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Manuela De Simone: Illustrator

This weekend I came across the work of 26-year-old Italian illustrator Manuela De Simone in one of my new favorite magazines, Advanced Photoshop (UK). My husband has been reading this magazine for quite awhile? but this is the first time I actually sat down and looked at it… Talk about a GREAT thorough publication that not only covers how advanced users of Photoshop can improve their designs (obviously) but showcases the work of up-and-coming and established artists from all over the world. I was blown away by some of the work that I found in issue #49, especially that of Manuela shown below.

Using a combination of pencils and Photoshop, she creates colorful characters that transmit good feelings and her love of children’s illustration. After researching her a bit online, I discovered that she not only has a DeviantArt page, but an Etsy shop (yes really!), a new blog, AND a calendar for 2009 (in case this post didn’t give you enough calendar options, he he). You can purchase the calendar here if you’d like.

Also in the issue I found the inspiring work of Brand Nu, Heisuke Kitazawa (who I’ll feature more in depth here in a moment), Lee Woodgate, and JeanSpezial. Mind blowing links, I seriously encourage major exploration! :)

(images from manuela de simone)

Posted in Arts + Crafts on October 20, 2008

Happy Weekend!

I’m signing off for a few days and wishing you a very happy weekend. We will be at a fun party on Saturday (time to play dress up, oh boy!) and Sunday I will learn how to use my new sewing machine and of course go for another very long walk in the forest near our apartment where I will collect pine cone branches to arrange in a glass vase for the living room.

I also plan to listen to a lot of music… it never fails to keep me focused on projects especially when I’m sewing. I plan to hit Virgin to see if I can locate the new Keane CD. By the way… any Depeche Mode fans out there? They held a press conference in Berlin last week (catch it here on You Tube) and confirmed a new album set to roll out in the beginning of ’09 along with tour dates in Europe, North America and South America. They even have a new band logo here. So exciting!

Before I go, I simply must point you to some visual candy — some of my current Flickr favorites, you can click here to view them. Once there you may click on the actual photo icon to view the full size version along with the photographer’s name and account. I hope that you enjoy them. My theme was “Inner Peace” as I pulled this particular collection together. All of these things gave me a good restful feeling, I hope that they also have this effect on you. :)

Have a lovely weekend!

(images from Flickr)

Posted in uncategorized on October 17, 2008

Fabulous Stationery Contest Winners

I simply cannot keep you waiting, I must share with you who Fabulous Stationery has selected as the winner of the Name That Card contest, along with our two runner ups. {drum roll please.}

And the winner is…

First Place Winner: “Winter Metro”, Comment #64 left by H is for Home. You have won a $200 gift certificate to be used towards anything you?d like at Fabulous Stationery PLUS you will be sent a set of the note cards bearing the winning name Winter Metro in one of the three color choices and customized to your specifications.

And our two runner ups…

1. High Street Holiday, Comment #144 left by Mark, you’ve won a $50 gift certificate and a pashmina.
2. Piccadilly Circus, Comment #5 left by Mia, you’ve won a $50 gift certificate and a pashmina, too!

Congratulations to all! If your name is above, please email for instructions on how to claim your prize: decor8blog AT yahoo.com. A big thanks to all who participated. :)

(image from fabulous stationery and decor8)

Posted in contests, stationery on October 17, 2008

Milchmaedchen Offer for decor8 Readers

Every serious small business lady needs a stylish bag, don’t you think? I have a plain Jane black nylon bag (ashamed to admit) but I’m considering dropping the cash to give myself a bag that doesn’t scream COLLEGE KID. Before signing off for the weekend, I want to mention a special promotion that Irina from Milchmaedchen in Hamburg, Germany would like to offer to decor8 readers until the end of October. It’s especially useful to readers looking for a well designed, good looking laptop bag made especially by business women for girls on the go.

If you recall, I visited Irina in her shop this past August and wrote about it here, her shop is so nice and it is exciting to have her in nearby Hamburg because I find her style very good and her products well chosen. The special offer that she’d like to extend is a 10% discount to decor8 readers (and free shipping within Germany, if outside see details below) on a brand new collection of stylish laptop bags designed by German designers Miriam Paschmann and Anja Heinz of Haikouella.

To view them click here and then look for “unterwegs mit laptop” in the left column. The website is in German but within the description of each bag Irina has an English translation.

I don’t know about you, but finding a stylish laptop bag is nothing short of a nightmare for me. I can’t seem to find anything that looks professional yet has some character… something unique about it, a pattern that is subtle but definitely noticeable. I think Haikouella does a nice job at being stylish, grown up, yet fun.

Re: Shipping — Shipping costs differ from destination to destination (within Germany shipping is free, within EU: 15.- Euros; Overseas: United States with DHL logistics within 10-12 days: 32.- Euros/ within 6 days: 45.- Euros). Orders from the U.S. and other countries outside of the EU need to be processed individually so please order via email and let Irina know that you found this offer on decor8. Contact Irina: shop AT milchmaedchen-design.de. Offer good until October 31, 2008.

(images from milchmaedchen design)

Posted in fashion + accessories, reader discounts, small business on October 17, 2008

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.

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