Everyday items can be pretty and functional. First created as an experimental organic vase, the Kontur vase is more than a flower vase. It can become a cool storage container for the bathroom, the office or the kitchen.
You could store small bathroom essentials, or transform it into a pen holders for your home office, or hold crayons in a kids playroom.
But the part that inspires me the most is this bird eye view of many vases. It gave me the idea of creating a wall installation. It would look amazing indoor or outdoor. Mette Kargo Hvid designed Kontur for Normann Copenhagen. It is made of silicone.
+ Kontur Vase $35 USD at 2Modern
I imagined myself relaxing at the lake cottage on weekends when I browsed the catalogue of the Danish designer Rie Elise Larsen. She cleverly mixes traditional with modern. The styling of the pictures really sells the story. Like Arren Williams did, I felt in love with her metal light pendants. She also carries the colorful hooks, in small and large sizes.
For eating on the porch, I would like to put my hands on her beautiful metal trays available in 5 different sizes and 5 colors. The XS tray seems the perfect size to serve croissants in the morning. And it’s so cute in purple.
Sadly for us, her home and kitchen products are only available across Europe. I hope that someone will want to distribute her products in the USA or Canada because I enjoy what she does.
+ Metal pendals
+ Kitchen products by Rie Elise Larsen
+ Store locator with European countries only
One thing that struck me while visiting Japan is the similarities between modern Japanese design and Danish design, and by extension, mid-century modern design. Once you pass the similarities, you can appreciate that the design is also unique. I love it and would like to furnish my home with many pieces that I spotted at Idée.
I love their dining tables. And if you live in a small places, the love-it chairs are versatile enough to move from the dining table to the living room.
Founded in 1975, Idée is now a subsidiary of Muji, another home design retail chain which operates a few stores in New York. You will find furniture and home accessories. Look at the original design of the umbrella stand. But the piece I wish I could have brought home is the Anton brown, white ash makeup dresser. It delivers on look and function. I had several makeup desks; so I know what to look for in a makeup dresser. This one fits my criteria. Although the unit is small, the 4 drawers were built to hold what a girl needs to style her hair and face.
+ Love-it chairs 81,900 yens ($883 USD approx.)
+ ARC dining table 165,900 yens ($1790 USD approx.)
+ Idée online store – only for Japan
As more and more people use their bike for their every day transportation needs, it is about time that a company provides a cute cycle helmet. Sport gears are designed for guys. They may be built for performance but they fail miserably when it comes to fashion style. Since wearing a cycle helmet became a must for our safety, I settled for the unattractive option. I will not anymore.
Yakkay is a Danish company who mixed style to safety in designing the coolest bicycle helmet ever for the urban boys and girls. They produced a naked helmet shell on which you add a cover. You can buy more cover to complement your outfits. Yakkay proposes an assortment of warm fabrics for cold weather and lighter fabrics for hot weather.
Next spring, I will check their range. I want to look fashionable when I ride my bicycle. You can order the Yakkay helmets and covers from 50cycles, a UK retailer who ships worldwide.
The helmet fully meets the European CE standard (EN 1078), which is more stringent than the CPSP that is commonly used in the USA. I based that on the fact that the snell of the EN 1078 must be validated externally while it is self-regulated by the manufacturers in the United States.
+ Yakkay helmet with cover £90 which is $145 each, extra cover £35 / $57 each
+ photos: Yakkay
+ via: Inhabitat
If you live with a cat, you know what I mean. The typical cat tree does not help our decor. A Danish design company decided to change this by creating modern style pet gears. You won’t have to hide the cat tree and the cat bowls when you have guests over.
This modern cat tree has a stainless steel post with a steel base. The perches with pillow and the sisal scratching area can be mounted on the post as you wish. It looks sharp. The only unknown at this point is how big a hole it will make on your budget.
+ Distance Design
+ via Moderncat
I guess that a lot of college students will ask this toaster as a housewarming gift. I totally understand the appeal. You know by now that I love bringing color into my home. It is not the first time that Bodum introduced color in an unusual but tasteful way.
The Bistro Toasters is not just a pretty thing. It has nice features that would be appreciated by moms and dads. The 900-watt Bistro 2-slice Toaster is made of stainless steel that is cover with a heat-resistant rubber exterior. It is safer. The little fingers cannot be burned by touching the toaster. It is also easier to clean. No more worries about finger marks on the toaster. Cool features are a defrost mode and a cancel button.
Writing this post makes me want to change my 15-year old toaster. I would like a red one to repeat the bright red center of my kitchen cabinets.
Bistro Flatbed Toasters by Bodum
The Flatbed toaster is something that I never seen before. It will be soon available. I read that it is:
- Great for Bagels, Croissants, Baguettes & More
- Toasts one side and defrosts four traditional slices of bread at once
- Comes with an adjustable Timer
- Toast larger breads without crushing them
I am curious to know how well it performs. If you have ever tried something similar, I would like to get your input. The Flatbed toaster is available in the same 8 colors.
