Showing posts with label magazines. Show all posts
Showing posts with label magazines. Show all posts

Friday, 18 April 2014

Happy Easter!

Yesterday I sat on my bicycle to get me a few things for Easter: two bouquets of white tulips, a magazine, berries and chocolate … no Easter eggs for me, thank you very much. It's a beautiful spring day in the West Midlands. I'm taking my coffee in my study room, watching the tulips embracing the sun - I love white tulips. Adding to the relaxing atmosphere in here is our male Persian cat sleeping on the windowsill.

Do you have any plans for Easter? I think I will just be enjoying some lazy days with the kids. Depending on the weather I wouldn't say no to a drive to Stratford-upon-Avon or Warwick, or both. Happy Easter!

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

a bowl of latte

It is not my intention to post coffee every day but I was sitting in my study room with a bowl of latte (a latte in a glass is a no-no for me!), getting ready to listen to a lecture before taking an exam, when the colours on my desk caught my attention. My May issue of Elle Decoration UK has arrived and I'm waiting for a moment later today to be inspired by its pages.

Wishing you all a beautiful day!

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Friday, 28 March 2014

artist Rachel Dein + her plaster-cast tiles

Yesterday I bought the March issue of Garden Illustrated mainly because of a short article about artist Rachel Dein of Tactile Studio that was photographed by Andrew Montgomery, who happens to be one of my favourite photographers (I've mentioned him a few times on the blog already). I had never heard of Rachel Dein before but I became fascinated with her work.

She creates plaster-cast tiles with delicate flowers and leaves. Some of the tiles she paints in watercolour, some she leaves unpainted. She says that her method isn't difficult but I find her work so unique, especially because she each mould she makes she can only use once.
Favourite flowers to cast include Dicentra with their bleeding heart blooms, the emerging fiddleheads of ferns and Japanese anemones. 'I like plants that have that delicate, spirity, of-the-woods feel to them, and I love to reflect the progress of the seasons.'

Rachel studied at Middlesex University and then worked as a prop maker for the English National Opera, the Royal Opera House and the Globe Theatre. After becoming a mother she set up a studio in her north London home.
At college it was considered uncool to cast in plaster - it was too messy, not conceptual enough. But I got to the stage when I just needed to start making my own things again. Luckily for me the time for craft and making things is now.

You can read the entire article on Rachel's website. Have a wonderful weekend!

photo credit:
1-2: Andrew Montgomery for Garden Illustrated via Tactile Studio / 3: Tactile Studio

Friday, 7 March 2014

inspirational: the new John Lewis Home catalogue

Next to my computer on the desk is the new and inspiring John Lewis Home catalogue that I have been enjoying since yesterday. It's beautifully styled and photographed; contains 116 ideas for spring and summer divided into a few chapters (I love the Cool Country one, it brings on an instant summer mood). There are also a few short interviews with various designers. I had to snap a few photos and share with you.

John Lewis opened the first store 150 years ago on Oxford Street in London and ever since it has been the go-to place for home and design lovers (luckily there's a store in my town!). I honestly think you can use John Lewis to measure your overall well-being: If you enter a John Lewis store and find the urge to pretty much buy every other item in there, that you will even consider chaining yourself to a shelf so no one can drag you out, I would say you don't have to worry at all. That's completely normal. You're fine! However, if you enter a John Lewis store and don't find five items to buy I would say you were in need of professional help. If you don't find a single item to buy you are past help. Go live in a cave!

Textile designer Pat Albeck in her studio.


The John Lewis Home catalogue is accompanying the April issue of Livingetc magazine. You can also order the catalogue.

Have a wonderful weekend!

