TAMING THE CHAOS



We had a wooden sofa in our kitchen when I grew up. Perhaps that's why I'm so fond of this black one from Danish Oliver Furniture. A modern take on a traditional Scandinavian piece of furniture. I would love to have one in the hallway to line up the kids and tie their shoes on, pull off their boots from, and hide their chaos in.

And no, it would not serve as shelf for my teapot!?
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE OLIVER FURNITURE WEBSHOP

ALLHELGONA

Skogskyrkogården på Allhelgona

In Sweden, we celebrate Allhelgona afton on Friday and Alla helgons dag on Saturday. In Norway, Allehelgensdag is on Sunday. (Need a recap?) This weekend is the first time we will be able to visit a family grave on this holiday, which makes the day all the more meaningful.
IMAGE:SKOGSKYRKOGÅRDEN PELLE STEN VIA FLICKR

TWINKLE TWINKLE

Ludwig stjärna koppar-koppar - Ø 60 cm - Watt & Veke

I have been set on finding the perfect white star for our windows, but am always drawn towards the metal kinds instead... Ludwig in copper coloured paper looks great in a Betlehem-meets-Scandinavia kind of way. 
IMAGE: DESIGNONLINE WEBSHOP

SAKSINVATNET

Saksinvatnet
IMAGE: ANDERS MOHLIN VIA FLICKR, CC

COUNT YOUR DEGREES

I had to run back to the house and get warmer mittens for my son as we were getting ready to go to school. An outdoor thermometer would be handy. Byggfabriken has four handsome ones. A pretty little mailable gift for home owners around the world. 
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE BYGGFABRIKEN WEBSHOP 

MULTI PURPOSE


What is going on over at Hemtex? I usually never set foot in that store and now, BOOM, I want this and that and this and that and what not. Table cloth Loke is a bargain at 129 SEK. 

Seasonal items irk me, I don't want to store things for 11 months and use it for 2 weeks. But this would look good with a colourful summer buffet, look great with orange for Halloween, on the children's table for Thanksgiving, and still last through November as we introduce green and red in the home in preparation for advent, and work the extra shift for informal family dinners in January. 
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE HEMTEX WEBSHOP 

GAME ON


Bu och Bä memoTomtebobarnen memoPelles Memo

I love gifting Scandinavian Memo games, especially during Christmas. It's a subtle introduction to Scandinavia through characters, objects and colour, and at the same time its an invitation to engage with other family members, rather than watch a screen during down time. The brilliance of games where you have to find matching pairs is that all ages, and languages, can play together.

There is an amazing range of memo games available in most book stores and online in Sweden. Barnbokhandeln.com is one of my favourites and dangerously wonderful to browse.
IMAGES: PRODUCT IMAGES BARNBOKHANDELN

A TALL ORDER


We live in small quarters, but with a large family and good neighbours there are plenty of occasions to invite people over for a Swedish fika. I've been looking for a tiered stand to serve many while leaving plenty of room on counters and tables for hot drinks and more snacks. This one from Bruka Design is best in show so far. You can take it apart between uses, so it stores easily. Pretty enough for a party, casual enough for a family gathering.

Now, if they would just make the rod in two sizes, so I could choose how high I want to stack my baked goods (a.k.a how much time I used sleeping the night before instead of baking) it would be a definite winner.
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE BRUKA DESIGN, USED WITH PERMISSION

A DIFFERENT KIND OF TREASURE HUNT

Skulptur på TrosterudPlanning a family weekend in Scandinavia? Fall is the ultimate time to enjoy the thousands of sculptures that grace the streets and parks of Scandinavian cities.

In spring there is a busy liveliness in the parks. Birds chirping, children running, and the sharp rays that awaken green life bursting from every branch. But in fall, the pace slows down. The rustling of leaves in deep ochre, blood red and moss green, the scaly bark of trees, provide a rich backdrop for sculptures who seem to come alive in the glow of the low afternoon sun. The seasonal difference is so transforming that even children find it a fun outing to discover sculptures on a city walk.

Next weekend we're circling destinations on a map and will let the kids navigate us around Oslo. We'll enjoy a hot drink and baked treat on a bench in one of the many parks. A great way to get to know a city as a family.
IMAGE: MORTEN F, SCULPTURE AT TROSTERUD IN OSLO, OCT 12 2014, VIA FLICKR

FATHER'S DAY IS COMING UP

Förkläde Gourmet

In Scandinavia we celebrate Father's Day on the 2nd Sunday in November, and isn't this a refreshing alternative to the tie, sock, and shaving staples? Affordable leather apron Gourmet from Åhlens.

Buffalos aren't native to Sweden, but recently skins are sourced increasingly to Scandinavia since they're often certified as organic. After all, we'd rather the animal lived a somewhat decent life and their skin is shipped long distances, than knowing it lived a miserable life nearby.
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE ÅHLENS.COM

NEW EQUESTRIAN HEIGHTS

dalahastar-roda-2.JPG - Dalahästar Röda, Swedish Icon Collection, Poster A2 (lagervara) - Heminredning på nätet hos Inreda.comdalahastar-svarta2.JPG - Dalahästar Svart/vita, Swedish Icon Collection, Poster (LAGERVARA) - Heminredning på nätet hos Inreda.com

Caroline Silfverling is the name behind I Love Design, and the creator of this two dimensional pile of Dalecarlian horses as well as a range of other items in the modern kitsch genre. Available at Inreda.com.
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE INREDA.COM

MONDAY MUSIC



Kristallen den fina, arranged and performed by Georg Jojje Wadenius and Gejoma.

