Tuesday, 31 May 2011

map store

Need a map? Guide book? Look no further than the Reisboekhandel Pied a Terre. This place is huge and has a lot of books in English, like by beloved Knopf city guides. And that's my tip of the day!
Reisboekhandel Pied a Terre: Overtoom 135-137, Amsterdam.

Monday, 30 May 2011

De Looier

De Looier in a little gem stashed away on the corner of the Elandsgracht and the Looiersgracht for all you antique junkies out there. I hadn't been there for years, but recently noticed a new store on as I trammed down Marnixstraat the other day and it prompted me to take a look. The new store was Vintage 2000 and the item that caught my eye was a lovely little vintage suitcase with wood frame detail that is now sitting by the front door. It's very sweet.
So the case reminded me of de Looier, and so I thought I'd take Mr E and I ventured in once more. It's a very old fashioned place, a rabbit warren maze of glass cabinets filled with all sorts of collectibles and curiosa.
We found a lovely silkscreen print from the 70's of boat buoys by a Dutch artist, and a little glass lion by Swedish artist, Lisa Larson. Both really reasonably priced. There's proper antiques (though all a bit dusty for my taste) but there are some great mid-century items too, much more my speed.
De Looier: Elandsgracht 109, Amsterdam. Open from 11am to 5pm, closed Fridays.

Friday, 27 May 2011

Light up my life

Today Amsterdam is a bit sleepy and sluggish. Or maybe it's just me. I'm looking forward to the weekend and really truly need to spend some quality time in my library or behind the sewing machine. Or both.
The weather is a pretty oppressive, mostly dark and ominous. A few bright streaks of sun that vanish as quickly as they appear. It feels like it's going to bucket down any second. Luckily I was lazy and took the tram to work this morning (but I was at least good and studied Spanish all the way). I'm secretly hoping it's crap weather all weekend so I can stay in and just potter about the house and make some stuff. Just feel like one of those weekend.

Anyway, enough prattle. Above is Distant Valley, a print by James Naughton for Tiny Showcase. I'm sorry to say the limited edition of 100 is sold out. But I think James is someone to keep an eye on. His work ace. Captures the light so perfectly. Amazing.

Wednesday, 25 May 2011


Julia Rothman has teamed up with Cloud 9 Fabrics and produced a gorgeous range of textiles. The range is called Miscellany and uses a selection of patterns from her recent portfolio. Above, stacked.
Above petal pusher and below, nethercote. I think these two are my favourites. But I'm not going to buy any as I have a big pile of fabrics I haven't used yet. So I think I'd best use those up before adding to the pile...
Above, flora, and below, candy trees.
Lastly, antique flower.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

the 'hood, part 3

Mr E and I often go for a little evening stroll around the Silodam. So relaxing looking out across the Ij.
Watching the swans scavenge for their dinner...the other waterbirds wandering pottering about. Here's my friend from before but with just one chic. Wonder where the others went.
Watching the barges and boats and ferries and cruise past the bobbing buoys.
And then there's this lovey Renault van! Which is quite fantastic.

Monday, 23 May 2011

Klaus Haapaniemi

One of the most amazing illustrators of today, Klaus Haapaniemi, with his own shop with delicious products like these silk scarves.Above: golden spider, 100% silk, 110 x 110cm. Colour: gold, black, blue, red, purple, green. £110.
And purple spider: 100% sheer silk chiffon, 110 x 110cm. Color: gold, black, blue, red, purple, green. £110. All orders by mail for now sales@klaush.com.

Friday, 20 May 2011

klm houses

KLM Delft miniature ceramic houses. Everyone I know has at least one. Whether you picked one up from a flea market, found one on Queen's Day, from an antique shop, or were given it when you flew business class on KLM, seems like there's a mini Dutch house tucked away in every house in Amsterdam. We have four (pictured above and below) from work trips and I always kinda thought they were a bit 'nana', but they grew on me and now that my house is less cluttered they look quite sweet, actually.
The miniature houses present some of the old Dutch houses situated along the canals in Amsterdam and other age-old towns in Holland. As mentioned, these houses are presented to travelers on board KLM business class flights and contain the famous Dutch young jenever, distilled by Bols Distilleries. You can find originals and also reproductions of the complete range of miniatures, which are all numbered from 1 to the very latest house number 91. And that leads me to these next images, taken from KLM's website where all the houses are showcased in an interactive experience. Advertising agency Tribal DDB created a real life, 7 meter long canal street with the 91 miniature houses, then filmed it, and finally turned it into a virtual, online experience, dubbed Take a trip down KLM lane.I also love these fab behind-the-scenes shots. Always fun to see how these things are built.
The different houses are clickable and reveal information about the different buildings’ location (in Google maps) and history. The miniature bridges, trees, boats, etc. were created by the very skillful hands of Dutch model maker Lucas van Doorn. Incredible craftsmanship.And what a fun job that looks like! And more images of the result –
I know, lots of grabs... I just couldn't decide!
But wait, there's more! For the keen collector, of if you have one already, you can now find the original house your miniature was based on via KLM's handy little app. He it tells you the location, and history of the house.
You can record in the app which houses you have, so I guess for a serious collector it's pretty handy to save you remembering which ones you have as you're digging through a flea market or antique store. But otherwise it's just a nice, simple, and informative app.
I love that KLM are keeping their tradition going, and taking it forward into the digital age for others to see and enjoy. Job well done.

Thursday, 19 May 2011

Maricor Maricar

Embroidery has made a come back and in a big way. I just love the trend back to all things hand made and these illustrations and typography works in stitch are sublime. Above: Every Cloud has a Sugar Lining. Exhibited in the Art by Design 7 group exhibition at the Wedge Gallery, Books Kinokuniya, Sydney. Cotton floss on canvas.
The following few pieces were exhibited as part of Maricor Maricar's show Turns of Speech and Figures of Phrase. Above, with details below is Macho Distrust: A Blondie lyric slightly skewed. Maricor Maricar says "This one took a lot of working up in the watercolour stage to get the colour combinations just right before a stitch was even sewn." Hand embroidered with cotton floss on cotton canvas using split stitch. 29cm x 29cm. Muscle On: "Simulated water coloured brushstrokes using a total of 16 colours on black fabric." Hand embroidered with cotton floss on cotton canvas using split stitch. Diamonds on the Soles of their Feet. "We discovered Paul Simon through a cd that belonged in a car that was borrowed. I don't think we would have become fans otherwise. Last year we made a print of patterned mushrooms identically titled. For the show we wanted to give that lyric a typographic treatment. The songs mentions shoes but we prefer them barefoot." Hand embroidered with cotton floss on cotton canvas. 27 colours using split stitch. 43cm x 43cm.
Tongue Tied & Hopeless. "I thought i'd give one of my favourite examples of mixed up lyricism another go in honour of our first solo show." Hand embroidered with cotton floss on cotton canvas using stem stitch. 43cm x 43cm.

Epic Battle #2: Lucha vs Ginga Ninja (you're too tasty for your own good). "Our latest battle is dedicated to Black Star Pastry's famous Ginger Ninjas." Private commission. Hand embroidered on cotton canvas with DMC cotton floss.Love love love this work. All I want to do is get home and pull out some needles and thread now!