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt - images from the John Lewis Home catalogue, spring/summer 2014

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

the inspiration dose - the April issues

Tuesdays are my exam days (I'm taking an online course on sustainable development). I cannot say the exams are heavy; they are quizzes to test one's knowledge after each lecture. Besides, when you are taking an online course you have the material in front of you and it's up to you to just look up the answers for certain types of questions, or study in a way where you feel confident to answer without any help. I like the latter approach. I have been doing well on my exams and I like rewarding myself after I'm done. My today's carrot is two April issues sitting on my desk that arrived by mail: Elle Decoration UK and Harper's Bazaar UK. I just became an Elle Decoration subscriber (it has always been one of my favourites) and am looking forward to my monthly dose of beautiful interiors. Since it is an issue that celebrates pattern and colour, there are plenty of textiles. The issue contains a few house tours that reflect my own style - think rustic elements - and one of them is a house and studio in the town of Neuchâtel in Switzerland. Many years ago I lived in Zürich for a year and lived for two months in a small town next to Neuchâtel. It's a beautiful part of Switzerland, at least in my memory. Sarah Jessica Parker graces the cover of Harper's Bazaar and there is an interview inside featuring a photo shoot by Alexi Lubomirski. There are also interviews with Karl Lagerfeld, Laudomia Pucci, the three generations of Fendi women, and Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana. To me, that's a good carrot!

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Friday, 17 January 2014

in a Swedish farmhouse

For almost a year I have been admiring this photo, regularly opening my country folder to get a glimpse of its special mood. The muted tones and texture lure me in, but there is something else I cannot define. Maybe it's the food and insignificant small items, that are part of everyday life, that make this photo so special. Or maybe it's the idea of living in a farmhouse. I found it on Pinterest when searching for something and I had no luck tracing the source. It wasn't until later that I discovered (thanks to H is for Home blog) that it was part of a feature on a Swedish farmhouse in Volume 1 of Elle Decoration Country. Unfortunately, I don't know who the photographer is. The magazine is a luxurious bi-annual featuring some of the world’s most spectacular countryside homes and they recently published Vol. 3, which I'm hoping to get my hands on soon.

Have a wonderful weekend!

photo credit:
Elle Decoration Country, Volume 1

Friday, 20 September 2013

bon week-end

This novel, Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann, is keeping me company on the train these days and I'm now on the last pages. I love its style. A book that tells many stories in one. This one is set in New York and it's Philippe Petit's tightrope walk between the Twin Towers back in 1974 that ties the stories together. It was Mary Jo who recommended it to me and also a book called The Master Butchers Singing Club by Louise Erdrich, which I got at the library yesterday. Just felt it was right to share these recommendations with all the book lovers out there.

When I got back home the postman had brought me the October issue of Harper's Bazaar UK to add to my weekend reading. It's been a busy week and I'm looking forward to a relaxing weekend. I just have to run out the door one more time and after that it's relaxation and Friday-pizza time.

For those interested in architecture and interior design, today I'm a guest blogger at Igor's Happy Interior Blog, sharing a stylish home on the Greek island Mykonos.

Have a wonderful weekend!

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Sunday, 15 September 2013

my Sunday moment

This is more like my weekend moment. I'm devouring the pages of this Elle Decoration issue, there is so much inspiration and wonderful to see familiar faces from blogosphere in short interviews like Kara Rosenlund and Paul Lowe of Sweet Paul Magazine (his blog was the first I started following long before I began blogging myself). The kids are going back to school tomorrow and buying school and art supplies left me inspired. By the way, that chinoiserie style painting on the card is by artist Kathe Fraga, whom I blogged about here.

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Friday, 5 July 2013

bon week-end

New magazines filled with inspirations - interiors, gardens and patios - and Out of Africa just sitting there waiting patiently for me to finish Hemingway; A working on a new piece in the atelier downstairs; coffee, biscotti and fruits. Something tells me that this is going to be a good day.

Have a beautiful weekend everyone and thank you for the kind and encouraging words yesterday (those of you who sent emails, you know who you are).

