What I Brought With Me From Sweden

After having been on this planet for quite a while I am still not sure I understand the concept of traveling lightly… Ask my great long time friend Sanne (I love you girlfriend!), who always kidnaps me from the city to her lovely home outside of Stockholm for a night or two before I fly back to the US. We adore hanging out together but after knowing each other for some 30 years (!), Sanne still raises her eyebrows everytime she sees my luggage! (Not to mention what my Hubby says when he picks me up at the airport…).

This time the suitcases were filled with gifts from family & friends, design things for my store, things from my Mom’s home, many gifts for loved ones, Swedish designer clothes and shoes, Swedish food & books, and some extra special things just because I can’t find them on the other side of the planet! Trust me when I say that I am normally not a shopaholic EXCEPT when I go back to my Mother land. I do tend to go a little nutty then.  (Perhaps I am desperately trying to hold on to my roots? Who knows…).

Just a few highlights:

1. A few new stunning Asa Lindstrom ceramic cups (handmade with 18K gold rim). I slowly keep adding to my collection. I don’t “collect” many things — but these cups I go absolutely crazy for.

This is where they hang out. I plan to fill all 25 cubbies!

 2. An old, original letter from 1649. Just pretty. (I framed it when I got home).

3. This little Swedish ceramic guy. A fox with an attitude perhaps? He puts a grin on my face and he lives in a cup. That is funny to me!

4. Chocolate from the fine chocolate store, “Chokladfabriken (Chocolate Factory) a few steps from my Mom’s home. A store bestseller is Swedish liquirice dipped in chocolate with a tad of sea salt on top. Only a true Scandinavian (or someone brave) will appreciate that!

5. A few classic mini glass vases from Svenskt Tenn (the most classic interior design institution in Sweden). I wish I could have brought a sofa with me…

These glasses are called Acorn” vases. The founder of Svenskt Tenn, Estrid Ericson, had gigantic acorn trees at her summer house in the 40’s. She designed this vase specifically for acorn growth.You are supposed to let an acorn sit on a moist piece of paper towel for a few weeks (preferably in the refrigerator). Once the acorn starts to sprout, you pop it into the vase and then watch a simple green branch start to embrace life.

That is all I dare to share today.

Do you also go shopping crazy when you travel? Please, let my Hubby know that I am not alone!

Happy long weekend! (Monday is President’s day here in the US).

 Image credits: No. 1 via Bon Appetit Hon, no. 2-6 via Splendid Willow, no. 9 via HouseMartin.


Written by Splendid Willow in: The Best of Sweden | Tags: ,


  • Great stuff! I also love all the great Swedish design, and that´s all I shop for when we visit Stockholm every summer.

  • Charlotta says:

    Underbara saker Monika! Din kopp kollektion är så fin!

    Räven är ju bara fantastisk!! Vart köpte du honom..

    Vi har en ekollon vas med ett litet ekollon i köket. Den har fått en liten liten rot och vi ser med hopp fram emot att se den växa mer nu när solen äääääntligen kommit fram igen!


  • Love all your finds especially because they each have special meaning, your collection of gold rimmed cups are beautiful! And ugh…the chocolates, well lets just say I am REALLY enjoying mine (actually enjoyed, lol), the acorn vases are also beautiful. So happy you had such a wonderful time, nothing like going “home”. Next time my husband is complaining that I packed too much, I will show him this post and say “see, it could be worse” lol. Hope you have a wonderful day, Mon!

  • Mon, I am taking the plane tomorrow to head to Michigan to see my Mom and Sister and I am so excited that I couldn’t sleep last night! It has been a year and a half, far too long. But I will only pack the least bit possible–two jeans, three sweaters, a couple of t’s–so that I can bring back a FULL suitcase of American goodies! Hooray! I always shop when I travel and they are the most treasured items in my home.

  • kim/nannykim says:

    Just love the idea of framing an old letter!

  • Monika-
    You are so fortunate to have two homelands! I love seeing the things you bring back, very unique.
    I love learning about each treasure you bring back. Especially love the story behind the acorns. I will try growing a new tree from an acorn. The cups are perfection! Love, love!
    Have a happy Thursday.

