This Fall Farrow and Ball introduced 9 new colors in addition to their current collection. I was the lucky one to receive a test set to try out the new tones. Farrow and Ball is an English company specialized in paint and wallpaper since the mid 40s. Their paint is chalk based with rich pigments. Resulting in hues that respond characterfully to the nuances of light throughout the day, After painting and playing with the small cans and colors I came to the conclusion that the color called Jitney is my current favorite.
I’m familiar with Farrow and Ball for a while now, love to use their paint for both projects and at home. Pavilion Grey, an elegant Swedish mid-gray, and Down Pipe, a deep grey with blue undertones, are examples of colors that I have used regularly in photo and styling shoots. The new colors are ranging from an exotic pink, a deep red to a soft off-white and a down to earth blue. Each blended with rich pigments and fine quality ingredients for an extraordinary depth of color.
Jitney is a sandy brown hue, an earthy color which is muted yet uplifting. And beautiful when the daylight comes in. This color strengthens the natural look and materials in this shoot. It fits the ceramics, black details and light wooden table. During the day Jitney is more sandy/greyish. As soon as the evening comes in, it becomes more brownish and warmer in tone. At first sight, it might seem a bit dull. But it’s quite the opposite, Jitney is a warm and calming color which varies from warm to a slightly cooler tone. I like the way Farrow and Ball paint changes according to the light.
Photography and styling beeldSTEIL | Wen van Woudenberg
In collaboration with Farrow and Ball
On invitation of the city of Malmö we traveled to Sweden for a few days to visit South Sweden’s largest city. Autumn was visible in the city, not only in the different parks but also in the narrow streets around Lilla Torg, a charming cobblestone square with half-timbered houses. In one of the streets around the square, we discovered Noir a tiny coffee place with a cozy green terrace with a real French vibe.
We stayed at the tenth floor of Studio Malmö, part of the Story Hotels, with an amazing view over both the city centre and the ocean with the iconic lighthouse. A lively building with different rooms, meeting and workspaces and a large reception area. We had lunch at the hotel restaurant Salads and Smoothies, great for healthy food and good coffee. Being huge Japanese food lovers we were blessed with rooftop Restaurant Kasai serving the best Sushi in town. Walking more than 10 kilometers a day and with low temperatures outside during the evening, we couldn’t think of a better way to finish the day then having some wine and try out the different sushi and Japanese specialties.
Selecting some places on forehand gave us enough opportunities to see different parts of town and while walking we discovered Zakka, a beautiful small Japanese concept store with a very kind shop owner. Another favorite store we visited was Grandpa, an inspirational Scandinavian lifestyle store with a great welcoming atmosphere. A cool layout and a nice collection of homeware, stationery and fashion. Next door to Grandpa is Absmåland what seemed a small store with cafe from the outside, turned out to be a large and cozy shopping experience with a hand-picked range of home accessories, art and fashion focussed on organic and recycled materials. We loved this area and part of Södra Förstadsgatan street and did some shopping at Designtorget, a must visit for Scandinavian interior accessories and design.
Closer to the hotel we visited Interior design store Olsson & Gerthel and tasted some Swedish specialties at Konditori Katarina. Since August 1959 they serve high-quality pastries, we enjoyed some real sweet tasting including the famous ‘kanelbulle’ with lots of coffee to keep us warm.
Malmö isn’t that big and we only took a bus once, it is a city that’s easy to discover by feet and walking through the old town there is so much to see. A bit outside of the touristic area we found Atrium the most beautiful breakfast spot where we had a breakfast we still talk about.. Not only the food was delicious, the cafe - mostly visited by locals - was so well curated, with a tiny vide and a separate large minimalistic room filled with plants.
Atrium is worth a visit and excellent to combine with a visit to Ribersborgs Kallbadhus which is on walking distance. We can only imagine how it will be during Summer at the sea, from here we could see Malmö city with its iconic Turning Torso, a residential skyscraper and the tallest building in Scandinavia, at one side and the bridge we passed to reach Malmö from Copenhagen on the other side. The Bathhouse is a stunning piece of architecture that extends into the sea. At Ribersborgs you can take a sauna bath and swim with a sea view.
We loved discovering this charming city and would like to thank the city of Malmö for having us and experience it in our own way.
Travel w/ Style
While Autumn strikes in, I’m thinking about our perfect stay in Barcelona last Summer. The Alexandra Hotel turned out to be the best place for Scandinavian design addicts in this vibrant and beautiful city.
