Scandinavian Fashion Beauties

So what about the notion that Swedish women are so beautiful. Is it really true? I certainly think so (perhaps that is why I had to move abroad. Ha!). As a generalization, Swedish women are healthy, fit, young looking, equipped with good skin and into natural beauty (and yes you will find more blond, blue eyed and tall women in Scandinvia than in many other parts of the world). Swedes like to look fresh and to keep it natural. (Aging is beautiful, people!)

The top model Emma Wiklund personifies Swedish beauty to me. She is 42, which is hardly considered old age in Sweden, where 70 year olds look 20 years younger. (It is all those power walks, long vacations (6 weeks/year is the law!), the love connection with Mother Nature, healthy diets and lots of fish oil!). Emma is not only stunning she is also famous for her always upbeat and friendly attitude (the key for true beauty). This busy mother of two recently launched her first skincare line. I look forward to checking in out on my next trip to Stockholm. I find this girl so inspirational!

When it comes to fashion, Sweden acoounts for a whole slew of fashion designers who do very well on the international scene. (For a country of only 9 million + people, Sweden keeps winning a surprising number of prestigious international awards for both fashion and gastronomy). The fashion style is more young looking and relaxed. Simple, uncomplicated cuts and good materials. Understated chic. And a lot of natural colors. (No surprise there!). Here are a few of the leading Swedish fashion brands.

Odd Molly

Filippa K.


(I want that Japanese cut sweater. In light blue).


Acne (famous for its very trendy denim).

Recently, I had fun putting together a couple of fashion boards for the Danish brand Ilse Jacobsen which I sell in my own store (Splendid Willow Avenue). I have to pinch myself every day that I get to work and have fun with such a great brand! (And I am also a lucky owner of that Odd Molly dress).

Stylish In The Rain

Stylish In The Rain by SplendidWillow featuring knit shawls

MURUA High Waist Army Shorts
$67 – maruione.jp
Army shorts »

Love Quotes Eyelash Scarf in Caviar
$86 – shopzoeonline.com
Knit shawls »

Animal Print Border Birdcage
20 GBP – houseoffraser.co.uk
Umbrellas »

Ilse Jacobsen
$179 – splendidwillow.com


I am very proud to be a  Scandinavian!  (Even though I am a petite gal with dark hair and green eyes and hardly any legs to write home about…). Warm hugs to you all.


Message for Pernilla: Pernilla Dear — you are the inspiration for this post. Thank you so much for the Swedish magazines. What  a nice surprise. I miss you TONS! And little Ville misses his girlfriend. Enjoy the snow in Stockholm!

Images: No. 1 + 3 via Damernas Varld. no. 2 via Ecco, no. 4 via Gorseller, no. 5 via Le Web Pedagogique.

Written by Splendid Willow in: Fashion & Trends | Tags: , ,


Ikea’s Latest Photo Shoot Rocks

Happy new week! (I am sorry for my absence in blog land last week, but now I am back with more energy!). This past Friday I went to a fun evening event with a bunch of lovely ladies (Thank you Ms. Eva Delishhh!) and at 1:00 am (!) Ikea came up as a topic. The hostess’s laptop was quickly turned on and I shared some photos from one of Ikea’ s latest photo shoots (courtesy of my close & creative friend Mia from Solid Frog). And now I am sharing them with all of you.

This is Ikea, people! I think the images are absolutely gorgeous. And the stylists hit the mark by incorporating the industrial vintage trend that is so hot right now.

BRAVO Ikea! I am totally inspired by each and every image and I am so heading to that Swedish mega store this week! Maybe I will run into you there!

Inspiration + images via Solid Frog.

Written by Splendid Willow in: Simply Swedish Style,Trends | Tags: , ,


Garbo Interiors and “Ebba & Jag” – Two Stores To Visit

Hello friends! I could go on and on about my trip to Stockholm and virtually drag you to every interesting street and shop but I don’t want to bore you with too much Stockholm talk. Ok, just one one more post….!

There are literally a zillion fun stores in Stockholm but today I am going to share two of my “secret” shops that are must visits for me whenever I go back to my old hometown — Garbo Interiors and Ebba & Jag (“Ebba and I”). None of them are painfully flashy, overly trendy, nor intimidating stores. I just find them interesting, tasteful, inviting and filled with unique things.

