ingridesignblog.com

About Ingrid Opstad

https://www.flickr.com/photos/ingridesign/

Hi there. I’m Ingrid, I am a graphic designer, and I love being creative. I get inspired by everyday life, and you can find traces of my Norwegian identity in alot of what I do. This blog will be a space for me to share my work but also somewhere I will post about things I like, places I go and things I experience. Hope you enjoy it!

Posts by Ingrid Opstad :

LITTLE EVERYDAY THINGS YOU CAN DO TO BOOST YOUR MOOD ON A BAD DAY

We all have them, those bad days when everything gets a bit too much and you just feel like crawling under a blanket and hide. On those days there are many small everyday things we can do to feel at least a little bit better, things that will boost your mood and improve your day.

Over the years I have figured out things that work for me, everyday things that will make me happy when I feel blue, and I thought I would share a couple of them here with you. So, here are my top tips on how to make yourself feel happier on a bad day;

When I wake up and feel a bit down I love to take my time with breakfast, after all, it is the most important meal of the day! Starting the day with a little pick-me-up like delicious pancakes or a lovely chia pudding with fresh fruit certainly, sets a good base for the rest of the day. I believe it’s important to create a lovely setting too, so make sure the table is set even if it is just for you.

Lately, my favorite go-to breakfast on those days are these delicious banana pancakes. They are so easy to make and as long as you prepare the batter first thing when you wake up and let it rest while getting ready for the day, they don’t take much time to make either. (This is so that they will rise and get nice & fluffy). To make these pancakes I mix together 1 egg with about 1dl natural yogurt, then add about 70g of flour and half a teaspoon of natron. I also melt a spoon of butter and mash up a banana to add in at the end. If the batter is too thick I also add a bit of milk, but I always play it a bit by ear. So next time you wake up and feel a bit rubbish, try these pancakes for yourself and see!

If I’m feeling a bit down I love browsing through my photos, it reminds me of better days and those little moments that I like to remember. It can either be the photos saved on my phone, tagged photos on Facebook, my Instagram feed or photos and albums I have printed. It is bound to put a smile on your face, and a way to remember for yourself that there are plenty of good days!

And while you’re at it, send a text to a friend to plan your next get-together. Having something to look forward to will make you feel a lot better and will create even more memories to look back at.

I work from home, and I see a big difference in my mood if I don’t listen to music during the day vs if I do. When I need a little extra boost on a bad day I put on my favorite music and sing out load (even if I don’t always know the lyrics..) It’s funny how a little thing like being a bit silly can make you feel so much better.

A walk in the park or in the neighborhood always makes me feel better, the combination of fresh air and exercise seems to always do the trick. I live close to a large park so in spring and summertime I try to get out in the morning for a walk or run after breakfast. Since I do work from home I see it as my “walking to work time” where I can reflect on things I have to do that day, or just clear my mind completely. If I have quite a busy morning a lunch walk or evening stroll is just as good. The change in scenery is something that will boost your mood and make you feel ready to tackle the rest of the day.

It’s important to have little everyday luxuries, something you do for yourself which you know will make a difference. I recently discovered linen spray, and I think it’s such a great way to prepare your bedroom by spraying a bit on the sheets after making your bed in the morning. Those days when I do it, by the end of the day when I crawl into bed it does lift my mood and helps me get a good nights sleep. So find one of life’s little luxuries to start doing yourself, something a bit extra that will spark joy and help you get through the day.

You know the feeling, you are not hungry but you just need something.. Well do it, have a little treat and don’t feel bad about it! Sometimes those little indulgences can be a little mood boost and exactly what you need to feel better. For me, it can be anything from salty licorice, biscuits, some chocolate or a coffee.

If the blues hit you, I recommend getting yourself some beautiful fresh flowers to brighten up your day. While having that walk I mentioned earlier, either pop into your nearest flower shop and purchase a lovely bouquet for yourself or pick some wildflowers in the park. Just the idea of walking down the street with flowers in my hand makes me smile, and when you get home and put them in a vase every time you see them it will for sure lift your spirit. As a matter of fact, I think I will go out and do just that now to make today more bearable…

What little everyday things do you do to feel better on one of those days?