FOOL PROOF GIFTS

This is our list of can't-go-wrong gifts from Sweden that suit all ages above 20 years, all genders, most home interiors, and all life events: wedding, christmas, birthday, anniversary, hostess gifts...



Round tray Aristida, Svenskt Tenn. Small crystal bowl Precious, by Malin Lindahl for Orrefors. His or her body scrub brushes, by Iris Hantverk. Baroque candlestick in concrete, by Tove Adman. Napkin rings available in silver or brass, by Skultuna.  Kitchen towel Siljan, by Ekelunds Linneväveri. Stoneware bowl available in 5 colours, by Höganäs. Notebook Dinners, by Ordning & Reda.
IMAGES: ORREFORS WEBSHOP, SKULTUNA WEBSHOP, SVENSKT TENN WEBSHOP, TOVE ADMAN, DESIGNONLINE, ORDNING-REDA.SE, CERVERA.SE, IRIS.SE

SATURDAY SHOPPING. SIGH.

PEM-TOI-GP00127 P.L. Wilhelmsens assortementhandel i Storgata 97, Tromsø

Saturday shopping at a crowded mall with two kids today. Not looking forward to it.
IMAGE: WILHELMSEN'S MERCANTILE STORE CA. 1905, by thoralf ØIEN, PERSPEKTIVET MUSEUM, TROMSØ

DYING TO ANNOY A SCANDINAVIAN?

The Scandi Kitchen is a Scandinavian food company in Britain. They've compiled a list of 17 ways to annoy a Scandinavian. Go on, I dare you...

COZY TOES


I have always loved my Tretorn rubber boots. At times I've tried other brands, both Finnish and British, but nothing beats the Tretorn fit on me feet. Their first factory opened in 1891, and the company now offers rain gear and shoes.

Since I bought my latest pair while pregnant, I have the Scout boot. Very sensible, practical, adjustable and easy to put on and take off. No longer in that "blessed" condition, I have started eyeing their cuter options, such as the model Nicole, above, or the zippered Lady.
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE ZAPPOS.COM

ON MY WISHLIST

RYSSBY 2014 Burk med lock, set om 2 IKEA Den genomskinliga burken gör det enkelt att hitta det du söker, oavsett var den är placerad.
I am slightly annoyed that my local IKEA doesn't carry all items of the limited edition collection Ryssby, but these glass canisters are supposed to arrive any day now. Let's hope they aren't gone by the time I get there...
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE IKEA

ROCK ON


Aksel L. Hansson has been producing his signature chairs since 1938 in Hjelmeland, Norway. The rocking chair Aksel is a children's classic. Made to last generations it is bound to be a family heirloom. Available at the Purnorsk webshop or from AKSEL.NO among others.

PS. Annasjul, this is a great item for your shop ;)
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE PURNORSK WEBSHOP  

MEANWHILE, IN SVALBARD...

Lonely roads.

The polar night is fast approaching the Arctic, and cloudy skies remind us of the impending season.
IMAGE: NEIL MORALEE, SEPT 2014, VIA FLICKR

GET IT WHILE YOU CAN


I've been meaning to wait with the actual Christmas stuff a little longer, but this one's sure to be sold out in a couple of weeks. Looks good as is, but can easily be decorated with ribbon or string or what not. I love that they filled it with spices. Adventsstake from Granit. 
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE GRANIT WEBSHOP

WISH ME LUCK


When temperatures drop low enough, I don't linger outside on my evening errands. Instead, I entertain delusions of having enough time to make something and linger on websites such as Korsstygnsbolaget in search of a small little something that might be easy enough. 
IMAGE: KORSTYGNSBOLAGET. USED WITH PERMISSION  

OCTOBER READS FOR CHILDREN

Mamma Mu bygger koja  

The unlikely pairing of a patient but curious cow and a scurrying pessimistic crow have resulted in a dear series of books. Here they build a tree house, and ponder whether its the journey or the destination that is worth while. Available in SwedishNorwegian, PolishArabic.

It can be quite daunting to perform on a stage, and how do you conquer your nerves and deliver a line in the school play? A younger brother comes to the rescue in The world's best singer, available in SwedishEnglish, French, and German. Read an excerpt here.

