Friday, 21 December 2007

Until next year!

That it from me! I'm off for a nice break, spending Christmas with my family – a rare treat. Made even more brilliant by our rendezvous location being the city of Beijing! I can't wait! Three weeks off – a long time, but please keep the faith and pop back in the new year, I'll up and running again January 14th with many tales of China, and more photos than you can imagine.

And on the subject of future blogs, please email me anything you think I'd be interested in, or feel free to send me samples of your work to feature (details in my profile).

Thanks for visiting my blog this year, please dive into the archives and check out the year of art, design, music and travel of moi that was. Highlights of my year and favourite posts for me would have to include Rob Ryan, Jen Corace, seeing Modest Mouse and Feist in Concert, visiting the Museum of Bags and Purses, Cheerleading in Prague and my trip to Croatia.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

From Amsterdam, with Love,
Lel x

PS. the photo above is the view from my desk (score!) in our new office. Today is very very cold, but I'm off for a boozey Irish Pub lunch with my work mates so that'll warm us up :)

Theatre of Obsessions

Last days to catch the Theatre of Obsessions exhibition at the Ronmandos Gallery. Work by Artists Anonymous, Eva & Adele and Hans van Bentem.

Gallery Ronmandos, Prinsengracht 282.
Theatre of Obsessions, October 27 - December 22, 2007.
Open Wednesday - Saturday 12 - 6pm.

Thursday, 20 December 2007

Tiny Showcase

Tiny Showcase is the brainchild of Jon Buonaccorsi and Shea'la Finch way back in 2004. Each week Tiny Showcase offers up a great little morsel for all you art hungry people out there. Each run is printed on 310gsm acid-free Hahnemühle German Printmaking Paper using UltraChrome ink is specially treated and sprayed, giving it an archival lifespan of over 60 years.

Beginning on August, 2005 Tiny Showcase introduced a new pricing structure where a percentage of the money from each print sold is donated to a charity chosen by the artist. This raises the print price slightly, but now the artist, as well as their favorite charity, benefit from each piece sold. Fantastic!

The week of December 11 had this great piece up for grabs:
"Not to Scale" is a beautiful letterpress print series by Robert Samuel Hanon. Run of 200 done (sold out – I missed out too!), 9" x 7", USD $30.
But I was quicker with this piece by my beloved Jen Corace. Dress'm up, 5.5" x 4.4", USD $20 / €13.90. It just arrived this week and is really beautiful.

Great art at super great prices. Thank you, Tiny Showcase!

Wednesday, 19 December 2007

Branch

Branch of San Fransisco is an interesting concept store that caters for the conscious consumer without sacrificing quality or design. Here are three fabulous products using that kind of materials, felt.
Felt Pebbles, handmade in South Africa, as part of a job creation program that offers opportunities to local craftswomen. 100% felted merino wool. Small pebbles are approximately 3" to 5" long. Price starts at USD $14 / €9.80 / £7.
Six-Pack Wine Rack, designed by Kelly Smith and Chris Grimley, 2007. Handmade by Etcetera the rack is 100% industrial wool felt, nylon stitching. Approximately 17" long x 5" wide, when flat. Price: USD $40 / €27.80 / £20.
Felt Birds: Red and White. Made in Germany from 100% eco-certified felted wool, satin ribbon. Each bird is 6" long, with a 4" wingspan. Birds come in sets of two: one red and one white. They ship flat and are easy to assemble. Price: USA $18 / €12.50 / £9.


Tuesday, 18 December 2007

Zelda Beauchampet

Zelda Beauchampet is a young Dutch designer from Eindhoven. After graduating from the Design Academy Zelda started up her own studio, Zlda, but also runs several self-initiated projects focusing on graphic, fashion and jewellery design. One such project is handscape: I think these handscape rings are just adorable. I like the contrast in the fact that they look like knuckle busters, but are in fact cute almost fairly-tale-esque scenes. Zelda says "...at last a piece of jewellery that is just as changeable as your daily moods. If you have a day off, wear the bird. More in a city mood, then today is the day for the flat. A handscape on your finger is perfect way to dream away and show the world how you're feeling." There are six different rings offering endless combinations.

Verre Vertical, 2006. Candlestick holders. Recycled glass.
Zelda Beauchampet, Ekkerstraat 2, 5616 SP Eindhoven, The Netherlands.

