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THE PERFECT MINIMALISTIC WALL CALENDAR

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Wallpley is a small creative studio based in Oslo, Norway who believe less is more and this reflects in their designs. This gorgeous wall calendar comes in both pink (as seen here) and grey, and is the perfect way to get organised in 2017! I love the minimal, nordic style and the fact that I will be able to write all my appointments and important notes on it.

It would also make for a great christmas present for a Scandinavian design lover, head over to the webshop, and if you do decide to make a purchase use the code thatscandifeeling to get 20% off any items! (Code is valid until end of 2016.)

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// Photo credit; Ingrid Opstad

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MEET ISELIN LINDMARK DUBLAND // THE NORWEGIAN BEHIND BIRK COFFEE TABLE

You might have heard of her, well at least if you are interested in furniture design and follow the famous design blog Design Milk. Earlier this year they did a feature about one of her designs; the BIRK coffee table which she debuted at the Stockholm Furniture & Light Fair 2016 ( >> read their post here)

Well, I thought it would be a great idea to learn more about her and to get her to give us a couple of interior tips seeing she is also a great stylist.

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BIO: Iselin Lindmark Dubland was born and raised in Sandnes, Norway and moved to Bergen in 2009 to study interior at the Norwegian Creative School. Alongside the studies she worked at an interior store called Bolia, a Scandinavian furniture & home accessories brand. While working there her passion for styling grew; after spending 3 years studying furniture design and interior architecture at the Bergen Academy of Art & Design she is just about to start her Master. She also works as an interior stylist for Heem – what a dream job!

Q1 // What inspires you in your design process?

I would say it’s a combination of different elements, as I often work on the basis of a given situation and / or users experience. I like to keep myself updated and get general inspiration using Pinterest and Instagram, and I regularly check Dezeen.com which writes about everything from architecture, interiors to design. One of my biggest inspirations is my mobile camera, which I use to capture moments and all kinds of situations. Otherwise, I gain a lot from working together with other designers, the ability to use each other as “sparring partners” is something I find incredibly important. Then you can build on each other’s ideas, as it is rare that you will sit there alone with every answer.

A big inspiration in my time as a student has been fields trips. With my school we have traveled to Ålesund to gain insight into the furniture industry in western Norway, visited Stockholm Furniture Fair and been in London during the London Design Week 2015. A project I was very intrigued by when I visited LDW was the project of the Swedish designer Kristina Schultz “100 days of need and greed”. She had emptied out her families home with a goal that they themselves should make the things they really wanted as and when they needed them, discovering along the way which objects they found essential in their life. This resulted in a very tactile, handmade and functional collection, including cutlery, dining tables, stools and toys for her daughter.

Q2 // In what way does your Scandinavian heritage affect your style?

I am quite influenced by the Scandinavian style, with its natural elements and clean lines. I think us Scandinavians have gained a lot of inspiration from the traditional cottage life, a somewhat simple style with natural materials and closeness to nature. I love the use of materials and design expression from the Scandinavian 60’s design, and admire classic designers from this period like Wegner, Arne Jacobsen, Torbjørn Afdal and Alf Sture to name a few.

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Q3 // Is there any particular Scandinavian designers & brands you like?

The Scandinavian brands I’m very fond of are Muuto, Hay and Normann Copenhagen, I think they make good, accessible design at a reasonable price with “typical” Scandinavian style. When it comes to Norwegian designers my favourites are Andersen & Voll, Andreas Engesvik, Silje Nesdal, Daniel Rybakken and Vera & Kyte. Andersen & Voll are very versatile and work with both furniture design and interior, they have also developed fabrics for textile giant FEBRIKS. Daniel Rybakken stock incredibly exciting light sources, blurring out the lines between art and design in a nice way. While Vera & Kyte makes simple and playful objects that I fall for every time they launch a new product.

Q4 // You are currently working as an interior stylist, can you tell us more about what this means and how you started?

Interior styling was something I came across from a friend of mine who I worked with at Bolia. Her name is Cathrine Bækken, and she is the founder of the company Heem that I now work for. She is incredibly talented and I’m so glad that she wanted me to join her! We had previously done a lot of styling jobs together at Bolia, and therefore knew we would work well together. This summer I have been working with her styling a lot of beautiful properties around Bergen. We work exclusively for the Bergen section of EiE (which is a real estate agency), and closely with the photographers. This is great because we get to be a part of the whole process, making sure the houses look their best before the trading begins! Our photographers only uses daylight when they shoot to get a natural result, we are lucky to have the lovely Nordic daylight to work with!