  • Exquisite….your taste is just exquisite my friend. I LOVE seeing what you brought back with you and I think most folks go a little nuts when they travel! No? Those cups are so beautiful and I love where you have put them….also that sweet little fox! Those vases are beautiful, I LOVE the vision of the roots in the bottom of the globe. So perfect…..I guess you can’t buy those in the states? I wonder….Thanks for sharing these hun, I always love seeing what you do with your gorgeous home & the special items you fill it with.

  • designchic says:

    What treasures you found. Love gold rimmed cups and the old framed letter and you found the perfect spot to display them!! Isn’t it fun to have collected items from your travels…wonderful memories…

  • Willow Decor says:

    Mon- Adore the Lindstrom cups and of course your wonderful display shelf!! Chocolate and licorice are two favoirtes of mine – sounds yummy! The vases are beautiful – such wonderful thinkgs to bring home!!

  • Bianca says:

    Love everything about this post Mon – and yes, I also go crazy when traveling… always love to bring some of my travels “back home”
    I love the sofa, the color, the form, actually: I love that whole room!

  • paula says:

    you collect so well. The cups are quite amazing.

  • LiveLikeYou says:

    Love the cup Monika. I want a cup like that with a little fox peaking up, just for fun…

  • casey says:

    Mon, I adore your framed letter. So simple and beautiful. And thanks SO much for your wonderful words on my blog yesterday. We are so happy!

  • Delishhh says:

    I travel very light, and never check luggage in – even when we went to Thailand last year for 3 weeks – just hand luggage – the trick is that your suitcase should be almost empty depending on where you go – so you can fill it up while you are there. When i go to Sweden i think i bring clothes for 2 days knowing that i will fill it up while i am there :). But mostly i fill up my belly – the first thing i do is go to the grocery store and buy everything i haven’t eating in awhile. That chocolate looks yummy :)

  • Joe Clarke says:

    Monika, I want to see some of these objects in your store! You have such a great eye for unique things!


  • Alex kimball says:

    Do enjoy your talented eye, keep up the great show… I too have been known to collect things cups got some,
    It’s your collection of luggage bags that are outstanding.

    Christina and I would love to get you guys out for a sail, we are happily living aboard … Might be the only boat that doesn’t look like a marine hardware store.
    4’x5 ‘ beveled mirror with clasic hand painted gypsy frame from Italy sets the stage of botique hotel, to beautiful Italian deli.. Sailing often so you and Peter, come join us.


  • so much gorgeousness to take in–i love your finds and your enthusiasm for them. the letter! the search is on for me now cuz i adore that idea of framing one.

    did i tell you my etsy shop stuff is selling? finally people are waking up to the vintage lovelies, and i am so glad you like your necklace!



  • classiq says:

    All these wonderful things you’ve found! The ceramic cups are so beautiful. Every time I travel there are so many things I want to buy and bring back home. I am not a light traveller at all. Wishing you a very lovely weekend, Monika! xo

  • Happy Friday Mon!
    I’m obsessed with the fox in the cup! Where would I get one? Oh, I have to go to Sweden? Okay!

  • Carol says:

    Will you be selling the acorn vases? Love the look and the concept – especially for starting new beginnings.

  • Julie at BV says:

    The cups are beautiful and that store looks like a place where they would find me at every day.

    Happy weekend Dear Monika!

  • Tree says:

    Oh, yes! Think it’s part of the flow one feels when we’re in our element. For me, my suitcase always buldges in Helsinki, and it’s usually a mix of Finnish + Swedish design from Stockmann’s.

  • Stacey says:

    those gold rimmed cups are tdf! love all the beauty you brought back! happy long weekend to you too! xx

  • tinajo says:

    Vilka finheter – gillar allt! :-)

  • Hi Monika!

    Thanks for sharing these lovely pieces from Sweden. I empathize with you. I always end up with too many suitcases and am at the airport squishing last minute things into them and paying for an extra case every time.


  • You found so many wonderful treasures!! Those ceramic cups can serve a multitude of uses! And, I adore old letters and have several frames, too. Nothing nearly as old as that though!

    I usually find a little something on my trips, but I think I’d have to take along an extra suitcase if I was visiting Sweden!! :)

    xo Elizabeth

  • I love all of your treasures, but yesterday I met with an artist who has a very inspiring story having to do with acorns. I immediately remembered the beautiful Estrid Ericson acorn vase you gave to Marianne. I’ve done a little searching, but do you happen to know if they are available any where in the United States? Maybe I’ll have to make a trip to Sweden!!

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