Jumat, 28 Februari 2014

An artist's home in black, white and concrete

It's Friday - yay! To top of the week I'd love to share this home with you designed by Copenhagen based firm Norm Architects. The house is situated directly behind Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Humlebaek (a must-see in Copenhagen!). The architectural work was commissioned by a local artist who was looking to turn the space into a modern home with more light so it could function both as a home and studio. The brick work and beams are original but Norm laid a new concrete floor.The monochrome palette and use of texture reminds me a lot of the Danish home from earlier in the week (do you prefer this floor or the glossier version?).

Norm Architects via Home DSGN

So now the beautiful bones are in place it's time to add the personal stamp. I'm sure it'll look truly wonderful!

I have to say, I do love Norm Architect's distinct style (see other of their homes featured here and here. They're also the architects behind Copenhagen restaurant Höst, one of my favourite places to eat out). How about you?

Since it's the weekend here's a house with a big dose of colour in the form of a relaxed family home in Ystad which never fails to put a smile on my face or if you're in the mood for something more countrystyle / rustic how about this pretty västergötland farmhouse?

I hope you have a wonderful weekend and see you Monday!

Kamis, 27 Februari 2014

My furniture painting secrets

Do you learn the hard way and wish at the end you had checked things out a little more thoroughly?  This  overconfidence gets me in hot water more times than I would like to admit, but learn I do!  I paint furniture frequently.  That means lots of experience from too many mistakes. Here's my recipe now.

What goes under a paint job is very important especially if you are painting a hard surface like laminate. My best painting tip in these situations is ....

Stix bonding primer
My top pick for a bonding primer

  use STIX bonding primer  as a base on just about anything, and then go with the paint of your choice on top of it - my fav is below.  With used furniture degrease with TSP or vinegar and do a light sanding with a sanding pad or electric sander. Paint doesn't like grease, and I always feel better if I sand a bit first. No need to overdo it!

The Facts on STIX

 Keep in mind:
  1. STIX is not a paint but a  primer/sealant, only a thin translucent coat is required; you are not gaining anything by going for opaque coverage.  
  2. You don't  need two coats; don't waste it because it is on the expensive side.
  3. You probably need a quart rather than a gallon for smaller jobs because it spreads a long way.
  4. It is best  applied going in one direction using light but swift movements. Forget back and forth or w moves.
  5. Wait at least 90 minutes for drying.
My latest project was a colour change for a small media cabinet from Target.  We needed  a multipurpose piece to act as a side table and storage for  two pieces of  TV equipment.  I hate it when you need something right away because you are forced to choose from what is available. 30 inch media cabinets are a thing of the past it seems; everyone has big TVs.   This one was the least offensive to  my design sensibilities.  NO I don't love it at all because it is a tad too traditional for me, but it will serve our purpose until hubby builds one - might be years!

media cabinet Target

The nutmeg colour looked terrible with my decor  especially my so lovely golden undertoned 80's oak. In comes trusty BM Iron Mountain  to match the  family room colour scheme. I highly recommend this gray if you are looking for a dark gray hue.

Benjamin Moore Iron Mountain
Benjamin Moore Iron  Mountain
If I want a durable finish I use Benjamin Moore Advance in a pearl finish.

Benjamin Moore Advance waterborne alkyd Iron Mountain

But.... if you are the impatient type it might not be for you.  I have to do a lot of self talk to get me through the drying time, but it is worth it for a durable finish. 

The facts on  Advance

 Benjamin Moore Advance is a waterborn alkyd and is as close to an oil finish as you can get today.

  • durable finish
  •  levels nicely
  • soap and water cleanup
  • available in all BM colours
  • low VOCs
  • difficult paint for impatient people (like me); re-coating time is 16 hours (don't try to hurry it); seems to take even longer when applied over sealed, hard, non porous surfaces; takes many days to fully harden from my experience
  • some reviews report whites yellowing over time ( I haven't used white)
  • higher price range(you get what you pay for)
  • not self-priming, stain-blocking nor antimicrobial -mildew resistant
 If you want a very extensive review of this product read Jack Pauhl.

Advance Benjamin moore Stix bonding primer
Benjamin Moore Iron Mountain using  Advance
Photo:  Margaret Ryall

 You may notice we chopped over two inches off the legs to hide the wires that were coming down behind the cabinet.  Wires are the enemy and they must be dealt with at all costs! This will also be used as a side table so it needed to be shorter.  I liked the higher legs, but function always wins. 

Do  you have any painting tips to pass along?  

