April 1, 2020

A specialty cafe in the oasis city of Al Ain | La Petite

Bone is a boutique interior architecture studio currently based in Dubai and designers of La Petite, a new specialty cafe in the oasis city of Al Ain in the U.A.E. I never posted a project or home from the United Arab Emirates on the blog, if you read on and look at the pictures , you will soon find out why I loved this project.

I emailed with Natalie one of the co-founders of Bone and asked her about the project and her studio. Bone is a nomadic studio, blurring the threshold between form and function, Natalie writes. "We begin by rejecting all conventional design stereotypes, freely exploring, yet methodically studying every theoretical and tangible aspect of design. The approach breaks away from the expected and perceived function, as Bone designs novel spaces that can functionally and aesthetically serve different purposes — reinterpreting the way common spaces are defined."

I came across the project after spotting some of Frama's furniture in a picture of the neighbourhood café — La Petite after the redesign by Bone studio. Bone redefined the coffee bar’s volume as a monolithic sculpture in a cubist approach, that serves multiple functions as well as emphasizes the essential role that one plays within a space. 

Some details of La Petite
The height of the bar is depressed from a customer’s standpoint — and serves as a coffee table for guests. From a barista’s position, the bar is at working height, this allows for a fluid dynamic and unification in one’s horizontal vision.

Inspired by Al Ain’s landscapes, desert topography, the space’s seating, and working height hierarchy was shaped - allowing a diversity in seating arrangements which accommodates a direct visual connection to the garden, creating privacy and eliminating obstruction of view. The seating arrangements were derived from traditional Emirati floor majlises as well as casual, laid back cafe seating.

The selection and tonality of the materiality and treatment of surfaces epitomize the surrounding abundant desert sand, allowing the space to remain grounded in its location’s origins and create a sense of space. Mineral plasters in course and smooth finishes, soft linens, clay table lamps are complemented with the use of untreated aluminum Rivet tables and black steel Trianglo Chairs from Frama. Other furniture used is from Gervasoni, Skargaarden, Ethnicraft Table lamps are from In Common With and PS Lab, while outdoors Flos lighting is used.

The use of bi-fold glass doors accentuates the connection, creating a dialogue between the inner space and surrounding landscaping while directional light fixtures in the shop and garden mimic soft theatrical lighting silhouettes. 

Photography: Oculis Project. Dubai, United Arab Emirates 
March 27, 2020

Minimal room screens for your home

The days folding room screens were just a necessary or functional solution are way behind us! Originally found in China in the 7th century they were mainly used by royalty, very heavy and ornate, and were not moved around. In the 8th century, the Japanese began using lighter, more portable room dividers for tea ceremonies, religious events and outdoor processions.

European travellers developed their own version of Asian screen dividers using wood, leather, silk, mirrors and decoupage. Folding room dividers are still used to offer privacy but also found their way into our homes in a more decorative form. Loving Japanese minimalism the minimal screens with only a few beautiful details are what I love most, two screens that caught my eye! 

AKI Paravent
This unique object is entirely made to measure. A collectible design piece made entirely by hand and made to measure by textile designer Nathalie van der Massen and interior architect Charlotte Vlerick. The handwoven textile panels are made of an intricate linen, rubber and silk blend; while the frame is made from solid walnut, bent to exact precision. Perfect for your bedroom or living space or as a standalone eye-catcher.

In Amsterdam the screen is available upon request via The loft Every once in a while The Loft open the doors of The Loft for their Artist in Residence series were the design-duo from Antwerp showed and were interviewed about the the AKI paravent.

SL Screen by Surrounding Objects
Surrounding Objects created SL Screen, previously shown at Stockholm Furniture Fair (Greenhouse) 2020. Natural rattan screens were handwoven by master weavers in Indonesia over wooden frames produce in Surrounding Objects' workshop. 

The patterns rendered in natural fibers are a nod to the
Stockholm Exhibition of 1930 where Sigurd Lewerentz created simple geometric wallpapers to be shown in ‘single-family houses’. The screen acts as a room divider and dressing wall with simple hooks.  
More information at Surrounding Objects

March 24, 2020

Daybed by Included Middle at the home of Catrine Svellingen

Made from solid German Douglas Pine from Dinesen, the Reykjavik daybed from Skagerak Denmark is one of the latest design pieces by Included Middle. Furniture designer Chris L. Halstrøm and textile designer Margrethe Odgaard formed 'Included Middle' in 2014 and an important aspect of their working process is an interest in the interactions of form, colours and patterns. Coming from separate professional areas, it is their dogma that both areas should be present in their products. Form, function, pattern and colours affect each other mutually.

I came across the daybed while looking at My kind of Styling the new blog of Catrine Svellingen, a interior stylist and content creator based in Bergen, who works in the same range as Wen and I with our project w/ Style. Talking about w/ Style, we sadly had to postpone our shoot that was plannend last week, and will get back on track as soon as it is safe to travel again. Blog and Social Media collaborations luckily are not affected by the common 'new', and to be honest most important is we all come safe through this period in time.

Reykjavik daybed from Skagerak Denmark is inspired by the colours and distinctive architecture on Iceland. Pictures in this post are made by Catrine who is the lucky owner of one of the beautiful daybeds.

Pictures // Catrine Svellingen
March 21, 2020

Republiek Bloemendaal | Wabi Sabi style at the beach

Hard times for many of us these days, including horeca... Just openend and due the pandemic forced to close within a few weeks till allowed to open again is the beautiful new 'Republiek' located right at the beach in Bloemendaal. From the opening a few weeks ago I have seen incredible images of Republiek Beach club designed by Anne Claus Interiors 

In the Netherlands we have a long coastline and from Zandvoort to Bloemendaal you will find different Beach Clubs on the beach, all with their own and different atmosphere. They vary from chic to bohemian hippie style, and I guess this might be my new favourite for the summer. Nenad who I follow on Instagram sent me a few pictures he made with his mobile to give you an impression of the atmosphere and design.

