January 30, 2011

A is for Art &...Charisma


WOW, right??

This huge work of art by Lars Thygesen, certainly makes a statement, don't you think... and then to know that on the opposite wall, you find the artwork below, gutsy and not for everyone!! But, isn't that the point of art? On top of that, the building housing all this color and excitement, is an old rail road station from 1865!! The couple living here are behind the Danish auction house Lauritz.com.
Color, art and interesting collections are what they are all about, can you tell?

Just before Christmas I received the second Visit Visit book, Kunst & Karisma, by Iben & Niels Ahlberg. I have been through the book several times, and each time my eye gravitates to a different interior, all in all eight VERY different homes, filled to the brim with art and self expression!

In writing this book review, I have been given access to never before published images (web), furnished by the authors of the book, for which I am grateful, Thank You!

The basis for this house is an all white and black interior, (I am sure, as a reader of Northern Light, you are well aware I have a fondness of this combo) but with Pops of Neon color, scattered throughout... All starting with the LED light behind the hood in the kitchen... it changes color, and dictates the rest of the color scheme in the house!

While the owners of this house have impeccable taste when it comes to fashion (they own their own stores) they have worked with a design duo (Design By Us), to pull the interior together! Feminine floral, Neon, Pop art and classic furniture melt together in a very interesting mix!!

Not my first choice.... but why not have a little fun in the bedroom? Hmmm..... ;)

Living with what you like and what speaks to you, really is essential and that's what this book is all about; Personal Art Collections!!

All featured homeowners are in some way or another "in the arts", be it furniture, fashion or floral... all very exciting and it is such a treat to be able to see "how the other side lives"!

Meet Signe Boegelund-Jensen, a Haute Couture designer. Africa is where she grew up, Copenhagen is where she lives and John Galliano is where she honed her skills!
Signe's story is very interesting and her home is a studio in white and light spaces... keeping the focus on her creations! Actually, not only does she create couture, she also created this "Cup of Cream" hanging chair....

With an eye for detail, it's no surprise that the dark, glossy, coffee colored floors are authentic to the building (of 1908) as is the tall white paneling. Signe's fashion even makes it into the kitchen, I guess it's difficult to only be creative in one room ;)!
How fun would it be to explore in this apartment??

A few posts back (here) I shared with you a house filled with Multi Cultural accessories, owned by the design duo behind Day Birger et Mikkelsen / DAY Home... and I am sure some of the inspiration for the decor in this house (owned by Lars & Camilla Wiberg) came from DAY, as Lars used to work at DAY, as Sales Manager.

Above a glimpse of the kitchen, filled with art and artifacts, this is no longer "just" a kitchen, but a gathering space! (Aren't all kitchens at some point??)

Imagine this room with light colored walls, now renovated and painted a beautiful dark grey, showing off all the different travel goodies, mixing all sorts of periods, making it all work! LOVE this room!!

I spy a Sea fan! ... I know, I know, you are probably sick of these by now ;)
A collection of perfume bottles and other curiosities are kept close together on a glass tray, a powerful statement, a small piece of art in itself, great impact as a group!!
There is strength in numbers.

Love of interesting materials and objects carry over to Camilla's store Pour Quoi, making the shopping experience even more unique.

Contemporary Bungalow; probably my favorite home  featured in this new book...

Meet Chresten Rud, owner of "Couch by C", Furniture and Interior. With a trained eye for style and quality, his house is filled with perfectly scaled furniture, calm colors, an interesting mix of objects. An impressive collection of Black and White photographs by Joergen Angel, Bent Rej ("Rolling Stones In Concert", below) and others are displayed through out the house.

Perhaps my favorite image from the Kunst & Karisma book, this nook from Chresten's home! Love the light (great photography), love the over sized lamp, love the color of the silk shade, love the white chaise, love the kelim pillow and the Missoni throw as well as the B/W photography!

In the other end of the large living room, one huge piece of furniture dominates, without overpowering the room!! Colors are keep neutral and warm, art is not just hung on the wall, but also on display on the Italian coffee table, in the window sills and in the rest of the home. It's clear that Chresten is a frequent traveler, and brings with him artifacts from other cultures. The colors in the home are kept to a minimum, playing up texture instead, making for a calm space! I would love to be a guest here, learning the story behind some of the pieces...