A lively cat tries to cheer a grumpy old man. A not entirely trivial task. Available in SwedishNorwegianFrenchGerman. Read an excerpt here.
IMAGES: ADLIBRIS, SMAKPROV.SE

A COOKIE TIN FOR GRANDMA

         
3 kinds of cookies from Arbro Ångbageri are now available at Slottsboden at the Royal Castle in Stockholm. The perfect gift for great aunts and grandma!  
IMAGE: PRESS IMAGE ARBRO ÅNGBAGERI, FOTOGRAF KATARINA HANSSON

STRÄNGNÄS CATHEDRAL

Strängnäs Cathedral, Södermanland, Sweden

Strängnäs Cathedral ca. 1890.
IMAGE: SWEDISH NATIONAL HERITAGE BOARD ON FLICKR 

A COLORFUL FALL

One of the reasons why we love Scandinavian design and love to give it as gifts, is its ability enhance both a minimalist and a maximalist home.  Its simplicity and modern shape contrasts classic settings beautifully, and its playfulness brightens a graphic or strict setting.  Colourful fall
Tealight chandelier Nappula by Iittala, Wooden hairbrush by Åhlens, Kivi votives in salmon pink and rain by Iittala, Key ring Ordning & Reda,  Gräshoppa table lamp Gubi, Mail box Bruka Design, Miniature ficus microcarpa IKEA, Elsa Beskow Tray Design House Stockholm. Aalto vase in deep purple by Iittala, Stockholm vase IKEA, orange Färgrik bowl IKEA,  Rondello paper napkins by Iittala, Fazermint chocolates by Fazer, candle holder HM Home, Wooden bowl HM Home
IMAGES: PRODUCT IMAGES IITTALA, IKEA, ÅHLENS, BRUKADESIGN, FAZER, H&M HOME, CONNOX.COM, ORDNING & REDA, CONRANSHOP.CO.UK

SCANDINAVIAN RECIPES ONLINE

I am not in the business of reinventing the wheel, so whenever someone from abroad asks for a recipe of a Swedish or Scandinavian dish I send them one of the links below.

It's my little list of excellent recipes from Scandinavia that are tested and adapted for a global crowd.

Happy cooking!

SAVEUR - Scandinavian Recipes  
SAVEUR - A Scandinavian Dinner Party 
World Food Channel - World Recipes: Scandinavian Recipes
Jamie Oliver - Super quick salmon gravlax
Martha Stewart Living - Swedish Crayfish Boil
Martha Stewart Living - Dinner Party, Northern Light: The cold/weather comforts of Sweden
Marcus Samuelsson on Martha - How to make pickled cucumber salad
Food Network/Marcus Samuelsson - Gravlax Club Sandwich
Epicurious/Andreas Viestad - Fish soup from Bergen 
Rachael Ray - Sailor's beef and potato casserole

WELCOME BACK NORGESGLASS!

NORGESGLASS MED HENGSLET LOKK 1 L

Ball mason jars in the US, Weck jars in Germany, and in Norway: Norgesglass. The once ubiquitous canning staple was discontinued and became a collectors item. Finally back in production at Hadeland Glassverk, Norgesglassen are available in three sizes and with two types of lids. 
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE KVALITETSGAVER.NO

FALL IS HERE

Vigeland II
IMAGE: JON OLAV EIKENES VIA FLICKR

YOUR OCTOBER PLAYLIST

We're compiling short playlists on Spotify with Scandinavian artists only. Spotify users are welcome to subscribe, or use it as a starting point to discover new artists.

You can also simply press play in the sidebar here on the blog. Enjoy!

PLAY IT AGAIN, GRIEG

Edvard and Nina Grieg playing cards with three friends

From left: Nina Grieg, Edvard Grieg, Johan Halvorsen, Frederik Delius og Christian Sinding, enjoying a game of cards. Christmas 1887, Leipzig. 
IMAGE: The Edvard Grieg Archives, BERGEN PUBLIC LIBRARY, VIA FLICKR

WEEKEND READS

 
The catalogue for Bukowskis Modern Auction part 1 - Art, Prints, Sculpture. Svenskt Tenn celebrates its 90th anniversary with an exhibition and publicationBukowskis Modern Auction part 2 -Furniture, Glass, Carpets, Works of Art, Design

ATTENTION BAG LADIES

Every three years or so, a new IT-bag graces the shoulders of young women in Stockholm, usually corresponding to the opening of a new luxury brand store. The current craze is sure to pass quickly as the bag is impractical, uncomfortable, and wears out quickly despite the hefty price tag.  

Palmgrens have been providing excellent leather goods since its founding year 1896. No dangling metal logos, no frills, just simple elegance and craftsmanship. Worldwide shipping. 
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE PALMGRENS.SE

NEW MUSEUM WEBSHOP



Sweden's largest museum of cultural history, Nordiska Museet, has opened its webshop. Its stocked with gems of both the kitsch and collector item variety. On my wish list, their hand made green flower pot. Santa, baby?
IMAGE: PRODUCT IMAGE NORDISKA MUSEET, WEBSHOP

OCTOBER

Sunset in Østerdalen

Sunset in Østerdalen, Norway.
PHOTOGRAPHER: IB AARMO, VIA FLICKR

WELCOME FRIENDS

After a spectacular spring and lingering summer the fall storms are easy to embrace. We've enjoyed the local corn, apples, plums and fårikål. The wool socks are on, and the last flower in the garden has been picked. It's fall, and it's almost the most wonderful time of the year.