Hotel Alexandra Barcelona is a designer boutique hotel where fascinating history meets modern details and avant-garde. Designer furniture from the ‘50s and ‘60s and local photography in both public spaces and the rooms combined with original mosaic flooring, framed ceilings, and natural oak details. A perfect mix of Spanish hospitality and design with a Scandinavian touch.
The hotel, part of the Curio Collection by Hilton, offers 109 rooms of different styles and categories and 4 exclusive suites for holding all kinds of conventions, meetings and banquets. All completely equipped with the best service and technology. Alexandra Barcelona offers excellent dining experiences including a Catalan gastronomic breakfast buffet with local quality products, a two-floor brasserie featuring ingredients grown in their own vegetable garden, a Charcuterie bar with Catalan specialties. We stayed in a beautiful big room with a balcony looking over the green trees, a spacious bay window and a beautiful white bath in the room itself, the view over the roofs from the balcony bath was even more stunning.
Located in one of our favorite areas on Carrer de Mallorca in Eixample and close to the Passeig de Gràcia, the fashion, culture and commercial heart of the city, it was the perfect spot to discover more of Barcelona. Visiting one of the beaches of Barcelona, but also going a bit further to a smaller town, more south, along the coast for a day. Spain can be really hot and luckily the Alexandra hotel has a swimming pool for guests next to the cozy restaurant and patio area if you do not want to go to the beach or need to stay around the hotel.
Photography: beeldSTEIL for w/ Style
Travel w/ Style in collaboration with Alexandra Hotel
From now I am the owner of the best kitchen tool ever: the Nut Hammer designed by Roger Arquer for Menu. It looks and feels like a real tool. It’s heavy and does what it is made for: cracking nuts fast and easy.
I must admit I’m not necessarily a cooking enthusiast. Though, I do love a good and beautiful kitchen essential. And the Nutt Hammer guarantees much more fun moments in the kitchen. I eat a lot of nuts for both breakfast, as a snack and in salads. So this is a welcome addition to my kitchen equipment.
The handle is made of dark ash wood. Combined with cast iron and a black silicone cap. It gives the design a masculine look. It’s a great combination of aesthetics and function. How does it work? Simply put a nut in the cap and hit it against a hard and smooth surface. The cast iron will do the work and crack the nut. You don’t have to slam it too hard. And no mess, because the cracked nut remains in the black cap. The Nutt Hammer works with different types of nuts, like walnuts, hazelnuts and almonds.
Menu’s philosophy is very simple. They want to make the world better en less complicated: a little bit nicer to wake up. This Danish brand collaborates with talented and creative designers all over the world to make objects and high quality design with a crisp Scandinavian look. The result of their cooperation with Spanish designer Roger Arquer meets these values and they created a clever solution for modern living and everyday use.
It is not an indispensable tool, but certainly a very nice way to crack some healthy nuts.
Photography and styling beeldSTEIL | Wen van Woudenberg
In collaboration with mister design
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Now the first signs of Autumn are visible, I long for the days when Desiree and visited Barcelona and Madrid this Summer. During this city trip, we photographed and enjoyed several hotels for our Travel w/ Style section. Among which the Cotton House Hotel in Barcelona, located on the former site of the ‘Cotton Textile Foundation’ A 19th- century building centrally situated only a few steps away from shops and restaurants.
We were welcomed by the lovely team and were really impressed by the beautiful entrance of the building, a vestibule covered in mirrors. The building is really elegant with several great rooms and lounges where the bar and restaurant are located, a luminous glass conservatory and a 300 sqm terrace filled with beautiful greens. Impressive stairways lead to the old library and the so-called L’Atelier which was the office to which guild-members withdrew so that their tailors and shirt-makers could take their measurements.
The Cotton House recovers the essence of this tradition by offering its guests an artisanal tailor service provided by the professionals of Santa Eulalia, the most prestigious tailor establishment in Barcelona. A tailor from that firm will come to the Atelier to take guests measurements, advise and select unique fabrics of the highest quality to make the desired garments.
The decoration of the 83 rooms, including five spacious suites, is inspired on cotton through a chromatic combination of the white, black and sepia of the cotton plant and everything it evokes: softness, comfort, delicacy and naturalness, which are materialized in the fabrics and textures of the very highest quality.
It was really warm when we were in Barcelona and it was great to start the day with breakfast in the beautiful garden. What we loved most about our stay though was the early morning swim in the exterior pool located on the sixth floor and seeing the city wake up before breakfast.
Photography: beeldSTEIL for w/ Style
Travel w/ Style in collaboration with Cotton House Hotel