Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Dream Home Number 3: Getting Regal in Sweden

I'm not usually a fan of traditional decor. My favourite decor is almost always mid-century modern, but generally if it features clean lines, a neutral colour palette and a modern sensibility then you can count me in! Every once in a while though, a very special property comes along which makes me reconsider. This week's dream home is definitely one of those properties!

This amazing home can be found on a bluff overlooking Sweden's Lake Mälaren and commands a magnificent view of the serene lake, while you can make out the Stockholm skyline in the distance. The home was originally built in 1880 on land leased from the King of Sweden. The land continues to be leased from the Swedish Royal Family - how many people can say that the King is their landlord?! Traditional furniture and textiles are mixed with bold colours and patterns to bridge the gap between traditional and contemporary to great effect.

Let's dive right into the bright and breezy entrance - love how the predominantly white room is balanced by the natural wood paneling on the far wall.

Normally the mix of contrasting prints on the walls, furniture and textiles would have me running a mile and yet in this context, I find it totally charming!

So many wonderful things about this room - the bold curtains, the gorgeous screen, the original fireplace and the chaise longue (I can't be the only one among us who has always wanted a chaise longue!)

Where has this library been all my life? Pink chairs, yellow sofa, blue walls, fabulous rug, books galore and arched windows? Yes please!
If you do happen to need a break from all of the patterns, textures and bold colours, heading down to your private dock to look across the lake should do the trick!

What do you think of this home? Does the mix of traditional and contemporary work for you?

Images via Skeppsholmen

Monday, 9 July 2012

Mod Pieces + coucou salut

I've long admired the work of two talented Canadian designers Lia Fagan (behind the lighting brand Mod Pieces) and Shannon Adolph (behind the textile brand coucou salut), so I was particularly intrigued when I heard they were working together on a new collection. 

The result of this collaboration is a gorgeous new limited edition collection of custom lampshades. Each of Shannon's patterns began as a pen and ink sketch which she then hand-printed using eco-friendly fabric and dyes. Then, using reclaimed rings, Lia carefully constructed each shade. I love the patterns and the choice of colours which combine to create a collection that is modern with a whimsical twist. 



You can see the entire collection here, but if you're anything like me you'll find it impossible to choose just one favourite design!

Monday, 2 July 2012

A Stylish Moroccan Getaway

Well, it's July and while many of my friends and colleagues are on the brink of taking some fantastic summer holidays, I don't have any such travels to look forward to. I can't complain though - I've already taken holidays in three different countries this year! While I've mentioned my trips to Montreal and New York in April and May, I actually took a much more exotic trip back in February to Marrakech, Morocco.

It was a bit of a culture shock, to say the least, but after a while I became accustomed to the heat, the pace, the ever-present merchants always looking to barter and the frankly terrifying seeming lack of any road traffic laws! We were very fortunate to experience the hospitality at Riad El Fenn and I couldn't resist sharing this extraordinary hotel with you.

Down a narrow alley, behind an unassuming door is Riad El Fenn. The property itself is nearly 200 years old, but has been painstakingly restored by its owners and now features a wonderful mix of original architectural details, modern decorative touches, artisanal Moroccan textiles and a bold modern art collection (I spotted works by Bridget Riley and Antony Gormley to name a few). The word Riad refers to a traditional Moroccan house or palace with an interior courtyard - on entering El Fenn, the courtyard is revealed and it is breathtaking. A beautiful marble fountain trickles water into a basin filled with rose petals and apart from the sound of birds singing, it is a remarkably quiet place, with the bustling city sounds somehow fading away.  There are 20 suites all leading off the courtyard on the ground and upper floors - each with a distinct decorative flair. The attention to detail is immaculate!

Many more gorgeous images after the jump!

Friday, 29 June 2012

Friday Five: Week 2

This week's Friday Five is entirely devoted to fabulous finds from one of my favourite shops - Papermash!

Last week, I was lucky to assist at an incredibly fun evening of shopping, crafting and mingling hosted by Lynne in celebration of her fantastic shop Papermash. If you don't already know Papermash, you simply must take a look - it's one of the best online retailers specialising in paper goods sourced from independent designers and has a richly deserved reputation for stocking the most gorgeous, unique products. With a huge array of beautiful goods including cards, notebooks, decorative washi tape, banners, poms and tableware, it's safe to say that I would pretty much buy every single thing in this shop if I could!

It's nearly impossible to choose a few highlights, so I'll just say that these five finds are my favourite this week.

All images by Papermash

Shopping list:
1. Blue graph washi tape
2. Paris & London post-its
3. Smile camera print
4. Bonjour notecards
5. Single colour masking tape

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

The room that isn't a room...

It's perfectly understandable that the majority of interior design inspiration focuses on, well, rooms. But there's another area of every home which is equally important - whether it be the first space you see upon entering your home or whether it's the space you walk through each day to get from room to room, or whether it's both! I'm talking, of course, about the hallway. It's often approached as an afterthought or sometimes even ignored altogether, but after seeing this collection of images I'm inspired to make more of mine!

Here are a few fantastic hallways ranging from the functional to the purely decorative, each of which aims to make the most of the space and proves that whether your approach is muted or flamboyant, the hallway shouldn't be neglected!

What's your hallway style?

All images by Alvhem Makleri
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