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Thursday, 27 June 2013

Garden design: a mill house garden in Oxfordshire

An interesting thing happened yesterday. I was uploading these photos from my files, of a garden that belongs to an 18th century mill house by the River Cherwell in Oxfordshire, when A came home from work. He had grabbed the latest copy of House & Garden (July 2013) and I'm not kidding, this same garden is featured in the magazine and there is a short interview with the garden designer, Arne Maynard.

From the feature I learned that Maynard published a book back in 2004, A Sense of Place: How to Create a Garden with Atmosphere, which immediately found its way to my wish list.

It says in the article that the house is "sandwiched between the River Cherwell and the South Oxford Canal on a finger of land that is almost an island" (p. 102). In the magazine I was able to view different angles of the garden and the house itself and I had to snap the photo below to show you the back of the house, as there is none on Maynard's website.

When Maynard arrived on the scene the garden was overgrown with "dozens of unpollarded willows and everything [was] covered in ivy." The garden was in desperate need of breathing space so they started with clearing everything except the beautiful 'New Dawn' and 'Albertine' roses that you can see climbing on the façade of the house.

Close to the house things are kept formal but at its edges the garden looks more natural. There is a herbaceous garden filled with many colourful plants and they also created a parterre that has yew pyramids and box hedges at its borders.

Don't get me started on all that lavender!


In the article, there is a quote from Maynard's book:
A successful garden must relate and respond to the surrounding landscape and its history as well as to the style of the building, to give it a proper sense of belonging.
I think it is safe to say that this garden philosophy is clearly visible in this gorgeous - yet somehow simple - garden.

photo credit:
1-2 + 4-9: Arne Maynard Garden Design / 3: Lisa Hjalt (photo in the magazine taken by Allan Pollok-Morris)

Friday, 14 June 2013

bon week-end

This morning has been very exciting. Remember when I told you about and showed you a few photos in A's workshop downstairs? We have decided to take that workshop to the next level and today we were waiting for some equipment, quite a heavy piece, to be delivered from Germany. It is now in the garage and A is beaming, he’s walking on air. I won't tell you more now, you will just have to wait and see.

While waiting I drove to the nearest magazine shop and got me the latest issue of Côte Ouest and have been swooning over cosy French seaside towns while enjoying my coffee.

I'm wishing you a wonderful weekend with photos that I took in a neighbours' garden - I love their colour palette - and one photo taken during a wonderful walk in a meadow close by. They remind me of what I call our first summer walk this year; you know, that moment when you go for a long walk and realise that summer has indeed arrived.

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Monday, 8 April 2013

interior design: the paris home of lauren santo domingo of m'o

Lauren Santo Domingo probably needs no introduction. She has been around in the fashion world for quite some time and is often referred to as a bottled-water heiress. She now runs her own successful fashion business, Moda Operandi, or M'O, which she co-founded with a fellow Icelander, Aslaug Magnusdottir.

Lauren and her husband live in New York City but they also own this Paris flat that was featured in the September 2012 issue of Vogue US. It is located in the heart of the Saint Germain district (on the Left Bank) and it happens to be right above the flat of Lauren's mother-in-law. When they bought it they turned to decorator François Catroux to help them with the renovation. In the Vogue article he refers to the style as a "mixture of grandeur and bohemian" (p. 866).

Of course I had to open the post with the library room. Okay, first it was a tie between the library room and the gorgeous terrace but the book lover in me won when I reread these words of Lauren in the article:
To me, libraries aren't all about decorative first editions and bindings. I actually read these books. When I am in Paris, I read a lot. I can really disconnect here. I feel like when I'm in Paris, people assume one is looking at beautiful things and can't be troubled by this tedious e-mail.
The painting, L'Offrande (1950), in the library is by Cuban artist Wifredo Lam (1902-82) and the table is by architect and designer India Mahdavi.

The stone-floored terrace is a Madison Cox design. It is filled with lavender and roses and also has olive trees, jasmine and pots of wild strawberries. In the article Lauren says that when in Paris they always have their breakfast there. She also says she loves it and you know what, I believe her!