It’s so exciting to work with so many different homes, some a bit soulless and “standard” and others older and venerable. The best senario is when we find lots of items owned by the customer that we can work with, it enables us to create more unique styles and get exciting results that showcases the property in the best possible way.

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One of my favorite projects was a detached house lying just below Fløyfjellet in Bergen, with three floors full of beautiful, old furnitures and art. Here it was a matter of simply “just” cleaning the rooms and moving items around, and we had a great time doing so. It was like being on a treasure hunt full of vintage finds.

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Q5 // What do you think is most important to think about when styling your own home? Any personal tips and smart solutions?

I think the key is to focus on personal style and not just do what everyone else is doing by using certain items and things that matter to you. For me this is my grandfather’s old sketches and a Kay Bojesen wooden monkey toy which I inherited from him. The monkey used to hang on the lamp in his living room when I was a little girl so it reminds me of him. He was a Danish artist and very fond of Nordic design, so I like to think that my creativity and love for Nordic design stems from him.

For me it is incredibly important with smart solutions and hidden storage, maybe because I live in a very small apartment but also because I’m not fond of clutter and “visual noise”. In my home all nooks are utilised in the best possible way, and the furnishings are as flexible as possible. I love functional things, and living on a smaller surface has made me very selective about what I really need and what is allowed to be a part of my living space.

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Q6 // Any new and exciting furniture & interior trends?

We are a little bit tired of the technological life, and the constant strive to be “online” all the time. Because of this we will continue to see handmade products, and very tactile products that are a great contrast to the smooth screens we constantly have in our hand. I also think people want to own unique products that are of higher quality, such as for example handmade ceramics. Just look at IKEA who now has begun to launch “limited edition” collections as a result of cooperations with renowned designers such as Ilse Crawford, HAY and Tom Dixon. I find it exciting when good design becomes accessible to everyone, not to mention that good design doesn’t always need not cost an arm and a leg.. Other than that I’m also loving the fact that people now seem to dare to use more colours, a trend I hope will last!

Q7 // You designed several great products while studying. Tell us more about the ideas behind BIRK and TRI.

TRI was a lamp I made my first year at the academy. I wanted to create a lamp that reflected light and could be used to create a certain mood. Two of the angled surfaces of the light are shorter than the back part, resulting in more light coming through. At the same time the light is reflected beautifully from the larger, white surface.

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When it comes to the coffee table BIRK that I designed for the furniture fair in Stockholm, I based this on how you use a coffee table. To do research I got friends and acquaintances to send me pictures of their coffee tables, doing this I found a big everyday problem that many may not think about; – Where do you put the remote? The iPad? Your favourite lipstick or magazines that you would like to have nearby? From there I worked on how to create a coffee table with hidden storage for everything you need to keep close to the couch. After numerous sketches and models where I worked with the form and function of the storage part, the result was BIRK.

Through the research phase, I found out that most objects we usually keep on a coffee table are low, and therefore it doesn’t need a particularly high storage space. Because of this discovery the storage room itself is only 8 cm high. It is an integral part of the coffee table, and has a plate that is pushed to reach into it. The plate can be separated from the coffee table so you can easily clean it, or you can use it as a serving tray or on the couch to put your PC or other things on. I wanted the table to have a simple expression, the legs are therefore made to look like the “body” is just sitting right down on it without any effort.

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Q8 // What is That Scandinavian Feeling to you?

That Scandinavian Feeling for me is when I’m at the cottage and live a “slow life”, in front of the fireplace and wrapped up in woollen clothes, with a good mug of tea and an interior magazine. When the rain is pouring down outside and you hear the wind beat the rain the against the window while there is a crackling sound from in the fireplace. THAT’S when I have That Scandinavian Feeling!

// Photo credit: Dag Sverre Randen & Sofie Brovold

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A FEW GOOD NORWEGIAN THINGS // EXHIBITION IN NEW YORK

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If you are in the New York area I recommend that you check out the A Few Good Things exhibition opening this Friday at the Terminal Stores! It is an inaugural exhibition celebrating the best in new Norwegian design to the US audience, presenting the work of 10 of Norway’s most exciting emerging and established talents. I saw quite a few of these designs earlier in April at the Structure exhibition in Milano, and will also be posting a blogpost soon of photos I took there.