// Photo credit: Ingrid Opstad

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VISITING NAMI CONCEPT STORE IN BERGAMO // FOR NORDIC DESIGN & HYGGE LOVERS

Living in Italy I do miss the homeware stores we have back home in Norway, always beautifully decorated and stocked full of goodies for Scandinavian interior lovers. So when I discovered a new store opening nearby with that same Nordic vibe that I love, I knew I had to visit. The NAMI Concept Store is located in the small but vibrant town Bergamo, about an hour drive from Milano. If you are planning a trip to this area I would highly recommend stopping by, the store is gorgeous and it has a great selection of homeware items in different price ranges. When walking in you immediately feel welcome, it is like entering someone’s living room full of treasures to discover. Warning; you will probably not leave empty handed…

On my visit I had a lovely chat with the owner Stefania, she told me all about her idea of creating an emotional store where design, quality, and craftsmanship are fused together. Her mission to enhance our daily life with little details chosen with care and attention for nature do come to life in NAMI, a store with the perfect Scandinavian feeling here in Italy.

BIO: Stefania, 28 years old, is a graduate in Design and has been working as a photographer for some years while cultivating her passion for art in all its forms. In the last few years, she has organized different exhibitions and collaborated as art director for a young artists collective called Progetto Meteora. She says she is an aesthete and likes to discover things that satisfy her taste; because of this during the last few years, she has approached Nordic design and therefore felt the need to bring up some not so well known artisans and brands for people to discover. For her, Nordic design is the right compromise between liveability, design, and nature.

Q1 // Tell us more about NAMI and why you decided to focus on Scandinavian style and hygge?

The idea originated from a little dream of mine but was mostly led by the path I had taken such as my photography experience, design studies, and experiences in retail. This all became NAMI. I started off by taking part in local markets and followed with an e-commerce, then finally I recently opened my concept store which allowed me to have a physical place to show all the products I love. The store is today also a gallery and a workshop location.

Q2 // Which Scandinavian brands do you currently have in your store?

I have decided to focus on two main Danish brands; Bloomingville and Madam Stoltz. While the first is more modern and minimal, the second is rougher in the aesthetic but with an ethnic chic soul. I have chosen these two companies as their styles are diverging but at the same time they provide our concept store with a good view of my idea of Scandinavian design, the right mix between the new (Bloomingville) and the lived (Madam Stoltz). We also stock Meraki skin care products.

Q3 // What are your future plans for NAMI?

In the future, I can see definite room for art exhibitions, workshops, and collaborations with new brands and creative people, in this way we will be able to widen the network of art and Nordic design lovers.

Q4 // What do you think is most important to think about when styling your own home? Any personal tips and smart solutions?

There are many elements to consider when giving a homogeneous and uniform style to your own home. Everything needs to appear as comfortable as possible since we have to see it as the place where we will spend the majority of our time. First of all, I believe the consistency of the palette is essential, the number of colours does not really matter, instead the ability to combine them correctly is key. Another essential aspect is the correct use of empty walls. Sometimes we tend to overload them as they can feel quite bare, in this case just the use of a wallpaper with the right colours and patterns is a great solution.

Q5 // Any new furniture & interior trends you are excited about?

Yes! One of the most fascinating trends for me is the use of plants in the home for decorative and other purposes, finally, we are bringing nature back inside. Apart from looking nice in the environment, plants appear to provide a relaxing feeling. They are also natural humidifiers, have healing power, minimize allergies risks by purifying the rooms and reduce the level of stress.

I would like to further develop these aspects in my concept store as well. At the moment you can find plants such as cactus, pilea, aloe and terrarium, but for the near future, I am planning to start retailing the beautiful vase by Boskke which aims to save space and water.

Q6 // How do you like to relax, how do you hygge?

During my free time, I like to discover new places and I am always hunting for new inspiration as, believe it or not, I find it very relaxing!