Last but not least, one image from a really cool home, which I will let you explore in the book, on your own....
My thought was this: Why does art have to hang on the wall or be propped on a shelf? Why not do it like this? Perfect for a casual summer house, or any other relaxed space for that matter.
Great idea, great use of color, great use of antique objects!!!

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book, the photographs are wonderful, and the differences in all these homes makes it interesting! There is something for everyone, the common thread is Art, all different kinds of art, keeping you engaged till the last page!

Of course I can't show you all the homes, so I encourage you to check out the book! The cover of the book, along with the image above, is by Contemporary Thai artist Attasit Pokpong, you can read more about him and his artwork here, a post I did a little while back.

Visit Visit Kunst & Karisma (Art & Charisma) can be purchased here in Danish, and an English insert is available though the Visit Visit website. If you spot an item in the book, you would like for yourself, access to an address list can be found here. Very cool, I must say, making art and artifacts available to all of us! The team behind the book, Iben & Niels Ahlberg, have a website, check that out here. And for all of you FB people, you can follow along here. Why not "Like" Northern Light Blog on FB, while you are there??

Still not satisfied? Check out the Visit Visit Nordisk Eksotisk post I wrote here!
(The first book in the series) Now I am left wondering what the next book in the series will be about, any guesses?


All image by Iben & Niels Ahlberg.
Open book image by NHH for Northern Light Blog.

January 29, 2011

Chinese Brushes

When traveling to Asia I was on the lookout for some of these bruhes... I found them, and brought home a few (too many if you ask Mr. Wonderful, who had to carry them around)! I already had a few in my house, but was happy to add to my collection, as well as send one to my mother and my sister.

I think they make for such an interesting display, and really love these red ones!!


PS. That dyed red coral on the black base is FAN.TAS.TIC, don't you think??

Image via Skona Hem

January 28, 2011

Are you ready for your Close-up?

I so wish I could say yes!!! My office looks nothing like this, but.... perhaps some day it will have a little bit of this cool factor!!

I really like this lucite tray, it is non obtrusive, yet it keeps things in order. I like using a box when working on a project, keeping the fabrics, paint chips, tiles etc in check this way! It works really well for me; it's easy to edit and if it growes on you, it's the right combo.... something that does not work with the project sticks out real fast, I promise!!

And she's ready for her close-up!!
How do you work a color scheme? Trays or boxes? Filing drawers? Or? Please share some wisdom, perhaps we can all learn some new tricks :)!!



Images via rue

January 27, 2011

White done right!

I get so happy when I come across a space like this!!

Not only has it been photographed beautifully, really showing the beautiful light filled rooms, but the interior has been done perfectly, at least in my humble opinion!!

This living room, with all it's white, still reads very cozy to me. I like how you get the sense of more space... when in the living room, look through the study, your eye travels to the bedroom. The rooms are infused with lot's of texture, older furniture - perhaps hand me downs - designer lighting (check out the Verner Panton lamp on the danish modern sideboard), travel finds (neck pieces) on stands, the rung in the bedroom.... wait till you see the rest of the house!!

Ethnic accessories creep in everywhere, and mingle so well with the all white interior!!

Framing a piece of cloth, is a great way to display  fragile textile! ... it breaks up the white wall, ties in the caramel velvet covered wing back chair and the beautiful organic coffee table(s) and bench. Notice how the old style chair by the window has been slip covered in white fabric. Great way to re-purpose furniture!!

Pocket doors keep the living room and the bedroom separate, yet keep the flow of the two spaces working well. What perhaps was an awkward little room before, has been united with the bedroom. The space now functioning as a study, making the transition between the two rooms less obvious. Imagine sitting at the old wood table, with a view of the garden.... I could be blogging from there, what about you?

Simple, clean, calm, uncluttered, white, beautiful... are some of the words that pop into my mind here.

Like the rest of the house, great ethnic infusion with the wood Asian benches, and I love the contemporary lighting (Tolomero bed side lamps). Keeping this space open to the living room, calls for a clutter free environment!!

A clean, modern bath room, in tune with the rest of the house. All you have to do is ad a few touched of texture... greenery, artwork and a necklace, artfully displayed! Voila!