Monday, 17 December 2007

Maastricht

Last Friday my company moved office and we were given the day off – yay! And my friends and I decided to get out of the 'Dam and spend a day relaxing and mooching about. So, we hopped on a train and headed to Maastricht, in the south of Holland. Round trip from the Dam took 2.5 hours each way, the train was €38 per person and was worth every penny. On arrival we headed to the Christmas market where there was a massive Ferris wheel (oh how the Europeans love their Ferris wheels), a double-decker merry-go-round, mulled wine and sausage stalls, ice skating and snowmen. I have to say we got a little caught up in the main drag and it wasn't until late afternoon that we three finally found the great little boutiques Maastricht. One little gem was Muchachas – and they're currently having a great sale, too, so get yourself down there. My friend Miss B picked up a great dress in which she looks gorgeous in and I snagged myself a wood necklace (broken arrow and heart) by Tatty Devine for a meager €27 / USD $38. Tatty seems to be branching out from her trademark perspex jewels into laser cut wood (more on that trend later). But wait, there's more. Right next door to Mustachas is Traders Pop, the more streetwise boutique. Lots of clothes and trainers and quirky nic-nacs. Couldn't resist this awesome pack of playing cards for €1,25 / USD $1.80. The have pink pugs on them!! Could you?
On the way back to the station a kind ancient Pharmacist gave me these fabric daisies. Too sweet.
Muchachas & Pop Traders, Heggenstraat 16, 6211 GW Maastricht.


Thursday, 13 December 2007

Het Grote Avontuur

Het Grote Avontuur (The Big Adventure) is a great little store on the Haarlemmerstraat, Amsterdam. A bright little number the shop is jam-packed with quirky toys, gifts, homewares and more.
The laser-cut wood animal tree above, and a few other designs range from €11-17.50.

Het Grote Avontuur, Haarlemmerstraat 25, Amsterdam.

Open 11 am - 6pm Monday to Saturday.

Wednesday, 12 December 2007

Belle Collar by HAL

The gorgeous Belle Collar by HAL is a two-tiered pleated collar in luscious hand-found fabrics. Designed and handcrafted in Amsterdam by my dear friend, Hanna. This pint-sized Swedish lass is a style queen, so if she says it's in, it's in. Belle Collars can be ordered in three "flavours" or fabric categories. Belle-Basics; Classic Checks and Dress-Up. Fabrics are chosen for charm. Individual fabrics within the three "flavours" will vary. Hanna's collars can be found exclusively at Smaak, €59 / £42.

Tuesday, 11 December 2007

Glitter & Twisted at YDU

Young Designers United (YDU) is an initiative of the Polish Angelika Groenendijk-Wasylewski, a well-traveled lass who's made Amsterdam her home. Angelika has a passion for fashion and supports young and upcoming talent in her boutique store in Amsterdam's city heart. YDU offers a wide variety of exclusive and high-quality clothes and accessories.
One accessory line up for grabs is Glitter & Twisted. G&T have lovely broaches and necklaces made from coloured and mirrored perspex. Please excuse the photos – they were very tricky to photograph! You'll just have to pop in and see for yourself.
Ok, some better images...
YDU, Keizersgracht 447, 1017 DK Amsterdam.
Open: Monday 13:00 - 18:00, Tuesday to Saturday 10:00 - 18:00, Thursday 10:00 - 20:00 (Shopping evening), closed on Sunday.

Monday, 10 December 2007

Small Things

Small Things make small, but very very nice things. Necklaces, bracelets, rings all hand crafted by Teresa Robinson of Portland. Take a squiz.

Friday, 7 December 2007

Kathleen Lolley

Let me introduce artist Kathleen Lolley and her quirky world of owls and rabbits.
Queen of cups, 5"x7", ink on paper.
The trees cradle you.
Myth and magic, 12"x12", ink on wood, sold.
Too much thinking, 10"x10", ink on paper, sold.
Waiting for the end, approx 24"x28", ink on paper, sold.
Pillows from USD $15 / £7.45 / €10.30.

Thursday, 6 December 2007

Iggy & Lou Lou

The last time I was back home in Australia, I made my obligatory trip to Melbourne to enjoy the finest of Australian fashion, art and culture. I love just roaming the streets of Melbourne, everyone looking so glam and stylish. In one little shop off Flinder's Lane I first found and fell in love with the work of ceramic artist Irene Grishin-Selzer. Irene is the woman behind label Iggy and Lou Lou. Featured last week as part of Via Alley's offerings, further investigation of this brand has me drooling and wanting to book a flight home to shop up a storm.

My picks include, from the Ships in the Night range:
Ahoy Anchor broach, in leather case. AUD $79 / £33.80 / €47.
Cufflinks, Blue Bird, Red Anchor, Blue Anchor, Black Anchor AUD $120 / £51 / €71.
From their Last Romance in Paris range:
Double Charm, AUD $120 / £51 / €71.
Fench Icon Pendant, on sterling chain, AUD $150 / £64 / €90.
I'd be here all day if I went through their other great ranges. Check them out for yourself: Friends of the Forest, I Will Eat You Alive and The Tide is High.