. And okay THIS. I’m super jealous of anyone who can. People always ask me what I miss most when I’m not in the states. Target, Newbury Comics (amazing CD, DVD, etc shop), Anthropologie (though you can order from them here but the store experience is why I really shop there), Paper Source, and I miss all the healthy whole foods stuff I can find there. Oh and I really miss Domino magazine because it’s nearly impossible to find here. I haven’t seen an issue since July and I’m starting to feel a little upset about the lack of Domino in Germany. I really don’t get it because we have Real Simple and Martha Stewart Weddings… If I had Target, Antho, and some good stationery shops here… and Domino magazine, I may never go home. I love being in Germany soooo much. :)
Is this collection in your local Target yet? How do you like it? Is it well made? Something you’d own?
(images from holly becker for decor8 and bottom image from target)
Surface pattern designer Ashley Thomas wrote to me last month (I know, I’m a little behind on my email) to tell me about her designs so I vowed to myself that today would be the day that I would share them on decor8. Ashley thank you for your patience with me! :)
Ashley is a freelance designer and illustrator based in England and her work is both feminine and edgy, a combination of hip city and a day in the country wearing a frilly dress. Her work reminds me of a lot of illustrative, graphic styles coming out of Berlin right now. I was quite surprised when I learned that Ashley is in the UK as upon first glance I would have guessed Berlin without question.
I am completely smitten by her wallpaper and pillows… lovely with a capital LOVE! I want Larry and Joey wallpaper in my entryway! :)
(images from ashley thomas)
Working from home here in Germany has been a real nice experience since back in New Hampshire I live in the country and do not have easy access to a city there. Here I live in the city so I can take quick breaks throughout the day (without the hassle of a car) to grab tea with friends, walk through the forest (2 blocks from my house, it’s about 10x the size of Central Park), or go find inspiration by roaming a museum or visiting a small shop. A few minutes ago I needed a break, I was feeling sort of crabby and instead of giving into the bad mood I decided to shut off my laptop and visit a new design/kids store one block away. I thought that maybe this new store was feeling the same way because her shop had its grand opening today but the weather is gray and a bit draining. I imagined that maybe this shop owner, a lady I’d never met before today by the way, was sitting in her shop waiting to meet those in our little neighborhood here. I thought maybe this lady was alone and wondering if anyone would support her shop today. Then I imagined how I would feel if in her shoes. That thought motivated me to get out of my house and go welcome her to our hood. I live here now, I should treat this as my home and be a good neighbor. And not to sound like Little Miss Goody Two Shoes, but I remember my mom always taught me that when I’m in a bad mood the best thing to do is imagine someone else out there who may also be feeling bad or lonely and actively seek them out and do something kind for them.
When I walked in to Lillehus (located at De Ha?n Platz 10 in Hannover List), the owner Susan was sitting at a little desk writing (seated as I imagined! too funny!) and I was the only customer so immediately I introduced myself (in English) and she started speaking to me in English (always a treat!) and soon we were chatting and laughing and having a really nice time. She thanked me many times for coming in and seeing her, she said it was a wonderful welcome to the neighborhood.
I think I can say that mom is always right because once again, her advice taught to me as a child worked. And it worked in another way too…
See this light…
It was designed by Hannover-based textile artist Orike Muth. She is someone I really look up to, I think her aesthetic is gorgeous and so original, she screenprints by hand all of the papers that she uses for her lamps and lampions, and all of the textiles she incorporates into her potholders, pillows, etc. I’ve been looking for a table lamp from her for the entire 8 weeks that I’ve been here and could not find the one that I was looking for. I saw the perfect light on her website but she sold out and she is currently working on her new line so there was a good chance that I would not find one before I leave here in December.
The lamp I spotted on Orike’s website… I think I will add some trim to the bottom of mine with beads to dress it up a little.
When I walked into Lillehus today and saw THE light sitting on a table I nearly passed out. It was perfect! It was what I’d been roaming this city for, one design shop after another, hoping to find and never could find. And now it was sitting before me on a pretty white table. Not only did I buy it but Susan (the store owner) took 20% off of the price as a grand opening day present to her customers. Just another way that doing good to others always results in something good – not always a material object, often just a good feeling — but today I received both a happy mood and a pretty light. Not only am I back to myself again, but I met a nice small business owner and found the lamp I’ve been desiring for quite awhile. What you put out into the world comes back to you. Always. Don’t you believe that too?
As corny as it sounds, whenever I look at this lamp I will remember today and the happy memories along with it. And please, if you live in or around Hannover pay Susan at Lillehus a visit. She is so, so sweet and a bonus for expats is that she speaks great English. The shop is mostly for kids; she stocks lots of Maileg products from Denmark (my mushroom is above on my kitchen cabinet only 5,- Euros each!) and cute stuff from a few indie designers in Berlin. She is soon to expand into clothing for women and cute rain boots too.
(images from holly becker for decor8)