Come join the party!
Heirlooms grace the table, and looking around the corner, a glimpse of the kitchen.

Great little eating area. Why keep your everyday tableware hidden, display it like here along with your cook books! Again, great lighting! White Poul Henningsen lamp above the table! The seating is not to shabby either ;), but I can't tell if the chairs are "the real deal" (read Arne Jacobsen Ant chair), but does that really matter anyway?

Another look of the kitchen, probably the "darkest" room in the house, but kept light in feel. The white marble counter tops, white glossy subway tiles as back splash, and the glass paneled door in the back, light is bouncing from surface to surface.

So, what do you think? "White done right!" , or not?
I hope you enjoyed this house tour!


Images via Nuevo Estilo

January 26, 2011

There comes a time...

... when all you need is a breath of fresh air!!

This tropical porch, with it's cool painted floor is like a tall glass of cold water on a hot summers day, don't you think??

And guess what...

Have a fun day, stop and smell the roses! Do whatever it takes :) !


Image #1 via Coastal Living, Image #2 via tumblr

January 24, 2011

Happy colors!!

I am sure some of you have already been through this little Happy Chic "coloring" book by Jonathan Adler, but I just got my hands on it. First of all, those fantastic hot pink roses lasted me over two weeks, second of all... LOVE the book, it is sooooo me :) !

Third... a shout out to my friend Isabelle; Congrats on the baby-girl news, the pink roses are for you!!!

If you didn't read the book yet, what are you waiting for?
Go get Happy and Chic!!


Image by NHH for Northern Light Blog

I spy...

I have not done an "I spy..." post in a while so here we go :)

Black and White stripes is what I spy, to be exact!
Ever since my blog re-vamp, I have been eying black and white stripes everywhere!

In Fashion... (love the contrast of the graphic with the natural and soft, by the way)


On vacation...

While relaxing...

In the bedroom...
(beautiful parquet floor, and the glossy green pop of color, is cool as well!)

 On the dramatic headboard...

Even this stylish umbrella... ella, ella... :)

I think it's difficult to go wrong with Black & White stripes, but you have to commit, since these stripes are very bold and graphic!! They are not for everyone, that's for sure.

You like? No? Why not??


Image #5 via Style Files/Design by Caitlin Wilson, all other images via tumblr

January 23, 2011

Elle DECOR.com Event

Just wanted to share with you, an event I went to last week; Redesigning Design, hosted by ElleDECOR.com. The event was held at DCOTA (Design Center Of The Americas) in Ft. Lauderdale, and while two of the key speakers were snowed in, in New York, I really enjoyed the descussion of the rest of the panel!

Jennifer Boles (L) of The Peak of Chic , Brook Giannetti (R) of Velvet & Linen and Stefan Hurray (C) of Architect Design all were great, and I am sorry to say, I was unable to stay through the entire event, as I had to go back to work. I would have loved to do the meet and greet thing, but time had gotten away from me :) Next time! FOR SURE!!

Heather Clawson of Habitually Chic, was unable to attend the event, but has posted some of her Q & A on her blog. Stefan Hurry did a little re-cap of the event here, so feel free to check them out!

...wait to you see the February / March ElleDECOR cover, looks SO fresh and pretty!!


Images by NHH for Northern Light Blog

January 21, 2011


Actually, it's a funny story...

When selecting images for my new blog header, Shari (Little Blue Deer), used this image as the center image behind my logo, in one of her first layouts.... Well, as I told her, I will now let you in on why it didn't make the cut.

Looking at this image; It's pretty much got everything going for it! The light, the white, the black, a pop of color, a flower..... So why did it not make the cut you ask? Well, see that frame above the velvet covered chair to the right? It's such a small thing, really, but critters are not my thing-y!!

When visiting China a year and a half ago, we were in a rural part, out by the rice patties, with the water buffalo tied to a pole right there.... and inside the house (mind you there are no glass in the windows) were the biggest critters I have EVER seen. There was the biggest "walking stick" thing-y, I kid you not, it's a big as the one framed above..... (I took a picture as proof!!) It was sitting on the railing for a good day, leaving me stranded on the lower floors of the house... Go ahead, laugh out loud, it's ok! :)

And that's that, picture didn't make the cut ....
Do you have any critter stories you want to share? Do you have any framed critters??