Q7 // What is That Scandinavian Feeling to you?

For me, it means to be able to understand deeply all the aspects of a different culture from mine and turn it into inspiration.

If you would like to visit the store, you can find it on Via Broseta in Bergamo. View all items available and shop online here, and if you do go let me know as I would love to hear what you though!

// Photo credit: Ingrid Opstad

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NORWAY IS THE HAPPIEST COUNTRY OF 2017

So it’s official; Norway is the happiest place on earth, at least according to The World Happiness Report just released today on the International Day of Happiness! This report is based on measuring how happy people are and why, and it is great to see that all the Nordic countries are in the top 10. In fact, the Nordic countries have been dominating the top spots in this report for all of the five years it has been published.

Top 10 happiest countries 2017;

    1. Norway
    2. Denmark
    3. Iceland
    4. Switzerland
    5. Finland
    6. Netherlands
    7. Canada
    8. New Zealand
    9. Australia
    10. Sweden

“What works in the Nordic countries is a sense of community and understanding in the common good.” – Meik Wiking (chief executive officer of the Happiness Research Institute, Copenhagen)

// Photo credit: Ingrid Opstad

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NORDIC PLACES I WANT TO VISIT // HAPPOLATI RESTAURANT IN OSLO

If you are planning a trip to Oslo be sure to check out this beautiful restaurant designed by Anderssen & Voll. Happolati is located on St. Olavs Plass and is a lovely mix of Asia and Scandinavia, with both the interior and the food inspired by Japan with a Nordic twist. The space looks open and inviting, and the dark floor blends nicely in with the bar. I love the creative wood lamp on the wall which reminds me of origami, a lovely detail!

Tempted to visit? Have a look at the menu and make a reservation here.

// Photo credit: Elisabeth Heier

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SELECTION OF 11 BEAUTIFUL SCANDINAVIAN DESIGN FLOWER VASES FOR SPRING

With spring just around the corner, it’s the perfect time to start decorating your home with beautiful flowers. I see this season as a new beginning, a chance to add some new little home decor pieces and colour! As I’ve mentioned before green is a big hit this year, but I love pairing it up with a lovely nude pink tone and white for a fresh vibe.

Here are my top picks of beautiful Scandinavian design vases to inspire you!


  1. FLOWER VASE OLIVE OPAL BY MARIMEKKO
  2. LAVA VASE BY STUDIO MACURA
  3. HEXAGON PINK VASE BY FERM LIVING
  4. UNICO VASE ROSE BY STUDIO ARHOJ FOR KÄHLER
  5. ROYAL VASE GREEN BY ARNE JACOBSEN / DESIGN LETTERS
  6. ALBA VASE BY ANNA KRAITZ FOR DESIGN HOUSE STOCKHOLM
  7. ILSE VASE STAINLESS STEEL BY GEORG JENSEN
  8. FOLDED VASE TALL BY MENU
  9. THE MIE VASE BY BJØRN WIINBLAD
  10. GREEN GLASS VASE BY HAY
  11. BALANCE 3 VASES SET BY HALLGEIR HOMSTVEDT FOR MUUTO

 

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COZY & GREEN RETRO HOME IN SWEDEN

Would you have dark green walls in your home? After seeing this beautiful home I am very tempted. It belongs to the Swedish couple Cajsa Berndtsdotter & Torbjörn Olsson living in Gothenburg and is full personality.

I love the dark green used here, and the combination of the green along with vintage, brown tones is perfect. The gorgeous artwork on the wall and the personal decor items around the apartment really gives it a unique look.

The kitchen has a minimal yet personal look, and I especially like the use of the String shelves and the herringbone tiles on the wall.

The bedroom has a retro wallpaper that gives off a warm and welcoming vibe.

“I love the decor from the 1950-70’s. Everything from colour to shape is amazing! I also like to mix it up with new to get your own style. But the best is to fins flea market bargains of furniture or fittings. It makes the home so personal.” – Cajsa Berndtsdotter

// Photo credit: Andrea Papini via Elle Decoration

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