Jan
11
2010
31

Quite Simply Swedish

When I need to declutter my mind and find some peace in & harmony I often gravitate towards my old home country. Swedish interiors can at times be considered cold but when done right and with some heart, I find those rooms calm, serene and easy to breathe in. They are often filled with less stuff but instead things with a purpose. Let me introduce you to such a home in beautiful Sweden.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       Anna-Malin is a friend who I have met in wonderful blog land. We have been sharing e-mails cross the Atlantic about  life issues and thoughts on design. Not only is Anna-Malin a wonderful person but she is also highly creative and talented. Her home is so inspiring and so is her Swedish blog Helt Enkelt. Take a deep breath – this is not staged, this is how she actually lives. Lovely or what?

Anna-Malin loves mixing Scandinavian design classics with heirloom pieces and vintage finds. She is an expert at taking flea market finds and turning them into must-have objects.

Just take a look at this vintage chair (Anna-Malin is well aware that I have a very serious crush on that particular chair!). She found the chair at a Swedish flea market, nobody wanted it (where was I!!), she paid about $40 dollars and voila. Hello?! Can a chair get much lovelier?

And now that chair lives here. In her kitchen. With sheep skins and everything. Oh no, that was 2 weeks ago! Anna-Malin changes furniture around on a daily basis and the kitchen of the week now looks like this!

                                                                                                                                                                                     She constantly moves things around and prefers to try new ideas before she would even consider going out and buying anything new.

As with most Swedes, Anna-Malin finds inspiration from nature. She is drawn to simple lines, organic materials and neutral colors. And she like to be good to mother nature by reusing things. She says: ” Being from the very North of Sweden, I get good energy from white and cripsy snow, complete quiet and branches from simple, wispy trees”.

Who said you need a whole roll of wall paper to make an impact? Just a little piece will take you a  long way!

My friend is a resourceful lady who is not afraid to use a hammer and nail on any given day. This sofa table is one of Anna-Malins own creations, put together on a weekend. (Maybe Hubby was involved in that project too, I can’t remember).

Another dining/work area in the family room.

All over the house you will find cozy and calm areas to relax and just be.

The rooms of her two boys are no exceptions.

I hope this gave you some good food for thought. Just writing this post got me so inspired that I am heading to a nearby consignment store – today! Thank you Anna-Malin for your friendship and all your wonderful ideas & inspiration! Happy Monday blog friends!

All images, curtesy of Anna-Malin @ Helt Enkelt.
 

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

Oct
09
2009
13

Stockholm Living

The styles may vary but you can be sure to find the following design elements in a Stockholm apartment:

  • White. Swedes embrace gallons and gallons of white paint.
  • Hardwood floors with individual rugs (we stopped using wall to wall carpeting decades ago).
  • State of the art kitchens (yep, nearly all of family & friends back home have fab kitchens!).
  • State of the art bathrooms.
  • Books! (See my earlier post).
  • A great mix of old and new. Just look at that old Swedish wood burning stove and the old beams. A true Swede will rather have no furniture at all than to get rid of historical elements.

Images: Lagerlings

Written by Splendid Willow in: Real Estate in Sweden | Tags: ,

Oct
01
2009
11

Attic Bliss In Stockholm

Here is some eye candy for you. This incredible attic apartment in Stockholm is owned by the interior architect and artist Carouschka Streijffert. I am going to keep quiet for a change and let you go through all the details yourself. Take your time.

Okay, just one comment! Let’s talk about books for a second. I do not know of one home in Sweden (unless they are somehow staged) where books are not prominent. Back home we surround ourselves with books and display them with pride. I get totally nervous when I don’t see books in a home. I am so pleased to be reading more and more about how formal living rooms in the US are fading away. People instead are opting for libraries. Yeah! I hope that trend stays!



Images via Skona Hem

Written by Splendid Willow in: Art & Antiques,DIY,Simply Swedish Style | Tags: , , ,

Sep
24
2009
3

Beautiful Mirror

Ok friends, I have a crush on this mirror. Isn’t it stunning? So unique. Simple and yet it makes a statement. The mirror is 69 cm in height (about 27 inches), so it is not too wimpy, which I like.

The company behind the mirror is BTC by Design from England. The Leafy Mirror in Oyster Gray is made of metal and is, according to BTC, Swedish inspired. No wonder I was immediately attracted to it!

Have a wonderful weekend blog friends from all corners of the world! You are the best!

Written by Splendid Willow in: Home Goods & Accessories | Tags:

Sep
23
2009
13

Slow Deco

One of the leading interior design magazines in Sweden, Skona Hem, has come up with a new catchy name for the new design movement taking place right now (especially in Sweden where being current and environmentally correct are two key factors within design. Well actually with just about everything. It is a very progressive country I come from!).

The term they use is “Slow Decor”. A close relative to “Slow Cooking”. And it means design that is meant to last. Both from an esthetic and material standpoint. Invest for the future. Try to buy local. That is how people think and buy right now. (And if they don’t – maybe they should).

Yeah!!! I am slow!!! That is how I have always tried to decorate. (With an emphasis on try because this girl is far from perfect!). I prefer to save for a long time to get that perfect, classic object that my childrens’ children one day will appreciate rather than to buy a ton of trendy things that I will say goodbye to shortly.  (And here flea markets and auctions also come to play. Not everything has to be bought new and/or for a steep price tag if you only train your eye and add some patience and a little bit of luck).

Let’s take a look at the first picture again. Love it BTW ! An old Swedish table from the 18th c. holds a collection of “new” and old Swedish classics of different textures. I love the beautiful and decorative bowl and the lamp from the 60’s next to the small, so typical Swedish, hand carved wooden bird. Pleasing to the eye. And a good investment for the future.

The table  “Twin” has a reversible table top – black/birch. For every table made, a new tree is planted. I love the tall vintage striped (originally) lemonade glasses (I have to look for them when I go to Sweden next!) and the wonderful collection of classic plates from different eras. (Reminds me that I need to get my own mixed collection going).

Only classic pieces from different epochs mixed here. And a beautiful old Swedish mirror. Hey, who knew that an old tuba could be so decorative!

A Tripode lamp shares the room with a classic Divan and a book shelf made of large, sturdy paper rolls (!) and Velcro that you put together any way you want (by ReturDesign) . The room is filled with more classic accessories.

Textile art in blue by Verner Panton from 1966. The chair by Carl Malmsten from the 50’s is called “the lazy servant”.

The Tolomeo lamp is always “right” and it brings a nice contrast to Carl Malmsten’s table from the 50’s and the eco friendly bedding.

Mix people – and by smart!

All images from Skona Hem.

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

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