Image via tumblr

January 20, 2011

Soft as a feather.

I came across this beautiful feather coverlet the other day, and just had to share!
I know the Black Swan movie is all over the place, perhaps that's why this captivated me, who knows?

I have been trying to figure out if it's an old vintage piece (I think it is) or a new(er) fashion piece.... Looks light as a feather on one hand, and heavy, due to the sheer amount of feathers, all at the same time! I try to imagine how many hours it has taken to make this. Is it a prop for the ballet? Wonder who would wear something like this?

It's so outrageous, it would be a shame if it didn't see the light of day!!!

What's the story??


Image vie tumblr

January 19, 2011

Sneak Peek!

Welcome to the home of Danish design duo Marianne Brandi and Keld Mikkelsen.
To view the full tour of the house, check out the post below...

... the house is full of interesting collections, and travel souvenirs... no, no, not those tacky plastic ones, but real, pretty, interesting travel mementos! Scroll down, this house is not to be believed :)!

Enjoy the house tour,


Images by Nils Mogensen Svaleboeg

January 18, 2011

Designer at Home

Look at this house... all 400 square meters of it! Built in 1917 and renovated top to bottom by the founders of the Danish brand Day Birger & Mikkelsen. The house sits on a huge lot, in Kerteminde, on the island of Fyn in Denmark. Budding up to the woods, views of the water, the house is so super duper cool, I hope you will enjoy this virtual tour!

In the entrance one is greeted by a wonderful personal art collection, complete with old hat forms as sculptures. To the right you get a glimpse of what's to come......

"Relaxed Elegance" is the description of the multi cultural interiors of the home. Owners Marianne Brandi and husband Keld Mikkelsen travel extensively for work and bring with them treasures from all over the world!
Small terracotta statues from China in the deep window sill, Juju hat from Cameroon on the wall, leather chair from New York, Asian wood furniture, Indian print pillows.... Complete with an antique crystal chandelier! Notice the specially stuccoed walls, keeping the room very warm and soft, even in the natural bright light.

How would you like to have a home office space as pretty as this? I don't think I would get anything done, starring out the window, looking through the trees down at the water.... Pure joy!!

Working in fashion and interior design, Marianne explains that calm surroundings at home is the only way to go! I concur! Not a lot of adornment, classic and simple lines, lots of natural light, warm wood counter top...

Home wears designed for DAY home. Easy to see where some of the inspiration comes from, huh? I really like those horn (?) bowls, they look so great with their colors variations, against the white serving pieces, don't you think?

As the Creative Director of successful Danish Lifestyle Brand, DAY Home, Marianne's touch is everywhere! Even in the bathroom; the style is calm, neutral and with great texture! A cohesive look that reaches every room in the house. Notice the three metal containers piled high with shells... perhaps brought back from their vacation home in the islands..?
(I will do a post about that house another day!)

A look of the house from the garden. To the very right is the newly added sun porch....

.... Spending part of the summer here would not be too bad! Notice how even the tile work on the porch works with the color scheme of the rest of the house! Small detail, but great impact!!

The TV room, at the very top floor of the house, under the eves exudes pure coziness!!! Notice the wall texture... When renovating this house, craftsmen from Portugal were flown in to complete the plasterwork. It's a special technique, the end result; walls that feel like velvet, shimmer in the light and looks like polished marble!! FANTASTIC!

The floors through out the house have also been treated with extra care to create this shiny, high gloss lacquered look. Six layers of lacquer to be exact!! I love how the shiny floors are balanced by the matte texture of the walls.

Everywhere in the house you find goods from far away lands; here Chinese urns mingle with a Zebra skin...

Simple, calm and beautiful master bedroom.

Why hide your jewelery collection?
Marianne uses this lamp, found in New York, as a prop.

In the "man room" Keld keeps this red cabinet, purchased on a trip to India, its origin is Tibetan. Take a closer look, the detail of the work is incredible!!

A view of the facade of the DAY Birger & Mikkelsen store in Copenhagen. Next time you visit, be sure to stop by, you will not be disappointed... and browsing for ideas is free :)!

For a peek inside this couples Copenhagen apartment, check out this Northern Light post.

Have a wonderful DAY!!


Images by Nils Mogensen Svaleboeg
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