A Finnish / Swedish children's creative space

I 'm re-arranging my little girls room ahead of a photo shoot later this month (eeek, so much to do, such little time!) and was so excited when my mini heart stickers arrived in the post yesterday. One aim is to provide a great space where they can sit and create with all their pens, paints (actually is that a good idea?! ha!), stickers and glue (hmmm?). I came across this fab inspiration from Ferm Living (created by Rikke and Emma) which fits the bill. This post is also dedicated to all the readers who've been patiently waiting for boys room inspiration (I see it as a perfect space for little guys or gals and actually big kids too don't you?). 

Styling: Rikke, Emma. Ferm Living

I spy Ferm Living pieces, the STOCKHOLM rug, String shelving and the Batgirl print.

What are your thoughts on black and white for a child's bedroom? Do you have any tips on creating a creative / work space?

For more rooms like this check out this, this and this room. And my favourite shops for children's items Nordic Think, Smallable and Bodie and Fou. Too tempting!

If you're looking for inspiration for your own work space my favourites include this industrial space, a norwegian / danish home office,  a converted warehouse and these beautiful vintage inspired creative spots. Which one of these would you choose?!

Have a lovely day and see you tomorrow!

Rabu, 26 Februari 2014

A stunning Copenhagen home with a shiny touch

Today I'm loving this beautiful home in the heart of Copenhagen belonging to Line Dahy Ernst and Thomas Hoedholts (who unsurprisingly work in the fashion and design industry). The exposed beams, rough plastered walls, and monochrome colour palette. The fab designer pieces such as the Thonet 209 chairs and Vitra Hang it all . But most of all the stunning polished concrete floor which reflects light around the space- what a fantastic apartment?!

Styling: Camilla Tange, Photography: Peter Kragballe with kind permission, RUM hemma

Are you a fan of concrete floors?

By the way, if you're visiting Copenhagen I have a little tip for you. I recently discovered this cool hotel called Central Hotel og Café in Vesterbro. When I say little I mean it - it only has one room and is considered the world's smallest hotel! And the bonus? Breakfast in the cafe immediately below.

Don't forget to enter this week's give-away to win a beautiful watch here!

Have a lovely Wednesday!

Selasa, 25 Februari 2014

Give-away: win a beautiful watch!

To celebrate the start of spring I've teamed up with the fab online shop Urban Trait to offer you the chance to win a men or ladies timepiece of your choice by Miro Watches, Daniel Wellington, Hygge, Nava Watches or AARK Collective. Founded in Stockholm in 2012, Urban Trait is a watch design shop & journal for urban creatives who aim to inspire and guide you through the coolest emerging watch brands.  I'm a big fan of Urban Trait and never without this watch. Here are my top picks: 

How to enter:

1. Like Urban Trait on Facebook for the latest news on design, creativity and emerging brands.
2. State in the comment section below which watch you'd most like to win and why from Miro Watches, Daniel Wellington, HYGGE, Nava watches or AARK Collective.
3. Let your friends know about the give-away on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter or Google+ by sharing this post with the hashtag #urbantraitwatch.

The give-away is open to everyone worldwide. Be sure to enter latest Midnight GMT 3rd March 2014 and don't forget to leave a way for us to contact you. The winner will be announced here and on Twitter on 4th March, 2014.

Oh, and great news, even if you don't win you can still enjoy a discount of 10 USD plus free shipping on a watch of your choice with the code SCANDI up until 14 March 2014. Perfect! 

Senin, 24 Februari 2014

Monday's home: shades of grey

Hello and happy Monday to you! I'm finally back in Sweden and despite the jet lag (although it's actually quite useful to be up at 4.30am!) it's lovely to be home. It's cold, grey and gloomy compared to Thailand and Singapore but sometimes that can be beautiful too. Take this apartment for example. Decorated in black, white and grey it's the oh so cool apartment of Josefin Hååg of 20 kvadrat photographed recently for Residence Magazine.

20 kvadrat, Lotta Agaton, Sara Mortensen. Photography: Kristofer Johnsson for Residence

I am loving that it has the real Lotta Agaton stamp (check out another styling project by Lotta here and her own home). Lotta is my absolute favourite stylist of the moment, she has such a unique personal style. She is also a firm believer that grey will be the go-to colour for interiors in 2014 like in the home featured here.

What do you love about this home?

Oh and I have some exciting news: the book featuring my house:  Design Bloggers at Home by Ellie Tennant launches in March. I can't wait to see a copy! I only hope there were no socks lurking under the sofa or something...!