+ Bistro 2-slice Toaster by Bodum choice of 8 colors $79.99 USD at Amazon.com
+ Black Bistro Flatbed Toaster by Bodum $79.99 USD
+ Bodum Toaster Collection
If you are looking for a unique gifts for a foodie with a love of modern design, browse through the catalogue of Eva Solo. They give unique shape to everyday housewares. Eva Solo products are not cheap. There are an indulgence. Therefore, they are perfect gift ideas.
Salad Sinner by Eva Solo
The Salad Spinner reinvent the old technique of washing salad. Your grand mothers used to do that with a tea towel. Now you can do it more efficiently and more stylishly with their salad spinner. I really like the look.
After you rinse the leaves with your hands (which you must always do whichever method you use), squeeze the top of the bucket together to form a spout and pour off the water. The lettuce is now ready for spinning. You need a little bit of vertical space. Swing the bucket around in the air – this you can do either indoors or outdoors. In the process, any surplus water and dirt collects under the drainage plate.
The bucket is made of soft TPE rubber, which is approved for foods, and has a nylon cord handle. The drainage plate is made of stainless steel. The bucket is available in creamy sand, spring green and steel grey.
Other Gift Ideas
The Eva Solo’s silicone potholders are available in new colors. I like it because you simply rinse them to remove small spills or put them in the dishwasher for a thorough wash. The flexibility of silicone means that they follow the form of the pots and pans your need to carry. If you want, you can place the potholders on a hook near the stove to have them close whenever you need.
You will be the stylish camper with the thermo picnic flask. In fact, they look as amazing that you can walk the city with the half-liter water flask.
+ Salad Spinner by Eva Solo $118 USD
+ Eva Solo Flexible Potholders $45 USD for a pair
+ Mat or polished Thermo Water Flask 0.5 litter $99 USD 1L $188
Designed for children of all ages, these wooden airplanes are almost too exquisite to be a toy. The shadows of their silhouette create a Wow factor when you gather them to form a mobile in a nursery or a toddler room.
These wooden planes were designed by Ole Sondergaard for the Normann Copenhagen brand. The shape conveys the simple elegance of Danish design. I love it!
+ Normann Copenhagen Plane small (plane 1) $45, med (plane 2) $60, large (plane 3) $115 at Velocity Art and Design
+ Normann Copenhagen Wooden Planes small £30, med £42, large £75 at Panik-Design
A 300-year old tradition got a makeover at the Café Royal in Copenhagen. The Danish smørrebrød was invented in Denmark when poor people could not afford two pieces of bread. Later, as people get more money the smørrebrød became more complex. It is a popular lunch dish. Do not be surprised of you do not see the bread anymore on the traditional smørrebrød.
Basically, the smørrebrød is an open-faced sandwich. It is often made with dark rye bread and the condiments are nicely assembled in layers. Although there are a wide variety of smørrebrød, tradition in Denmark dictates was goes with what and in which order. They took their smørrebrød seriously. There is a 3 years and a half school program to master the art of making smørrebrøds.
But Rud Christiansen, the owner and founder of the Royal Café in Copenhagen, wanted to broke the rules and played with the dish. He decided to reduce the size of the smørrebrød and to explore new ingredient pairing. He called his finger-sized open-faced sandwiches Smushi; in reference to sushi.
The presentation at the smushi at Café Royal is sublime. I would love to smushies at my next tea party. Plus the interior design of the Café Royal is a treat by itself. I marked Café Royal as a must-see place.
+ Listing of traditional smørrebrød restaurants
+ Told & Snaps
+ Café Royal in Copenhagen
I have a thing for cute kitchen storage jars. You can say that I feel under the spells of Opus Storage Jars.
World-famous designer Ole Palsby put its signature style in designing the elegant clean-cut Opus Storage Jars. The stainless steel Opus Funnel comes handy for neatly filling the jars with dry food. How cool is that!
I continue my exploration of Rosendahl catalogue when I spot the Grand Cru Egg Cup, a new addition in Spring 2008.
All the items of the Grand Cru range feature distinctive grooves. The stylishly utilitarian tableware collection can be dress up and down. I paired it for a brunch with the Grand Cru Crystal Dessert Plate to eat fruits with yogurt. That plate with high edge looks at its place at a casual breakfast or a dinner party.
Winner of IF Design Award 2007, the Opus Carafe and Opus Tumblers are part of a complete clear glass and fine bone china tableware family. This is a style that anyone can live with for years to come.
Use these as inspiration to set your table for a casual family brunch on Mother’s Day. Better yet, give her one of these items on May 11th.
Buy online: Opus Storage Jars at Zwello – price: $21.95 USD for a set of 5
Buy online: Opus Funnel at Zwello – price: $27.95 USD
Buy online: Opus Carafe with Lid at Zwello – price: $29.95 USD
Find: Store locator for Rosendahl products