Below you see photos taken in the drawing room, dining room, hallway and master bedroom. The couple borrowed the dining table from their decorator François Catroux, who designed it in the 1970s. He lent them some pieces of modern furniture while they were gradually furnishing the Paris flat.

If you want to see a few more images then follow the interior links below or take out your September 2012 issue of Vogue and turn to an article called 'French Open' on page 860. In it you will also find an adorable photo of Lauren and her son (then 14 months old).

As you can see from the images below, Lauren is a stylish lady. The photo to the right is from the Vogue article; the other two are old street style shots.



photo credit:
1-7: Oberto Gili for Vogue US, September 2012 via Sukio + terrace photo via Mark D. Sikes / 8: unknown source via RosieOM /
9: Norman Jean Roy for Vogue US, September 2012 via Mark D. Sikes / 10: Citizen Couture via Netrobe

Sunday, 24 March 2013

my Sunday moment

Yesterday evening it started snowing again! [Pause for reaction.] I'm under a blanket on my chaise lounge and I refuse to budge until spring arrives properly. My magazines and books are keeping me sane. Also the film Argo, which we bought yesterday, and is the best film I have seen in a long time. Definitely watching that one again today.

In my photo above is a spread from the February/March issue of Art & Décoration. I wish that kitchen were mine. I would only change the pendant lights and the black kitchen unit.

Enjoy your Sunday!

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

Monday, 25 February 2013

ode to spring + summer


"In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer." Really, Albert Camus? I'm trying; I'm just not feeling it. It has been snowing for three days in my part of the world and I have had enough. Enough! I don't want to put on warm socks and sweaters any more; I don't want to put on winter boots each time I go out to get the mail.

Winter, you and me are so over! O.v.e.r.


This post is some kind of an ode to spring and summer. I went through my magazines to find spring and summer issues showing the mood in Provence and Normandy, or anywhere in the south or north of France, and in Umbria and Tuscany in Italy. Every time I leaf through the pages I start dreaming of al fresco lunches with a glass of rosé, putting on sandals again, feeling the sun on my face, bicycling, and visiting flower markets.

Spring, seriously, where are you?!!


photo credit:
1 + 4: Lisa Hjalt (from the February/March issue of Art & Décoration) / 2: from the book Provence Style edited by Angelika Taschen /
3: from the book French Country Living by Caroline Clifton-Mogg | both photos via Aged and Gilded / 5: Kristian Septimius Krogh
for Bo Bedre via Pinterest

Saturday, 23 February 2013

styling: anya hindmarch spring 2013 campaign


The photo above, part of the Anya Hindmarch Spring 2013 ad campaign, almost mesmerised me when I saw it for the first time (it is in almost every magazine I leave through these days). It wasn't the accessory itself that caught my attention, but the gorgeous styling. All these beautiful blue coloured vintage items and the books - love it! Unfortunately, I have no idea who is the mastermind behind it all. Whoever it is, that person is my favourite stylist these days.

I had to share two more ads with different colours.


I had such a pleasant morning with my coffee and magazines (I love the Vanity Fair issue; it has a great collection of Bruce Weber's photographs). I decided to stay home today, as it is so cold outside (could someone please tell Siberia to blow their winds in another direction!). Instead I had fun in the kitchen and I made my chocolate tray bake. I was experimenting with a new chocolate frosting and I believe the recipe is ready. I will share it soon on kitchen & aroma.

Have a wonderful weekend!

photo credit:
Anya Hindmarch Spring 2013 ad campaign via The Terrier and Lobster

Friday, 22 February 2013

charming spaces: arty + modern in madrid


Today's charming space is in the heart of Madrid, the capital of Spain. The owners of the flat are French and they turned to interior designer Sabine Marchal, who in my opinion did a wonderful job in creating harmony. I like spaces with character and this flat has plenty. The sculpture is by Richard Hudson and the Chinese vase is from the nineteenth century. I'm drawn to the rug, which is from Rajasthan in India - I love its colours.

