Cheery Observations

Celebrating the Unique, Sustainable, and Creative

Atelier Bernier January 31, 2009

Filed under: home design,housewares — meaghin @ 10:13 am
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Atelier Bernier is a design workshop in Paris.  Their fabrics are incredible!  No matter the design, each fabric is convincing as a bag, a table, a pillow, a stool, a lampshade, etc.  I can’t think of a lot of designs I’ve seen that can make such a leap.  Their online shop is ‘coming soon’, so alas, you can’t order online yet.  However, the website does have a form one can fill out to learn about local stores that may carry their fabrics.

My favorite collection is the Fleur Pompon D’Island (Island Fluffball seems to be an accurate descripton!).  The fabric looks like a collection of green, yellow, and blue dandelions, ripe for scattering the seeds through the air.  The pattern is grounded by a dark blue branch, with different colors and sizes shooting off from the branch.  It’s a carefree pattern that makes me dream of summer.

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I also like the Datchas lampshades. The Datchas collection is not as developed, so I’m not sure how it would translate to a bag or pillow (But, I’m thinking it would translate perfectly!).  I like the minimalist quality of the design:  a plump, green bird, with abstract flowers.  The splash of green draws the eye in, but because the design is so unassuming, the lamp could work in many different rooms.

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Appealing, Affordable Illustrations January 25, 2009

Filed under: home design — meaghin @ 10:35 pm
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I believe these two artists would both fall under the category of ‘affordable, unique artwork’.  They were found on completely separate web searches, but have similar styles and themes.

Sandra Juto is an illustrator from Sweden.  Her images are cheerful and whimsical.  They remind me of a less trippy ‘Yellow Submarine’.  I like her color palette (rusty hues) and her uncluttered approach to her illustrations.    In ‘Rain’ her people look like happy paper dolls.  I don’t know if there’s a story behind ‘Adolf’, but I see a sad marionette-type figure wondering what is going to happen next.

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Blanca Gomez is an illustrator from Spain.  Instead of rusty hues, she uses bright primary colors.  She also has a ‘Rain’ picture, with the sole character rejoicing in the rain in her own way.  Unlike Juto’s, Gomez’ rain is the colored part of the illustration.  And one of her individual men differs greatly from ‘Adolf’.  The object over this man’s head is not a rain cloud but rather, a bunch of overly large, bright balloons.  The expression on the man’s face is not one of bewilderment, but instead one of contentment.

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Despite their differences, both illustrators’ folk art approaches are quite appealing!

 

While in Boston… January 19, 2009

Filed under: housewares — meaghin @ 3:15 pm
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We spent a wonderful week in the Boston area over Christmas: we divided our time between Plymouth, Needham, and Boston, and also took a day trip to Providence. There are two stores that I’ve been wanting to write about since returning!

Bob’s Your Uncle is a “Boston Based wholesale gift and greeting card company founded by Martin and Michele Yeeles in 2001.” Their passion seems to gravitate toward bold fonts and graphics on everyday items such as file folders, luggage tags, and list makers (the latter being right up my alley!).

I was drawn to the ‘Out, In, Limbo’ file folders and could especially see myself filling up the ‘Limbo’ folder.

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I also liked the length of the ‘(too much) To Do; list pad. I’ve found that when I’m making ‘to do’ lists I have to write and rewrite them because they invariably become much bigger than planned and I end up writing things sidewise to squeeze them in. I don’t think I would run into that problem with this notepad.

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Bowl and Board is a New England housewares chain that I explored in Providence and Brookline. I appreciated wandering the store and finding both the familiar (Oxo, Umbra, the entire Thymes line ) and unique (funky shower curtains and pottery). It seems like a great place to go to add a splash of fun to your pad, be it this Toothbrush Holder:

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These napkin rings:

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Or these ‘Pushing Bookends’:

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I do enjoy stores like Crate and Barrel, but I am a true believer that stores like Bowl and Board should exist and be supported:   our homes should be  a reflection of us as individuals and it’s frustrating when one can’t find products to reflect that individuality. Bowl and Board helps!