Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Pale Blue Door

I just found the most amazing setting, I was so mesmerized that I had to write about it immediately, even if this means I will be late to my morning appointment with the doorknobs lady.

It's The Pale Blue Door, a nomad restaurant designed by Tony Hornecker, a set designer who has worked with the likes of Kylie Minogue, Stella McCartney, Puma and Vogue. The particular dinning spot opened in London in 2009 with the support of his family (his mom supplied the tablecloths) and friends, to 24 open-minded diners who traveled across London to experience Hornecker’s concept. In 2010 the restaurant traveled to Buenos Aires, Santiago, New York and Berlin.

It is a homemade structure that resembles an overgrown dollhouse, an art installation of balconies and secret rooms, built and furnished with the trash and castoffs that Hornecker himself collected around town for his fantastical creation.

The wonderful surreal ambiance resembles sets from the Mad Hatter's tea party. Vintage tablecloths, colorful antique painted furniture, old chairs, wooden stairs. Flower curtains that hide cozy spots with cushions to lay on amazing lighting.

I can't believe my eyes when I look at the wonderful photographs of Manuel Vazquez. I just wish The Pale Blue Door comes to Mexico next year.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Shops in Norway

This summer I spent ten days in Norway and 10 days in Paris, it was a wonderful vacation and I got to do one of the things I like the most: visiting shops. Not so much shopping, but just visiting, kind of like when one visits a museum. Looking around, getting inspired, amazed with styled vignetes, beautiful arrangements of everyday things placed on the perfect spot. Gray was the color that was mostly used, along with rich textures: old wood, linen fabric, stones, oxidized metals and of course liberty fabric. The natural world is brought inside and paired with industrial pieces. Sheepskins and antlers are the Scandinavian staple this season, and the It piece of furniture was the Tolix Chaise A chair, designed in France in 1934 and made from galvanized steel, it was for sale in almost every shop I went to.

Bolina, Oslo

Shabby, Oslo

landromantikk, Tønsberg

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Hip and Soul in Paris

This was my favorite part with the kitchen tools hung on the bar and the picture of the granny on the sofa. Loved the vintage chairs painted in white and check out the legs left unpainted.

Mexican Oilcloth tablecover on the comunal table and wooden pizza oven in the back.

Last weekend we stayed at the oh so chic Mama Shelter hotel in Paris. A perfect mix of hip and soul, The Sun Herald called it.

Far away from ultra modern sterile interiors, Mama shelter is cozy and fun. One of the latest creations of Philippe Starck, who also designed one of my favorite places in Miami, the Delano hotel in South Beach.

The theme is quirky design chic, filled to the brim (actually, a vast chalkboard ceiling covered in graffiti) with Starck’s inventiveness, a mix of classic design pieces like the tulip table, light fixtures made from bird cages and bizarre Asterix and Obelix face masks used as lampshades are all part of the fun. The rooms are small but functional. The beds, are hugely comfortable with crisp cotton sheets and each room has got a Mac screen that works as your TV, Radio, and includes Internet access.

The restaurant is overseen by one of France's leading culinary figures, chef Alain Senderens, There’s a huge communal table with a long oilcloth table cover, in cherry print. I actually checked and it was made in Mexico, from the same brand I use for Neena products.
It's also got a beautifully furnished rooftop terrace and bar where barbecues are the rage.

The hotel is located in Saint Blaise neighborhood, the city's boho SoPig (south of Pigalle) in the 20th arrondisment. This neighborhood hosts a few of the latest bars and rock venues and its supposed to become Paris equivalent to New York's Meatpacking district, although I found it to be more of a residential area with families walking by and a nice apartment buildings and a school a few blocks away from the hotel.

I loved every bit, each piece was thoughtfully selected and placed, the colors, the pictures, the fabrics, the textures. A lot of messages are sent through images (they had interesting paparazzi photos of the British royal family hung on the wall at the dining room) and through graffiti on the walls and on the carpets. I think we will see more and more of this kind of interiors where all these details make the space feel very personal, very well lived.

Tulip table and open kitchen

Mama Shelter Terrace

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Vintage Artwork Displays

Country Living Magazine

Ever since my last post I have been obsessing over vintage art work, bidding constantly on Ebay (currently bidding on two pink ballerinas and one vase of roses paint by numbers that I don't know if I will get till june 6th. I am counting on the fact that it is my birthday and therefore I have to have good luck).
I have also been searching on countless blogs and websites for nicely displayed collections of framed artwork. I specially like the mix of colorful paintings, unrelated subjects from different eras, antique gold leaf frames and modern furniture. These are some of my favorites.


