Friday, 24 March 2017

Fabrics & Upholstery at Stilbrott

I visited a wonderful upholstery shop called  Stilbrott in Söder Stockholm yesterday. I was meeting with Fia, the lovely owner, and soon to be new stockist of Van Asch fabrics.

I hate having my picture taken so I often do silly faces to cover my embarrassment ... sorry about that!

Anyway, they have the most wonderful selection of fabrics, which of course, I couldn't resist snuffling around...
One of my favourites was this oriental inspired print by Lorenzo Castillo on velvet, such a fabulous crisp print and quite a bonkers design...

And speaking of bonkers designs, just check out the Christian Lacroix for Designers Guild collection!

I mean check out all the busy pattern mayhem! It's just crazy

and I like pattern!  But some of these are a bit much even for me. I do love the stained glass effect fabric on the chair above though... here is a close up of it...

Apart from going into town to meet Fia, I've been working on the new design for my stand at Formex trade show in August. It's going to be a whole new concept and I'm super excited about it but it is a lot of work to get it ready in time... I've also been working on the new range of clothing, sampling up the forms before I do the print designs.... much to do! 
Which is one of the reasons that I'm so pleased it is Friday! Oh how I love Friday! My sofa is calling to me! I'm going to have a very relaxing chill weekend and recharge, ready for my super creative next week to come...
Have a lovely weekend folks!

Friday, 17 March 2017

VIP Party at Blåhuset & the Van Asch Creative Challenge

I thought it would be great fun to invite my wonderful crafty customers to enter into a creative challenge. I selected 8 creative people to take part and they have all been given a meter of our new Luna Gold fabric for free (a few decided to buy more to make more ambitious projects) but mostly they have only a little over a meter to work with. They can do anything they want with the fabric and I'll announce the winner on here on Friday April 7th, which is coincidentally my birthday. Actually it is no coincidence at all. I love giving things away on my birthday... The winner of this challenge gets 5 meters of various fabrics for free and I'll be featuring all the contestants pictures on here so you can see everything.
If you feel inspired to make something out of this fabric too then here is a quick link to buy it...

That fabulous grey panelled background is actually wallpaper and I bought it from a wonderful shop near me called Blåhuset, which leads me nicely on to tell you about the VIP party I went to last night.
Blåhuset has been selling all the best wallpaper, paints and fabrics for years but this year they have done a total refit in the store, gutted it and relaunched even more fabulous than before and  was invited to the launch party...

Here I am with Petra and with Charlotte and Anniken from the Blåhuset team...

I did lots of snuffling around the wallpaper section...I can't tell you how excited I get when looking at fabulous patterns! It's like my eyes are eating..don't try to imagine sounds disgusting!
Just check out these beauties from Christian Lacroix...

There was lots of fabulosity from Lacroix, cushions and wallpapers...

But what most struck me was how much bigger and well organised the new store is... there is still some space in there though and we are going to fill it with some Van Asch cushions! Oh yes that is going to be happening soon and I'll take some pictures and show you when they are in stock.

There are lots of gorgeous little style moments all around the store, so lots of inspiration..which you will need as the choice is overwhelming!

Maybe you are thinking of doing some DIY or renovations this weekend, or organising, rearranging, painting,or whatever.. well good luck with that and may the creative force be with you!

Friday, 10 March 2017

Swedish Maximalism in Interior Design

When you think of Swedish design it is all about modern minimalism, black and white, lots of wood and not a twiddly bit of nonsense in sight..well that is changing. It might take a decade to filter down into the homes of the average Swede but at the top end, the new hotels and luxury interior stores are embracing rich colour and more than a nod to the former 'Swedish Grace' style. A trend that emerged in the 1920's but was out of favour by the 30's due to the politicised idea of mass production and functionalism. Scandinavian design has been synonymous with minimalism and clean lines ever since... but things are changing. And what is really exciting is the combination of Swedish minimalism, so stylish and clean but combined with ornate and rich elements. It's all about eclectic fusion. That's just a fancy way of saying your own personal style.

Because of the internet, which I mostly hate, even though it sometimes enchants me with its shiny digital baubles...anyway, because of our unfettered access to pictures of other peoples homes, instagram, pinterest and all the rest, we see so much more possibilities, so many different ways to do things, so much more inspiration that we can cherry pick our own style.

And speaking of style I have to mention Layered at this point, a spectacularly drool worthy store in Stockholm, located in a 500 year old palace. It don't get more maximalistic than that!

I think Swedish style will be even more stylish with the inclusion of a little more detail and the odd embellishment..And whilst we might never reinvent the interior style of Hallwyl Pallazzo  (probably a good thing as that place gave me visual indigestion..I did actually feel sick in there...true) anyway, a little bit of flounce or gold or fiddly nonsense is only a good thing. 

Hallwyl Palace...way too much of a good thing...