Got any plans for the weekend? Tonight it's of course the traditional Friday pizza in this house, enjoyed with red wine. Basically, I'm just looking forward to not having to set the alarm clock and having a relaxing Saturday morning with a cup - or two - of good coffee and magazine reading. A stack is already awaiting me. Yesterday I bought the March issue of Vanity Fair, a special collector's edition that looks like a good one, and the French design magazine Art & Décoration. I recently subscribed to the British version of Harper's Bazaar, as it isn't available anywhere in Luxembourg. My first copy arrived in the mail earlier this week and I have yet to read it. If the cold weather doesn't stop me I may go into the city to check out a nice café that I recently spotted, hidden in a small alleyway. So, relaxation is what I have in mind.

I'm leaving you with this live version of Lykke Li's song I Follow Rivers and wishing you a wonderful day!

photo credit:
Nuevo Estilo

Thursday, 7 February 2013

on my mind + books


The internet has been teasing me today, which has given me the perfect excuse to read, wrapped in my new 100% wool pashmina (feels like being wrapped in a blanket, it's so warm). Before I talk about the books I wanted to ramble just a little. The other day I read an interview in my February issue of British Vogue with actress Andrea Riseborough (played Wallis Simpson in Madonna's W.E.). It is called 'Character Study' and what amazes me is that I hardly learn anything about her character. The interview is only one page long, with five pages devoted to photos of her wearing Armani. In the "interview" she says 'I don't shop', adding that most of her clothes come from charity shops. Why wasn't the interview five pages long with maybe one photo of her wearing her own clothes? Why do we get a fashion editorial every time an actress or other celebrities are interviewed?

I can only imagine how frustrating this must be for an artist that is only interested in promoting his or her craft. Is this really something that the majority of consumers want? Do you buy a magazine because someone that interests you is photographed wearing the latest fashion? Do you? I didn't buy this particular issue for myself (A brought it home) but when I looked at the content I was looking forward to read this interview, to learn more about Riseborough as an actress, only to read one page and learn nothing, except the fact that she doesn't shop, and a film she stars in will soon be released.

Groundbreaking!


Now to the books.

These days I'm reading two. The first one I got on my birthday last summer, Dancing on My Grave by Gelsey Kirkland (with Greg Lawrence). I started reading it a long time ago only to put it down shortly after, thinking that the timing wasn't right. That often happens with my books; they can sit on my table for months until the right moment to read them arrives. That moment has definitely arrived and I'm thoroughly enjoying it, sometimes unable to put it down.

Gelsey Kirkland was a famous ballerina (she now runs a ballet school) that, for example, danced and was romantically involved with the ballet dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov (some of you probably remember him as the Russian in the last season of Sex and the City). Her story is both inspiring and heartbreaking. I have never studied ballet but still I find myself enjoying her vocabulary, her descriptions of struggles with body movements, physical pain and suffering, and how she strived to always become better. Of course it's wonderful to read about her success, which she never seemed to enjoy. She was her worst enemy. I haven't reached the part of the book where she starts using drugs but her thoughts on body image and how she used to starve herself are difficult to comprehend, especially when all the photos of her reveal a beautiful woman.

I highly recommend this book. I don't think you will find it in bookshops anymore (I got a used copy) but maybe your local library has a copy.

The other book I just started reading is called The Art of Travel, written by Alain de Botton. At this point I cannot really say much about it but what drew me to it were these words on page 9:

If our lives are dominated by a search for happiness, then perhaps few activities reveal as much about the dynamics of this quest - in all its ardour and paradoxes - than our travels. They express, however inarticulately, an understanding of what life might be about, outside the constraints of work and the struggle for survival.


I had to include a photo of my furry friend. She moves so gracefully and every time I'm photographing something on that working table she tends to jump on it. She usually plants herself firmly on my stuff, as if she wants to be in the photo. Yesterday she lay on my magazine and watched the snow falling while my heart melted.

photo credit:
Lisa Hjalt

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