Garbo Interiors is located in my Mom’s neighborhood, Ostermalm, a lovely and classy downtown neighborhood filled with many nice design destinations.

Garbo Interiors offers classic high-end Swedish antiques and vintage furniture mixed with lovely accessories for the home. This store has many followers among interior designers and stylists. And rightfully so. It is just a gorgeous store!

Ebba & Jag is situated in Sodermalm, the neighboord where I was staying on my recent trip. I love this happening area which is filled with vibrant and funky stores and good places to eat.

Ebba & Jag is more of a lifestyle store and the lovely owner Mona and I have connected over the years and always give each other warm hugs when I pay a visit. (And we both just learned that one of Mona’s close friend’s happens to be one of my big brother Erik’s old girlfriend’s who we loved and viewed as part of our family! A crazy small world!).

Mona mixes Swedish antiques and vintage furniture with fashion from young Swedish designers and a bunch of other things she likes from around the world. I buy something every single time I visit this store and I always bring back a fashion item as a gift to my dear girlfriend Stacey in Seattle.

On my last trip I came home with several pieces of clothing by the Swedish brand Melmelli. These thin, high quality long cotton tunics are super comfortable and and look fabulous on. I have been wearing these tunics a lot this summer.

So, when you visit Stockholm — please don’t miss these two lovely stores. And if you meet Mona with “Ebba & Jag”, make sure to say hi from me!

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


Simply Scandinavian

I just purchased Simply Scandinavianby Sara Normann. What a page turner this design book is! I really recommend it. I could scan (didn’t find any of these images on-line) pictures all day long to share with you. Here are a few that made my eyes extra large and teary with joy.

Ok, this is my favorite image in the book. I am borderline jealous (even if I don’t have a jealous bone in my body). The cabinet in the background (be prepared now) was found on a beach in Denmark! It is an old safety box used by swimmers to deposit their valuables! Paired with Arne Jacobsen’s table and chairs, I think I am about to faint. I love it all!

Maybe a little on the boring side to some. But I love bedrooms that are calm and serene. Love the simple details including the striped pillows and box spring and the old portrait and bedside table.

Count the objects in this image? Not very many! But the eye can rest in this room and focus on quality rather than quantity.

Love this room with the two sofas facing each other! Look at those large windows! And the two different light fixtures (one propped up on pile of magazines!).

A calm & neutral room with many old classics gets some added color with a striking wall art piece by Maibritt Ulvedal Bjelke. I love big and unexpected art pieces.

When I see all these images – I just want to book a large container and get rid of half of my house. The older I get – the more I appreciate less. Less is so beautiful in my book.

Happy weekend to you all, friends!

Publisher: www.rylandpeters.com

Written by Splendid Willow in: Lovely Rooms,White rooms | Tags: , , ,


A Dose of Swedish

Happy new week, friends! It is pouring in Seattle right now. It is gray, gray, gray and I lust for airy, light & uncomplicated Swedish rooms. Who better to capture that then the very talented Stockholm-based photographer Martin Cederblad.

I have a pair of similar Swedish baroque chairs (ca 1750) as the gray ones around the table. And hundreds of years later they – with their heads high – work so beautifully hand in hand with contemporary pieces  (in my opinion one of the few antique styles that can). That is why Swedish antiques never will go out style (especially the old, gray painted furniture). They are beautiful, simple and fit in just about anywhere.

Also don’t be afraid to mix different time periods and build your own cluster of objects for the eye (and soul & heart), like these silver candle holders.

Lovely cottage living.  Nothing matchy-matchy. Nothing contrived. Just relaxed.

White in different textures.

Imagine starting your day with a cup of tea in this setting!  Look how much a simple linen table cloth adds to the atmosphere. Now envision the image without it!

Happy eating in this lovely & cheery setting where vintage china adds color to the table.

Sigh. Simple and so beautiful.

Can’t wait for the sun! Can’t wait to get my hands dirty and put a whole row of lovely white blooming plants on my own stone steps! Spring can’t come quick enough for me.

Written by Splendid Willow in: Designers, Illustrators, Photographers, Stylists | Tags:

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