Friday, 3 March 2017

Fredagsmys... Friday Cozy Time I usually write a blog on a Friday afternoon, pretty much every week, and I had a great thing to write about too! I was going to talk about the rise of Swedish Maximalism...yes, it is a thing apparently. I've been reading about it. I would definitely jump on that train of possibility and ride it all the way to Truthville, because I really really do want it to be true. So, I was going to tell you all about that, and I still am, but it has to be next week. I've had no time today, been in meetings with my Spanish distributor, and Malin, who I co-design clothing with, talking about our next collection, so I've had no time to do the research necessary to talk about this new Swedish Maximalism. I even forgot to buy 'Fredagsmys'! Horror! For my non-swedish readers, Fredagsmys is a family tradition of having the whole family together on the sofa, watching TV and eating crisps and snacks on a Friday evening and roughly translates as 'Friday cozy time' but not really. I can quite honestly say that it is one of the best things I know, but I've been running around all day like a mad woman and forgot to buy aforementioned snacks... Got to dash to the store now and save Friday! The children are not amused!!!

I promise next weeks blog will be a lush and luxurious interiors indulgence.
Until then, have a wonderful Friday, I know I will!

Friday, 24 February 2017

New Stuff & Ibiza

This has been a busy week at Van Asch. I got a huge delivery of wash bags and purses which I have been packing up and sending out to all my stockists...

You can also buy the purses here and the washbags here. So which one is your favourite?

I also sent out some big orders to a couple of shops in Ibiza which is super exciting for me! I visited Ibiza last year, for the first time, and just fell in love with the place, so it's great that a little bit of me will be there all the time. You can now find my cushions at Villa Azuree in Santa Eulalia and Descanshop in San Antonio. Who knows, I might even have to go there on business ;-)
Well, I'm really looking forward to a quiet relaxing weekend, and whatever you've got planned, have a great one!

Friday, 17 February 2017

Fashion: Can We Dress Ourselves Happy?

Well apparently we can! It's called Dopamine Dressing and it really is a thing. It's fashions answer to these dark and difficult times.
Normally when Fashion has an answer, it is to a question like 'How can I give myself a really bad body image?' or ' how to spend too much money on a skirt that looks like a lampshade?'... Yeah, I'm not a huge fan of the fashion industry. But occasionally something unexpected and positive pops out of the Fashion industry's collective gob and this is one of those rare occurrences. Dressing to make yourself more happy.

There certainly has been plenty of bright colours gracing the catwalk recently...

Pic courtesy of Fashionisers

And surely this would make anyone hysterical with laughter? Hmmm perhaps not in a good way...
Moschino Spring 2017

But it's not all about wearing jolly colours, unless wearing jolly colours makes you feel good. Personally I'd feel like an idiot, but the point it that it is more about wearing clothes that make you feel good and happy rather than just bright colours. It also starts to explain the idea of 'your lucky jumper' or whatever special good luck charm garment it may be... I do believe there is some sciencey stuff to explain it, but we need not bother our pretty little heads with that nonsense, just grab those lemon yellow flares and get out there!
You know, when I typed the words 'Yellow Flares', I really didn't think there would be all that much out there, I mean I was poking fun, but you'd be surprised! the internet is absolutely chocker block full of bright yellow flares! Amazing!
I think I'm getting very boring in my old age...favourite colour for clothes is grey. How sad is that? Only it's not sad! It's happy! Because Grey makes me feel happy, so there.
Want to know what colours Pantone thinks are the hot shades for spring 2017?
Thought you did...

And now I'm going to leave you with a peak into what kind of clothes I really like...

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

What I Really Think About Valentines Day

'Disclaimer' This is actually a repost from my blog in 2014 but I still feel the same about it and I still want to share this with you, I hope you don't mind....

Whilst all around you, businesses are trying to shove 'romantic' gift ideas down your throat, I just want to say that you don't need to spend lots of money to prove anything on Valentines day. Time and effort are the greatest gifts, breakfast in bed or a romantic meal get the idea. I am nauseated by the cringey way businesses use that particular celebration as another way to wrangle our hard earned cash out of our pockets. They use those charming twin sisters of guilt and obligation to make as much money as possible. 

Now don't get me wrong, I love a bit of shopping, but for what I hope are the right reasons, not guilt and obligation. But rather for appreciation of beautiful things (that would be for myself) or because something is just perfect for someone and it would bring them lots of happiness to have it. 
I don't buy something to say 'I love you'. Nothing says 'I love you' like you saying the words 'I love you'. 
I apologise for my little rant here but the commercialisation of emotion is hideous.

Perhaps I'm also a bit bitter as my husband is not here, he's away for work…we'll, I use the word 'work' very loosely! What I really mean is playing bass in a goth band to thousands of crazy young Japanese goths! But anyway, this Valentines day I celebrate with my lovely children and am doubly happy that hubby gets to do something he loves (I'm not really bitter ;-). Personally I think Valentines day should be about love. Love for each other, love for things you do, just love. Not necessarily romantic love, let's widen the net and get more love out there and more love in here!