I am particularly interested in the fireplace pictures, where a huge piece of stone is used and I am determined to add a non toxic fake fireplace to my own home before the next winter, unfortunately no options for a real fire in my home. 

March 20, 2020

Pedestal tables by Vilde Hagelund

With many people supporting small designers at the moment due the pandemic, I came across the 'Free ads with love'  Lotta Agaton posted and re-discovered the beautiful work of Vilde Hagelund, a 27-year-old Oslo based furniture designer and her work, especially the Pedestal tables caught my eye and I love to show you a few images made by Vilde and at Kollekted by in Oslo.

Pedestal consist of geometric solid wood parts made by machine. A hand-carved texture is added on the surface, for a tactile experience, enhancing the material agency and the value of craft. In a way, they can be seen as a representation of how machine and hand can coexist to make rare products in a world with overconsumption and mass production.

Remissus tray
Remissus is inspired by the water drop and its unpredictability in the contour. The various shapes leave traces of the asymmetrical shape and movements of the hand. The organic design language represents a sensitivity to the wood (birch) and the aesthetic function of the hands. 

By using unknown contours, proportions that the hand can relate to and a smooth surface, the goal is to invite the user to interact and touch the products. Carved from a single piece of wood, the trays have the potential for longevity and possibly an attractive surface patina made over time.

Pictures Vilde Hagelund // First 3 pictures by Helene Bye
March 18, 2020

Hakudo cork diffuser | Aoiro Design X Studio Corkinho

On my Instagram I showed you the wonderful gift I got from Aoiro some time ago, I treasure little gifts like these and burn the candle the slowest possible to let it last longer. In my opinion a nice home perfume can have a healing effect for the soul and mind and especially these days when we all stay at home a lot and feel a bit insecure I love to use beautiful scents.

It is always beautiful to see new brands I have on my radar like Studio Corkhino with who I was talking about visiting them and how to collaborate, connect with long time favourites of mine. For me a confirmation we are a match and have the same aesthetics. Aoiro now, together with Studio Corkinho, introduce a contemporary purifying ritual.

Hakudo cork diffuser
Aioro: "Inspired by the atmosphere of a spirited Japanese island after rainfall Aoiro's Hakudo rain scent enables us to experience the sensation of air being charged with the spirit of rain. Smooth earthiness and dark, powerful greens are highlighting the quality of humidity as a main profile. Combined with airy notes of leafy and resinous essences, the scent slowly draws a vivid scenery with three - dimensional depth and creates a captivating air that rejuvenates the mind and spirit"

Stillness and Mindfulness
Studio Corkinho completes the ceremony set with nine cubic cork sculptures. Exploring the unique and raw, organic surfaces of burnt cork, each object offers a diffusion ground, on which the Hakudo rain botanical essence can be dripped, spread around the space or kept together to intensify the energy of the scent. The set brings a personal ritual into our private spaces. sensory experience that stimulates and harmonises our presence, offering Stillness and Mindfulness. // txt Aoiro

Pictures via Aoiri design // © Piet-Albert Goethals
March 12, 2020

New colours and accessories for the String shelving system

With the Salone del Mobile postponed to June and skipping Stockholm Designweek, I am really happy I had the opportunity to spent a few days at imm Cologne. Imm is an international fair and many of my favourite Scandinavian brands are always present in Cologne to show their new collections. The stand by Swedish brand String is always a must see for the beautiful styled shelving and products. Despite Lotta Agaton's recognizable styling for String, she always surprises the public with her outstanding styling tricks making the stand of String shelving and furniture one of the best in their niche.

I think a lot about different storage solutions lately, finalising my kitchen I can finally add everything back in and rearrange some things! The actual countertop is not really big and even though I love to keep things out of sight, I do love to expose a few of my most treasured ceramics. No wonder I payed more attention to all the new features and colours String added to their collection that would fit my own kitchen. I especially loved the 30cm deep wall panel, offering lots of storage space but still airy.  

This year’s Furniture Fair in Cologne was all about refining existing products according to String Furniture. Sometimes a design principle is so good that the options to expand the existing series are endless, and if you already own a String Shelving or see yourself as a future buyer you will love the new colours and additions to the existing shelving. Let me show you some of the novelties! 

Warm Browns and Beige
Last year the colour 'beige' was introduced to the shelving system. This year String will offer all parts of the shelving system in last year's introduced colour. Other exciting news, the classic String System will also welcome a new colour to its panels; a warm brown tone that complements the existing shelf colours. Now this is something I loved to see myself as the brown colour harmonized perfectly with shelves in oak and walnut – a particularly exclusive combination with a chic and warm touch. I can't get enough of all the different brown tones as the all perfectly match my new kitchen.

New accessories offer smart solutions for customizing your String System I can easily see the magazine holder in the kitchen with my favourite cookbook!

Galvanized steel hooks are an addition to the outdoor assortment, that was introduced last year, and they can easily be attached to the perforated galvanized shelves for more storing space. Another new addition to the accessories assortment and especially for the kitchen is the knife holder, made from solid untreated oak it is easily attached to one of the panels of your String.

New String Pocket in metal
Originally designed by Nisse Strinning the Swedish designer duo Anna von Schewen and Björn Dahlström designed a new version in entirely metal. It comes in three colours and despite being Dutch, a bright neon orange is one of the new options! my favourite would be the subtile taupe and classic white.  

Pictures © String // In collaboration with Mister Design