The Rug Company

German magazine Living and More
Via Sweet Home Style

Studio da Lu

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Painting by Numbers

I was searching online for pictures of colorful vintage flower paintings paired with mid century modern furniture, like those I had seen on the Rug Company cataloge, when I came up with Trey Speegle in Anthropology's website.
Speegle has art directed and designed for publications like Vogue and Vanity Fair, but he is also quite an artist. He owns a paint-by-number collection which he uses as a departure point for his artwork, sometimes deconstructing it and combining it with text. He creates wonderful contemporary images with a pop visual language reminiscent of Lichestein's.
Now Anthropology has launged rugs and pillows with Speegle's iconic work and they even sell some of his original artwork online on their gallery section. I like these accesories but what I'd really love to use is one of his paintings in a very white interior, paired with modern furniture like a Tulip table or white Bertoia chairs.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

I Love Liberty!


I have been into Liberty of London fabrics for a while now and I am very happy to see that my personal craze is now shared by most everyone around the globe and not just my good friend Aina. I seem to find liberty fabrics everywhere I turn to!

This spring the most stunning collection of limited edition Liberty print pieces was lounged, in collaboration with Merci (the stylish Parisian concept store) all designed by Merci's Creative Director Marie France Cohen. The collection includes fashion for women and children and also homewares, stationery and furnishings. I saw pictures from the opening here. They had everything from liberty print aprons, to cute baskets for babies. I love the structured suitcases, so vintage and the jumper is at the top of my wish list. You can still buy a few pieces from the collection online at Liberty's website.

And it doesn't stop there, my heart almost came out when I read about Target's collaboration with Liberty. Aparently I was a little late with the news since almost everything is soldout or available only at some stores. With prices that are more affordable that Merci's and easier to buy for us in America, Target now carries a line of Liberty print products, beautiful dresses, bathing suits, trays and plates, two tiered dessert stands and a beautiful bike. Even the ads are cute!!!
I'd use the nighties as dresses to wear during the day, I love the wellies, and I really NEED one of those pareos to use as a scarf.
"I am thrilled by the way Target has interpreted the flower power of Liberty by mixing, in a very modern way, our heritage prints with the widest ever range of products from lingerie to design chairs to bicycles," said Geoffroy de La Bourdonnaye, chief executive of Liberty, in a release. "The collection is a very youthful interpretation of the love and rebellion values that Liberty of London stands for."

Liberty has been doing this collaborations for a while. In 2009, they partnered with Nike (and made very pretty sneakers), APC and Hermes, amongst others.
Cacharel's, spring 09 show featured re-edit pieces with the Liberty prints they created in 1970, to mark their 50th anniversary. Lovely dresses, very 'Little house on the prairy' kind of style.

Liberty or not, we will be seeing a lot more of this girly floral prints that remind me so much of the way we dressed as little girls back in the 70's. And if you are creative and adventurous enough, you can get your own liberty fabric and easily tailor made your own creations!

Bloomers I had made for Leah and My husband's shirt

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Neena Interior Design Acapulco


This being the first post of the year is also the most important to date. I am showing pictures of the first apartment designed by Neenä! It is the work of 6 months, years of inspiration, thousands of interior design magazines read or watched (as most of them where Norwegian issues of Interiør and Vakkre Hjem) and countless hunting trips to La Lagunilla (my favorite flea market in Mexico City) materialized in an apartment designed by scratch.

It is a three room apartment in Acapulco, Mexico. Right on the beach, with a nice balcony overlooking the ocean. We did everything except the kitchen, and went as far as buying sheets, towels and choosing the dinnerware. The owners were thrilled with the end result and needless to say, so was I. We went for a scandinavian cottage look, with some contemporary details very white and a little color here and there. I wanted our clients (a lovely couple with three young boys) to feel welcomed comfortable and relaxed at their vacation house. All of the other apartments in the building where designed in a very contemporary way with brand new furniture and no character, so it is a nice surprise when people enter this one.

The floors, that look like white painted wood planks are actually marble which is a much better choice for Acapulco's weather as it will not be affected by humidity and feels so fresh to the touch. Almost every piece of furniture is white, most of it was found at flea markets or antique stores and some of it was made to order.
We used a lot of linen and cotton throughout the house, I really prefer natural fabrics. The cushions in the living room are made with Designers Guild Arabella silk fabric. The sofas have removable cotton slipcovers that can be washed at home and they are super comfortable.

I used a lot of wicker furniture on the terrace and updated the look with a vintage Tulip table. The new ones from Knoll have a metal base that cannot be used outside but this one is from the sixties and it is made of fiberglass.

In the master bedroom I found a XVI century English secretaire and paired it with the beautiful Louis Ghost chair designed by Phillip Starck for Kartell. We chose lavender color here because it is both relaxing and warm enough to use in a bedroom and mixed it with charcoal gray (a very 'of the moment' combination). And of course I had to hang a Keep Calm poster somewhere.
The children's room turned out lovely in blue and white and all the diferent fabrics on the cushions work really well together.

There are still a few things that need to be worked out, we are waiting for an iron bed and a sleight bed for this room and some artwork and other details for the living room, but I was dying to show you how it came out. I hope you like it as much as I did.