And the second exciting thing is I'm holding a fab give-away here tomorrow so be sure to pop back for your chance to win.

Have a lovely Monday!

Minggu, 23 Februari 2014

The perfect space for a Sunday lie-in

Since Sunday is the perfect day for a lie-in I had to share this bedroom and bathroom from the weekend home of designer Kali Cavanagh featured in Inside Out Magazine. I could spend my whole day flitting between these two rooms. Or perhaps rolling out of bed and into the roll-top bath and back again! How about you?

Stylist: Julia Green. Photography: Armelle Habib for Inside Out
Have a lovely relaxing Sunday and see you tomorrow!

Kamis, 20 Februari 2014

A very cool Swedish home with a twist.

There's something up with this space and you'll never guess from the pictures. This is actually a show house for a new residential area outside Stockholm called Fredborgs.  Consisting of 38 modern detached homes, the area is planned to have a village feel surrounded by untouched nature. The low energy villas will be built in natural materials all with a ready made garden looking out over forest land.  The show home has clearly been designed by someone very cool with impeccable, on trend taste!  

Styling Pella Hedeby. Photography Kristofer Johnsson for JM via Stil Inspiration
Apart from the obvious designer items and cool moodboards, I immediately noticed the baby crib in the bedroom as this is the one I also had when my little girls were newborns.

Is there anything that resonates with you in particular about this home? And have you ever seen a showhome like it?! I'd want to move in directly complete with all the furniture, lighting and accessories!

After four fantastic weeks with my family in Thailand we're finally heading home (boo hooo!). Right now we're in Singapore (anyone got any great tips?!) and will fly back to Sweden tomorrow.  The good news is I'll be back to blogging from my usual workspace on Monday. Since we'll be on the move tomorrow I won't have a chance to post, so have a fantastic weekend and see you Monday from sunny Sweden!

PS Other stunning homes shot by Kristofer Johnsson include the artist Therese Sennerholt's black and white home and this beautiful Stockholm apartment with a mid-century touch. Love!

Rabu, 19 Februari 2014

Blue- A home decor trend to watch

 It seems like only yesterday I  wrote my  2013  home decor trends  post,  and I've already looked at Pantone's Colour of the year, Radiant Orchid, and suggested  ways to integrate this vibrant colour into your decor. What else can we expect in the coming year?

While Radiant Orchid is Pantone's colour of the year, I think it will be the blues that will take over the stage in 2014.  Joan Mitchell had this all figured out in her 1972 painting!  She painted the best blues ever and these are the ones you'll be seeing more of in 2014.

decor trend 2014 blues
Joan Mitchell, “Blue Territory,” 1972

 And here's a modern interpretation of the darker side of blue...

2014 blue trend home decor
A range of blues for 2014

This year the popular blues are much deeper leaning toward cobalt and navy.  But what can you put with so much blue? 

decor trend 2014 blue and yellow
Add yellow as an accent in 2014

decor trends 2014 navy and gold
Gold accents work well  with navy blue and cobalt
And don't forget vibrant oranges or greens with dark blues.  The sky is the limit with this colour.  I thought the art work in the mood board above gives lots of accent choices. 

navy blue cobalt blue 2014 trend Designing Home
Versatile green blue looks great with white and radiant orchid

And never forget that blue has a green side that mixes with all sorts of colours especially the pinkish purples like Radiant Orchid. That way you can bet two trends for the price of one.  Think turquoise, aqua and any blue you may see on a Caribbean holiday.


Benjamin Moore highlighted the lighter side of blue for their 2014 Colour of the year. It is reminiscent of summer breezes blowing lightly under a pale sky. Cool and inviting and perfect for a summer house or a spa retreat.

It seems all versions of blue are hot this year. Is there blue in your future? 

Selasa, 18 Februari 2014

Cool grey and brass in a Gothenburg home

I was overwhelmed with the popularity of the swedish apartment with a mid-century touch featured in Monday's post- especially on Facebook! This Gothenburg home channels a different trend: the combination of light grey and brass. It's a completely different style but very cool too. I've been coveting a brass faucet with a light grey marble kitchen surface in my kitchen, what do you think? I absolutely love the rest of the space too.

What do you think? Are you a fan of this look? Anything in particular you love about this home? I love it. I guess my only concern is that it could become outdated quickly.

For more brass-in-the-home inspiration it's definitely work checking out this oh so stunning home and this very cool Norwegian work space.

Have a lovely Wednesday!
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