A FEW GOOD DESIGNERS;

Anderssen & Voll will be presenting the sculptural cast-iron Ildhane (translates as ‘fire rooster’ in English) Candleholders. With its unusual and expressive shape it truly is a decorative piece of art. They will also show the beautiful Una Blankets produced in collaboration with textile company Røros Tweed. Una is a powerful name with a Old Norse origin. The meaning is “she who thrives,” and the high quality wool comes from sheep that graze in the Norwegian mountains which has excellent elasticity, softness and durability.

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Andreas Bergsaker is showcasing new prototypes of wooden products, including his Birch & Brass Clock, the Mushi Lamps, the Piedistallo Lamp and Equal Serving Tray. The simple yet solid Birch & Brass table clock is designed to give you the feeling that time goes by in a slower manner..

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Fimbul is a practice dealing with problem solving in finding the balance between functionality, material characteristics, production methods and aesthetics. They are showing off their Soft Square Stools, MUPU Shelves, Canary Wharf Brushes and The Stone Elephant. I particularly like the cute Stone Elephant, a playful puzzle made of rocks from the quarries which is a unique stone found only in Larvik, Norway. It comes flat packed and is meant to be assembled at home. A fun little character that acts both as a toy and a decorative object in tour home.

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Kristine Five Melvær is exhibiting the Vava stacking stool as well as the beautiful and colourful Åsmund Pillows and Blankets. She is also displaying 5 of the new heavy-duty nylon Heymat Doormats; Heim, Mix, Hand, Eng, and Spot. These are the perfect way to add a bit of colour to your hallway or entrance space.

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Røros Tweed_Åsmund Blankets

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Lars Beller Fjetland is exhibiting Monstera, a set of cutlery created in collaboration with Norway’s oldest silverware producer Theodor Olsen Sølvvareverksted. I saw these at the Structure exhibition and thought they were simply stunning!

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Martin Solem is displaying the Solem Table, a innovative lightweight and minimalistic table designed with hotels in mind. A great feature is the U-channel legs that is created to conceal cabling.

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noidoi is inspired by the differing cultural and professional backgrounds of its founders, a Norwegian & a Romanian. They are showcasing their On The Edge Lamp, Bølgen Trivet and Tube Candleholder. Inspired by the patterns of a heat wave, Bølgen (Norwegian for the wave) is a simple, sculptural trivet designed to protect table surfaces from hot pans and pots.

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Runa Klock is showing her Moving Mamas Cutting Boards and Salad Servers, The Thief Ceramics, Bokhari Baskets & Mats and the Core Lamp. Core is a table lamp made from natural stone with clean and simple shapes.

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Sara Skotte will be presenting her collection of vases called Dialogue and the five-piece porcelain tableware set Vei. Vei has a lovely colour palette of white, black, bright orange, grey and greyish blue in combination with dark brown earthenware and oak, giving off a sophisticated yet calming feel to a dining table.

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Sara Skotte, keramikkdesigner, fotograf Anne Bråtveit

Sverre Uhnger creates products that underline the inherent qualities of their materials and production methods, and is showcasing two of his wood pieces; Trace & Vert. Vert is a series of five beautiful wooden trays created to highlight Scandinavian food culture by presenting fresh produce in a natural way.

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The A Few Good Things exhibition is curated by Metropolis magazine’s editorial director Paul Makovsky and produced by the Norwegian Centre for Design and Architecture (DOGA) in partnership with the Norwegian Consulate General in New York and the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. It is presented at Wanted Design on May 13th – 16th as a part of the NYC x DESIGN — New York City’s celebration of global design. If you do go let me know how it is, as I would love to hear!

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SCENTSOUVENIR FROM NORWAY

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The ScentSouvenir is a cute way for someone to take home or share a unique piece of Norway in the form of scent. It is handmade in Norway using only natural essences, and has therapeutic effects because the aroma of spruce is known to be both grounding & stimulating.

Open the lid, close your eyes and breathe in the true essence of the Norwegian Woods: a blend made from different types of spruce from the deep forests of Østerdalen.

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The box contains “aroma beads” infused with carefully-selected essential oils, and it comes in a lovely little printed cotton bag with a small brochure inside. Find it here & dream about the Norwegian woods..

// Photo credit: ScentSouvenir

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